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Thread: What is real scale of the “Stalin’s repressions”?

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    What is real scale of the “Stalin’s repressions”?

    What is real scale of the “Stalin’s repressions”?
    http://www.geocities.com/CapitolHill/Pa ... epress.htm
    (Russian original)
    Igor Pykhalov

    (
    Comment:

    NKVD (Narodnyi Komissariat Vnutrennikh Del) - People’s commissariat of Internal Affairs
    People’s Commissariat of Internal Affairs (NKVD),

    GULAG (Glavnoe Upravlenie LAGerey) - Central directorate of camps,

    MVD (Ministerstvo Vnutrennikh Del) - Ministry of Internal Affairs.

    NKVD (reformatory labor) camp, GULAG (reformatory labor) camp, MVD (reformatory labor) camp are the same.
    NKVD (reformatory labor) settlement, GULAG (reformatory labor) settlement, MVD (reformatory labor) settlement are the same.

    As GULAG was a department of NKVD, then NKVD was reorganized into MVD in 1946 as all People’s commissariats were reorganized into Ministries.

    “Memorial” is a society of the furious fighters against the “totalitarian regime”.
    )

    What is real scale of the “Stalin’s repressions”?
    Igor Pykhalov

    (
    Comment:

    NKVD (Narodnyi Komissariat Vnutrennikh Del) - People’s commissariat of Internal Affairs
    People’s Commissariat of Internal Affairs (NKVD),

    GULAG (Glavnoe Upravlenie LAGerey) - Central directorate of camps,

    MVD (Ministerstvo Vnutrennikh Del) - Ministry of Internal Affairs.

    NKVD (reformatory labor) camp, GULAG (reformatory labor) camp, MVD (reformatory labor) camp are the same.
    NKVD (reformatory labor) settlement, GULAG (reformatory labor) settlement, MVD (reformatory labor) settlement are the same.

    As GULAG was a department of NKVD, then NKVD was reorganized into MVD in 1946 as all People’s commissariats were reorganized into Ministries.

    “Memorial” is a society of the furious fighters against the “totalitarian regime”.
    )

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    1. Introduction
    Almost all publicated works broaching a subject about number of the repressed can be related to two groups. One of them includes works of accusers of “the totalitarian regime”, calling astronomic numbers of many millions of the executed and imprisoned. And at the same time, these “finders for the truth” hard dissembled an archive data, including published, feigning as if the data don’t exist. For basing of their numbers they either appeal to one another or simply come to nothing more than to say phrases like “by my calculating”, “I am convinced” and etc.
    However any conscientious researcher, being occupied in research of the problem, rather quickly finds out that besides “memoirs of the eye-witnesses” there is mass of documentary sources (in the stocks of the Central State Archive of the October revolution, supreme government bodies of the USSR - Центральный государственный архив Октябрьской революции, высших органов государственной власти и органов государственного управления СССР (ЦГАОР СССР) there were revealed several thousand units of issue of the documents related to the GULAG’s activity).
    Having familiarized with the archive documents, such a researcher makes certain with astonishment that a scale of the repressions, about which we “know” due to mass media, not only disagrees with the facts but is overstated dozens of times more. After that the researcher is faced with the dilemma: professional ethics demands to publish obtained data but on the other hand that may build up a reputation of Stalin’s defender. As result there usually is some “compromise” published work containing both standard set of antistalin’s epithets and curtsies in address of Solzhenitsin & Co, and information on number of the repressed that in contrast to the published works from first group is not spined out of thin air and not an entire fabrication but is confirmed by documents from archives.

    2. How many were repressed in all?
    The most well-known of published documents containing combined information on the repressions is the following staff report addressed to Khruschev:


    1 February 1954
    To comrade Khruschev N. S., the secretary of Central Committee of the CPSU

    In connection with the incoming in Central Committee of the CPSU signals from a number of the people about unlawfully conviction for counter-revolutionary crimes in past years by panel of judges of OGPU, troikas of NKVD, Particular consultation, Military panel of judges, courts and military tribunals and in accordance with your instruction about the necessity to review cases on the persons who were convicted of a counter-revolutionary crimes and now are keeping in prisons and in camps we report:

    In this period from 1921 to the present time there were convicted of a counter-revolutionary crimes - 3,777,380 persons,
    including :
    to extreme penalty – 642,980 persons,
    to prisons and camps for period of 25 years and lower – 2,369,220 persons,
    to exile and banishment – 765,180 persons.

    From the sum number of the convicts approximately there were convicted:
    2,900,000 persons - by the panel of judges of OGPU, troikas of NKVD, Particular consultation
    and
    877,000 persons – by courts, Military panel of judges, Special panel of judges and military tribunals.

    It oughts to mention that established on the basis of decree the Central Executive Committee and the Council of People’s Commissars of the USSR (ЦИК и СНК СССР) of 5 November 1934 Particular consultation under NKVD of the USSR, which had existed till 1 September 1953, convicted 442,531 persons, including to extreme penalty – 10,101 persons, to deprivation of liberty – 360,921 persons, to exile and banishment (in limits of the country) – 57,539 persons and to other penalty (reckoning the time under arrest, expulsion to abroad, forced medical treatment) – 3,970 persons ...

    General public prosecutor R.Rudenko
    Minister of Internal Affairs S.Kruglov
    Minister of Justice K.Gorshenin


    Thus as it appears from the quoted document, altogether from 1921 to the beginning of the 1954 by political accusations there were sentenced to death 642,980 persons, to deprivation of liberty – 2,369,220 persons, to exile – 765,180. It oughts also to have in view that not all sentences were executed. For example from 15 July 1939 till 20 April 1940 there were convicted of a disorganization of the camp order and manufacturing to extreme penalty – 201 prisoners, however then for part of them extreme penalty was replaced by imprisonment for term from 10 up to 15 years. In 1934 there were keeping in camps 3849 prisoners who were convicted to extreme penalty with replacement by deprivation of liberty, in 1935 - 5671, in 1936 - 7303, in 1937 - 6239, in 1938 - 5926, in 1939 - 3425, in 1940 - 4037.

    3. Number of prisoners.
    Thanks to brain washing of many years, a reader “knows” well about millions of the executed and tens of millions, who were sent to camps, and is ready to be sceptical about these numbers and exclaims: “Are you really sure that information from the staff report corresponds to fact?”
    So let apply for more detailed statistics, especially because contrary to the assurances of the “fighters against totalitarianism” such a data not only are available in archives, but were published repeatedly.
    Let start with data about number of the prisoners in GULAG camps. I remind that convicts of a term of imprisonment upper than 3 years as a rule served their sentence in reformatory labor camp (ITL), convicts of a lower term - in reformatory labour settlement (ITK).

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    However for those who used to take Solzhenitsin’s opuses as the Holy scripture even direct references to archive records are frequently not convincing.
    They claim: “This is NKVD records consequently they are falsified. From whence these figures that were produced there had come?”
    So specially for these distrustful gentlemen I give a couple of concrete examples wherefrom “these figures” come. Thus, year 1935:

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    Four years later:


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    However, as mentioned above, besides NKVD camps (ITL) there were also NKVD reformatory labour settlements (ITK). Before the fall of 1938 ITK along with prisons were subordinated to the NKVD department of imprisonment places (OMZ). Therefore for 1935-1938 I have found for the present only their combined statistics:


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    Since 1939 settlements (ITK) were subordinated to GULAG, and prisons were subordinated to the NKVD Central prison’s office (GTU).


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    Information in the table presents numbers on the middle of each month. Moreover again for especially strong antistalinists, there is separate column that presents information on 1 January of the each year (marked by red color). This information was taken from article of A. Kokurin placed on the “Memorial” website http://www.memo.ru/history/NKVD/GULAG/articles/r4-2.htm

    In the article among other things there are pointed references to concrete archive records. In addition one who wishes can read an article of the same author in magazine “Military historical archive” - "Военно-исторический архив".

    Now we can compile summary table for numbers of prisoners in the USSR under Stalin:



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    One cannot say that these numbers are something like a revelation. Beginning at 1990 such a data was cited in a whole series of published works. In this way article of L.Ivashov and A.Emelin published in 1991 was affirmed that total number of prisoners in the camps (ITL) and settlements (ITK) on 1.03.1940 was 1,668,200 persons, on 22.06.1941 - 2.3 millions, on 1.07.1944 г. - 1.2 millions.

    V.Nekrasov in his book “13 “ iron” people's commissar” - "Тринадцать "железных" наркомов" informs that “in the places of deprivation of liberty” there were in 1933 - 334 thousands prisoners, in 1934 - 510 thousands, in 1935 - 991 thousands, in 1936 - 1296 thousands; on 21 December 1944 prisoners in the camps (ITL) and settlements (ITK) - 1,450,000; on 24 March 1953 in the same places - 2,526,402.

    According to information of A.Kokurin and N.Petrov (that is especially demonstration inasmuch as both authors are connected with “Memorial” society, and N.Petrov even is “Memorial” member)


    on 1.07.1944 in NKVD camps and settlements there were about 1.2 million prisoners, and in NKVD prisons on the same date - 204,290. On 30.12.1945 in NKVD reformatory labour camps (ITL) there were about 640 thousand prisoners, in NKVD reformatory labour settlements (ITK) - about 730 thousands, in prisons - about 250 thousands, in bull-pens (KPZ) - about 38 thousands, in settlements for juvenile offenders - about 21 thousands, in NKVD special camps and prisons in Germany - about 84 thousands.

    Finally, here is information on number of prisoners in the places of deprivation of liberty that were subordinated to GULAG territorial bodies. This information was taken directly from the foregoing “Memorial” website
    http://www.memo.ru/history/NKVD/GULAG/articles/r4-1.htm


    Also there is recommended fundamental reference book recently published by “Memorial”: “Reformatory labour camp system in the USSR, 1923-1960”, Moscow, 1998, that is confirmatory for numbers indicated above.

    Thus, summation:
    During all the time of the Stalin’s ruling, number of prisoners simultaneously (at the same time) being in the places of deprivation of liberty never was more than 2 millions 760 thousands (of course, not counting German, Japanese and other prisoners of war). Hence, “tens of million GULAG’s prisoners” is out of the question.

    Now let count up quantity of prisoners per capita. On 1 January 1941, as shown in the table above, total number of prisoners in the USSR came to 2,400,422 persons. Exact population of the USSR on the moment is unknown, but usually it is estimated at 190 -195 millions. Consequently we get from 1230 to 1260 prisoners per every 100 thousand people. In the January 1950 number of prisoners in the USSR was 2,760,095 persons - it was maximum index for all the time of the Stalin’s ruling. Population of the USSR on the moment numbers 178 millions 547 thousands. We get 1546 prisoners per 100 thousand people.


    Now let calculate analogous index for the modern USA. At present time there are two sorts of places of deprivation of liberty: jail and prison (jail - приблизительный аналог наших изоляторов временного содержания, в jail содержатся подследственные, а также отбывают наказание осужденные на небольшие сроки, и prison - собственно тюрьма). So in the end of 1999 there were in prisons 1,366,721 persons, in jails - 687,973 (see: website “juridical statistics bureau”
    http://www.ojp.usdoj.gov/bjs/correct.htm
    , that in summary results in 2,054,694.

    Population of the USA in the end of 1999 was about 275 millions (see: “population of the USA”
    http://www.census.gov/cgi-bin/popclock

    consequently, we get 747 prisoners per 100 thousand people.
    Yes, it is twice as less than Stalin had, but not tenfold.


    Как-то несолидно для державы, взявшей на себя "защиту прав человека" в мировом масштабе. А если учесть темпы роста этого показателя - когда данная статья была впервые опубликована, он составлял (на середину 1998 г.) 693 заключенных на 100 тысяч американского населения, в 1990-1998 гг. средний ежегодный прирост числа обитателей jails - 4.9%, prisons - 6.9%, то, глядишь, лет через десять заокеанские друзья наших отечественных сталиноненавистников догонят и перегонят сталинский СССР.
    Кстати, тут в одной интернетовской дискуссии была высказано возражение - дескать, эти цифры включают всех арестованных американцев, в том числе и тех, кто задержан на несколько дней. Еще раз подчеркну - к концу 1999 года в США имелось 2 с лишним миллиона заключенных, которые отбывают срок или находятся в предварительном заключении. Что же касается арестов, то их в 1998 году было произведено 14.5 миллионов (см.: отчет ФБР).
    http://www.fbi.gov/ucr/98cius.htm


    Now a few words about total number of prisoners who have been in the places of imprisonment in the Stalin’s time. Of course, if we take the table above and sum rows, result will be incorrect as most GULAG prisoners were convict for a term more than one year. However, next staff report allows to fairly estimate number of those who passed through GULAG:


    6 August 1955

    To the chief of the GULAG of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of the USSR
    Major-General Egorov S.E.

    In sum total GULAG departments have custody of 11 million units of archive materials; 9,5 millions of them are personal prisoner’s files.

    Chief of the secretariat of the GULAG of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of the USSR
    Major Podymov.

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    4. How many of the prisoners were “political”.
    It is an utter fallacy to suppose that most prisoners under Stalin were “victims of the political repressions”:

    (Comment to table 9: the death penalty was repealed in 1947 and was put in force again in 1950 that shown in the table.)
    “Other penalties” imply reckoning the time under arrest, forced medical treatment, and expulsion to abroad. For year 1953 information is quoted only for the first half year. It follows from the table that number of the “repressed” was somewhat more, than it was named in the staff report addressed to Khruschev (see above) - 799,455 condemned to extreme penalty instead of 642,980, and 2,634,397 sentenced to imprisonment instead of 2,369,220. However, this difference is relatively not too large - numbers of the same order.
    Furthermore, there is one more moment - it is quite possible, that a fair amount criminals intruded into the cited table. The point is that one of the archive documents, on which based the table, has a pencil mark:

    Total sum of convicts during 1921-1938 is 2,944,879 persons; 30% (1062 thousands) of them - criminals.

    In this way total sum of the “repressed” is not more than 3 millions. However, additional work with sources is necessary conditions to finally make clear the question.
    Let examine now what percentage did the “repressed” form in full number of the GULAG’s inhabitants:

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    And then examining the structure of GULAG’s inhabitants in more detail in some moments of its existence.

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    Thus, most prisoners keeping in the NKVD camps were criminals, and as a rule there were less than 1/3 the “repressed”. With the exception of 1944-1948 when this category got deserving reinforcements in the persons of the “Vlasov’s”, “politsayes”, “starotaes” and other "fighters against communist tyranny». (Comment: “Vlasov’s”, “politsayes”, “starotaes” and other "fighters against communist tyranny» are those who served the Nazi). Still less there was percent of the "political" in the reformatory labour settlements.

    5. Death-rate among prisoners.
    Available archive documents allow to shed light on the question.



    Information for 1948 год I have still not found.

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    As average number of prisoners was taken an arithmetical mean between numbers on 1 January and 31 December.
    Death-rate in settlements on the eve of war was lower than in camps. For example in 1939 it was 2.30%.



    Thus as the facts evidence, regardless of “exposer”’s assurances, death-rate among prisoners under Stalin lasted at rather low level. However during the war a state of GULAG prisoners had become worse. Nutrition rates were considerably reduced that right away brought to drastic increase of death-rate. By 1944 nutrition rates of the GULAG prisoners were slightly increased: bread rate increased by 12%, groats - by 24%, meat and fish - by 40%, fat - by 28%, and vegetables - by 22%, whereupon a death-rate became distinctly reduced. But even after that they keeped below the pre-war nutrition rates by calorie content by about 30%.
    Nevertheless even in the most heavy years 1942 and 1943 a death-rate among prisoners was about 20% per year in camps and about 10% per year in prisons, but it was not 10% per month as for instance Solzhenitsin asserts. By the beginning of 1950s in camps and settlements it fell lower than 1% per year, and in prisons lower than 0.5% per year.
    In closing it must be said a few words about the notorious “Special camps” (OsobLag), founded according to regulation of the Council of Ministers of the USSR №416-159сс of 21 February 1948. These camps (as well as Special prisons for that time already having been) had to concentrate all sentenced to deprivation of liberty who were convicted of espionage, diversions, terror and also Trotskists, the rights, Mensheviks, socialist-revolutionaries (S.R. - member of Socialist Revolutionary Party), anarchists, nationalists, White emigrants, members of antisoviet organizations and groups, and “persons who represent a danger by their “antisoviet relationship”. Prisoners of “Special camps” had to be used in heavy manual works.

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