Podcast

Stalin Falsified the Data, Then Killed the Statisticians

How the Soviet Union facilitated the famine of the 1930s that killed millions of Ukrainians, then buried the evidence.

redfamine

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The painful history between Russia and Ukraine did not begin with Moscow’s invasion of Crimea in 2014. In the 1930s, the Soviet Union’s policies led to a famine that killed more than 3 million Ukrainians. Joseph Stalin, who directed his paranoia and brutality particularly at Ukrainians, sent his henchmen to confiscate food and block roads. Later, he falsified documents to keep the famine from being written into history.

The painful history between Russia and Ukraine did not begin with Moscow’s invasion of Crimea in 2014. In the 1930s, the Soviet Union’s policies led to a famine that killed more than 3 million Ukrainians. Joseph Stalin, who directed his paranoia and brutality particularly at Ukrainians, sent his henchmen to confiscate food and block roads. Later, he falsified documents to keep the famine from being written into history.

The story is told in Anne Applebaum’s recent book, Red Famine: Stalin’s War on Ukraine. Applebaum, who has won a Pulitzer Prize, joins us this week on our podcast, The ER.

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