"Russian writer Alexander Solzhenitsyn, who exposed Stalin's prison system in his novels and spent 20 years in exile, has died near Moscow at the age of 89... He was one of the first to talk about the inhumane Stalinist regime and about the people who experienced it but were not broken...Solzhenitsyn was a captain in the Red Army when it entered East Prussia in January 1945. In The Gulag Archipelago, he says this:
His works 'changed the consciousness of millions of people', Gorbachev said.
Solzhenitsyn served as a Soviet artillery officer in World War II and was decorated for his courage but in 1945 was denounced for criticising Stalin in a letter. He spent the next eight years in the Soviet prison system, or Gulag, before being internally exiled to Kazakhstan, where he was successfully treated for stomach cancer.
Publication in 1962 of the novella Denisovich, an account of a day in a Gulag prisoner's life, made him a celebrity during the post-Stalin political thaw. However, within a decade, the writer awarded the 1970 Nobel Prize for Literature was out of favour again for his work, and was being harassed by the KGB secret police.
In 1973, the first of the three volumes of Archipelago, a detailed account of the systematic Soviet abuses from 1918 to 1956 in the vast network of its prison and labour camps, was published in the West. Its publication sparked a furious backlash in the Soviet press, which denounced him as a traitor. Early in 1974, the Soviet authorities stripped him of his citizenship and expelled him from the country.
He settled in Vermont, in the US, where he completed the other two volumes of Archipelago. While living there as a recluse, he railed against what he saw as the moral corruption of the West."
"All of us knew very well that if the girls were German they could be raped and then shot. This was almost a combat distinction... In Allenstein, which had been taken almost without a fight, the sacking and raping lasted for weeks."In his poem, Prussian Nights, he described what he saw in the east Prussian town of Neidenburg in 1945:
"Twenty-two Hoeringstrasse. It's not been burned, just looted, rifled. A moaning by the walls, half muffled: the mother's wounded, half alive. The little daughter's on the mattress, dead. How many have been on it? A platoon, a company perhaps? A girl's been turned into a woman, a woman turned into a corpse... The mother begs, ‘Soldier, kill me'!"Solzhenitsyn was sent to the gulag a short while after describing the above events.
In The Gulag Archipelago, Solzhenitsyn also tells us of the period in 1934 and 1935, when Genrikh Yagoda was head of the secret police.
"And how we burned in the camps later, thinking: what would things have been like if every Security operative, when he went out at night to make an arrest, had been uncertain whether he would return alive and had to say good-bye to his family? Or if, during periods of mass arrests, as for example in Leningrad, when they arrested a quarter of the entire city, people had not simply sat there in their lairs, paling in terror at every bang of the downstairs door and at every step on the staircase, but had understood they had nothing left to lose and had boldly set up in the downstairs hall an ambush of half a dozen people with axes, hammers, pokers, or whatever else was at hand...Yagoda was Jewish.
The Organs would very quickly have suffered a shortage of officers and transport and, notwithstanding all of Stalin's thirst, the cursed machine would have ground to a halt!"
In the second volume of The Gulag Archipelago, Solzhenitsyn informs us that:
"We have to condemn publicly the very idea that some people have the right to repress others... In keeping silent about evil, in burying it so deep within us that no sign of it appears on the surface, we are implanting it, and it will rise up a thousandfold in the future. When we neither punish nor reproach evildoers... We are ripping the foundations of justice from beneath new generations."In an address at Harvard University on 8 June 1978, Solzhenitsyn described western decadence thus:
"A loss of courage may be the most striking feature which an outside observer notices in the West in our days... European democracy was originally imbued with a sense of Christian responsibility and self-discipline, but these spiritual principles have been gradually losing their force. Spiritual independence is being pressured on all sides by the dictatorship of self-satisfied vulgarity, of the latest fads, and of group interests."On 30 June 1975, Solzhenitsyn told an audience at the Washington Hilton of a long-standing but well-hidden alliance between the Soviet and US leaderships.
"At first glance a strange one, a surprising one but if you think about it, one which is well grounded and easy to understand. This is the alliance between our Communist leaders and your Capitalists."Solzhenitsyn explained that American capitalists had assisted Lenin 'in the first years of the Revolution' and that since then:
"We observe continuous and steady support by the businessmen of the West of the Soviet Communist leaders."Solzhenitsyn then stated that the Russian masses could have thrown off Communism several times had not Western assistance been poured into the USSR to sustain the Communist leadership!
"The major construction projects in the initial five-year plan were built exclusively with American technology and materials. Even Stalin recognized that two thirds of what was needed was obtained from the West. And if today the Soviet Union has powerful military and police forces... used to crush our movement for freedom in the Soviet Union ... We have Western capital to thank for this also…The above speech was followed by another in New York on 9 July 1975, where he, once again, emphasized:
In the Soviet Union today, Marxism has fallen so low it's simply an object of contempt. No serious person in our-country today, even students in schools, can talk about Marxism without smiling…
I would like to remind you about the kind of system the foreign relations, have been taken up with. It was a system that got into power by armed revolt, that dispersed the constituent assembly.
It was a system that liquidated political opponents without any judicial proceedings, that suppressed the strikes of the working men, that pillaged the villages and drove the peasants to rebel, such rebellions were crushed bloodily. It was a system that destroyed the church.
It was the system that was first to introduce concentration camps in the twentieth century. It was the first to introduce the method of taking hostages, not by catching those the regime wished to prosecute, but by taking their families and, ultimately, any one at all and, indiscriminately, shooting them.
It was the system that deceived the working people with all its decrees: the decree concerning the land-reform, the decree concerning peace, the decree concerning the manufacturing plants, the decree concerning the freedom of the press.
It was the system that liquidated all the other parties. Get this right. It did not, actually, destroy the parties as such, it did not, actually, dissolve the parties, it liquidated their members instead.
It was the system that introduced genocide of the peasantry: 15 million peasants were deported and liquidated. It was the system that reintroduced serfdom.
It was the system that provoked an artificial famine in the Ukraine during peace time. 6 million people died of hunger in the Ukraine at the border of western Europe during the years 1932 and 1933.
During the years 1918 and 1919 the Tcheka shot more than a thousand people a month without legal procedure. At the climax of the Stalin-terror, during the years 1937-1938, the number of people shot to death averaged more than 40,000 a month. And with this country, with this Soviet Union, the whole allied democratic world entered a war alliance in 1941."
"The whole existence of our slave owners from beginning to end, has depended on Western economic assistance… We are slaves there from birth. We are born slaves. I'm not young anymore, and I myself was born a slave; this is even more true for those who are younger. We are slaves, but we are striving for freedom. You, however, were born free. If so, then why do you help our slave owners?
Our country is taking your assistance but in the schools they are teaching and in newspapers they are writing and in the lectures they are saying, ‘Look at the Western world, it's beginning to rot. Look at the economy of the Western world, it's coming to an end. The great predictions of Marx, Engels, and Lenin are coming true. Capitalism is breathing its last. It's already dead. It has demonstrated once and for all the triumph of Communism…
All I ask you is that as long as this Soviet economy is so proud, so flourishing, and yours is so rotten and so moribund - stop helping it then. Where has a cripple ever helped along an athlete?
In my last address I only requested one thing and I make the same request now: When they bury us in the ground alive ... please do not send them shovels. Please do not send them the most modern earth-moving equipment."
Pictured on page 79 of the second volume of the original version of Solzhenitsyn’s Gulag Archipelago were the leading administrators of the Gulag System.
These were Aron Solts, Yakov Rappoport, Lazar Kogan, Matvei Berman, Genrikh Yagoda and Naftaly Frenkel.
All of these gentlemen were Jewish.
On 25 January 2003, Solzhenitsyn was quoted thus in The Guardian:
"In the camps where I was kept... The Jews whose experience I saw - their life was softer than that of others…The Guardian continued:
To explain the actions of the Kiev cheka only by the fact that two thirds were Jews, is certainly incorrect…
My book was directed to empathise with the thoughts, feelings and the psychology of the Jews, their spiritual component…
I have never made general conclusions about a people. I will always differentiate between layers of Jews. One layer rushed headfirst to the revolution. Another, to the contrary, was trying to stand back. The Jewish subject for a long time was considered prohibited. Zhabotinsky once said that the best service our Russian friends give to us is never to speak aloud about us."
"In his latest book Solzhenitsyn, 84, deals with one of the last taboos of the communist revolution: that Jews were as much perpetrators of the repression as its victims. Two Hundred Years Together… contains three chapters discussing the Jewish role in the revolutionary genocide and secret police purges of Soviet Russia…
Solzhenitsyn… states that all the nation's ethnic groups must share the blame, and that people shy away from speaking the truth about the Jewish experience…
In an interview given last month he said that Russia must come to terms with the Stalinist and revolutionary genocides - and that its Jewish population should be as offended at their own role in the purges as they are at the Soviet power that also persecuted them."
"Solzhenitsyn's novel, The First Circle, is frankly directed against the Jews. It contains a number of Jewish characters, and they are, without exception, scoundrels, traitors and provocateurs... In Solzhenitsyn's writings the Russian people is presented as a victim of unforgiving Jewish cruelty."In Solzhenitsyn: A Biography, Michael Scammel describes Solzhenitsyn's childhood thus:
"By the age of ten he had the cross ripped from his neck by jeering Pioneers and for over a year was held up to ridicule...Solzhenitsyn's wife was Jewish.
Solzhenitsyn was, as a boy, exposed to students whose parents had an officially superior status. Most of the members of the Young Pioneers and Komsomol movements, at least in Rostov, were Jewish children."