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By Pavel Polian

In the course of his reign over the previous Soviet Union, Joseph Stalin oversaw the compelled resettlement of six million humans -- a maniacal ardour that he used for social engineering. The Soviets weren't the 1st to thrust resettlement on its inhabitants -- an incredible attribute of totalitarian structures -- yet by way of sheer numbers, applied sciences used to deport humans and the lawlessness which observed it, Stalin's approach used to be the main extraordinary. Six million humans of alternative social, ethnic, and professions have been resettled earlier than Stalin's dying. Even at the present time, the aftermath of such deportations mostly predetermines occasions which happen within the northern Caucasus, Crimea, the Baltic republics, Moldavia, and western Ukraine. Polian's quantity is the 1st try and comprehensively research the historical past of pressured and semivoluntary inhabitants pursuits inside of or prepared through the Soviet Union. Contents diversity from the early Nineteen Twenties to the rehabilitation of repressed nationalities within the Nineteen Nineties facing inner (kulaks, ethnic and political deportations) and overseas compelled migrations (German internees and occupied territories). An abundance of evidence, figures, tables, maps, and an exhaustively-detailed annex will function vital assets for extra researches.

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Additional info for Against their will. The history and geography of forced migration in the USSR.

Example text

And very rarely were these migrations voluntary. In essence, the entire contemporary history of the Jewish people has been a succession of ceaseless migrations, a sequence of mass wandering and suffering. This is a history of “The Galut,” or expulsion. In 1290, all Jews were expelled from England, and then from France in 1292. The expellees settled predominantly in Spain. However, in 1492—under the pressure of the Inquisition—all Jews (except those baptized, or Marranos) were driven out of Spain, and in 1497 from Portugal too: they moved to Italy, North Africa, and Turkey.

Along with Germans, Austrians and Hungarians, Poles, Jews and others were deported too (the only exception was allowed for Czechs, Serbs and Rusyns who signed a pledge “not to undertake any harmful actions against Russia”). 22 Incidentally, the exile was carried out at the expense of the deportees themselves. If they did not have sufficient means for relocating, they were conveyed to the destination as prisoners. ” This arbitrary policy reached its climax at the point when General N. Yanushkevich,23 the chief of staff of the Supreme Commander-in-Chief, issued an order on 5 January 1915 to cleanse a 100-verst-wide 24 zone along the Russian Baltic coastline of all German and Austro-Hungarian nationals aged from 17 to 60.

All such peoples were deported not merely from their historical homeland, but also from other cities and districts, as well as demobilized from the army, which shows that such ethnic deportations embraced the entire country (we term this type of repression “total deportation”). Apart from their homeland, the “punished people” were deprived of their autonomy if they had any before, in other words, of their relative sovereignty. In essence, ten peoples in the USSR were subjected to total deportation.

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