Saturday, November 24, 2012

Holodomor Remembrance Day

There are always exciting things going on in Freedom Square which is a block away from our apartment. Usually I walk by and there is something going on that I don't really understand so I just take pictures and then go home and read the newspaper. Today was no different when I walked by and there were all these candles and a news crew there video taping the speeches. 

It turns out that today was Holodomor Remembrance Day. If you remember from an earlier post, the holodomor was a man made famine in 1932-1933 where more than 4 million Ukrainians we systematically starved in order to force the farmers to collectivization their land. People in other parts of the Soviet Union started to death as well but the worst part of it was in Ukraine with Kharkiv topping the most affected list. Of course this is debated by historians and I have seen people almost come to blows when discussing this theme so take my opinion on the event as it is. The holodomor is an even sadder event when you consider that Ukraine is the bread basket of Europe so having millions of people starve to death in such a fertile area of the world is tantamount to genocide (a label which is hotly contested as well). During Soviet times this event was brushed under the rug and it wasn't until 2006 after the Orange Revolution that people started officially memorializing this event in Ukraine. Needless to say I was happy that I could glimpse the memorial ceremony to this horrible atrocity and listen to people remember it.

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