I wrote the following as a letter to the editor of the Wall Street Journal, but decided to print it here instead.
"I was shocked to read the strait communist-Trotskyite line on Stalin’s terror put forward, by David North of the Socialist Equality Party, (“The How and Why of Russia’s Stalinist Terror” WSJ opinion page May 25) in this day and age. Mr. North pulls the normal socialist trick of context dropping to make it look like socialists were the major victims of Stalin.
While it is likely true that the majority of the one million victims of the Purges of 1937-1938 were party members, these were by no means the sum total of the victims of Stalin or of the soviet system. To take only one example, what of the six and a half million kulaks (better off peasants) slaughtered as part of the collectivization program. Mr. North of course will defend himself by saying that he and his Trotskyite comrades were opposed to Stalin. But the cold fact is that V.I. Lenin, Trotsky and their communist revolutionary brethren had managed to kill five million soviet citizens even before Stalin became general secretary of the Communist Party.
The Romanoff dynasty had ruled Russia for hundreds of years with a heavy handed authoritarianism that was the scandal of prewar Europe. Lenin has the dubious distinction of being one of the few figures in world history that could make the Romanoff dynasty look good by comparison. He and Trotsky have all too often, escaped the judgment of history because they were followed in power by Stalin, one of the three greatest murderers in the history of the world. Sir Winston L.S. Churchill summed up the proper judgment of Lenin when he wrote, “the Russian people’s second greatest tragedy, his birth, their greatest tragedy, his death.”
The fact that Mr. North and his friends are unwilling to face, is that as a form of collectivism, communism can have no other result than mass murder because it devalues the individual and blends people, in the minds of its adherents, into an amorphous collective. The members of that collective are both the justification for and the victims of a revolutionary socialist party. They are the justification, since having no voice except that of the individuals that make it up, a collective is ripe to be the justification for any gang fascist or socialist that claims to speak in its name. Its members are the victims since the collective is used by socialists and fascists to destroy the reality of the individuals that the collectivists lump together. The novelist Ayn Rand described what this collectivist perspective reduced humans to, “Hundreds. Thousands. Millions. Millions of What? Stomachs and heads and legs and tongues and souls, and it doesn’t even matter if they fit together properly. Just millions. Just flesh.” Once people are “just flesh,” in the minds of their rulers any atrocity can be perpetrated upon them in the name of a twisted ideal.
Mr. North and his comrades are understandably in denial about the full horror of the socialist system, because if they admit to themselves even for a moment that more people have been killed during the 20th Century in the pursuit of their ideal, than the total population of Great Briton, they would have no choice but abandonment of their views or suicide.
The rest of us however, must, because our lives do in fact depend on it, face the facts. Revolutionary socialism in China and the Soviet Union alone killed tens of millions of human beings. That does not count the tens of millions killed by other communists in Cambodia, Korea, Vietnam and in other communist and socialist states, or the tens of millions killed by their collectivist brothers the fascists and national socialists, or the 15 million killed in the Second World War started jointly by the communists and fascists. In total the four most murderous regimes of the 20th century, the Soviet Union, the Peoples Republic of China, Nazi Germany, and Nationalist China all to one degree or another socialist and all certainly collectivist managed to slaughter 120 million human beings.
The plain fact is that power kills. As a state becomes more powerful and less democratic the more it kills. It is time for the people of the United States, the English Speaking Nation, and the World to say, 120 million dead is enough. "
For those interested the statistics on democide can be found here.