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The Harvest of Sorrow Hardcover – 1 Oct 1986


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Hardcover, 1 Oct 1986
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Product details

  • Hardcover
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press (1 Oct 1986)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0888641109
  • ISBN-13: 978-0888641106
  • Product Dimensions: 23.4 x 16.3 x 3.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 2,026,011 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Dr. R. Brandon TOP 1000 REVIEWER on 14 Feb 2014
It is an arresting thought that by the time of Hitler’s rise to power in 1933 Stalin had already directly caused the deaths of more people in the Soviet Union than had died among all the combatant nations of the First World War. Robert Conquest sets out to explain how this came about, especially during the terrible years of 1929 to 1933, in Soviet Russia and even more tragically in the Ukraine, the North Caucasus and Kazakhstan.
The author describes Lenin’s battle to subdue breakaway nations such as the Ukraine and to impose collectivisation (as a means of control) on the peasants, which resulted in the Peasant War of 1917 to 1921 and the accompanying famine. Western readers will have heard of the role of White Russian anti-Bolshevik forces in the civil war in Russia but how many are familiar with the much more widespread and prolonged Peasant War against the forces of Communism?
With the impending death of Lenin we have the bid for power by Stalin and his struggle to achieve dominance over his rivals on the left and right. Coincident with this struggle for power is the suppression of the so-called ‘kulaks’ or rich peasant landlords, who had all long since been deprived of their land by the poorer peasants immediately following the revolution, so that this was a political bidding game of terror against a fictional opponent by elements in the Politburo. This directly resulted in the deaths and deportation of hundreds of thousands of innocent peasants. During this time we have the stalemate of 1921 to 1927 and the announcement of the New Economic Policy (NEP) when peasants were allowed a tiny measure of freedom to develop their own land, such was the dire shortage of food and the recalcitrance of the population. This was not to last.
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