ISBN 0-919642-29-2 | 1988 | Marco Carynnyk, Lubomyr Luciuk, Bohdan Kordan

The Foreign Office and the Famine
British Documents on Ukraine and the Great Famine of 1932-1933

Marco Carynnyk was one of the star interviewees in the first trilingual Holodomor documentary film --  titled Neznanij Holod in Ukrainian, The Unknown Holocaust in English and La Famine Inconnue in French --  spearheaded by Taras Hukalo for Radio Quebec in early 1983. At that time, Dr. Carynnyk referred to British documents from the 1930s, which clearly showed the genocidal nature of the Ukrainian Famine of 1932-33 and which the British Government chose not to disclose to the general public for fear of jeopardizing commercial relations with the Soviet Union.

A 493-page book containing 85 declassified documents and 116 footnotes appeared in 1988 with the above-indicated title.  The 45-page introduction, written by Dr. Carynnyk, skillfully summarizes the contents and implications of these documents, as well as exposing the reader to the mindset of the authors and personnel of the British Foreign Office. The 76 footnotes provide further information on events and personalities associated with these documents and the Holodomor.

The documents cover the time frame from 28Mar1932 to 22Oct1935, which we have arbitrarily divided as follows:
A.  Carynnyk Introduction:

B.  1932 (28 March to 06 December); Documents 1 to 19:
    Part 1: Andrew Cairns (1899 – 1958.05.15)
    Part 2:  Correspondence between Foreign Office and British Embassy in Moscow (1932)
    1932 Summation by Will Zuzak
C.  1933 (14 January to 18 December); Documents 20 to 64:

    1933 Summation by Will Zuzak
D. 1934-1935; Documents 65 to 85:
    1934-1935 Summation by Will Zuzak

We particularly wanted to highlight the evidence of Andrew Cairns, who made three tours of the Soviet agricultural areas during the summer of 1932 and recorded very detailed observations of the agricultural and sociological conditions in the Soviet Union (see docs. 5, 10, 13). His comments are extremely critical, starvation is already rampant with pot-bellied children and people dying in the streets, and he predicts a catastrophe for the coming winter.

Although in 1932 the people were still defiant and offered passive resistance to collectivization,  the huge death toll during the winter broke their spirit, such that by the summer of 1933 Stalin’s terror apparatus was fully in control. Starting with his denouncement of Mykola Skrypnik on 10June1933, Postyshev, Stalin’s appointed dictator of Ukraine, directed all his energies in rooting out any traces of Ukrainian independence, Ukrainian nationalism, Ukrainian culture and even the Ukrainian language. These actions clearly demonstrate the genocidal nature of the Holodomor.

Respectfully submitted
Will Zuzak; 2009.03.15

A.  Carynnyk Introduction:
(page xvii to lxiv) Rather than regurgitate Dr. Carynnyk’s excellent analysis, we will simply excerpt certain key passages in his text and in the 76 references.

Although Nikita Khrushchev never publicly mentioned the starvation of the peasants during collectivization [Ref. 3], according to Yugoslav Communist Anton Kolendic in private Khrushchev spoke of massive deaths in Ukraine during the Holodomor.
[Anton Kolendic, Les derniers jours: De la mort de Staline a celle de Beria (mars-decembre 1953) (Paris: Fayard, 1982), 161-162.]

Talking with the writer Mikhail Sholokhov in May 1953, Khrushchev said: “There is much that is true in your books, but nevertheless they do not tell the whole truth. We are still far from knowing everything that happened at the time of collectivization. We shall doubtless never know how many human lives were swallowed up in collectivization. You have only spoken of Ukraine, and of individual cases. I myself know of hundreds of thousands of cases and, I repeat, only in Ukraine. And here scholars are proving mathematically, demographically, that close to twelve million victims died at that time … You ask me who is responsible? In the past we would say, you and I, the ‘kulaks’, the ‘bourgeoisie’, ‘imperialism’. Today I can in all honesty say this to you with regard to collectivization. First, Stalinist methods of collectivization have brought us, beyond violence and terror, only misery and famine in the countryside. Second, at the time, Stalin was already dictator of the Soviet Union. … Thus, if one must seek out the one person responsible for the millions of deaths and for those years of horror, it is to Stalin that one must turn.”

Paul Scheffer, the Moscow correspondent of the Berliner Taggeblatt warned about bread riots and food shortages since 1928 and by early 1930 was anticipating catastrophe: “The days of famine are already sounding their approach. The present disorganization will not show its full effects till the coming harvest. It is still five months till that time, months in which hunger can only increase.”
[Paul Scheffer, Seven Years in Soviet Russia (London: Putnam, 1931; New York: Macmillan, 1932) 64, 83, 294.]

In his memoirs, Vansittart states:
“Population was reduced by the supply of short-lived slaves, and six million farmers were killed off to increase production. … The great man-made famine of 1933 was followed by a silence that Stalin called happiness … The Kremlin took so much food from the peasants that they destroyed their livestock. Between 1939 and 1933 the number of horses in Russia dropped from 34 to 16 millions, cows from 68 to 38, sheep and goats from 147 to 50, pigs from 20 to 12 millions. Consequently the people also fell by millions, and Stalin could never admit the human cattle uselessly slaughtered. He therefore had to fake the census. Statistics were adopted to the leader’s whim. When they were too low for his taste, he killed the authors.”
[Sir Robert Gilbert Vansittart, The Mist Procession (London: Hutchison, 1958), 457, 459.]

The author, Marco Carynnyk , perceptively notes that, while the Foreign Office was genuinely shocked and concerned by Cairn’s reports of famine in 1932, by the spring of 1933 their sympathy had waned and later when the issue of humanitarian aid arose “the Foreign Office viewed pleas for help as a political embarrassment and refused to take action  or even confirm that it had evidence of famine conditions.”

“The change of attitude was brought about by Hitler’s accession to power in January 1933. From then on the great question confronting British statesmen was what relations they ought to seek with Germany and the Soviet Union or, to put the question in ideological terms, how to deal with fascism and communism.” Whitehall had begun to think that the Soviet Union might even be a partner against the country that it saw as the real threat to Britain --  Nazi Germany.

By July 1933 Vansittart had made up his mind that Nazism was more dangerous for Britain than Communism. He wrote to Sir John Simon:
“It does not help to compare the internal excesses of Hitlerism with those of Bolshevism : the latter of course are vastly greater at present. But that is beside the point.  We cannot take the same detached and highbrow view of Hitlerism as we can of Bolshevism or Fascism, precisely because these are not really and vitally dangerous to us, and Hitlerism is exceedingly dangerous. Fascism has never presented the least danger to this country, and Russia has been too incompetent a country to be really dangerous, even under Bolshevism. But Germany is an extremely competent country, and she is visibly being prepared to external aggression. I do not think that anything but evil and danger for the rest of the world can come out of Hitlerism, whichever way the dice fall in Germany.”
[Quoted in Ian Colvin, Vansittart in Office: An Historical Survey of the Origins of the Second World War Based on Papers of Sir Robert Vansittart (London: Victor Gollancz, 1965), 26-27.]

In January 1936 Lawrence Collier had a similar view:
“I believe that it is important for us and for France to cultivate good relations with the Soviet Government in view both of the German menace in Europe and of the Japanese menace in the Far East; and I do not believe that it is either possible or desirable to attempt to reverse our present policy by coming to an understanding with Germany at the expense of Russia.”
[Woodward and Butler, eds., Documents on British Foreign Policy 15: 538.]

Carynnyk next suggests that economic considerations were even more important than geopolitical considerations: “For the most important reason for the British government’s silence was economic: it saw the Soviet Union as a profitable market for the exports of its beleaguered industries and a source of cheap food with which to feed its disgruntled populace.” Even in 1926, Paul Scheffer had written: “A lavish opening of Russian business is an absolute and unavoidable necessity for Europe --  the fact is becoming more and more apparent every day.”

(Page xlvi) “Of the average annual exports of 142 million bushels of wheat from Russia  in 1908-12, only 27.7 million had gone to Britain. In 1931-32, 51.4 million bushels of the total wheat exports of 65.7 million bushels went to Britain. In 1930-31 and 1932-33, Britain imported 40% of her wheat from the USSR as compared to less than 20% in pre-war days. To put it a different way, in 1926 Britain’s imports of Soviet wheat amounted to only 1,493,728 BPD. By 1930 the value had increased to 5,751,955 BPD, and wheat was the single largest item imported from the Soviet Union.”
[Mikhail Heller and Aleksandr M. Nekrich, Utopia in Power: The History of the Soviet Union from 1917 to the Present (New York: Simon and Schuster, 1985), 238.]

[Ref. 70] The census taken at the beginning of [1937], after a minute preparation and with an army of over a million officials, ended in the arrest of the directors of the statistical bureau and of their close collaborators, the results remaining a mystery. According to W. Krivitsky, whose excellent confidential source of information is the G.P.U.: ‘Instead of the 171 million inhabitants calculated for 1937, only 145 million were found; thus nearly 30 million people in the U.S.S.R. are missing.’”
[Boris Souvarine, Stalin: A Critical Survey of Bolshevism (New York: Alliance Book Corporation, 1939), 669.]

B.  1932 (28 March to 06 December); Documents 1 to 19:
Part 1: Andrew Cairns (1899 – 1958.05.15)

[Andrew Cairns immigrated to Canada from Scotland as a child with his parents; grew up on a farm in Islay, Alberta; attended the Universities of Alberta and Minnesota; joined the Alberta Wheat Pool in 1926 and the Canadian Wheat Pools in Winnipeg in 1927; toured Soviet agricultural areas in 1930; became director of the Grain Department of the Empire Marketing Board in London in 1931; made three tours of the grain-producing areas in the Soviet Union during the summer of 1932 about which he submitted reports via the British Embassy in Moscow to the British Foreign Office (see below).

He never spoke publicly about his observations, presumably because he expected to continue his visits. Unfortunately, the Soviets declined to issue him a visa for 1933. However, he presumably wrote a report for the Empire Marketing Board in 1933:
Andrew Cairns, Agricultural Production in Soviet Russia: A Preliminary Report as at May 1st, 1933 [London: Empire Marketing Board, 1933]

He died in an airline crash near New Dehli, India on Thursday, 15May1958.]

By far the greatest detail of the agricultural and social conditions in the Soviet Union during the summer of 1932 is provided by Andrew Cairns (docs. 2, 5 8, 10, 11, 13), who toured the grain producing regions on behalf of the Empire Marketing Board based in London, England.

Doc. 5: 10 May to 05 June 1932 tour of Western Siberia (Novosibirsk, Omsk), Kazakhstan, Volga.
- During the 3 day train trip to Novosibirsk, Cairns did not see a single tractor working.
- amazing amount of begging for food.
- refers many times to taking photographs of starving children and adults.
- very high cost of food.

Cairns met and received much background information from Dr. Schiller, the Agricultural Attache of the German Embassy. Due to severe drought, the 1931 harvest in Western Siberia had been very poor. (In May 1932 the weather and agricultural land continued to be extremely dry, but Cairns received reports that good rains finally arrived in June.) The Soviets had confiscated virtually all the cattle from the Kirghiz such that they were starving. (Schiller had not seen a single head of cattle over a 110 km trip.)

(p38) “The population of Kazakhstan was 5 million, 3.5 million of which were Kirghizian, but many, many thousands of the Kirghizians had died of hunger and, in [Schiller’s] opinion, 1 million must die as they were all nomads and without their cattle (the bulk of which had been collected by the Government for meat), they could not live.” … “At every station I [Cairns] saw hundreds of them --  all thin, cold, rag-clad, hungry and many begging for bread. … In two days motoring in one direction from Slavgorod I saw many small groups of Kirghizians camping on the prairie --  every group beside a horse which had died and all eating the meat for food, and drying the skin in the sun to make boots, etc. “

(p43) “Most of the people in his [fat and cheerful Mayor of Slavgorod] rayon had come from the Ukraine a long time ago, 85 percent of the peasants were in collective farms, …”

 (p47) “… large settlement of German Mennonites not very far from Slavgorod …”  … “Many of their  relatives had gone to Canada in 1929 (Professor Aughowgan, Schiller’s predecessor, had raised such a row in the German press in 1929 about the persecution of German colonists during the drive against the kulaks --  best farmers --  that the Russian Government granted visas to 5,000 of them in the Slavgorod area) and did I know anything about Canada?” [Cairns took a letter from one woman who had relatives in Winnipeg.]

(p49) “Eighty five percent of the population were Mennonites.” …  “… the children did not look well and a number of them, both in Siberia and the Middle Volga, looked very poorly, thin and very swollen tummies --  in a few groups which I photographed there were children with enormous, hunger-swelled stomachs.”

(p52)  “… Pavlodar where 100 people were dying per day of hunger; during the winter and early spring only Kirghizians had died, but now Russians were dying too …”

(p53) “The director told us that last year the crop around Omsk was worse than in the famine year of 1921.” [Privately, Cairns is very critical of the drive for mechanization at expense of inhabitants. Cairns presumably visited the state farm “Gigant" in 1930 (p57)]

(p61-69) On the train trip from Omsk, through Chelyabinsk (Urals), Ufa (Bashkir Republic), Buguruslan (Middle Volga) to Samara, Cairns and Schiller noted the slightly improving crop conditions, the variations in food prices (8 roubles for a very small piece of black bread) and the dissatisfaction of the people. The Samara authorities organized tours for them, gave very optimistic statics and predictions, and attempted to minimize contact with ordinary people. However, some brave people contradicted the authorities and said that workers got only 500 gm per day, family members only 250 gm, and that they were paid only 0.27 roubles per day and not 1.65 roubles as promised.

(p70) Cairns and Schiller left Samara for Moscow on 03Jun1932. East of the Volga River, the winter rye and spring sown wheat were good but weedy, but got progressively worse as they travelled west. No bread for sale, but butter and milk available. “All day long peasants spoke of the passive resistance they were offering.” “… passed through a section of the Central Black Earth district and there the amount of land idle seemed to be even greater than in any place we had seen during the trip, excepting Western Siberia.”

Doc. 10: 15 June to 30 July 1932 tour of Ukraine, Crimea and Northern Caucasus (“Drusag” in the Kuban)

(p105) On train trip from Moscow before Cairns reached Ukraine, “the farming seemed to be done by individual peasants as the grain was largely confined to small strips.” In Ukraine, “the fields increased in size rapidly (more collectivization), but the bulk of the crops were very poor, thin and very weedy.”  Much land uncultivated. “At the first large station [before Kyiv] a loaf of extremely coarse black bread sold for 10 roubles.” Scores of “rag-clad hungry peasants, some begging for bread” at each stop.

“The autumn sown crops were generally badly winter-killed, spindly, weedy and short, and the spring sown crops were choked by weeds. But all the crops were of good colour, indicating that they had ample moisture. I did not see a single tractor all day.”

(p106f) On 17Jun1932, Cairns wandered through Kyiv looking at food prices and talking to people. Two women, gathering tender grass to make soup,  “were third category workers and got only 125 roubles per month and only 200 grams of bread per day.” On the way back to my hotel I saw a horrible sight --  a man dying on the street.”

(p109) The starving peasants flocked to the cities: “… the population of Kyiv had increased from 400 to 600 thousand in 2 years, and the number of workers by 110 thousand.”

(p109) “In the hotel I got my key from a young Jewess who said she had come there from Philadelphia for a visit in 1929 and saw “what was what”; so she had returned 9 months ago, given up her U.S. citizenship and never wished to return to America.”

(p111)  “He said he was a second category worker  and got 180 roubles per month and 525 gms of bread per day, that first category workers got 600 gms of bread per day and street conductors only 400 and absolutely nothing else. What surprised me most in Kyiv was not what the people said (although conditions there seemed to be worse than in any place I visited in the next five weeks), but that they should all --  young, middle aged and old alike --  be unanimous and that none of them seemed to care what they said or who heard them, even the police and G.P.U.”

(p112) While passing a very large military camp, “I remarked that never in all my life had I seen so many soldiers as I had seen in Russia. … I thought of the hundreds and thousands of armed soldiers I had seen in every village, town and station I had seen, and of the large numbers I had seen even on farms, but I did not say anything.”

(p116) “The communists, she [young interpreter] said, realized very well that the French revolution had been broken by the peasants and they were very much afraid the Russian peasants would break the Russian revolution if they were left alone as they were in NEP (when things were very good, and there was an abundance of food and she could take a holiday and spend money and not worry about tomorrow). The Party was, therefore, determined to change the psychology of the peasants and eventually to make good communists of them.”

(p118) “Next day, June 22nd, I was taken to visit the Jewish National Kolhoz near Kyiv. The president was a very cocky young communist …” Farm sold products in the kolhoz bazaar and  paid Government rent of 300 roubles per year;  workers paid 3 roubles per day, 900 roubles per year, meals for 24 kopeks per day. “I remarked that the farm seemed to be highly favoured and  my interpreter said: ‘Yes, of course it is, because it is populated entirely by Jews, and as a national minority they get many privileges,’ …” Cairns observed: “All you say goes to confirm my impression that you have a very fine agreement  with the Government, and enjoy very many privileges.”

(p120)  “I left Kyiv early in the evening and arrived in Dniepropetrovsk late in the afternoon the next day of June 23rd [1932]. I got very little sleep during the night as at every station hundreds of peasants were fighting to get on to or into the roof, couplings and steps of the train.”

“I … was surprised to see so much good land … now lying idle. The spring sown crops were everywhere very late and full of weeds, but all of good colour as the weather had been ideal. Where the land had been fairly well cultivated , the winter wheat was good to very good.” … “As usual, all day I looked for cattle, but saw only fine grass going to waste.”

(p127)  In 3 years from 1928 to 1931, the Dnipropetrovsk oblast had lost 57% of horses, 70% of cattle, 76% of pigs and 87% of sheep.

(p128)  During trip from Dniepropetrovsk to Simferopil  27Jun1932, Cairns summarizes agricultural conditions in Ukraine:  “Good winter wheat where the land was moderately well cultivated, all spring crops late and very weedy, much land recently in cultivation now idle, much good grass but no livestock, practically no hay made, virtually no summer fallow, and everywhere a magnificent crop of weeds.”

(p129)  Discussion of idiocy of exporting food while people were starving.

(p130) In Simferopil 28Jun1932, Cairns was told that Crimea had 750,000 people (38% Tatar); they were expecting a very good crop of winter wheat; had had good weather all summer but were getting too much rain and could not get started with the harvest; had a very good crop last year also and in 1930 nearly as good a crop as they expected this year. It was an off-year for fruit in Crimea.

There was more bread for sale than he had seen anywhere in Russia. “While conditions were undoubtedly bad, there was nothing like as much begging or obvious hunger as in the Ukraine.”

(p132)  Cairns notes that Russians always over-estimate yield of crops by at least 25%. They were combining wheat too early and with second growth; turning over wet barley to keep it from heating; shoveling wet grain onto the ground out of 6 enormous tractor trucks; enormous pile of grain on the ground at the elevator being worked over to keep it from moulding.

(p134) Chambermaid in Simferopil hotel: “… soon the Communists would be beaten by the peasants and then conditions would get much better.”

Cairns was joined by Mr. Vyvyan of the Embassy staff on July 10 and by Schiller on July 11, 1932. Schiller gave a very pessimistic report of his “10 days trip to Kyiv and Vinnitsa (the centre of the sugar beet industry in the Ukraine) …” “At Vinnitsa the sugar beets were badly infested with caterpillars and choked with weeds.” The spring sown wheat and oats were badly rusted.

Vyvyan and Cairns left Simferopil on July 11, 1932 to Melitopol [Zaporizhia oblast] where they “visited very fine Czechoslovakian kolhoz” and on July 14 to Sinelnikovo [Dnipropetrovsk oblast].

(p140) “The crops … were like those around Melitopol --  odd good fields of winter wheat where the land was well cultivated, but mostly poor and the spring crops all very poor and choked with weeds.”

Similar conditions were observed on their trip to Rostov [Russian Federation] and visits to surrounding area.

(p141) “Although we saw many very thin children on the main street and in the central park, we both got the impression that the people were better dressed and that general conditions were better than in any place we had visited.” (Vyvyan  flew to Moscow on July 17, 1932.)

(p142) On a bus tour of American tourists “to Verblud --  the large experimental State grain farm about 70 km east of Rostov” --  talked to two Jews from New York and Chicago, who seemed particularly disillusioned.

(p144)At Verblud (which he had visited in 1930), Cairns spent an evening with a level-headed American-Canadian (McDowell), who had become a Russian citizen, joined the Party and became active in an Inspection Committee and who openly related the grave problems they were having. “All the spring wheat I saw was simply rotten with rust.”

(p146) Cairns next travelled 100 km to “Gigant” (“the greatest grain factory in the world”), where a Russian-American (in charge of the machine shop) showed him around. They had imported a great deal of modern machinery which often broke down and proved useless, such that they had to revert to “old fashioned Russian reapers”.

“… I had several long and interesting conversations with the chairman --  a young Jew who spoke English rather well.”

(p148)  The Russian-American said that things were very good in 1928. “But conditions started to tighten in 1929, were hard in 1930, very bad in 1931, and terrible in the winter and spring of 1932.” … “The Party would never again make the people suffer as they had done, as they (the Party) had learned a bitter lesson.” … “The Government had sold far too much grain last autumn and their policy was to fulfill their contracts even at the expense of the starving people --  which they did. But they would not do it again as the people would not stand for it.”

(p149)  Cairn’s (Jewish Chairman) friend told him: In Gigant “practically all the combines were standing still, choked full of green weeds.” …  The Party would not “export so much and might even go so far as to import some consumption goods.” … The Party fully realized that the local people had been too enthusiastic and had collected too much grain, especially in the Ukraine, …” … He had been in U.S. for 7 months in 1931 and was amazed at “how efficiently the people in U.S. factories worked.”

(p153) When the Jewish Chairman of the Central Executive Control Commission asked Cairns for a frank assessment of Gigant, Cairns responded “that it was an enormous white elephant; that it was the height of stupidity to rely exclusively upon tractors and only heavy machinery on any farm, let alone under conditions such as existed in the North Caucasus; and that the farm would never pay for the capital invested in it even with good management, let alone with the type of management in charge at present.”

(p155f)  Cairns left Rostov late 23 July 1932 to Kavkazkaya (near Krasnodar on Kuban River) and was driven 50 km to German Agricultural Concession called “Drusag”, where Schiller joined him.
- He was met by the director Dr. Dittlof and his wife, both of whom went to work at 4:30 a.m. next morning.
- “I shall always remember the four days I spent on the Concession and the days I spent at the Embassy as the only true treats I had during 4 months in Russia.”
- Drusag was very efficiently run, as contrasted with the State farm across the road.
- Harvesting by horses was half as costly as harvesting by tractors.
- Most of Dittloff’s foremen and many of his workers were “kulaks” who had been dispossessed.

(p158) Along the Kuban River, “the only obviously happy peasants I have seen during my travels in Russia.” (In contrast to the miserable German colony in Western Siberia.)

(p161f) Cairns and Schiller left “Drusag” on 28 July 1932, through Rostov and on route to Kharkiv noted the same miserable crop conditions. Next day they called on Narkozem and once again were fed questionable statistics and optimistic projections. They conceded that collecting the grain quotas would be an “extremely difficult task”.

(p165) Cairns and Schiller “paid 90 roubles each, over and above the cost of our railroad tickets, for the privilege of riding over night in the international sleeper on the crack new Kharkiv-Moscow express.”

Doc. 13: 12 to 22 August 1932 tour of the Volga region (Voronezh, capital of Central Black Earth region)

(p174f) Cairns left Moscow and arrived in Voronezh [Russian Federation, northeast of Kharkiv] on August 13, 1932. “The people in the streets looked even poorer than they do in most towns of similar size, and the number of rag clad, pot-bellied children seemed to be as high, if not higher, than usual.”

(p175)  The authorities would not let Cairns see the sugar beet farms but sent him to the southeast corner of the oblast. “The vice-president whom I interviewed was an extremely stupid young Jew (every day I am impressed by the very large number of Jews there must be in Russia --  there actually seems to be enough to fill nearly all the administrative posts, in the Government agricultural departments at least) and I got little information from him.”

(p179)  On his August 14, 1932 train trip to Kalach, Cairns noted the terrible agricultural conditions: weeds; stunted sunflowers choked with weeds; very late and poor carrots; stunted and very weedy sugar beets;  land lying idle; practically no summer fallow; hungry and miserable peasants; no bread in bazaars; etc.

(p180)  “Later a table was set on a porch overlooking a small river and while we (the young Jewish secretary of Rispolkom, the assistant secretary of the Party and myself) watched nude women bathing, we were served good vegetable soup with fats   and tongue, roasted chicken, fine new mashed potatoes soaked in butter, whole wheat bread, milk and fruit juices.”

On August 15, 1932 Cairns visited the “Kolachevski” sovkoz: most grain cut; sunflowers poor with weeds; etc.

(p181)  French Communist writing for l’Humanite tried to be positive and was “very unhappy about the rate of progress the Communists were making in France, but thought they were making very rapid progress in Germany.”

(p182f)  Because of schedule foul up, Cairns was stranded in Talavaya for a day before proceeding on to Stalingrad. He relates a whole series of interesting observations, incidents and conversations. He refers to 30 pot-bellied children living on black bread and watermelon.

(p189)  Cairns arrived by boat to Saratov late on August 19, 1932 and had next morning had a good discussion with Professor Tulikov, who “to my amazement, confirmed the worst stories I had heard from the peasants.”

(p192)  “In Saratov I had the good fortune to meet a member of the Central Control Commission (an Armenian Jew who spoke English extremely well) and travelled with him to Moscow.”  This official “was just returning to Moscow after a five week inspection tour of the villages in the Lower Volga”, who provided Cairns with good information.
- The rye crop was good, but all the other crops were extremely poor.
- “He had also been in the German Republic of the Volga and there the crops were especially bad.”

[W.Z. The Volga German Autonomous Soviet Socialist Republic was created in 1924 from the German colony in the area, which in 1897 contained some 1.8 million Germans. There were about 605,000 Germans listed in the 1939 census. It was formally extinguished on 07Sep1941, following the German invasion of the Soviet Union on 22Jun1941. The vast majority of the Germans were deported to Siberia and the Gulags.]
- “From all their reports the conditions in the Ukraine were very bad and the loss of livestock there had also been very heavy during the past year.”
- “The success of Torgsin was greatly exaggerated and it made only a few million gold dollars per year as the Russians had only a very limited amount of jewellery. However, in the Caucasus, where the women had always worn a lot of jewellery, Torgsin had been a very great success.”

(p194)  Cairns concludes his report by making several sarcastic suggestions:
- “state that while the poor peasants were happy a few years ago to receive livestock and other capital stolen from the best farmers (called kulaks)that now the poor peasants were not only poorer but hungry, and it was necessary to invite the good farmers back to do some work and raise livestock and other sorely needed foods.”
- “that they had reluctantly found it necessary to fire all the Jews and other town birds managing white elephants called State grain and cattle factories, communes and many of the collectives, as despite their admirable qualifications to accept and expound the teachings of Marx and Lenin, unfortunately they knew little or nothing about farming.”

Doc. 2: Enclosure of  03 May 1932 (Andrew Cairns to William Strang)
- “… information given to me by friends and foreign specialists.”

(p7)  Conditions in Donetsk coal mines are appalling due to lack of food.

(p8)  “The day clerk at the Grand Hotel tells me that the collective farms around his home in the Ukraine have absolutely nothing, and that there is a great deal of “trouble” there.”
- Many American engineers are returning home, as are German engineers, because they are now being paid in roubles.

Doc. 8:  02 August 1932 Cables to Empire Marketing Board
(p99-101)  These cables are a very concise summary of Cairns’ observations described in Documents 5, 10 and 13 above.

Doc. 11:  12 August 1932 note from Cairns to Lloyd
(p166)  “However, Kissin [President of Exportkhleb] admitted that exports of grain from Russia this year would be less than last year.”
“He said they had not been able to sell any so far to Germany, France or many other countries. They had sold very little to Italy and Greece. There only good sale so far was 100,000 tons to the United Kingdom for August-September shipment.”
[However, the enclosed cable states “THEY SOLD TO AUGUST EIGHTH THOUSAND TONS WHEAT FOR AUGUST SEPTEMBER SHIPMENT TO UNITED KINGDOM …”.  The “eighth” is probably a misprint for “eighty” and 80,000 tons presumably refers to metric tonnes.]

[W.Z. By buying the 100,000 tons of wheat, while they were fully aware of the famine conditions in Ukraine, the British Government became complicit in furthering the Holodomor.]

Part 2:  Correspondence between Foreign Office and British Embassy in Moscow (1932)

Doc. 1:  28 March 1932; Ovey (Moscow) to Simon
(p3)  Stories that “traffic between the Ukraine and the consuming regions lying to the north of it is closely controlled, no one being allowed to bring more than 1,000 roubles out from the Ukraine, and all grain in the possession of private persons entering the Ukraine being confiscated.”

Doc. 3:  20 May 1932; Ovey (Moscow) to Simon
- Observations of Ambassador Esmond Ovey during 05-15May1932 trip to Ukraine.

(p13)  In Odesa: “The people seemed generally to speak the Ukrainian language. All the papers are in Ukrainian with the exception of a Jewish one. There are no Russian papers but there is a Russian and Jewish theatre. Hebrew and other dialects are taught in the schools.”
[W.Z. Is this the result of the Ukrainization program adopted during the NEP years prior to 1928?]

Doc. 4:  08 June 1932; Memorandum of Greenway
(p23)  “… a brief resume of our existing reports” on Financial, Economic and Agricultural, Internal, and Military conditions in the Soviet Union.

Doc. 6:  18 July 1932; Ovey (Moscow) to Simon
(p79)  Simon quotes Molotov and Kaganovich blaming the Ukrainian Bolsheviks of insufficient leadership of collective farm organization.

Doc. 7:  01 Aug 1932; Strang (Moscow) to Simon re Vyvyan tour of Crimea and Ukraine
- Vyvyan joined Cairns in Crimea on 10 July 1932. His report repeats that of Andrew Cairns. (See doc. 10)

(p83)  “… the movements of Ukrainian peasants to the towns or from north to south is stopped by withholding railway tickets.”

(p93)  May 1932 decree to allow “Collective farm trade is considered in many quarters to be the beginning of a wholesale reversion to NEP , and to have had already a considerable effect in stimulating the agricultural workers.”

(p97)  “His opinion, which he told me was widely held, was interesting, that any concession to the peasants is bound to affect industrial workers adversely, and that the government cannot afford to estrange the proletariat of the towns.”

Doc. 9:  10 August 1932; Strang (Moscow) to Simon
(p102) Refers to 07Aug1932 decree “instituting severe sanctions for the protection against pilferage of the property of State undertakings, collective farms and co-operatives [including crops in the fields] , and of goods conveyed by rail or by water.”
[W.Z. This is the infamous “five ears of corn” decree, allowing starving people scavenging for food on collective farmland to be shot.]

Doc. 12:  14 August 1932; Strang (Moscow) to Simon
(p170)  “Stalin’s six points (or some of them) have already had a remarkable effect in promoting the growth of a new bourgeois class, … . Recruits to their ranks are even coming from across the Atlantic, generally American Jews of Russian origin.” … “As the New Economic Policy created the Nepmen, so the Five-Year Plan is in its turn breaking the egalitarian structure of Soviet society and bringing a class of non-proletarians and ex-proletarians into positions of privilege and authority. At the changeover from N.E.P. to planning, the Nepmen were destroyed.”

Doc. 14:  25 August 1932; Strang (Moscow) to Simon
(p195)  Strang explains that the real target of the “five ears of corn decree” (see Doc. 9) are the starving peasants.

Doc. 15:  30 August 1932; Memorandum of Walker (Moscow)
(p197)  Expands on “five ears of corn decree” with examples of death penalties, etc.

Doc. 16:  01 October 1932; Embassy (Moscow) to Foreign Office
(p201)  “A large commission, including Kodatski, the president of the Leningrad Regional Executive Committee, and Kirov, and said to be supported by troops, has been sent out into the country districts to prosecute the grain collection campaign.”  “Kulagin [G.P.U. officer] … put on a similar commission to the Caucasus.”

Doc. 17:  31 October 1932; Strang (Moscow) conversation with Walter Duranty
(p202)  “… he says that the true position is only just being realized.”
- Duranty’s observations are similar to those of Cairns and others over the last 6 to 9 months.

(p203)  The Central Committee rejected return to NEP.

(p204)  “There are millions of people in Russia, peasants, whom it is fairly safe to leave in want. But the industrial proletariat, about 10 per cent of the population, must at all costs be fed if the revolution is to be safeguarded.”
“… no sign of any actively subversive of insurrectionary movement.”

In the Minutes, Lawrence Collier: “Mr. Duranty is a somewhat shady individual, who has been accused (though not on convincing evidence, as far as I can tell) of being in the pay of the Soviet Govt.”

Doc. 18:  19 November 1932; Ovey (Moscow) to Simon
(p206)  “These figures show that the plan for the month of October had been fulfilled to the extent of only 57 per cent, … The areas which show the worst results are the primary grain-producing regions such as the Ukraine and the North Caucasus.”
- “… the press continues to be full of lamentations about the failure of the country to supply its due quota of grain for the towns.”
- Ovey refers to newspaper articles blaming kulaks and saboteurs for failure.

Doc. 19: 06 December 1932; Strang (Moscow) to Collier
Walter Duranty bypassed the censors and sent an article by safe hand to Paris and on to the New York Times, which published a series of articles on “the serious food situation in Soviet Russia” [25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30 November 1932].

(p209) “Shortly afterwards Duranty was visited by emissaries from governing circles here (not from the Censorship Department of the People’s Commissariat for Foreign Affairs but from higher spheres) who reproached him with unfaithfulness. How could he, who had been so fair for ten years, choose this moment to stab them in the back, when critical negotiations were taking place and when prospects of recognition by the U.S.A. was brightening? What did he mean by it, and did he not realize that the consequences for himself might be serious. Let him take this warning.”

1932 Summation by Will Zuzak
From the descriptions of Andrew Cairns and others, it is obvious that the Holodomor was well under way in Ukraine and other parts of the Soviet Union by the spring of 1932. The symptoms were obvious: shortage of food, exorbitant food prices, people begging for food everywhere, starving pot-bellied children everywhere, people dying of starvation.

Indeed, the Holodomor appears to have had its beginnings in 1928, when the New Economic Policy (NEP) instituted by Lenin was replaced by Stalin’s Five-Year Plan. Many people told Cairns that things had gotten steadily worse since 1928.

Cairns and Schiller were amazed that the vast majority of people spoke critically and defiantly in front of Communists and the GPU. They were still hoping and expecting the “Party” to stop exporting grain, to lower the grain quotas on the collectives and the remaining individual farmers, for the Party to make peace with the peasants and revert to some form of NEP.

It appears that there was a standoff mentality of “us” against “them” --  “kto – kovo?” (who will destroy whom?).  History shows that the Communists won and the millions of peasants lost.

Cairns intimates that in 1928 many of the poor peasants and never-do-wells were pleased to receive the property of the good hard-working farmers, as the so-called kulaks were dispossessed and banished to Siberia. They could not imagine that they themselves were earmarked for annihilation.

Similarly, the Communists, the townspeople and the “proletariat” were eager to believe that the food shortages were the result of kulaks hoarding grain and the actions of saboteurs, bourgeois nationalists, Petliurites, Pilsudski agents and other “enemies of the State”. They had no inkling that they, too, were destined to be devoured by the “Great Terror” unleashed by Stalin and his inner circle.

C.  1933 (14 January to 18 December); Documents 20 to 64:

Doc. 20:  14 January 1933; Ovey (Moscow) to Simon
(p211)  “… the terrorization applied in the later stages of the grain-collection campaign appears to have increased in severity.”
-“The contemporary incarnation of the class enemy has been definitely located in Soviet agriculture, and exhortations to exterminate him, backed by … Stalin …, form the chief slogans of the daily press.”
- Ovey refers to several Ukrainians being tried and shot and gives an example of “gradual party purge” in North Caucasus [Kuban region].

(p212)  “The Ukraine has been the most backward of all the chief grain areas, and the rate of its deliveries has steadily declined, only 50 per cent of the month’s plan has been carried out in December.”

Doc. 21:  27 February 1933; Ovey (Moscow) to Simon
(p214) The decree of 23Sep1932 forbidding “seed loans for either the autumn or the spring sowings” was softened on 25Feb1933 by a decree “that in view of the loss of a part of the harvest in the steppe zone of the Ukraine and in the Kuban region of the Northern Caucasus owing to unfavourable climatic conditions, it has been found necessary to provide seed for those areas from the State grain reserve, to the amount of about 20 million poods for the Ukraine and 15 million poods for the North Caucasus.”

(p214)  “These are, of course, the regions where the food situation is worst and where the most violent measures have been taken to secure the execution of the grain-collection plan.”
[W.Z. Stalin did not issue this decree for humanitarian reasons. It was to try to ensure that there was enough grain to plant the spring crops. Any of this “seed grain” that was used for food was to ensure that there were enough peasants alive on the collective farms to do the spring sowing.]

Doc. 22:  05 March 1933; Ovey (Moscow) to Foreign Office
(p215)  “Conditions in Kuban have been described to me by recent English visitor as appalling and as resembling an armed camp in a desert --  no work no grain no cattle no draught horses, only idle peasants or soldiers. Another correspondent who had visited Kuban was strongly dissuaded from visiting the Ukraine where conditions are apparently as bad although apathy is greater.”
- “ … this morning names of forty officials arrested for agricultural sabotage have been published in the press.”

Doc. 23:  07 March 1933; Ovey (Moscow) to Simon
(p216)  Update on arrests in Doc. 22; total of 70 arrested.

Doc. 24: 13 March 1933; Ovey (Moscow) to Simon
(p217)  “Mr. Muggeridge of the Manchester Guardian … having recently returned from a trip in the Ukraine and Kuban, tells me that the conditions, especially in the Kuban, would have been incredible to him if he had not seen them with his own eyes. That part of the country is becoming a desert, inhabited by starving peasants and occupied by well-fed troops.”

- Ovey makes several other remarks and encloses translations of two letters from the Volga German Republic

Doc. 25: 27 March 1933; Embassy (Moscow) to Foreign Office
(p221)  References to more letters describing terrible conditions.
(p222)  Minutes by A. Walker 7 April: “These letters serve to confirm the articles of Mr. Gareth Jones at present appearing in the Daily Press.”

Doc. 26:  09 April 1933; Strang (Moscow) to Simon
(p223)  Multiple descriptions of the terrible conditions.

(p225)  Reports indicate that nowhere is the situation worse than in the Ukraine, where the only hope of the desperate population seems to lie in the rumour of a contemplated annexationist coup on the part of Poland.”

Doc. 27: 08 May 1933; Strang (Moscow) to Simon
(p227f)  More information on conditions and translated bitter letters, such as:

(p230)  “Socialism has produced the deaths of tens of millions of citizens and peasants in Russia …”
- “At the present moment only fascism has the right outlook on Bolshevism. Hasten to unite with the German fascists; that is the only remedy for Marxism.”

Doc. 28:  01 June 1933; Strang (Moscow) to Simon
(p232) More letters and incidents, including two students wanting British citizenship.

Doc. 29:  19 June 1933; Embassy (Moscow) to Foreign Office
(p236f)  “… enclosing letters from anonymous disaffected Soviet citizens”  such as from “A Poor Russian Peasant” emanating from the Kyiv district:
“Are the civilized powers really incapable of un-masking the Jewish-Soviet machinations: to sell at a loss to undermine the competition of goods produced by capitalists?”
“… to buy our goods is to aggravate the famine … to buy our goods is to strengthen the Bolshevik party.”
“Only Hitler knows the truth, what they really represent, these friends who with lies proclaim world peace.”

(p238)  “For example it is not mentioned that in the Ukraine millions of the population have died from hunger.”

Doc. 30:  22 June 1933; Farrer conversation with Leslie Pott (Leningrad)
(p241)  “Mr. Pott said that conditions in the Soviet union were becoming almost incredibly bad.” … “… that conditions in the Ukraine and South Russia were even worse.”

Doc. 31:  26 June 1933; Strang (Moscow) to Simon
(p243)  Refers to 20 June 1933 decree establishing “Procurator’s Department of the U.S.S.R.” to replace “Procurator’s Departments of the constituent republics of the Soviet Union”
Ivan Alexeivich Akulov and deputy Andrei Yanuarovich Vyshinski were subsequently appointed to this position. [Reference to Yagoda.]

Doc. 32:  29 June 1933; Strang (Moscow) to Simon
(p246)  “… rumour of a staged trial of Ukrainian intellectuals … is probably based on recent press attacks upon the All-Ukrainian Academy of Science on account of its alleged bourgeois and nationalist tendencies.”
“The Academy of Science is accused of … counter revolution and nationalism”; replace Russian word “Zavod” with “virobnya”, etc.

Doc. 33: 04 July 1933; Strang (Moscow) to Simon
Discussion of decrees to enforce Kremlin directives:
- Grain deliveries to be “direct function of the planned spring sowings, irrespective of whether the planned area was, in fact, sown or not.”
- Very detailed analysis by Strang.

(p250)  Postyshev speech of 10 June 1933 on failings of the Ukrainian Communist Party --  spies, Petliurists, foreign agents, bourgeois nationalist activities, etc. [Strang does not mention Postyshev’s attack on Mykola Skrypnik.]

Doc. 34:  10 July 1933; Strang (Moscow) to Simon [Skrypnik suicide]
(p253)  “… the Soviet press of 8th July announced the death by suicide of Nikolai Alexeivich Skrypnik, an old Bolshevik, a member of the Politburo of the Ukrainian Communist party and Commissar for Education of the Ukrainian Republic.” [W.Z. and presumably an old friend of Vladimir Lenin.]

(p254) On 10 June 1933, “Postyshev made a violent attack on Skrypnik as the person most responsible for allowing the Ukraine to become honeycombed with wrecking, counter-revolutionary and separatist organizations working in the interest of foreign capitalist circles.”

Doc. 35:  17 July 1933; Strang (Moscow) to Simon
(p255)  Number of people that died vary up to “the fantastic figure of 10 million”.
- Soviet protests of German fund for starving Germans in the Volga region.
- Fewer signs of malnutrition in Moscow
- Typhus epidemic in Leningrad and Moscow; brought in by peasants from the countryside.

Doc. 36:  23 May 1933; Schiller (German Moscow) via Duchess of Atholl to Anthony Eden
(p258)  In spring of 1933, Schiller made a 1200 km tour by car of Kuban Oblast (Kropotkino, Krasnodar, Stavropol, Armavir, Polovoye, Salska-Bieloglina). He gives a very detailed description.
- The Kuban Cossacks were the main target of expulsion, deportation and starvation.
- “Thus, from the political point of view the Cossack danger may already be considered to have been eradicated.”
- Fears typhus epidemic.
- “Resigned despair and complete apathy characterize the people rather than wrath and bitterness.”

(p263) Soviet Government exported 1.5 million tons of grain from last year’s crop which could have saved 5 million lives.

(p265)  In Kuban only 25% of arable land sown by beginning of May 1933.

(p266) “It is proposed to transfer peasants from the Voronezh Province to the Kuban.”


Doc 37:  19 July 1933; Bullard (Leningrad) to Strang
(p269) Rumour that Stalin’s  second wife, Nadia Alleluyeva, committed suicide because Stalin wrote out an order for his wife’s arrest.
- Young Jewess student in Leningrad spoke of dreadful conditions of relatives in Ukraine and that Skrypnik committed killed himself in despair.

Doc. 38:  22 July 1933; Memorandum by Rapp (Moscow)
(p271) Eyewitness account of British subject about terrible conditions building the White Sea Canal.

Doc. 39:  01 August 1933; Strang (Moscow) to Simon re “Akulov”
(p274)  “Mr. Podolski, with whom Mr. Cholerton [of Daily Telegraph] is on terms of friendship, is a Jew, 37 years of age, and a member of the Communist Party since 1918.” Podolski states “that Mr. Akulov, in his position as Procurator of the Soviet Union, would be independent of and superior to the head of the O.G.P.U.” [Yagoda]

Doc. 40:  10 August 1933; Memorandum by Walton
(p276) Rumours that Skrypnik fired shots at Kosior and Postyshev before committing suicide.
- Khvylovy committed suicide on 13 May 1933. Wide-spread arrests of Ukrainian intellectuals, in particular, Dr. Siak, Shumski and Yavorski

Doc. 41:  15 August 1933; Strang (Moscow) to Simon
(p278) Foreigners’ passports travelling by train are retained by railway officials.

Doc. 42:  15 August 1933; Strang (Moscow) to Simon
(p279)  Progress of harvest in Ukraine criticized as most unsatisfactory.

Doc. 43:  22 August 1933; Times Report
(p283) – Restrictions on travel by foreign correspondents.
- Criticism of the Moscow Chancery for turning away Soviet citizens who volunteer information about the famine.

Doc. 44:  24 August 1933; Golden (Save the Children Fund) to Vansittart
                  07 September 1933; Foreign Office to Coote

(p287) “… alarmist reports of the situation in the Ukraine and the North Caucasus.”
- “Save the Children Fund” preparing to organize relief.

Doc. 45:  26 August 1933; Coote (Moscow) to Simon

(p290) A decree published 16 August 1933 establishes an All-Union Committee of Migration.

(p291) This decree “may be interpreted as a sinister admission of the depopulation resulting from this year’s famine.”
- Dr. Schiller estimates between 5 and 10 million deaths in the present year.

Doc. 46:  29 August 1933; Coote (Moscow) to Simon
Dr. Schiller says that famine conditions in the Urals are worse than elsewhere. He doesn’t want to make any further tours. Gives reference to two books:
Otto Schiller, Die Krise der sozialistischen Landwirtschaft in der Sowjetunion (Berlin: Paul Perry, 1933)
Andrew Cairns, Agricultural Production in Soviet Russia: A Preliminary Report as at May 1st, 1933 [London: Empire Marketing Board, 1933]

Doc. 47:  11 September 1933; Coote (Moscow) to Simon
(p297)  Very detailed report on visit of former French Premier Eduard Herriot fro 26 August to 09 September 1933.
- Herriot was completely fooled by the Soviets: He stated that the reports of famine in the Ukraine were gross libels.

(p301)  “They are presumably aware that the present Franco-Soviet rapprochement is due rather to a common hatred and fear of Hitlerite Germany than to any necessarily permanent community of interest or natural sympathy between the two countries.”

Doc. 48:  11 September 1933; Coote (Moscow) to Simon
(p303)  Discussion of meat quotas.

Doc. 49:  12 September 1933; Coote (Moscow) to Simon
(p305)  Discussion of Soviet harvest.
(p307)  Reference to Duranty.

Doc. 50:  26 September 1933; Strang (Moscow) to Simon
(p309)  Tour by Mr. W. Duranty in North Caucasus and the Ukraine
(p310)  “According to Mr. Duranty, the population of the North Caucasus and the Lower Volga has decreased in the past year by 3 million, and the population of the Ukraine by 4-5 million.

(p311)  From Rostov to Kharkiv, Duranty noticed large quantities of grain lying in the open air. Conditions were worse in Kharkiv; less to eat; dearth of cattle and poultry; only 10% excess mortality.
- “Numerous peasants, however, who had come into the towns had died off like flies.”
- “On 19 and 20 July [1933], over 200,000 people were mobilized in Kharkiv and dispatched to work in the fields.”

(p312)  “The Ukraine had been bled white.”
- “…, Postyshev is the real force in the Ukraine. He and his “boys” in the political departments now run the country.”

(p313)  “Mr. Duranty thinks it is quite possible that as many as 10 million people may have died directly or indirectly from lack of food in the Soviet Union during the past year.”

Doc. 51:  26 September 1933; Vyvyan conversations with Russians
(p314f) Gruesome stories.
- Continued rumours that Skrypnik was “the focus of an important nationalist movement in the Ukraine.”

Doc. 52:  27 September 1933; European Federation of Ukrainians Abroad to Simon
(p317) Memorandum on the Famine in Ukraine by Dm. Andriewsky and N. Hrab.
(p319)  “The national character of this struggle pursued by the Bolsheviks in Ukraine, aiming at the extermination of the Ukrainians by famine, was note by many foreign observers.”
(p321) British bureaucrats decide to ignore the appeal because “it is anti-Soviet in complexion.”

Doc. 53:  30 September 1933; Carr (League of Nations) to Collier
(p322)  The Norwegian delegate to the League of Nations, Joh. Ludw. Mowinckel, as President of the Council, attempted to have the famine in Ukraine put on the formal agenda of the League of Nations, but was told to bring it up at a private meeting of the Council, which instructed him to tell the petitioners to ask the International Red Cross to approach the Soviet Union to allow humanitarian aid. [Of course, the Soviets refused.]

Mowinckel had received and transmitted submissions by the Central Ukrainian Committee for Relief to Soviet Ukraine; Head of the Ukrainian Mission in France; Liaison Committee of Women’s International Organisations; and Senator Zaloziecky and Deputy Serbeniuk (via telegram).

(p324) “Such well-known and respected names as that of His Eminence Cardinal Innitzer of Vienna and the names of Ukrainian Greek Catholic Bishops with His Eminence Metropolitan Count Scheptytzkyj at the head are there to assert that this catastrophic famine, unequalled in history, is a true peril.”

(p328)  “The best proof that conditions are really serious is the appeals for assistance being made by Ukrainians domiciled in other countries.
1. The appeal of the Greek-Catholic Church in Polish Ukraine signed by the Metropolitan and Bishops.
2. The appeal of “Le Comite ukrainien de secours aux affames de l’Ukraine et du Kouban,” Brussels.
3. In Germany a joint relief committee has been formed by the Red Cross, the Roman Catholics, the Lutherans, the Mennonites and others, called “Bruder in Not”.”

Doc. 54: 27 October 1933; Collier interview with Malone, Mrs. Christie, Miss Nike
(p329) The Quaker Relief Organization “hoped to enlist the help of H.M.G. in persuading the Soviet Government to allow a relief mission to enter the Ukraine”.
Collier declined: “Lastly, anything to do with Ukrainian nationalism at the present moment was like a red flag to a bull to the Soviet authorities.”

(p330) “The Federation of Jewish Relief Organisations are now carrying out relief work, distributing relief through Torgsin.”

Doc. 55:  14 October 1933; Strang (Moscow) to Simon
W.H. Chamberlin (Manchester Guardian, Christian Science Monitor) and his wife (Russian origin and fluent in Russian) made a 10 day tour to the South Russian Grain Belt. He visited 3 areas “Drusag” in the North Caucasus; and Poltava and Belaya Tserkva in Ukraine. The authorities admitted a 10% death rate, but a young girl in a Poltava village told him “that her mother and four brothers and sisters had died of starvation”.

(p334) Chamberlin total: 4 to 5 million in Soviet Union of whom 2 million in Ukraine, 2 million in Kazakhstan and 0.5 million in the North Caucasus.

(p335) Chamberlin “found, however, that the active resistance of the peasants had been broken both by terror and by mass deportations.”
- Deportations in Kuban are still going on. “The Cossack element has been largely eliminated.”
- “Since 1929 the Ukraine has lost about half its livestock.”

(p337) Note by Shone: “Mr. Chamberlin’s estimate 4-5 million deaths from starvation in the Union is only about half Mr. Duranty’s”.

Note by Collier: “Mr. Chamberlin has the reputation of being somewhat pro-Soviet, but much less so than Mr. Duranty.”

Doc. 56:  02 October 1933; Ukrainian National Council in Canada to Ramsay MacDonald (PM)
(p340) “… an urgent request to take the necessary steps to arrange for an immediate neutral investigation of the famine situation in Ukraine, with a view to organizing international relief for the stricken population.”
[The story of Mrs. Maria Zuk , who managed to join her husband in Canada is very descriptive.]

(p343) There are several enclosures of correspondence emanating from this request.

Doc. 57:  07 November 1933; Chilston (Moscow) to Simon
(p348)  Moscow reports that grain deliveries have been fulfilled in Ukraine.

Note by Shone: “At what a cost to the inhabitants has this been done!”

Doc. 58:  01 December 1933; Malone to Collier
(p350)  Malone is trying to get information about the Ukrainian Bureau in London (40 Grosvenor Place). He knows that they are very much opposed to the German-Skoropadsky movement and that they protest against the treatment of Ukrainian minorities by the Polish and Soviet governments.
- Malone encloses a draft constitution of the United British Appeal Committee for Russian Relief.

(p351) Laurence Collier replies to Malone: “The chief activity of the Ukrainian Bureau, in this country at least, seems to be the issue of periodical bulletins in which it maintains that Poland has not lived up  to her engagements to grant autonomy to Eastern Galicia and protests against the treatment of Ukrainian minorities by the Polish and Soviet Governments (though the protests are more frequently directed against the former than against the latter Government). It does not approve of the Skoropadsky movement, however.”

Doc. 59: 04 December 1933; Chilston (Moscow) to Simon
(p353)  Summary of Postyshev speech on 19Nov1933, “regarding the [thorough and ruthless] methods adopted in the Ukraine for ensuring the success of the Bolshevik campaign in regard to the collective farms.”

Doc. 60:  04 December; Chilston (Moscow) to Simon
(p355)  Summary of resolution and Kosior speech of 22Nov1933, in which Skrypnik is demonized and Kosior proposes an unceasing struggle against Russian chauvinism and Ukrainian nationalism.

Notes by Shone: “We have had information to the effect that Skrypnik was in touch with Herr Rosenberg, in connexion with plans for detaching the Ukraine from the Soviet Union.” [???]

Doc 61:  07 December 1933; Minutes by Shone and Collier
(p357)  Reference to Herriot claims that famine stories are part of Hitler’s propaganda for the establishment of an independent Ukraine.

Doc. 62:  11December 1933; Ponsonby Moore Crosthwaite
History of Ukraine and Its Relations with Poland and Russia

(p358-362) This is an excellent analysis of the geopolitical situation of Ukrainians in 1933.
- Polish Eastern Galicia: 3 million Ruthenes, 1 million Poles, 500,000 Jews (before WWI).
- Soviet Ukraine: 20 million (80% Ukrainians, 9% Russians, 5% Jews --  1926 census).

On 09Feb1918 the Central Powers signed a separate peace treaty with the Ukrainian Peoples Republic at Brest-Litovsk. On 28Dec1920 a Russo-Ukrainian treaty was signed defining the relationship between the two Soviet Republics.

Doc. 63:  13/15 December 1933; Newton – Oliphant Correspondence
(p363) The Foreign Office discourages Lord Newton to meet with a Ukraine committee.

Doc. 64:  18 December 1933; Chilston (Moscow) to Simon re Ukrainian Nationalism
(p365)  As a result of Kosior and Postyshev speeches alleging a Ukrainian Nationalist conspiracy, massive arrests were made. Skrypnik is made a scapegoat and Alfred Rosenberg is mentioned.

Notes by Shone and Collier downplay the possibility of such a conspiracy in Ukraine, although they recognize the “apparent futility of the Ukrainian nationalist organisations abroad.”

1933 Summation by Will Zuzak
As the year commences, Foreign Office personnel note in almost horrified disbelief as Stalin pursues his genocidal policies in Ukraine, the Kuban and other grain-growing areas of the Soviet Union. By the summer of 1933, it is obvious to everyone that many millions have died by starvation.

The Communists won and millions of peasants lost their lives. Any active or passive resistance, any defiance was replaced by submission and apathy. The countryside was so depopulated, that townspeople had to be mobilized by the hundreds of thousands to “bring in the harvest”.

The denunciation of Ukrainization and massive arrests of Ukrainian intellectuals (and even members of the Communist Party of Ukraine), indicates that the Holodomor was, indeed, directed against the Ukrainian nation and culture. The constant references to bourgeois nationalists, Petliurites, Pilsudsky agents, etc. support this conclusion.

D. 1934-1935; Documents 65 to 85:
Doc. 65:  February 1934; Malone to Labour Party re German-Ukrainian Relations
(p370-379) This is another excellent article on the geopolitical realities in Ukraine. (See also Doc. 62.)
- Ridicules the idea that ex-hetman Skoropadsky has any significant support in Ukraine or abroad.
- More than 300,000 German colonists lived in south of Ukraine.
- Both Austria and Russia covet Galicia.
- “Both in Germany and Austria the “Union for the Delivery of the Ukraine” was created , and this Union undertook the training of more than 200,000 prisoners of war, who were destined as the basis of a Ukrainian army.” [during WWI]
- Reference to [Alfred] Rosenberg plan.
- Malone outlines the turmoil in Ukraine after the 07Nov1917 “Kerensky” Revolution: Ukrainian Central Rada, Bolsheviks, German help, Skoropadsky dictatorship, Petliura.
- The German Rapallo policy (with Soviet Union) and Poland – Soviet Union non-aggression pact disappointed Ukrainians in both Poland and Soviet Union.
- “The German policy of colonization towards the East is well known and was set out in Hitler’s autobiography Mein Kampf and Rosenberg’s booklet Der Zukunftsweg einer Deutschen Aussenpolitik.”
- Reference to Ukrainian Military Organization (U.W.O.) under E. Konowalec and R. Jary.
- Reference to European Nationalities Congress under Dr. Ewald Ammende and Cardinal Innitzer, Chief Rabbi of Vienna, etc.
- Discussion of German-Polish Pact, Polish-Russian Pact and their impact on Ukraine.

(p378) “As for Great Britain, she can certainly never allow for one moment a German industrial sphere stretching from the Saar to the Caucasus and including, as it would, the newly developed industrial districts of Dniepropetrovsk. At the same time we have to face the evidence that there is a growing Ukrainian independence movement probably stronger than ever before. This is due partly to the Soviet Ukrainization policy from 1923 to 1929, during which time Ukrainian culture and language developed until this policy was reversed in 1930 and replaced by a policy of centralization from Moscow and liquidations of Ukrainian organizations, and partly due to the starvation which has been experienced in many districts of Ukraine. Any hostility on the part of Great Britain would only be playing into the hands of Germany and increase the German-Nazi influence.”

Doc. 66: 02 April 1934; Chilston report on Soviet Union in 1933
Annual Report on Russia for 1933

(p380)  Discussion of 1932 decree introducing compulsory passports, whose object was to keep “undesirables” from key districts.
- Redistribution of population in the countryside.

(p382) “On the 4th July [1933] M. Nikolai Alexeivich Skrypnik, an old Bolshevik, a member of the Central Committee of the All-Union Communist party, a member of the Politburo of the Ukrainian Communist party and Commissar for Education of the Ukrainian Republic, was attacked in a speech by M. Postyshev as being the one person most responsible for allowing the Ukraine to become honeycombed with wrecking, counter-revolutionary and separatist organizations working in the interest of foreign capitalist circles. Four days afterwards he committed suicide.”
[W.Z. In Doc. 34, Strang refers to “my dispatch No. 371 of the 4th July” in which he describes the 10 June 1933 violent attack on Skrypnik by Postyshev. Perhaps Chilston mixed up the dates.]

(p383) “In most countries the terrible famine of the spring would have caused sanguinary riots, if not revolution; in the Ukraine the people died without a murmur.”

Doc. 67:  16 May 1934; Collier interviews Ethel Christie
(p384)  Quaker Organization was sending parcels to individuals in Ukraine via Torgsin.
- Christie stated that the famine in Ukraine this year was almost as bad as last year.
- She wanted advice on the Ammende project.

Doc. 68:  17 May 1934; Collier interview with Ammende and Dietloff
(p387)  Dietloff gave a very dismal description of the situation in the Soviet Union:
- “colossal reduction in the agricultural population throughout the south of Russia … deliberate policy … ordered all “useless mouths” to leave the villages … deporting them to Siberia or simply driving them out into the wilderness to starve.”

(p388) “… he illustrated his statements by some gruesome photographs.”

Ammende was lobbying the British for his “humanitarian campaign” and suggested that admission of the Soviet Union to the League of Nations should be conditional on humanitarian aid to starving.

Doc. 69:  15 June 1934; Chilston (Moscow) to Simon
(p391) Trials in Kyiv of 29 employees for speculation in essential consumption goods. [food]
- Anti-semitic overtones;  [ref. 91] article by David Zaslavski (of Jewish origin himself) identified the accused as Jews by employing an arsenal of anti-semitic stereotypes.

Doc. 70:  18 June 1934; Garbett (Punjab) to Vansittart
(p393) “… determined effort is being made to subvert the peasants of the Punjab.”
- Appropriate documents were sent to Garbett (in India) to expose the true situation in the Soviet Union.

Doc. 71: 02 July 1934; Foreign Office to Smithers (House of Commons)
Although “we have a certain amount of information about famine conditions in the south of Russia” … “We do not want to make it public , however, because the Soviet Government would resent it and our relations with them would be prejudiced.”

Doc. 72:  02 July 1934; Duchess of Atholl to Simon
(p399) Lady Atholl presents information from Dr. Dietloff and Malcolm Muggeridge (when he was at “Drusag” last year). Dietloff replies at length to 16 questions.

(p407) Disastrous famine of 1933 … “with its toll of ten million lives”.
Note by Vyvyan: “Mr. Muggeridge, to whom the Duchess refers, tells me that … he has no doubt that Dr. Ammende … is financed as an agitator by the German Ministry of Propaganda.”

Doc. 73:  16 July 1934; Smithers to Simon
Confirmatory Evidence of the Existence of Famine in the Soviet Union
Particularly in Ukraine and the North Caucasus

(p411) Source of evidence: Reliable newspaper correspondents; Refugees; The Soviet Press and official Soviet statements; Photographs taken by foreigners;  15 Relief Organizations and Committees.
- The serious famine of 1933 left conditions in such a bad state that it leads “to the conclusion that famine must be worse in 1934 than in 1933.”

(p412) Quotes of Malcolm Muggeridge, Manchester Guardian, 25 to 29Mar1933
- Confirmation by Gareth Jones (Evening Standard, 31Mar1933)
- Daily Telegraph, 25, 28 and 30Aug1933
- Canadian Gazette, 07Sep1933, Humphrey Mitchell M.P.
- Toronto Star, 31Jul1933, M.H. Halton
- Adolph Ehrt, Bruder in Not! Dokumente der Hungersnot unter den deutschen Volksgenossen in Russland (Berlin: Bruder in Not, 1934) [with photographs]
- Czas Czernowitz, 19Aug1933
- Berlingske Tidende (Denmark), 24Aug1933
- Le Matin, 29Aug1933; Mrs. Martha Stebalo
- Dilo (Lviv), 03Dec1933
- Answers, 24Feb1934 and 03Mar1934; Whiting Williams
- Christian Science Monitor, 29May1934; W.H. Chamberlin

(p415) Mr. Whiting Williams and Mr. Otto Wienerberger, an Austrian engineer, took photographs of dead people in Kharkiv streets, innumerable bread and milk queues, and mass graveyards for the victims of the famine.

Reference 98 on p460 by Marco Carynnyk:
“Otto Wienerberger’s photographs are probably the ones reproduced in Ewald Ammende, Muss Russland hungern? Menschen- und Volkerschicksale in der Sowjetunion (Vienna: Wilhelm Braumuller, 1935). The book included 21 photographs which Ammende said had been taken by an Austrian engineer in Kharkiv in the summer of 1933. They are for the most part shots of streets and show shops that did not exist before the 1930s. Unless evidence to the contrary is presented, these twenty-one pictures may be accepted as genuine and authentic. When Ammende’s book was translated into English as Human Life in Russia (London: George Allen & Unwin, 1936. Reprint. Cleveland: John T. Zubal, 1984), however, only twelve of these pictures were reprinted, and fourteen others were added. Ammende asserted that the second group of pictures had been taken in the summer of 1933 by the manager of a German agricultural concession in the North Caucasus (Fritz Dittloff?), but it can be shown that most of them were taken during the famine of 1921-1922. Nevertheless, they have often been inadvertently reproduced as evidence of the famine of 1932-1933.”

[W.Z. In the Introduction to the English-language version of the book, Lord Dickinson (1936) states: “Dr. Ammende has died, a victim of his own unceasing activity.” The Preface by Ammende is dated November 1935. It would be interesting to correlate the date and cause of death with the date of the final editing and publication of the book.]

(p415) Further Evidence Concerning Famine Conditions in 1934 are:
- Letters and reports from organizations such as: European Central Office for Church Aid; Deutsches Rotes Kreuz, Berlin; Bruder-in Not; British Subjects in Russia Relief Association; Federation  of Jewish Relief Organizations; Society of Friends; Russian Assistance Fund.
- Visti (Kharkiv), 09Apr1934
- Daily Telegraph, 23May1934
- Times (London), 28/29May1934, 28June1934
- Visti (Kharkiv) 22Jun1934
- Berliner Tageblatt, 04Jul1934
- Visti (Kharkiv), 03Jul1934

[W.Z. The seat of the Government of Ukraine was transferred from Kharkiv to Kyiv sometimes between 03 and 16Jul1934]

Doc. 74:  25 July 1934; Vyvyan to Charnwood (House of Lords)
(p418) Notes on how to reply to Lord Charnwood’s question about the famine “in these delicate circumstances”.

Note by Lawrence Collier on 06Jul1934: “I fear there is reason to believe that, when they found there was a shortage, they deliberately reduced the population in the country districts & otherwise starved them to feed the towns (see [Document 68]).”

Doc. 75:  25 August 1934, 08 September 1934; Duchess of Atholl correspondence with Simon
(p422) Lady Atholl asks “if it would be possible to make our consent to Russia’s entry into the League conditional on the Soviet Government taking steps to mitigate the famine.”

(p423) “Hitler’s declared aim of securing expansion in Eastern Europe and Russia must have a much greater chance of success than it otherwise would, with Russian agriculture largely in ruins and Russian peasants dying by the million, and it seems to me that for this reason, the Soviet Government might be willing to allow help to be sent.”

Vyvyan discourages this approach and Sir John Simon replies to Lady Atholl accordingly.

Doc. 76:  08 September 1934; Chilston (Moscow) to Simon
(p425) In the past six months the USSR has exported 472,068 tons of grain, 123,000 tons to the United Kingdom plus large quantities of butter, eggs, poultry, bacon and fish.
- Chilston discourages relief work.

Note by Lawrence Collier: “This is an odd dispatch. Does Lord Chilston really think that there is now no famine, or no prospect of famine, in the Soviet Union, because grain is being exported?”

Doc. 77:  11 September 1934; Charles (Moscow) to Vyvyan
(p427) L.E. Hubbard Conversation with Walter Duranty
- Duranty described his interview with Stalin on Christmas Day, 1933.

Note in margin: “I think he [Duranty] is a conscious humbug & always was.”

Doc. 78:  31 December 1934; Chilston (Moscow) to Simon
(p429) Chilston discusses nationalist tendencies in Ukraine and measures to combat them.

Doc. 79:  06, 14 February 1935; Rushbrooke (Baptist World Alliance) to Simon to Chilston
- Times, 05Feb1935, “Fear of Famine in Russia”
- Meeting with Ammende representing Cardinal Innitzer, Continental Protestants, Jews, etc.
- Ask Rushbrooke asks, Simon writes Chilston who downplays possibility of famine in 1934-35, although independent farmers (20%) are still being squeezed.
- 1934 harvest was worse than in 1933.

Doc. 80:  20 February 1935, 08 March 1935; Chilston to Simon to Rushbrooke
(p435) Although the 1934 crop was about the same as 1933, it was unlikely there would be famine.

Note by R.L. Speaight: “… the Soviet Govt are no longer deliberately allowing peasants to starve (in order to force them into collective farms) as there is little doubt that they did in 1933. … we have had a dispatch from Moscow showing that even the individual farmers are now being induced to collectivize themselves by kindness rather than by brutality.”

Doc. 81:  09, 11 March 1935; Rushbrooke to Simon
(p437) Negative response to relief effort; would not even ask Eden to bring up subject of famine during Soviet-Anglo security meeting.

Doc. 82:  01, 11 April 1935; Smithers to War Office to Foreign Office
Letter by Smithers suggest deaths: “The number was given to me as 15,000,000.”
(p441) Reply that this was the largest number they have seen; the 1932-1933 numbers vary from 1,000,000 to 10,000,000.
(p442) “… we are confident that there is no systematic registration of deaths from starvation.”

Doc. 83:  24 June 1935; Memorandum by Lawrence Collier
(p443) General wind-down of the famine and humanitarian aid.

Doc. 84:  12 August 1935; Chilston (Moscow) to Hoare
(p447) Report by Mr. C.A.S. Hawker from Australia on agricultural conditions in the Soviet Union, which also involved air flights over affected famine areas.
[W.Z. Chilston appears to be pro-Bolshevik, and not sympathetic to the farmers.]

Doc. 85: 22 October 1935; Charles (Moscow) to Hoare
(p451) Former Petliura officer and his lieutenant who travelled as itinerant musicians shot for inciting peasants against the regime.
- Arrest of another “counter-revolutionary” in Kharkiv.

1934-1935 Summation by Will Zuzak
This time period is the aftermath of the Holodomor. Stalin and his henchmen have completed their dirty deed and now concentrate on rooting out any traces of Ukrainian independence, Ukrainian nationalism, Ukrainian culture and even the Ukrainian language. These actions clearly demonstrate the genocidal nature of the Holodomor.

Any humanitarian aid is rejected by the Soviets and efforts to arouse world public opinion is discouraged by the British Government. The Duchess of Atholl was one of the first prominent people to express concern (doc. 36) and propose humanitarian aid. This was followed by Dr. Ewald Ammende, Cardinal Innitzer (with Metropolitan Andrei Sheptytsky; doc. 53) and a large number of organizations and individuals.

Although the British abandon Ukraine to its sad fate, nevertheless, they were well informed on Ukraine-German relations and Ukrainian nationalism. In particular, the analyses of Ponsonby Moore Crosthwaite (doc. 62) and Lieutenant-Colonel Cecil Strange Malone (doc. 65) are particularly insightful. Also, Lord Chilston (docs. 64 and 66) seems to be well informed on the situation.

Little did the British Foreign Office personnel realize that Stalin, having starved out the peasants, would next turn on the townspeople and old Communists. Yezhovschyna was yet to come!