- The first great project of the Soviet forced labor camps, or gulag system, was the building of a canal 200 kilometers from the White Sea to the Baltic Sea between 1931 and 1933. The canal was supposed to allow the Soviet navy to transfer major warships between the White and the Baltic seas. The project employed more than 100,000 prisoners, the vast majority of whom were peasants the OGPU had arrested for resistance to collectivization. In one of the first active measures of the Stalin years, the canal was used to demonstrate the humanity of the Soviet prison system. Books praising the humanity of the OGPU staff in saving desperate criminals by honest labor were widely distributed in the West, but the reality was different. The canal consumed peasant workers by the thousands. According to some sources, as many as 20,000 prisoners perished in the building of the canal, and tens of thousands more were broken by their service. Worse still for the Soviet military, the canal was icebound several months a year, and too shallow to accept major warships. It rapidly became little more than a ditch. The Belomor Canal was a model for larger forced labor projects in Siberia and the Far East. A cigarette product named after the canal continues to be sold to this day in Russia.
Historical dictionary of Russian and Soviet Intelligence. Robert W. Pringle. 2014.
Look at other dictionaries:
Canal De La Mer Blanche — Carte du canal de la mer Blanche … Wikipédia en Français
Canal de la mer Blanche — 62°48′N 34°48′E / 62.8, 34.8 … Wikipédia en Français
White Sea-Baltic Canal — The White Sea Baltic Sea Canal ( ru. Belomorsko Baltiyskiy Kanal; BBK), is a ship canal that joins the White Sea and the Baltic Sea near St. Petersburg. Its original name was (until 1961) Belomorsko Baltiyskiy Kanal imeni Stalina ( Stalin White… … Wikipedia
Belomorkanal — Canal de la mer Blanche Carte du canal de la mer Blanche … Wikipédia en Français
Weißmeer-Ostsee-Kanal — Der Verlauf des Weißmeer Kanals Der Weißmeer Ostsee Kanal (russisch Беломорско Балтийский канал; Transkription: Belomorsko Baltijskij kanal, bis 1961 russisch Беломорско Балтийский канал имени Сталина; Stalin Weißmeer Ostsee Kanal) ist… … Deutsch Wikipedia
Naftaly Frenkel — Naftali Frenkel. Naftali Aronovitch Frenkel (en russe : Нафталий Аронович Френкель) (1883–1960) est un citoyen soviétique, il fut membre de la Tcheka, la police secrète soviétique fondée par Félix Dzerjinski dès 1918. Frenkel est surtout… … Wikipédia en Français
Persecuted bandurists — Many bandurists and kobzars were persecuted by the authorities that controlled Ukraine at various times because of the association of the bandura to the Cossack past and aspects of Ukrainian history which the kobzars would glorify in their songs… … Wikipedia
GULAG — The term gulag is derived from Glavnoye upravleniye ispravitel’no trudovykh lagerei, or Chief Directorate of Corrective Labor Camps, a sector of the Ministry of Internal Affairs (MVD). Nobel laureate Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn described the… … Historical dictionary of Russian and Soviet Intelligence
Nikolaï Pogodine — Monument à Nikolaï Fiodorovitch Pogodine au cimetière de Novodiévitchi. Nom de naissance Nikolaï F … Wikipédia en Français
Collectivization — The decision by the Soviet leadership to force the Soviet peasantry into collective and state farms between 1929 and 1932 was executed at a terrible price. More than half the farm animals in the country were killed by peasants refusing to… … Historical dictionary of Russian and Soviet Intelligence