By Pavel Polian

In the course of his reign over the previous Soviet Union, Joseph Stalin oversaw the compelled resettlement of six million humans -- a maniacal ardour that he used for social engineering. The Soviets weren't the 1st to thrust resettlement on its inhabitants -- a massive attribute of totalitarian platforms -- yet by way of sheer numbers, applied sciences used to deport humans and the lawlessness which observed it, Stalin's approach was once the main awesome. Six million humans of alternative social, ethnic, and professions have been resettled sooner than Stalin's dying. Even this day, the aftermath of such deportations mostly predetermines occasions which occur within the northern Caucasus, Crimea, the Baltic republics, Moldavia, and western Ukraine. Polian's quantity is the 1st try to comprehensively learn the historical past of pressured and semivoluntary inhabitants pursuits inside or geared up by means of the Soviet Union. Contents variety from the early Twenties to the rehabilitation of repressed nationalities within the Nineteen Nineties facing inner (kulaks, ethnic and political deportations) and overseas compelled migrations (German internees and occupied territories). An abundance of proof, figures, tables, maps, and an exhaustively-detailed annex will function vital resources for extra researches.

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Additional resources for Against their will. The history and geography of forced migration in the USSR.

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Undoubtedly it was primarily Germany that was able to rival the USSR when it came to forced migrations. And in the case of Nazi Germany it was the ethnic criteria that played the foremost role in corresponding practices. The two peoples that received singular and most careful attention on the part of the Nazis were Germans and Jews. As far as the German population residing outside the Third Reich (so-called Volksdeutsche) was concerned, the Hitler state developed—and consistently implemented—resettlement projects, that were far-reaching and impressive in scope.

However, in practice it had to follow the same practices: the Soviet occupation authorities forced the government to deport 500 thousand of its German population from the country. It was only the Yugoslavian version of homogenization that had been initially complicated by the federal nature of the Yugoslavian state, which still was characterized by an obvious Serbian dominance. Remarkably, Czechoslovakia was banishing Hungarians along with Germans from its territory. 88 It is in this context that Poland’s policy towards the Jewish survivors residing on its territory can be explained.

Apart from their punitive function, the “repressive migrations” involve as their defining feature a direct action engendered by a supreme political decision (more rarely by an international agreement, as in the case of the Yalta agreement with regard to forced repatriation), which is not subject to appeal or even discussion. The proposed classification certainly represents a simplified model. In reality, more complex combinations of migration types have occurred. For example, to which type—socially or ethnically-determined—do the pre-war deportations of Estonian, Latvian, and Lithuanian kulaks belong?

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