…We must know that the Genozide in Russia was driven by the Jews in order to be aware of what is done to us today. Our Jewish U.S. government is trying to silence Christianity and Free Speech, take our guns away and many other rights… We are heading there, beware! During each of these decades, 1915 to 1949, the Soviet authorities [*under the Jews] murdered about one-fourth to one-third of the entire ethnic-German population in Russia. [*In those days, families frequently had 6-10 children.] The Letters from Hell publication includes a discussion about the period, including what was known outside of the Soviet Union about the genocide…
[*comments by germanvictims.com]
THE GENOCIDE OF MILLIONS OF GERMAN RUSSIANS OVER SEVERAL DECADES IN THE UKRAINE AND RUSSIA HAS BEEN DONE BY THE JEWS WHO HAVE USURPED RUSSIA AND MURDERED BETWEEN 66 MILLION AND 100 MILLION RUSSIANS, WHITE PEOPLE AND RUSSIA’S FINEST. IT WAS NOT A RUSSIAN REVOLUTION BUT A JEWISH REVOLUTION, A USURPTION OF RUSSIA WITH THE HELP OF AMERICAN WALL STREET JEWS. THE GERMAN RUSSIANS BUILT THE RUSSIAN BREAD BASKET WITH THEIR INVENTED FARMING TOOLS AND INGENUITY, AND THE JEW RULERS STARVED THEM TO DEATH, DEPORTED THEM TO SIBERIA ALREADY IN THE DECADES BEFORE STALIN, WHERE THEY STARVED TO DEATH ON OPEN LAND BY THE HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS. THEN AFTER THAT THE JEWS PUT THEM THROUGH 2 FAMINES IN THE UKRAINE, IN THE 1920TH AND 1930TH. MILLIONS OF RUSSIANS, UKRAINIANS, AND GERMAN-UKRAINIANS DIED. AFTER THAT THEY EXECUTED HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS OF THEM FOR INVENTED REASONS, OR FOR HIDING A LOAF OF BREAD FOR THEIR STARVING CHILDREN. MILLIONS MORE WENT INTO THE GULAG DEATH CAMPS WHERE THEY WERE WORKED TO DEATH UNDER THE MOST HORRID CONDITIONS.
AND ALL THIS IS THE WORK OF THE “VICTIM” THE JEW. BECAUSE THEY HAVE DONE SUCH EVIL THINGS, THE JEW MEDIA WANTS TO SHUT PEOPLE DOWN SO NO TRUTH ABOUT THEM COMES UP. BECAUSE ONCE THE HOLOCAUST IS UNDERSTOOD AS A FRAUD, ALL THE FRAUDS WILL COME UP ABOUT THE JEWS.
Extermination of the Valuable National Elements of Russia Through Jewry.
In November 1917, Jewish Marxism completely absorb ed the ruling power of Russia.
Its next step was to expand this power through the exploitation of the masses. As an ideal state, it visioned a slavishly devoted and a spiritually and morally degenerated, population.
Soon, however, the new rulers discovered that this goal could not be attained unless all those racially valuable ele ments which would never be content with a life of slavery, were exterminated.
With the aid of a terroristic organization, established specially for this purpose—the Tscheka (Tsche-Ka, meaning extraordinary commission) and later the G. P. U., they started out on the bloody task.
It was comparatively easy to dispose of the leading and most valuable racial elements: the intelligentsia and nobility.
A certain number of the intelligentsia had fallen during the world war, and an even greater number fell during the civil war which led up to the inauguration of Jewish con trol. The rest either fled the country or were cruelly mas sacred by the Tscheka.
Only a very small number were allowed to contribute their knowledge and experience in service for the new state.
But the most difficult problem was the handling of the peasants. Lenin, himself, had long ago recognized that the greatest obstacle in establishing a Communistic slave- state would be the strong and healthy peasant, consequently the government had but one alternative: the complete destruction of the healthy peasantry. [gv*the Russian bread basket was developed and maintained by the German immigrants.] Excerpt from “Slave Labor in Soviet Russia”-Herman Greife
ALL THE VIDEOS BELOW HAVE BEEN DELETED, APPARENTLY BY YOUTUBE, BECAUSE THE TRUTH MUST NOT COME OUT.
The Soviet Holocaust Story
THE ENEMY OF TRUTH HAS REMOVED THE VIDEOS WITNESSING THE CRIMES!
[*Comments by germanvictims.com]
[*There was a famine in many areas of the Soviet Union: The Ukrainian Breadbasket, The Crimea, Kasakhstan, etc., all heavily populated with Germans. The Volga was just one German area. In order to stay politically correct, no word is being said that the Jews usurped Russia and where the instigators of all this horror.]
Many letters were written to family members in North America during the 1920s and 1930s famines in Russia. Below is a collection of these letters published in Die Welt-Post (The World Post), a German language newspaper originally established in Lincoln, Nebraska and later published in Omaha, Nebraska. Die Welt-Post was read by many Volga German families.
Die Welt-Post newspaper articles are on microfilm and held by AHSGR in Lincoln, NE. The papers have been indexed by Samuel D. Sinner in his booklet Letters from Hell published by AHSGR in 2000. In order to obtain the original articles, one must buy Sinner’s Index and then order the individual articles. The articles are not indexed by surname. They are indexed by village.
Sinner’s documented research shows that between 1915 and 1949 approximately one million ethnic Germans died in Russia and the Soviet Union. [*This number is the number for ethnic Germans in Russia but this is not all because from 1944-1970 alone from the Prussian Part of Germany 1,000,000 women and girls were taken to the Russian Gulag of which 50% died right away and most did not survive. Many more hundreds of thousands of ethnic Eastbloc Germans were taken from Austria, Poland, Hungary, Czechnia, East Germany under Russian occupation and other places into the Gulags in Russia. It must have been many Millions of civilians. Several Million German POWs were also taken to the Gulags in Russia where almost all of them died.] During each of these decades, the Soviet authorities murdered about one-fourth to one-third of the entire ethnic-German population. The Letters from Hell publication includes a discussion about the period, including what was known outside of the Soviet Union about the genocide, how the non-communist world overlooked what was occurring, and how this horrible nightmare became a forgotten past. The complete discussion is found in the Letters from Hell booklet which can be purchased from the AHSGR . [*Considering that the United States worked twice with the Communist Soviet Union, once in WW1 and then in WW2, to further Communism throughout the world for the Jews, I can imagine that many letters and many packages did not reach their destination.]
The genocide committed against the ethnic Germans of Russia comprised a series of mass murders and genocidal actions that unfolded in the 1910s, 1920s, 1930s, and 1940s. In all, from 1915 to 1945, probably over
one million [*several Million!] Russian Germans perished from unnatural causes under three successive Russian governments—those of Tsar Nicholas II [hardly any], Lenin, and Stalin—chiefly by means of mass executions, forced labor, deliberate starvation, and brutal deportations.
Source: “The German-Russian Genocide: Remembrance in the 21st Century” by Samuel D. Sinner
Joseph Stalin’s forcible resettlement of over 1.5 million people, mostly Muslims, during and after World War II is now viewed by many human rights experts in Russia as one of his most drastic genocidal acts. Volga Germans and seven nationalities of Crimea and the northern Caucasus were deported: the Crimean Tatars, Kalmyks, Chechens, Ingush, Balkars, Karachai, and Meskhetians. Other minorities evicted from the Black Sea coastal region included Bulgarians, Greeks, and Armenians. [*The Germans in the Ukraine had their homes attacked, burned down, and their land taken away! Later all ethnic Germans lost their homestead.]
Resistance to Soviet rule, separatism, and widespread collaboration with the German occupation forces were among the official reasons for the deportation of these non-Russian peoples. [*But that was not until the Nazi forces overtook the Ukraine!] The possibility of a German attack was used to justify the resettlement of the ethnically mixed population of Mtskheta, in southwestern Georgia. The Balkars were punished for allegedly having sent a white horse as a gift to Adolf Hitler.
The deportees were rounded up and transported, usually in railroad cattle cars, to Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, Kirgizia, and Siberia [*already during WWI] — areas called “human dumping grounds” by historian Robert Conquest. Most estimates indicate that close to two-fifths of the affected populations perished. The plight of the Crimean Tatars was exceptionally harsh; nearly half died of hunger in the first eighteen months after being banished from their homeland.
In February 1956, Nikita Khrushchev condemned the deportations as a violation of Leninist principles. [*What a joke!!!] In his “secret speech” to the Twentieth Party Congress, he stated that the Ukrainians avoided such a fate “only because there were too many of them and there was no place to which to deport them.” [*They were executed by the tens of Thousands and brought into the Gulag.] That year, the Soviet government issued decrees on the restoration of the Chechen-Ingush Autonomous Republic and the Kabardino-Balkar Autonomous Republic, the formation of the Kalmyk Autonomous Oblast’, and the reorganization of the Cherkess Autonomous Oblast’ into the Karachai-Cherkess Autonomous Oblast’. The Crimean Tatars, Meskhetians, and Volga Germans, however, were only partially rehabilitated and were not, for the most part, permitted to return to their homelands until after the disintegration of the Soviet Union in 1991.
In 1941, all the colonists who had not yet emigrated from the Volga region were deported by Stalin’s Soviet government to Siberia, Kazakhstan, and other remote regions because of their German heritage. The formal decree came on 28 August 1941 which abolished the Autonomous Socialistic Soviet Republic of the Volga Germans .
On 1 September 1941 mass evacuation was announced for the approximately 440,000 Volga Germans. Ten days later they began their forced deportation to Kazakhstan and Siberia. Many were forced to work in the Trudarmee (labor army) in camps such as Kolyma. The Volga Germans were then stripped of their citizenship and did not regain their civil rights until after Stalin’s death.
The Volga Germans were now treated as prisoners and were transported by rail to the camps. There were 151 train convoys departing from 19 stations. Some 20,000 NKVD troops and the huge quantities of rolling stock and other resources were diverted from the war effort in order to shift vast numbers of old people, women and children to distant lands quite unprepared to receive them. Fifty or 60 people were packed into each freight car and given water only when the train stopped every three or four days. Food, when provided, was generally salted herring which only made the prisoners’ thirst that much greater. The journey could take many weeks.
The consequences were devastating. Some families were given as little as five or ten minutes to pack up their belongings and food for the trip. No food was supplied. Tens of thousands are believed to have died during journeys which lasted up to two months. In some cases, bodies were left in the overcrowded cattle wagons for weeks on end. In others, they were thrown out beside the tracks. Most estimates indicate that close to 40 percent of the affected population perished.
Many of the transfers took place in fall and winter months. Those who survived the journey often found themselves with inadequate clothing, no shelter, and no means to support themselves in temperatures as low as -40ºC in Siberia. Their movement was restricted to a limited zone always a few kilometers short of the nearest town.
Walters provides the following chilling account:
“Perhaps the best account of what happened is given by Victor Leiker, a New Jersey Journalist, who interviewed four natives of the Volga Republic in 1968. The men, ranging in age from forty-nine to fifty-three, made their way to Germany and settled there after the war. Leiker described the evacuation of Ober-Monjou as follows: ‘In Ober-Monjou the order came early in the morning. The people were given four hours in which to prepare for the evacuation. Anyone resisting or attempting to hide would be summarily shot, and a few were. Soldiers arrived a few hours after the order and herded the people to the banks of the river where they boarded barges and were taken to a railhead. Each person, regardless of age, was allowed one suitcase or bundle. Some suspected that they would be sent to Siberia and took all the clothes and bedding they could carry. Others took as much food as they could assemble. In the long run those with the extra clothing and bedding had the best chance of surviving the cold in the north where little or no preparation had been made for their arrival.
At the railhead the people were loaded into freight and cattle cars, some with open vents and some with no vents at all. And so began the long, horrible, and disastrous trip to Siberia. No statistics are available, and we shall probably never know how many died on their trip to the the forced labor camps and how many in the forests, mines, and fields of Siberia. There was only one railroad running through the Volga Republic and it had no branch lines. The people were almost always forced to walk to the nearest railroad station. It can be imagined that many of those not in good health, that many of the old and young, did not make it to the station.”
Walters notes that little is known about banished persons who survived, and he expresses anger that Russia has escaped censure from the international community for what it has done.
In the Volga colonies, all German institutions disappeared. German buildings remained but often were reconfigured for different use. The many contributions Volga Germans made to the region were buried under the hostility toward all things Germanic.
– Chai-mun, Lee. “The Lost Sheep: The Soviet Deportation of Ethnic Koreans and Volga Germans.” The Review of Korean Studies (June 2003). (in Korean)
– Pohl, J. Otto. “The Deportation and Destruction of the German Minority in the USSR.” ( online )
– Walters, George J. Wir Wollen Deutsche Bleiben: The Story of the Volga Germans (Kansas City, MO: Halcyon House Publishers, 1982).
Why did the Germans move to Russia?
The German Side of the Story
The majority (95 percent) of those who settled in the Volga German colonies were refugees from the war-ravaged German states where religious strife and economic hardship had created a climate ripe for immigration. The bulk of those Germans came from Hesse and the Palatinate. Among other things, Catherine’s manifesto promised religious freedom, exemption from military service, and thirty years without having to pay taxes.
For two centuries, a bloody battle was waged between the religious factions of Central Europe. By the end of the 30 Years’ War in 1648, the Holy Roman Empire had disolved into more than 300 territories and independent cities led by secular or clerical rulers. These groups continued to battle on and off into the next century with opposing coalitions led by Catholic Austria and Protestant Prussia. The Seven Years’ War began in 1754 and involved all the major powers in Europe at the time. The average inhabitant of Central Europe, regardless of religious or political allegiance, was under extreme tax burden, constant threat of injury to person or property, and routine conscription into military service for one side or the other. For many, there was little cause to remain.
The Russian Side of the Story
Only twenty-one days after her coronation in 1762, Catherine the Great issued a directive to her government authorizing them to admit into the country all persons who wanted to settle in Russia. A manifesto to this effect was issued on 4 December 1762. She wanted permanent settlers to populate the lower Volga frontier and bring stability to this region.
For centuries, the nomadic Kirghiz and Kalmyks had been ravaging the steppe of the lower Volga River basin. Russians and Ukrainians had attempted to settle there, but three battalions of soldiers sent there to protect them had been slaughtered. In 1732, Empress Anna had turned to forced settlement of the area and sent Russian, Ukrainian, and Don Cossack settlers numbering 1,057 families to build a new defense line along the Volga between Tsaritsyn and Kamyshin. However, these settlers failed to defend the locale, but rather participated in robbery and murder along side the bandits.
Having noticed the successful recruitment of over 300,000 Central European immigrants to Holland, England, Prussia, Austria, and even America, Empress Elizabeth in 1759 invited Austrians to settle in Russia. Catherine followed her example, but the 1762 manifesto had been worded in generalities and received disappointing response. Catherine learned quickly why these early efforts were unsuccessful and, undaunted, she issued a second manifesto on 22 July 1763 that provided more specifics about who was covering transportation and settlement expenses and outlining protections and rights afforded to those who answered her call. More than 30,000 did so.
The above recount is much abbreviated. Each family undoubtedly had its own reasons for leaving. Each Russian official involved in the recruiting, transport, or settlement of the colonists had their own reasons for being involved in this enterprise. The following resources offer additional insight into these issues.
– Beratz, Gottieb. The German colonies on the Lower Volga, their origin and early development: a memorial for the 150th anniversary of the arrival of the first German settlers on the Volga, 29 June 1764 . Translated by Adam Giesinger. Lincoln, NE: American Historical Society of Germans from Russia, 1991.
– Dietz, Jacob E. History of the Volga German Colonists . Lincoln, NE: American Historical Society of Germans from Russia, 2005.
– Koch, Fred C. The Volga Germans: In Russia and the Americas, from 1763 to the Present . University Park, PA: Pennsylvania State University Press, 1977.
– Pleve, Igor R. The German Colonies on the Volga: The Second Half of the Eighteenth Century . Translated by Richard Rye. Lincoln, NE: American Historical Society of Germans from Russia, 2001.
* * *
The German-Russian Genocide: Remembrance in the 21st Century
Baltic professor Adolf Perandi explains how genocide is carried out in the
following manner: “Genocide does not necessarily constitute one act. The destruction of
a nation cannot ordinarily be achieved through a single act, limited in time. It requires a
combination of many acts carried out at different times with different means and for
different reasons. Accordingly, many successive acts aimed at the destruction of a nation
and interrupted at intervals can be classified as one continuous crime of genocide.”
The genocide committed against the ethnic Germans of Russia comprised a series
of mass murders and genocidal actions that unfolded in the 1910s, 1920s, 1930s, and
1940s. In all, from 1915 to 1945, probably over one million Russian Germans perished
from unnatural causes under three successive Russian governments—those of Tsar
Nicholas II, Lenin, and Stalin—chiefly by means of mass executions, forced labor,
deliberate starvation, and brutal deportations. When the figure of over one million
victims within a span of only 30 years, 1915-1945, is viewed in light of the fact that
during those same years, at its height, the group numbered only 1,621,000 (in 1918), one
is not surprised to find that the collective conscience and consciousness of the group are
still suffering from the effects of psychological trauma. In countless poems, novels,
works of art, and theater pieces being produced by Russian Germans in Russia and in
Germany, one finds the common themes of deliberate starvation, the Gulag, deportation,
torture, and genocide.
As a consequence of this genocide, the Russian Germans were unable to exceed
their combined population level of 1918 (1,621,000) until about 1960 (1959 census –
For three decades, countless Russian Germans suffered the brutal murder of family
members, lost relatives, and friends through deportation and were forced to watch
helplessly as their loved ones slowly starved to death, were beaten, tortured, harassed
daily, driven to insanity and suicide. Their genocide remains an open wound.
In the decree of the RSFSR On the Rehabilitation of Repressed Peoples of 26
April 1991, the Russian government finally confessed that a campaign of “slander and
genocide” had been committed against those nationalities which had been deported by
Stalin during World War II. The Russian Germans were the largest of these deported
Deportations and Massacres
WWI exacerbated Russia’s Germanophobia and Panslavic and Slavophile tendencies.
Foreign Minister Zazonov called for a “final solution” to the ethnic German problem in
Russia, noting that the time had come “…to deal with this long over-due problem, for the
current war has created the conditions to make it possible to solve this problem once and
for all.” Russian General Polivanov wrote in a pamphlet that was distributed among
Russian soldiers on order of Grand Duke Nicholas, the Tsar’s uncle: “Russia’s Germans
must all be driven out, without respect of age, sex, any supposed usefulness, or their
many years of residence in the empire.”
In 1915 and 1916, the deportation of ethnic-German groups followed the issuance
of property expropriation laws. In all, approximately 190,000 to 200,000 ethnic Germans
were deported in 1915-1916. An overall mortality rate of one-third to one-half (63,000-
100,000) would most likely agree with the actual number of losses, though the exact
figure will never be known. RJ Rummel, a political scientist at the University of
Hawaii, argues that the casualties which resulted from the deportations of this ethnic
group should, in accord with standard legal definitions, be classified as “murder.”
From the Tsarist point of view, under the cloak of war, the time had come to deal
with a long overdue ethnic “problem.” The deportations of Russian Germans were in
reality exterminatory measures hidden under the cloak of a supposed “war time
The repression of the Russian Germans during World War I included pogroms in
the major Russian cities which destroyed thousands of German homes and businesses, the
out-lawing of public speaking of German, the prohibition of German correspondence, and
the suppression of German language newspapers.
In addition to the Tsarist property expropriation and deportations, following the
Bolshevik Revolution of October 25, 1917, the ethnic Germans of the former Tsarist
empire were immediately confronted by an organized campaign of terror. With the
October Revolution, there emerged what Vahakn Dadrian writing on the Turkish
genocide of the Armenians has called “a subculture of massacre.” The eruption of
massacres manifested itself in a combination of small and large scale killing operations
involving, among other cruelties, the mass rape of the elderly, women, and children, mass
drownings, prolonged torture sessions, mutilations, mass shootings of hundreds, even
thousands in a single action, the holocaust of entire villages—including the burning of all
inhabitants and building structures, and the complete robbery of entire villages in the
name of “requisition” and extermination of the quote, unquote, “German kulaks, big
farmers and counter-revolutionaries.”
It is impossible to determine the exact number of Russian Germans who were
murdered through executions during the years of the Great Massacres. But we can safely
conclude that from 1918-1921, and then to a lesser extent 1922-1925—which is the
second phase of the genocide we will discuss next—probably about 360,000 to 365,000
Russian Germans were exterminated through organized starvation and massacres, that is
300,000 starvation deaths + 60,000-65,000 shootings. This statistic approaches one-third of the entire group’s 1926 population level.
The draught Russia experienced in 1921, as well as the devastation caused by the so-
called Russian civil war, certainly contributed to the starvation crisis of the early 1920s.
But these were neither the direct nor main causes of the mass starvation which lasted
from 1920 to 1925 among the ethnic Germans in Russia. Mass starvation began only
after grain reserves were mercilessly requisitioned by order of the Lenin government.
The Russian-German population attempted to save itself from certain death from
starvation by resisting the Bolshevik grain requisition policy. The government initially
denied the existence of mass starvation. Mention of famine conditions was forbidden in
the press, and talk of starvation was punishable by death. In July 1921, the Russian
government finally broke its silence, admitting that international press reports of mass
starvation were indeed true. It reluctantly allowed international aid into the country. The
change in policy of 1921 was not motivated by charity or concern for the victims. As
Josef Stalin wrote in a brief from October 19, 1921, granting the American Relief
Association permission to carry out relief operations in Russia: “The issue is not charity
The peasant uprisings of the early 1920s were cruelly eradicated, after which
special military tribunals were established to punish not only individuals, but also to
execute hundreds en masse , including children and the elderly of both sexes. After the
end of the uprisings, Lenin ordered in 1921 the most brutal and devastating grain
requisitions yet to be carried out in the Volga-German settlement area. Conditions grew
so critical that Russian reports referred to cannibalism and consumption of even more
shocking resources not fit to be mentioned in civilized company.
The latest Russian-language studies of the starvation crisis among the Russian
Germans, conclude that approximately 300,000 ethnic Germans needlessly died of
starvation in the early 1920s. Along with the 60,000-65,000 shootings of 1918-1921, this
statistic of 360,000 approaches one-third of the entire group’s 1926 population level.
Collectivization, Deportations, Executions
During Stalin’s first Five Year Plan (1928-1932), a plan for forced agricultural
collectivization, or de-privatization of farming, the ethnic Germans were stripped of life’s
necessities. The higher than average death rate among the Russian Germans, in which
this policy of requisition played a central role, began in 1930 as collectivization
There was a mixed harvest in 1932 and 1933, but there was no need for mass
starvation in the Soviet Union. At the very least, Stalin could have requested help from
the international community. Instead, he denied there was any starvation and refused all
help offered. Indeed, mass starvation was precisely what he wanted. It was the best tool
to exterminate the so-called kulaks and other “enemies of the people,” in other words,
“private farmers.” One Russian German wrote in 1932:
If a solution cannot be found in the coming winter, then 50
percent of the population will starve to death… [O]ur
government is conjuring up an artificial famine…
Entire villages nearly died out, and show trials were held against mothers who had
eaten their infants in desperation. Between 1930 and the beginning of 1937, the Russian
Germans lost approximately 300,000 to 350,000 members, one-fourth of their entire
group—one out of every four was therefore exterminated through deliberate starvation,
deportation, or shooting. Khrushchev admitted that the collectivization famine was an act
of “murder” on the part of the government. In 1990, the Central Committee of the
Communist Party of Ukraine confessed that the famine had been deliberately created by
the Soviet leadership.
1940s Deportations and Trudarmiya
In 1941, all Russian Germans were deported en masse to Siberia and other points
east by order of Stalin. During World War II, Stalin used the pretext of war to seal the
fate of those problematic [*what do you mean problematic!!! They established the bread basket under blood and sweat and many deaths in 1775 and were immigrating to Russia under promise of keeping their ethnic language. These were hard working German Christians] ethnic groups which had been the object of Soviet anti-nationalities policies since the early 1930s. The deportations were the unavoidable
outcome of the 1930s Soviet anti-nationalities policies and would have occurred even had
Hitler never invaded the USSR [*pre-emptive strike. The Russians were lined up at the German border0.
As with the World War I deportations, so for Stalin in 1941 the time had come to
deal with a long overdue nationalities “problem” under the cloak of war. As in World
War I, the 1941 deportations were in reality genocidal measures hidden under the cloak
of a supposed “war time emergency action” described as a “temporary resettlement”
After arriving at their areas of exile, many of the deportees were soon “drafted”
into the trudarmiya (Labor Army). “Enlisted” were able-bodied men 15-55 years of age
and women 16-45. All others lived in what came to be designated Special Settlements.
After 1945, the trudarmiya was officially abolished, and the former areas of the
trudarmiya were then also designated Special Settlements. Until 1956, those living in
these zones were required to report regularly to a local Soviet official, and leaving these
special zones without permission was punishable by up to 20 years of hard labor.
According to several internationally respected scholars, between 300,000 and
500,000 Russian Germans perished in the 1940s through needless starvation and forced
labor in the trudarmiya , representing anywhere from one-fourth to one-third of the entire group.
The Russian Germans have never received financial compensation for the loss of
their property, or for the psychological, spiritual, and emotional damages caused by the
murder of their relatives. Neither their land, autonomous republic, independent rayons,
nor villages have been returned to them. Their traditional ways of life, language, and
culture in Russia and other CIS countries are all swiftly heading towards extinction.
As for the approximately two million Russian Germans from the Soviet Union who
in the years 1987 to the present succeeded in emigrating to Germany, their relocation is
understandable in the light of their twentieth-century experience under Russian
The ethnic Germans of the former Russian and Soviet empires now live scattered
across the globe in the CIS, the Americas, and Germany. The great cultural treasures of
this ethnic group being produced in Russia and Germany should enjoy a more general
dissemination among America’s Russian Germans. I mention the music of Alfred
Schnittke, one of the world’s most often performed neo-classical composers, born 1934 in
Engels in the former region of the Volga-German republic as the son of a Jewish father
and a Volga-German Catholic mother. Schnittke died in Germany in 1998, shortly after
completing his ninth Symphony. He was buried in honor in Moscow. You can purchase
his music at any Borders or Barnes & Nobles bookstore. One also thinks of artists such as
Nikolaus Rode, Isolde Hartwan, and countless other “post-Soviet” Russian-German
Both the sufferings and achievements of the Russian Germans are reflected in the
group’s poetry, genealogical and historical research, art, music, and so on, at an
international level. The American Historical Society of Germans from Russia, located in
Lincoln, Nebraska in the center of America, holds the nation’s premier collection of
Russian-German archival materials. But the ethnic group must not rest content with this.
Russian-German archives and centers of study should and must be established also on, or
near, our two coasts. An east coast and west coast Russian-German archives are a vital
necessity in the 21st century. Such a project would represent not a competitive, but a
fruitful cooperative endeavor. A national network of Russian-German archives and
centers of study would facilitate nation-wide access to primary materials, including the
group’s cultural heritage as manifested in music, art, and folklore.
Finally, such a national network would encourage more local contributions to the
group, in the forms of donated time, primary genealogical and historical materials, and
educational outreach both within and outside the group. At the beginning of the 21st
century, it is of the utmost importance for the group to seize the historic opportunity to
build a national network of Russian-German archives and centers of culture and study in
order to make possible the fuller documentation of the genocide committed against
Russian Germans in 20th-century Tsarist Russia and the Soviet Union. It is our duty to
ensure that the sufferings and triumphs of our people are never forgotten. May we never
lose sight of the tragedy and strength of the victims and survivors of the genocide
committed against our people, the Russian Germans, die Russlanddeutschen .
28 August 2005
* * *