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MoJo: USSR fought for "liberty and freedom"?
Posted by: McQ on Thursday, September 06, 2007

Jonathan Stein of Mother Jones notes:
In response to a question from Jay Leno about why America is so disliked worldwide, new presidential candidate Fred Thompson had this to say (transcript here):

Well, part of that comes with being the strongest, most powerful, most prosperous country in the history of the world. I think that goes with the territory. We're more unpopular than we need to be. That's for sure, but our people have shed more blood for the liberty and freedom of other peoples in this country than all the other countries put together. (Applause.) And I don't feel any need to apologize for the United States of America.
After a bit of mumbling about being the strongest, most powerful and prosperous country in the history of world not having to mean you must be unpopular, he says:
Second, this is false. The Soviet Union lost over 20 million people in World War II, an astonishing 10-13 percent of the country's total population. The U.S. lost 418,500 in WWII, 117,465 in WWI, and roughly 60,000 in Vietnam. More on those numbers here; point is, it's not even close.
The Soviet Union, run by a man named Joseph Stalin, was fighting for 'liberty and freedom'?

Wow ... I'd bet quite a few millions in Eastern Europe might disagree with Mr. Stein.

[As an aside, I don't know why but it sort of hits me as an answer Ms. Teen South Carolina might have managed.]
 
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The Soviet Union lost over 20 million people in World War II
Yeah, because Stalin KILLED THEM.

Idiots.
 
Written By: Scott Jacobs
URL: http://
In 1989, I crossed America with the first tour in this country by a repertory company from the Bolshoi Ballet. I became rather close to a woman from Vilnius, Lithuania. That woman’s mother disappeared into GULAG in the late 70’s. You had to see her eyes when she described that.

I’d like to see Stein face her down, the bloody imbecile.
 
Written By: Billy Beck
URL: http://www.two—four.net/weblog.php
The halcyon recollections of the Only Just War tend to forget we actually lost, when you consider that the initial aim of the war was to preserve the Polish republic. They traded cruel Nazi masters for Soviet tyrants that were little better.

Had Patton been given his head, we might have saved Eastern Europe from half a century of oppression. And it’s heartbreaking to think what a non-Communist China might have offered the world had our support of Kai-Shek been less tepid.
 
Written By: TallDave
URL: http://www.deanesmay.com
Thanks Scott - that was my thinking.
Good that MoJo didn’t bring up all the other countries that the Soviet Union helped spill blood for freedom (like the Polish Officer Corp in the Katyn forest after the partition of Poland).

It must also have escaped MoJo’s notice that we tended to encourage more free societies than the Soviet Union did during occupations.
 
Written By: looker
URL: http://
In Soviet Russia, freedom dies for you!
 
Written By: ChrisB
URL: http://
Huh. Here she is.

I still have one of her slippers.
 
Written By: Billy Beck
URL: http://www.two—four.net/weblog.php
TallDave, our entry into the war didn’t have anything to do with saving Poland. You’ll have to contact the French and British for that portion of the discussion.
 
Written By: looker
URL: http://
McQ writes about the Mother Jones writer pointing out that the Soviets lost 20 million men in WWII:
The Soviet Union, run by a man named Joseph Stalin, was fighting for ’freedom and liberty"?
Holding to the side for a moment that Stalin was fighting in WWII because Hitler double-crossed him on the pact they had agreed to, the Soviets might not have lost that many troops if Stalin hadn’t killed most of the Red Army’s generals. But perhaps he made up for that lapse in judgment when he had the NKVD at the rear shooting any soldiers who retreated in the head.

Was it a wash for freedom?

Or, maybe some of those 10 million or so Soviet citizens Stalin killed in the 30s might have lent a hand.
 
Written By: Martin McPhillips
URL: http://mcphillips.blogspot.com/
I suppose this man has been reading the new book which apparently argues that Iosif Vissarionich was the greatest WWII general?

Presumably his favorite film is the favorite of his hero, Iosif Vissarionich, The Unforgettable Year 1919, which was based on a true incident in the life of Iosif Vissarionich. Well, it would have been true if the incident had actually happened. And he liked the film so much he even allowed the composer of the film’s score to not be arrested!

Has MoJo noticed that by his logic, not only the Soviet Union, but Nazi Germany spilled more blood for liberty and freedom? Ditto Japan.

The truly sorry thing is that he was correct: other countries have given more blood for liberty and freedom, although, thanks in great part to Iosif Vissarionich, that blood was given in vain. Some other posters have mentioned them: the Poles, the Chinese. The Vietnamese and Cambodians as well.

But it would be so inconvenient for MoJo to talk about them, and not the Great General.
 
Written By: kishnevi
URL: http://
"Has MoJo noticed that by his logic, not only the Soviet Union, but Nazi Germany spilled more blood for liberty and freedom? Ditto Japan."
Bravura!

 
Written By: Billy Beck
URL: http://www.two—four.net/weblog.php
The Soviet Union lost over 20 million people in World War II, an astonishing 10-13 percent of the country’s total population. The U.S. lost 418,500 in WWII, 117,465 in WWI, and roughly 60,000 in Vietnam. More on those numbers here; point is, it’s not even close.
The Soviet Union, run by a man named Joseph Stalin, was fighting for ’liberty and freedom’.........for Joseph Stalin

 
Written By: shark
URL: http://
All that said, Thompson’s comments were not particularly well thought out. There are undoubtedly many reasons why the USA is hated and I’d guess the most common one is ignorance.
 
Written By: Grimshaw
URL: http://
Scott brings up a good point that most Liberal professors (oxymoron, i know) gloss over or completely ignore: There is absolutely no way that The German Army split by two fronts fighting both the French Resistance (laugh) and the Brits on one side, and the entire Soviet Army on the other could have inflicted such massive casualties by themselves on the Russian populace. What those professors choose to ignore is two very important facts:

1. The Soviets would shoot any of their own members who didn’t stand and fight even against unwinnable odds. This tends to inflate your numbers when your soldiers are being shot at by both the enemy and their reinforcements.

2. The numbers used by the Soviets also include the deaths of those purged by Stalin during this politicidal campaign.

In essence, while it is true that 20 million Reds did die in WWII, i’d venture more than half of them (probably ’well over’) were killed by Stalin’s tactic/politicide than by Nazi fire.
 
Written By: Joel C.
URL: http://
In another case of researchers reporting the bleeding obvious, European scientists have found that children are smarter than chimpanzees.

There is no explanation yet as to why some go on to regress.
 
Written By: Neo
URL: http://
Even if you leave aside the value judgement of Uncle Joe’s perception of liberty and freedom, I’m not sure fighting off an invasion is exactly the kind of sacrifice Thompson was referring to. We could have sat some of these wars out—I don’t think the Soviets had a choice.
 
Written By: spongeworthy
URL: http://
I am surprised Francis and Glasnost haven’t spoken out in defense of the article yet. These are their fellow travelers.
 
Written By: capt joe on the road
URL: http://
The Red Army won the Great Patriotic War, there can be no doubt of that. With or without the Western Allies and their paltry "Second Front". It was the Heroic Efforts of the Soviet People, led by their Glorious Leader Comrade Stalin that defeated the Fascist Menace. Then having paid that price the valiant Soviet People saw their hopes for a better future dashed by the Western Imperialists and their aggressive designs, personified by the creation of the revanchist West Germany and it’s Nazi Goon Squad, the Wehrm....I mean the Bundeswehr. Rather than gratitude the long-suffering Soviet people saw their efforts rewarded by the creation of the Imperialist Bloc of Nations, NATO.
 
Written By: Joe
URL: http://
the long-suffering Soviet people saw their efforts rewarded by the creation of the Imperialist Bloc of Nations
Also known as NAMBLA...
 
Written By: Scott Jacobs
URL: http://
Joel C: Don’t deny the Germans their share of the credit. Plenty of that 20 million were civilian victims of the Nazis—or at least, were civilians killed as a direct result of the military conflict. Over a million people died in the Seige of Leningrad, most of them from starvation. More than a million Jews from the prewar Soviet Union (that is, excluding the Baltic States) were killed as part of the Holocaust. Those kind of losses can add up pretty quickly.
Of course, compared to what happened under Stalin in the years before and after the war, 20 million quickly becomes a much smaller number, and MoJo’s linkage of Stalin to freedom and liberty becomes blasphemous.
 
Written By: kishnevi
URL: http://
" Leaving aside the fact that Hitler double crossed him on the pact they made"
that’s a line worthy of "Other than the obvious, how did you like the theatre,
Mrs. Lincoln" The German army trained in Russia, ironically in order to avoid
the Versailles sanctions. It was this fact that the Abwehr relied on to provoke
Stalin into ’purging his front line generals. His end was prefigured by the Napoleon example a century before and his lateness in securing Yugoslavia before proceeding with Barbarossa. Hitler was a confirmed hater of Soviets, and other races he considered inferior (Ukrainians, Tatars, Egyptians, Iraqis) Stalin’s actions in the 20s and 30s insured the warm reception the first two grups gave the invading army.
 
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