|Soviet Bread Card|
“One death is a tragedy; one million is a statistic.” —Joseph Stalin
This summer’s searing heat has put a fire beneath grain prices. But worse than another round of inflation is the potential for widespread famine, particularly in the former Soviet Union, which has been beset by the worst heat wave in 130 years.
The Ukraine is no stranger to starvation. The Terror-Famine struck the Ukraine in 1932-33 when as many as 10 million starved. It should come as little surprise that Joseph Stalin was the architect of that tragedy.
In the 1920s, Lenin proved his political savvy and made concessions to the peasantry. This led to The New Economic Policy (NEP) and a rethinking by the Kremlin.
That all ended when Stalin suspended concessions and the NEP. He even unleashed his secret police (NKVD, which became the KGB) targeting capitalists and squeezing greater food production from the suffering peasants. In the 1930s, when quotas could not be met in the face of drought, the NKVD ruthlessly robbed Ukraine of its wheat and packed the grain back to Russia.