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  #106  
Old 08 May 12, 14:31
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jon Jordan View Post
But would not that also apply to Germany? <snipped>
Broadly, yes. Although Imperial Russia was a harsh, culturally backward, place to exist in compared to Imperial Germany (or the Habsburg Empire for that matter). Men like Stalin were brutalised by the environment they grew up in, the likes of Hitler, Goering and Speer chose to reject society's norms. 'Hair-splitting' maybe but I think we can make a distinction there.

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I agree it is hard to judge a Georgian by Anglo-American standards (much less by 2012 Anglo-American standards), but if Stalin gets a pass, you have to give Hitler a pass in the same circumstances. And that gets hard to swallow, at least by 2012 Anglo-American standards.
*If* we accept that Hitler and Stalin were operating in a dog-eat-dog political environment whereby if they don't back-stab and murder they can expect the same then I think we can give them a pass. Where Hitler and the Nazis don't get a pass is in the genocide and 'waging aggressive war' categories. It's clear with them, for Stalin and the Bolsheviks it's much harder to pin down.
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  #107  
Old 09 May 12, 19:26
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Originally Posted by Rojik View Post
I'd piss on Stalin's grave given the chance. And for those that chose to get upset about it, then I'd happily piss on them too.
I would't recommend that inside Russia. Just imagine someone would piss on the american flag on a public place.
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  #108  
Old 09 May 12, 19:32
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Originally Posted by Konzev View Post
I would't recommend that inside Russia. Just imagine someone would piss on the american flag on a public place.
Well, they get away with burning it. But I see your point.
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  #109  
Old 09 May 12, 19:36
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Originally Posted by Full Monty View Post
*If* we accept that Hitler and Stalin were operating in a dog-eat-dog political environment whereby if they don't back-stab and murder they can expect the same then I think we can give them a pass. Where Hitler and the Nazis don't get a pass is in the genocide and 'waging aggressive war' categories. It's clear with them, for Stalin and the Bolsheviks it's much harder to pin down.


Wouldn't the harsh collectivization policies and the "war" against the kulaks put Stalin and the Bolsheviks in the same category? And the mass deportations of various ethnic groups to hostile environments without means to support themselves also put them in the same category? Maybe not quite industrial genocide but still....
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  #110  
Old 10 May 12, 02:05
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Wouldn't the harsh collectivization policies and the "war" against the kulaks put Stalin and the Bolsheviks in the same category? And the mass deportations of various ethnic groups to hostile environments without means to support themselves also put them in the same category? Maybe not quite industrial genocide but still....
Well, I'd put the allegedly 'harsh' collectivisation policies down to ideology overcoming common sense. Deportation to 'hostile environments' never happened, at least according to some former Soviet citizens, since 'Siberia' (favourite location for such policies) is not the vast wasteland of Western legend (some of it is, but not all). As for the 'war' against the Kulaks, they supposedly opposed state policies and, as such, had to be broken.

Now, I make no excuses for the above activities - they're at best capricious, stupid and/or senseless at times - but even if one wants to paint them as 'state crimes' there isn't the systematic nature to them that one finds with Nazism. The history of the Soviet state is complex and is still unravelling, when that process is finished (if any history is ever really 'finished') many people won't like what they're confronted with and a lot of historians will be spinning in their graves.
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  #111  
Old 10 May 12, 05:03
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Originally Posted by Full Monty View Post
Imperial Russia was a harsh, culturally backward, place to exist
well, that myth had been promoted in the west back then just the same as concerning the ussr these days, but of course things aren't that simple... in fact the russian empire was much more benign than other empires in europe, for example, the 19th century's russia had no death penalty and had a very lax censorship, which altogether made the revolution possible.

by 1917, russia was already a success in economics and in liberal reforms, so the tsarist authority fell victim of its own success in raising the living level of the nation, when the newly born middle class claimed the power.

revolutions happen not when a country is in decline but when a country is on the rise.

stalin's phenomenon is that he grew up in the environment with a culture that encouraged broad-mindedness, unlike in the west where its culture indoctrinates narrow-mindedness, though i wouldn't compare stalin and hitler here, because hitler was a democratically elected leader implementing the people's will and not building a new model economy state from scratch.
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  #112  
Old 10 May 12, 05:58
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My goodness,perish the thought,I have to agree with (the living) Stalin: poor me
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  #113  
Old 10 May 12, 06:03
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OTOH:lucky me:I have found something to disagree with I.V(his statement that in the west,the culture is indoctrinating narrow-mindedness):I was already panicking :nothing to disagree with Koba.
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  #114  
Old 10 May 12, 10:06
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stalin View Post
well, that myth had been promoted in the west back then just the same as concerning the ussr these days, but of course things aren't that simple... in fact the russian empire was much more benign than other empires in europe, for example, the 19th century's russia had no death penalty and had a very lax censorship, which altogether made the revolution possible.
Possibly, but serfdom was not abolished until quite late in the 19th Century. I'd also argue that quite how 'liberal' Imperial Russia was depended largely on who was Tsar and where you were within the Empire.

Quote:
by 1917, russia was already a success in economics and in liberal reforms, so the tsarist authority fell victim of its own success in raising the living level of the nation, when the newly born middle class claimed the power.
There is a contradiction here with the first part I've quoted. One of the hallmarks of liberalism is a successful middle-class. That they didn't exist until early in the 20th Century suggests that the Russia you describe isn't the 'benign' and 'open' state.

Quote:
revolutions happen not when a country is in decline but when a country is on the rise.
This is not proven. The French Revolution of 1789 was a direct result of economic decline. The European Revolutions of 1848 coincided with failures of agriculture and economic stagnation. The Russian Revolutions of 1905 and 1917 can be traced to military defeats and disasters as well as economic dislocation (more true of 1917 than 1905) caused by war. The process is one of a rise then stagnation and/or a fall. Revolutions occur when there is a disconnect between the aspirational middle-class and the controlling administration - the stagnation/fall is rightly or wrongly blamed on those controlling power and since the middle-class feel they have no voice they set about rectifying it.

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stalin's phenomenon is that he grew up in the environment with a culture that encouraged broad-mindedness, unlike in the west where its culture indoctrinates narrow-mindedness, though i wouldn't compare stalin and hitler here, because hitler was a democratically elected leader implementing the people's will and not building a new model economy state from scratch.
There are several flaws in this argument.

1) There is no 'Western Culture'
2) If Stalin's Russian life (rather than Soviet life) was marked by 'broad-mindedness', how come he was arrested and imprisoned for political crimes?
3) Hitler was not a democratically elected leader. Nazi votes were in decline and he only became Chancellor on the back of a broad coalition that thought he could be manipulated just as his predecessors were. He wasn't in any way 'implementing the people's will' although he was very good at giving that to them.
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  #115  
Old 10 May 12, 18:07
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Originally Posted by Full Monty View Post
serfdom was not abolished until quite late in the 19th Century.
honestly, i see no problem with serfdom, and i'm against its abolition.

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Originally Posted by Full Monty View Post
quite how 'liberal' Imperial Russia was depended largely on who was Tsar and where you were within the Empire.
but that's the way life is, forever and ever and everywhere, right?

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Originally Posted by Full Monty View Post
One of the hallmarks of liberalism is a successful middle-class. That they didn't exist until early in the 20th Century suggests that the Russia you describe isn't the 'benign' and 'open' state.
i didn't say the 19th century russia was liberal, i only said it was benign which is more of opposition to liberalism, imo, and also i'm not a fan of the middle-class.

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The French Revolution of 1789 was a direct result of economic decline.
hmm, i don't think so... the french revolution was more a result of joint effort by the bankers and some of the nobility that simply wanted 'more'.

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Originally Posted by Full Monty View Post
The European Revolutions of 1848 coincided with failures of agriculture and economic stagnation.
this one too seems to me like it was made by the financiers...

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Originally Posted by Full Monty View Post
The Russian Revolutions of 1905 and 1917 can be traced to military defeats and disasters as well as economic dislocation (more true of 1917 than 1905) caused by war.
the one of 1905 was succesfully thwarted, and in 1917 it wasn't a defeat yet because russia fought on the side that won after all.

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Originally Posted by Full Monty View Post
Revolutions occur when there is a disconnect between the aspirational middle-class and the controlling administration
in addition, revolutions can be 'exported'.

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Originally Posted by Full Monty View Post
There is no 'Western Culture'
probably, but i use that term to point out the split between the two civilisations.

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Originally Posted by Full Monty View Post
If Stalin's Russian life (rather than Soviet life) was marked by 'broad-mindedness', how come he was arrested and imprisoned for political crimes?
more relevant would have been to ask: how come he wasn't hanged or assassinated?

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Originally Posted by Full Monty View Post
Hitler was not a democratically elected leader. Nazi votes were in decline and he only became Chancellor on the back of a broad coalition that thought he could be manipulated just as his predecessors were. He wasn't in any way 'implementing the people's will' although he was very good at giving that to them.
didn't the germans hate jews and want to be the master race back then, correct me if i'm wrong?
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  #116  
Old 10 May 12, 21:07
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Originally Posted by Konzev View Post
I would't recommend that inside Russia. Just imagine someone would piss on the american flag on a public place.
Really? Well as silly as I find flag worship, venerating a psychopath makes flag worship look positively rational. You lot enjoy your hero worship and let me know how things are working out for you when you get another just like him.
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  #117  
Old 11 May 12, 03:30
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After 1860 Russia was developping (=transforming):it had to,and,at the same time,the regime was desperately(and unsuccesfully) trying to conserve its power .
Of course,it is always the interesting question of :is the bottle half full,or half empty:a lot had been done in 1914(railways,...),but,much more had still to be done .
About the abolition of serfdom (1861),if I am not wrong,slavery was abolished in the US in ....1865.
There were in 1875 5151 students on the Russian universities,in 1900 16357,in 1916 : 35695
In 1914, 38,8 % of these students were children of workers and farmers .
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  #118  
Old 11 May 12, 04:38
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An other exemple of the question if the bottle was full/empty:
In 1885,73 % of the Russian recruits were illeterate,in 1895,61 %
What was more important? the 61 %,or the fact that the number of illiterates was decreasing one % a year ?
But,in 1905,it was still 18 % in Ireland,in Spain 42 % in 1940.
While at the beginning of the 20 th century,Russia still had a big arrears,it was developping ,making up arrears .
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  #119  
Old 11 May 12, 14:40
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stalin View Post
well, that myth had been promoted in the west back then just the same as concerning the ussr these days, but of course things aren't that simple... in fact the russian empire was much more benign than other empires in europe, for example, the 19th century's russia had no death penalty and had a very lax censorship, which altogether made the revolution possible.

by 1917, russia was already a success in economics and in liberal reforms, so the tsarist authority fell victim of its own success in raising the living level of the nation, when the newly born middle class claimed the power.

revolutions happen not when a country is in decline but when a country is on the rise.

stalin's phenomenon is that he grew up in the environment with a culture that encouraged broad-mindedness, unlike in the west where its culture indoctrinates narrow-mindedness, though i wouldn't compare stalin and hitler here, because hitler was a democratically elected leader implementing the people's will and not building a new model economy state from scratch.
Good post... who are you, and what have you done with Stalin?

Seriously, if you can do that, how about laying off the brick-wall routine?

And factually correct. In their first 4 months in power, the Bolsheviks executed more people for Political crimes than the Czars had in the previous century.
But serfdom persisted into the 1860s, an institution that was adopted there when it was already in decline in the west. If it weren't for Peter the Great in the 1700s, Russia would never have caught up... and would probably be more Asiatic than European today.
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  #120  
Old 11 May 12, 14:47
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Originally Posted by Exorcist View Post
Good post... who are you, and what have you done with Stalin?

Seriously, if you can do that, how about laying off the brick-wall routine?

And factually correct. In their first 4 months in power, the Bolsheviks executed more people for Political crimes than the Czars had in the previous century.
But serfdom persisted into the 1860s, an institution that was adopted there when it was already in decline in the west. If it weren't for Peter the Great in the 1700s, Russia would never have caught up... and would probably be more Asiatic than European today.
Slavery still existed in USA and the conditions of people in colonies were not better. The only difference between the West and Russia is that Russia abused his own population instead of a foreign one.
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