Follow by Email

Saturday, April 25, 2015

ISIS v. Rwanda v. Bosnian Genocide v. Armenian Genocide v. Cambodian Genocide v. Hitler v. Moses v. Genocides in History

ISIS is just a symptom of the basic problem -- that the instinct to kill, maim, rape, torture others who do not share our beliefs or racial traits remains alive and well in the human race.  We are all kidding ourselves if we don't think it's in there somewhere, deep within us; the only reason we can say "I would never do something like that' is because we -- the privileged ones -- have grown up in environments in which such things are unthinkable.  But not everyone in the world is that lucky.  ISIS's particular reason for doing what it does -- a warped understanding of the Muslim faith -- is somewhat beside the point (although of course, I propose a scientifically religion-based solution to the ISIS problem here).  The point is that under the right conditions, it's not all that hard to convert otherwise normal human beings (well, mostly men and boys) into depraved murderers.

And of course, Muslims don't have anything near a monopoly on the idea that their "God" wants them to murder others.  You don't have to look any farther the Old Testament, Book of Numbers, Chapter 31, to see God instructing Moses to avenge the children of Israel on the Midianites, which Moses takes to mean killing off all the men of the defeated Midianites, and then killing off all the women who had been with men, and all the boys, leaving only girls who had not been with men as plunder for the victorious Israelites.  God didn't seem bothered by this, so presumably it's what He wanted.  Of those 32,000 girls, it sounds like 32 may have been
 sacrificed to God himself.  I wonder what he did with them.

Here is Numbers 31, in its entirety:

1  And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying,
2  Avenge the children of Israel of the Midianites: afterward shalt thou be gathered unto thy people.
3  And Moses spake unto the people, saying, Arm some of yourselves unto the war, and let them go against the Midianites, and avenge the LORD of Midian.
4  Of every tribe a thousand, throughout all the tribes of Israel, shall ye send to the war.
5  So there were delivered out of the thousands of Israel, a thousand of every tribe, twelve thousand armed for war.
6  And Moses sent them to the war, a thousand of every tribe, them and Phinehas the son of Eleazar the priest, to the war, with the holy instruments, and the trumpets to blow in his hand.
7  And they warred against the Midianites, as the LORD commanded Moses; and they slew all the males.
8  And they slew the kings of Midian, beside the rest of them that were slain; namely, Evi, and Rekem, and Zur, and Hur, and Reba, five kings of Midian: Balaam also the son of Beor they slew with the sword.
9  And the children of Israel took all the women of Midian captives, and their little ones, and took the spoil of all their cattle, and all their flocks, and all their goods.
10  And they burnt all their cities wherein they dwelt, and all their goodly castles, with fire.
11  And they took all the spoil, and all the prey, both of men and of beasts.
12  And they brought the captives, and the prey, and the spoil, unto Moses, and Eleazar the priest, and unto the congregation of the children of Israel, unto the camp at the plains of Moab, which are by Jordan near Jericho.
13  And Moses, and Eleazar the priest, and all the princes of the congregation, went forth to meet them without the camp.
14  And Moses was wroth with the officers of the host, with the captains over thousands, and captains over hundreds, which came from the battle.
15  And Moses said unto them, Have ye saved all the women alive?
16  Behold, these caused the children of Israel, through the counsel of Balaam, to commit trespass against the LORD in the matter of Peor, and there was a plague among the congregation of the LORD.
17  Now therefore kill every male among the little ones, and kill every woman that hath known man by lying with him.
18  But all the women children, that have not known a man by lying with him, keep alive for yourselves.
19  And do ye abide without the camp seven days: whosoever hath killed any person, and whosoever hath touched any slain, purify both yourselves and your captives on the third day, and on the seventh day.
20  And purify all your raiment, and all that is made of skins, and all work of goats' hair, and all things made of wood.
21  And Eleazar the priest said unto the men of war which went to the battle, This is the ordinance of the law which the LORD commanded Moses;
22  Only the gold, and the silver, the brass, the iron, the tin, and the lead,
23  Every thing that may abide the fire, ye shall make it go through the fire, and it shall be clean: nevertheless it shall be purified with the water of separation: and all that abideth not the fire ye shall make go through the water.
24  And ye shall wash your clothes on the seventh day, and ye shall be clean, and afterward ye shall come into the camp.
25  And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying,
26  Take the sum of the prey that was taken, both of man and of beast, thou, and Eleazar the priest, and the chief fathers of the congregation:
27  And divide the prey into two parts; between them that took the war upon them, who went out to battle, and between all the congregation:
28  And levy a tribute unto the LORD of the men of war which went out to battle: one soul of five hundred, both of the persons, and of the beeves, and of the asses, and of the sheep:
29  Take it of their half, and give it unto Eleazar the priest, for an heave offering of the LORD.
30  And of the children of Israel's half, thou shalt take one portion of fifty, of the persons, of the beeves, of the asses, and of the flocks, of all manner of beasts, and give them unto the Levites, which keep the charge of the tabernacle of the LORD.
31  And Moses and Eleazar the priest did as the LORD commanded Moses.
32  And the booty, being the rest of the prey which the men of war had caught, was six hundred thousand and seventy thousand and five thousand sheep,
33  And threescore and twelve thousand beeves,
34  And threescore and one thousand asses,
35  And thirty and two thousand persons in all, of women that had not known man by lying with him.
36  And the half, which was the portion of them that went out to war, was in number three hundred thousand and seven and thirty thousand and five hundred sheep:
37  And the LORD's tribute of the sheep was six hundred and threescore and fifteen.
38  And the beeves were thirty and six thousand; of which the LORD's tribute was threescore and twelve.
39  And the asses were thirty thousand and five hundred; of which the LORD's tribute was threescore and one.
40  And the persons were sixteen thousand; of which the LORD's tribute was thirty and two persons.
41  And Moses gave the tribute, which was the LORD's heave offering, unto Eleazar the priest, as the LORD commanded Moses.
42  And of the children of Israel's half, which Moses divided from the men that warred,
43  (Now the half that pertained unto the congregation was three hundred thousand and thirty thousand and seven thousand and five hundred sheep,
44  And thirty and six thousand beeves,
45  And thirty thousand asses and five hundred,
46  And sixteen thousand persons;)
47  Even of the children of Israel's half, Moses took one portion of fifty, both of man and of beast, and gave them unto the Levites, which kept the charge of the tabernacle of the LORD; as the LORD commanded Moses.
48  And the officers which were over thousands of the host, the captains of thousands, and captains of hundreds, came near unto Moses:
49  And they said unto Moses, Thy servants have taken the sum of the men of war which are under our charge, and there lacketh not one man of us.
50  We have therefore brought an oblation for the LORD, what every man hath gotten, of jewels of gold, chains, and bracelets, rings, earrings, and tablets, to make an atonement for our souls before the LORD.
51  And Moses and Eleazar the priest took the gold of them, even all wrought jewels.
52  And all the gold of the offering that they offered up to the LORD, of the captains of thousands, and of the captains of hundreds, was sixteen thousand seven hundred and fifty shekels.
53  (For the men of war had taken spoil, every man for himself.)
54  And Moses and Eleazar the priest took the gold of the captains of thousands and of hundreds, and brought it into the tabernacle of the congregation, for a memorial for the children of Israel before the LORD.

So let's think about this a little bit.  If there were 32,000 girls that age (probably mostly 15 and under, given the times), that means about 32,000 (probably a few more, given the times) boys 15 and under were slaughtered.  About 8000 of those were under 4.  So how many adults were killed?  Well, today the 0-18 age group is about 25% of the US population.  Chances are the Midianites had more kids, and chances are we're are talking about a smaller age group  (0-15 or less, as posited above).  Maybe those facts cancel each other out and bring us back to 25% -- impossible to know.  But if that's right, that means there were about  64,000 "kids", and three times that many adults -- 192,000.  That means at least 96,000 women were killed.  And then don't forget about the 32,000 boys.  So a fair guess is that Moses -- acting on orders from an uncomplaining God -- had about 128,000 women and children specifically killed, out of a total of 224,000 people killed.  The rest were, of course, men, but many of these were doubtless mere civilians, elderly and infirm.

- - - - - -

What follows are some Wikipedia excerpts, with light introductory commentary by me, regarding the motivations underlying various past genocides.  And yes, Barack, the Armenian massacre by the Turks was a genocide, even if you can't say so anymore, because you need the Turks to help prevent other genocidal-type activity.  For a literary take on this, read about the Turkish slaughter of Dr. Philobosian's Smyrna family in Middlesex by Jeffrey Eugenides.

Note:  I am not making any judgments here.  As you can see below, the jury may still be out on whether some of the listed events qualify as “genocide.”  But at least from my read, they are all examples of “man’s inhumanity to man,” and my overall point is that no particular group of people is immune to genocidal tendencies.

1.  Bosnian Genocide.  Here, the murderers were Christians of the "Eastern Orthodox Church," and the victims were mostly Muslim (and also some Christian Catholics):

The ethnic cleansing campaign that took place throughout areas controlled by the Bosnian Serbs (majority Orthodox) through the VRS targeted Bosniaks (majority Muslim) and Bosnian Croats (majorityCatholic). The ethnic cleansing campaign included unlawful confinement, murder, rape, sexual assault, torture, beating, robbery and inhumane treatment of civilians; the targeting of political leaders, intellectuals and professionals; the unlawful deportation and transfer of civilians; the unlawful shelling of civilians; the unlawful appropriation and plunder of real and personal property; the destruction of homes and businesses; and the destruction of places of worship.

. . . .

If a narrow definition of genocide is used, as favoured by the international courts, then during the Srebrenica massacre, 8,000 Bosnian Muslim men and boys were murdered and the remainder of the population (between 25,000 and 30,000 Bosniak women, children and elderly people) was forced to leave the area. If a wider definition is used, then the number is much larger. According to the ICTY Demographic Unit, an estimated 69.8% or 25,609 of the civilians killed in the war were Bosniak (with 42,501 military deaths), with the Bosnian Serbs suffering 7,480 civilian casualties (15,299 military deaths), the Bosnian Croats suffering 1,675 civilian casualties (7,183 military deaths), amounting to a total of 104,732 casualties, spread between the Bosnian Croats (8.5%), Bosnian Serbs (21.7%), Bosniaks (65%), and others (4.8%). In January 2013, the Sarajevo-based Research and Documentation Center (RDC) published its final results on the most comprehensive research into Bosnia-Herzegovina's war casualties: The Bosnian Book of the Dead – a database that reveals "a minimum of" 97,207 names of Bosnia and Herzegovina's citizens killed and missing during the 1992–1995 war. The head of the ICTY Demographic Unit, Ewa Tabeu, has called it "the largest existing database on Bosnian war victims".  

More than 240,000 pieces of data have been collected, processed, checked, compared and evaluated by an international team of experts to produce the final number of over 97,000 victim's names of all nationalities. According to the RDC, 82 percent or 33,071 of the civilians killed in the war were Bosniak, with a minimum of 97,207 casualties, military and civilian, for all sides involved: Bosniaks (66.2%), Serbs (25.4%) and Croats (7.8%), as well as others (0,5%).  In a statement on 23 September 2008 to the United Nations, Dr. Haris Silajdžić, as head of the Bosnia and Herzegovina delegation to the United Nations 63rd Session of the General Assembly, said that "according to ICRCdata, 200,000 people were killed, 12,000 of them children, up to 50,000 women were raped, and 2.2 million were forced to flee their homes. This was a veritable genocide and sociocide". However, such estimations have been criticized as highly inaccurate and analysts such as George Kenney have accused the Bosnian government and the international community of sensationalism and of deliberately inflating the number of fatalities to attract international support for the Muslims.

 2.  Rwandan Genocide

The Rwandan Genocide was a genocidal mass slaughter of Tutsi  and moderate Hutu in Rwanda by members of the Hutu majority. During the approximate 100-day period from April 7, 1994, to mid-July, an estimated 500,000–1,000,000 Rwandans were killed, constituting as much as 20% of the country's total population and 70% of the Tutsi then living in Rwanda. The genocide was planned by members of the core political elite known as the akazu, many of whom occupied positions at top levels of the national government. Perpetrators came from the ranks of the Rwandan army, the National Police (gendarmerie), government-backed militias including the Interahamwe  and Impuzamugambi, and the Hutu civilian population.

 3.  Cambodian Genocide

The Khmer Rouge regime arrested and eventually executed almost everyone suspected of connections with the former government or with foreign governments, as well as professionals and intellectuals. Ethnic Vietnamese, ethnic Thai, ethnic Chinese, ethnic Cham, CambodianChristians, and the Buddhist monkhood were the demographic targets of persecution. As a result, Pol Pot is sometimes described as "the Hitler of Cambodia" and "a genocidal tyrant." Martin Shaw described the Cambodian genocide as "the purest genocide of the Cold War era."

Ben Kiernan estimates that about 1.7 million people were killed.Researcher Craig Etcheson of the Documentation Center of Cambodiasuggests that the death toll was between 2 and 2.5 million, with a "most likely" figure of 2.2 million. After 5 years of researching some 20,000 grave sites, he concludes that, "these mass graves contain the remains of 1,386,734 victims of execution." A UN investigation reported 2–3 million dead, while UNICEF estimated 3 million had been killed. Demographic analysis by Patrick Heuveline suggests that between 1.17 and 3.42 million Cambodians were killed, while Marek Sliwinski suggests that 1.8 million is a conservative figure. Even the Khmer Rouge acknowledged that 2 million had been killed—though they attributed those deaths to a subsequent Vietnamese invasion. By late 1979, UN and Red Cross officials were warning that another 2.25 million Cambodians faced death by starvation due to “the near destruction of Cambodian society under the regime of ousted Prime Minister Pol Pot,” who were saved by international aid after the Vietnamese invasion.

4.   The Holocaust

The Holocaust (from the Greek ὁλόκαυστος holókaustos:hólos, "whole" and kaustós, "burnt"), also known as the Shoah (Hebrew: השואה, HaShoah, "the catastrophe"), was a genocide in which approximately six million Jews were killed by the Nazi regime and its collaborators.  Some historians use a definition of the Holocaust that includes the additional five million non-Jewish victims of Nazi mass murders, bringing the total to approximately eleven million. Killings took place throughout Nazi Germany and German-occupied territories.
From 1941 to 1945, Jews were targeted and methodically murdered in a genocide, one of the largest in history, and part of a broader aggregate of acts of oppression and killings of various ethnic and political groups in Europe by the Nazis. Every arm of Germany's bureaucracy was involved in the logistics of the genocide, turning the Third Reich into "a genocidal state". Non-Jewish victims of broader Nazi crimes include Gypsies, Poles, communists, homosexuals, Soviet POWs, and the mentally and physically disabled. In total, approximately 11 million people were killed, including approximately one million Jewish children. Of the nine million Jews who had resided in Europe before the Holocaust, approximately two-thirds were killed. A network of about 42,500 facilities in Germany and German-occupied territories were used to concentrate, confine, and kill Jews and other victims.  Between 100,000 and 500,000 people were direct participants in the planning and execution of the Holocaust.

5.  Sudan/Darfur.  I need to read up some more on this one.  It seems to be Muslim on Muslim genocide, with ethnic cleansing of the Fur, Masalit, and Zaghawa tribes.

The War in Darfur is a major armed onslaught in the Darfur region of Sudan. It began in February 2003 when the Sudan Liberation Movement/Army (SLM/A) and Justice and Equality Movement (JEM) rebel groups began fighting thegovernment of Sudan, which they accused of oppressing Darfur's non-Arab population. The government responded to attacks by carrying out a campaign of ethnic cleansing against Darfur's non-Arabs. This produced the deaths of tens to hundreds of thousands of civilians and the indictment of Sudan's president Omar al-Bashir for genocide and crimes against humanity by the International Criminal Court.

One side of the conflict was composed mainly of Sudanese military and police and the Janjaweed, a Sudanese militia group recruited mostly among Arabized indigenous Africans and a small number of Bedouin of the northern Rizeigat; the majority of other Arab groups in Darfur remained uninvolved.  The other side was made up of rebel groups, notably the SLM/A and the JEM, recruited primarily from the non-Arab Muslim Fur, Zaghawa, and Masalit ethnic groups. Although the Sudanese government publicly denies that it supported the Janjaweed, evidence supports claims that it provided financial assistance and weapons and coordinated joint attacks, many against civilians.

Estimates of the number of human casualties range up to several hundred thousand dead, from either combat or starvation and disease. Mass displacements and coercive migrations forced millions into refugee camps or across the border, creating a humanitarian crisis. Former US Secretary of State Colin Powell, described the situation as a genocide or acts of genocide.

6. Turkish Genocide

The Armenian Genocide (Armenian: Հայոց ցեղասպանություն Hayots tseghaspanutyun), also known as the Armenian Holocaust, the Armenian Massacres and, traditionally by Armenians, as Medz Yeghern (Armenian: Մեծ Եղեռն, "Great Crime"), was the Ottoman government's systematic extermination of its minority Armeniansubjects inside their historic homeland, which lies within the territory constituting the present-day Republic of Turkey. The total number of people killed as a result has been estimated at between 800,000 to 1.5 million. The starting date is conventionally held to be 24 April 1915, the day Ottoman authorities rounded up and arrested, subsequently executing, some 250 Armenian intellectuals and community leaders in Constantinople.
The genocide was carried out during and after World War I and implemented in two phases: the wholesale killing of the able-bodied male population through massacre and subjection of army conscripts to forced labour, followed by the deportation of women, children, the elderly and infirm on death marches leading to the Syrian desert. Driven forward by military escorts, the deportees were deprived of food and water and subjected to periodic robbery, rape, and massacre.  Other indigenous and Christian ethnic groups such as the Assyriansand the Ottoman Greeks were similarly targeted for extermination by the Ottoman government, and their treatment is considered by many historians to be part of the same genocidal policy. The majority of Armenian diaspora communities around the world came into being as a direct result of the genocide.

And now some excerpts from Wikipedia's list of genocides in history:

7.  The Greeks at Melos and the early Assyrian rampages

Scholars of antiquity differentiate between genocide and gendercide, in which males were killed but the children (particularly the girls) and women were incorporated into the conquering group. Jones notes, "Chalk and Jonassohn provide a wide-ranging selection of historical events such as the Assyrian Empire's root-and branch depredations in the first half of the first millennium BCE, and the destruction of Melos by Athens during the Peloponnesian War (fifth century BCE), a gendercidal rampage described by Thucydides in his 'Melian Dialogue'".

8.  Moses (see also above transcription of Numbers 31)

The Old Testament documents the destruction of the Midianites, taking place during the life of Moses in the 2nd millenium BC. The Book of Numbers chapter 31 recounts that an army of Israelites kill every Midianite man but capture the women and children as plunder. These are later killed at the command of Moses, with the exception of girls who have not slept with a man. The total number killed is not recorded but the number of surviving girls is recorded as thirty two thousand [elsewhere, Wikipedia tells me that these girls were kept as plunder, so even though spared, the rest of their lives were probably not entirely pleasant.  Elsewhere I also see that this was carried out on God's -- the instructions.  Those who think the Bible contains the literal truth should think hard on this].

9.  The Romans at Carthage

Ben Kiernan, a Yale scholar, has labelled the destruction of Carthage at the end of the Third Punic War (149–146 BC) "The First Genocide".

10.  An early non-white massacre of American Indians

A 2010 study suggests that a group of Anasazi in the American Southwest were killed in a genocide that took place circa 800 AD.

11.  Genghis Khan

Quoting Eric Margolis, Jones observes that in the 13th century the Mongol horsemen of Temüjin Genghis Khan were genocidal killers (génocidaires) who were known to kill whole nations, leaving nothing but empty ruins and bones. He ordered the extermination of the Tata Mongols, and all Kankalis males in Bukhara "taller than a wheel" using a technique called measuring against the linchpin. Rosanne Klass referred to the Mongols' rule of Afghanistan as "genocide".

12.  Tamerlane

Similarly, the Turko-Mongol conqueror Tamerlane was known for his extreme brutality and his conquests were accompanied by genocidal massacres.  William Rubinstein wrote: "In Assyria (1393–4) – Tamerlane got around – he killed all the Christians he could find, including everyone in the, then, Christian city of Tikrit, thus virtually destroying Christianity in Mesopotamia. Impartially, however, Tamerlane also slaughtered Shi'ite Muslims, Jews and heathens."

13.  The Zulus in Zimbabwe -- killing everybody including the dogs

Between 1810 and 1828, the Zulu kingdom under Shaka Zulu laid waste to large parts of present-day South Africaand Zimbabwe. Zulu armies often aimed not only at defeating enemies but at their total destruction. Those exterminated included prisoners of war, women, children and even dogs. (Controversial) estimates for the death toll range from 1 million to 2 million.

14.  The Germans against the Herero and Namaqua -- German South-West Africa (now Namibia)

The Herero and Namaqua Genocide in German South-West Africa (present-day Namibia) occurred between 1904 and 1907.  Eighty percent of the Herero population and 50 percent of the Nama population were killed in a brutal scorched earth campaign led by German General Lothar von Trotha. Between 24,000 and 100,000 Herero perished along with 10,000 Nama.  A copy of Trotha's Extermination Order survives in the Botswana National Archives. The order states "every Herero, with or without a gun, with or without cattle, will be shot. I will no longer accept women or children, I will drive them back to their people [to die in the desert] or let them be shot at." Olusoga and Erichsen write: "It is an almost unique document: an explicit, written declaration of intent to commit genocide".  These mass killings were named as the first example of a 20th-century genocide in the 1985 Whitaker Report, commissioned but never adopted by the now defunct United Nations subcommittee ECOSOC.

15.  "Genocide" of the Indigenous Americans. It's not clear whether we should call this a genocide, since it wasn't all necessarily intentional, but there were doubtless incidents of ethnic cleansing, and, as far as the effect on the indigenous population (i.e. those who were here first), it was pretty much the same.

From the 1490s when Christopher Columbus landed in the Americas to the end of the 19th century, the indigenous population of the Western Hemisphere declined, mostly from disease, to 1.8 million from around 50 million, a decline of 96%. In Brazil alone, the indigenous population declined from a pre-Columbian high of an estimated 3 million to some 300,000 (1997). Estimates of how many people were living in the Americas when Columbus arrived have varied tremendously; 20th century scholarly estimates ranged from 8.4 million to 112.5 million.

However, Robert Royal stated, "estimates of pre-Columbian population figures have become heavily politicized with scholars who are particularly critical of Europe and/or Western civilization often favoring wildly higher figures."  Epidemic disease was the overwhelming direct cause of the population decline of the American natives. 

After first contacts with Europeans and Africans, the death of 90 to 95 percent of the native population of the New World was caused by Old World diseases such as smallpox and measles.  Some estimates indicate that smallpox had a 80–90% fatality rate in Native American populations.

British commander Jeffery Amherst may have authorized the intentional use of disease as a biological weapon against indigenous populations during the Siege of Fort Pitt.  It was the only documented case of germ warfare and it is uncertain whether it successfully infected the target population.  Some historians argue that genocide, as a crime of intent, does not describe the colonization experience.

 Stafford Poole, a research historian, wrote: "There are other terms to describe what happened in the Western Hemisphere, but genocide is not one of them. It is a good propaganda term in an age where slogans and shouting have replaced reflection and learning, but to use it in this context is to cheapen both the word itself and the appalling experiences of the Jews and Armenians, to mention but two of the major victims of this century."

Holocaust scholar and political scientist Guenter Lewy rejects the label of genocide and views the depopulation of the Americas as "not a crime but a tragedy".  Likewise, Noble David Cook writing about the Black Legend wrote "There were too few Spaniards to have killed the millions who were reported to have died in the first century after Old and New World contact."  By contrast, David Stannard argued that the destruction of the American aboriginals from 76 million down to a quarter-million over 4 centuries, in a "string of genocide campaigns", killing "countless tens of millions", was the most massive genocide in world history. Several works on the subject were released around the year 1992 to coincide with the 500th anniversary of Columbus' voyage.

In 2003, Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez urged Latin Americans to not celebrate the Columbus Day holiday. Chavez blamed Columbus for leading to the alleged genocide. David Quammen likened colonial American practices toward Native Americans to those of Australia toward its aboriginal populations, calling both genocide.

16.  Argentina's conquest of the desert in the 1870s
The Conquest of the Desert was a military campaign directed mainly by General Julio Argentino Roca in the 1870s, which established Argentine dominance over Patagonia, then inhabited by indigenous peoples, killing more than 1,300.  Contemporary sources indicate that it was a deliberate genocide by the Argentine government.  Others perceived the campaign as intending to suppress only groups of aboriginals that refused to submit to the government and carried out attacks on European settlements.

17.  Haitis's 1804 killing of French creoles

Jean-Jacques Dessalines, the first ruler of an independent Haiti, ordered the killing of the white population of French creoles on Haiti which culminated in the 1804 Haiti Massacre. According to Philippe Girard, "when the genocide was over, Haiti's white population was virtually non-existent."

I've stopped editing below this line.  Maybe will return to it one day.  But the basic point is that in each of these genocides, many perfectly ordinary people (well, men and boys, as I noted above) have become vicious killers of innocent victims.  And my point again is that one can't blame any particular religion for being more prone to it than any other.

18.  The Crusades -- there seems to be a debate about whether one should consider the Crusades as a whole to have been a genocide.  But it certainly had its genocidal moments, including the taking of Antioch, and the massacre of thousands of its Muslim and Christian inhabitants (it was too hard to tell them apart, apparently).  

And then there was the siege of Maarat, or Maara:

On the morning of December 12, the garrison negotiated with Bohemond, who promised them safe conduct if they surrendered. The Muslims surrendered, but the crusaders immediately began to massacre the population. Meanwhile, Bohemond seized control of the walls and towers while Raymond of Toulouse took control of the interior of the city, continuing their dispute over who would rule conquered territories.
Maarat was not as rich as the crusaders had hoped and they were still short of supplies and food as December progressed. Most of the soldiers and knights preferred to continue the march to Jerusalem, caring little for the political dispute between Bohemond and Raymond, and Raymond tried to buy the support of the other leaders. While the leaders negotiated away from the city, some of the starving crusaders at Maarat reportedly resorted to cannibalism, feeding on the dead bodies of Muslims.
A chronicler, Radulph of Caen wrote (in 1107, 9 years after the fact):Some people said that, constrained by the lack of food, they boiled pagan adults in cooking-pots, impaled children on spits and devoured them grilled.

These events were also chronicled by Fulcher of Chartres, who wrote:I shudder to tell that many of our people, harassed by the madness of excessive hunger, cut pieces from the buttocks of the Saracens already dead there, which they cooked, but when it was not yet roasted enough by the fire, they devoured it with savage mouth.

19.  Mexico -- The Caste War of Yucatán (approx. 1847–1901)

The Caste War of Yucatán (approx. 1847–1901) against the population of European descent, called Yucatecos, who held political and economic control of the region. Adam Jones wrote: Genocidal atrocities on both sides cost up to 200,000 killed."
 20.  Mexico – Scalping Apache children (1835-1837)

In 1835, Don Ignacio Zuniga, commander of the presidios of northern Sonora, asserted that since 1820 the Apaches had killed at least five thousand settlers. The state of Sonora then offered a bounty on Apache scalps in 1835. Beginning in 1837 Chihuahua state also offered a bounty of 100 pesos per warrior, 50 pesos per woman and 25 pesos per child.
 21.  Peru -- The rebellions of Túpac Amaru II and Túpac Katari against the Spanish (1780-1782)
The indigenous rebellions of Túpac Amaru II and Túpac Katari against the Spanish between 1780 and 1782, cost over 100,000 colonists' lives in Peru and Upper Peru (present-day Bolivia)."
22.  United States – Trail of Tears, etc.

Further information: Genocide of indigenous peoples § United States colonization and westward expansion.  Chalk and Jonassohn claimed that the deportation of the Cherokee tribe along the Trail of Tears would almost certainly be considered an act of genocide today.  The Indian Removal Act of 1830 led to the exodus. About 17,000 Cherokees—along with approximately 2,000 Cherokee-owned black slaves—were removed from their homes. The number of people who died as a result of the Trail of Tears has been variously estimated. American doctor and missionary Elizur Butler, who made the journey with one party, estimated 4,000 deaths.
23.  Newfoundland – the Beothuks – possible genocide

The Beothuks attempted to avoid contact with Europeans in Newfoundland by moving from their traditional settlements. The Beothuks were put into a position where they were forced from their traditional land and lifestyle into ecosystems that could not support them and that led to undernourishment and eventually starvation.  While some scholars believe that the Beothuk primarily died out due to the elements noted above, another theory is that Europeans conducted a sustained campaign of genocide against them. They were officially declared "extinct" after the death of Shanawdithit in 1829 in the capital, St. John's, where she had been taken.

24. Russians in Siberia.  We tend to forget that for the Russians, the “East” was like the “West” was for the United States. From: Genocide of indigenous peoples § Russian Empire's conquest of Siberia:

The Russian conquest of Siberia was accompanied by massacres due to indigenous resistance to colonization by the Russian Cossacks, who savagely crushed the natives. At the hands of people like Vasilii Poyarkov in 1645 and Yerofei Khabarov in 1650 some peoples like the Daur were slaughtered by the Russians to the extent that it is considered genocide. 8,000 out of a previously 20,000 strong population in Kamchatka remained after being subjected to half a century of Cossacks slaughter. The Daurs initially deserted their villages since they heard about the cruelty of the Russians the first time Khabarov came. The second time he came, the Daurs decided to do battle against the Russians instead but were slaughtered by Russian guns. In the 17th century, indigenous peoples of the Amur region were attacked by Russians who came to be known as "red-beards".  The Russian Cossacks were named luocha (羅剎), after Demons found in Buddhist mythology, by the Amur natives because of their cruelty towards the Amur tribes people, who were subjects of the Qing dynasty during the Sino–Russian border conflicts.

In the 1640s the Yakuts were subjected to slaughters during the Russian advance into their land near the Lena river, and on Kamchatka in the 1690s the Koryak, Kamchadals, and Chukchi were also subjected to slaughters by the Russians.  When the Russians did not obtain the demanded amount of yasak from the natives, the Governor of Yakutsk, Piotr Golovin, who was a Cossack, used meat hooks to hang the native men. In the Lena basin, 70% of the Yakut population died within 40 years, and rape and enslavement were used against native women and children in order to force the natives to pay the Yasak.
In Kamchatka the Russians savagely crushed the Itelmens uprisings against their rule in 1706, 1731, and 1741, the first time the Itelmen were armed with stone weapons and were badly unprepared and equipped but they used gunpowder weapons the second time. The Russians faced tougher resistance when from 1745-56 they tried to exterminate the gun and bow equipped Koraks until their victory. The Russian Cossacks also faced fierce resistance and were forced to give up when trying unsuccessfully to wipe out the Chukchi through genocide in 1729, 1730-1, and 1744-7.

After the Russian defeat in 1729 at Chukchi hands, the Russian commander Major Pavlutskiy was responsible for the Russian war against the Chukchi and the mass slaughters and enslavement of Chukchi women and children in 1730-31, but his cruelty only made the Chukchis fight more fiercely.  A genocide of the Chukchis and Koraks was ordered by Empress Elizabeth in 1742 to totally expel them from their native lands and erase their culture through war. The command was that the natives be "totally extirpated" with Pavlutskiy leading again in this war from 1744-47 in which he led to the Cossacks "with the help of Almighty God and to the good fortune of Her Imperial Highness", to slaughter the Chukchi men and enslave their women and children as booty. However the Chukchi ended this campaign and forced them to give up by killing Pavlitskiy and decapitating his head. The Russians were also launching wars and slaughters against the Koraks in 1744 and 1753-4.

After the Russians tried to force the natives to convert to Christianity, the different native peoples like the Koraks, Chukchis, Itelmens, and Yukagirs all united to drive the Russians out of their land in the 1740s, culminating in the assault on Nizhnekamchatsk fort in 1746.  Kamchatka today is European in demographics and culture with only 2.5% of it being native, around 10,000 from a previous number of 150,000, due to the mass slaughters by the Cossacks after its annexation in 1697 of the Itelmen and Koryaks throughout the first decades of Russian rule.  The genocide by the Russian Cossacks devastated the native peoples of Kamchatka and exterminated much of their population.  In addition to committing genocide they Cossacks also devastated the wildlife by slaughtering massive amounts of animals for fur.  90% of the Kamchadals and half of the Vogules were killed from the eighteenth to nineteenth centuries and the rapid genocide of the indigenous population led to entire ethnic groups being entirely wiped out, with around 12 exterminated groups which could be named by Nikolai Iadrintsev as of 1882. Much of the slaughter was brought on by the fur trade. 
The Aleuts in the Aleutians were subjected to genocide and slavery by the Russians for the first 20 years of Russian rule, with the Aleut women and children captured by the Russians and Aleut men slaughtered.
The regionalist oblastniki in the 19th century among the Russians in Siberia acknowledged that the natives were subjected to immense genocidal cruelty by the Russian colonization, and claimed that they would rectify the situation with their proposed regionalist polices. The Russians used "slaughter, alcoholism and disease" to bring the natives under their control, who were soon left in misery, and much of the evidence of their extermination has itself been destroyed by the Russians, with only a few artifacts documenting their presence remaining in Russian museums and collections.

25.  China – Qing dynasty’s massacre of the Zunghars (Dzungars) (I cobbled the below together from two different Wikipedia sources: Genocide of indigenous peoples § Vietnamese conquest of Champa and the Central Highlands and

Some scholars estimate that about 80% of the Dzungar (Western Mongol) population (600,000 or more) were destroyed by a combination of warfare and disease in the Zunghar Genocide during the Qing conquest ofZunghar Khanate in 1755–1757, in which Manchu Bannermen andKhalkha Mongols exterminated the Dzungar Oirat Mongols.  Mark Levene, a historian whose recent research interests focus on genocide, has stated that the extermination of the Dzungars was "arguably the eighteenth century genocide par excellence.". . .After the Qianlong Emperor led Qing forces to victory over the Dzungars in 1755, he originally planned to split the Dzungar Khanate into four tribes headed by four Khans, the Khoit tribe was to have the Dzungar leader Amursana as its Khan. Amursana rejected the Qing arrangement and rebelled since he wanted to be leader of a united Dzungar nation. Qianlong then issued his orders for the genocide and eradication of the entire Dzungar nation and name, Qing Manchu Bannermen and Inner Mongolian bannermen enslaved Zunghar women and children while slaying the other Zunghars.

The Outer Mongol Khalkha Prince Chingünjav conspired with Amursana to revolt against the Qing in 1755. Chingünjav then started his own rebellion in Outer Mongolia against the Qing in 1756 but it was crushed by the Qing in 1757. Chingünjav and his entire family were executed by the Qing after the rebellion was put down. He is now revered as a hero by Khalkha Mongols today.
The Qianlong Emperor issued his commanders with direct orders to "massacre" the Zunghars and "show no mercy". Rewards were given to those who carried out the extermination and orders were given for young men to be slaughtered while women were taken as the spoils of war. The Qing extirpated Zunghar identity from the remaining enslaved Zunghar women and children.  Orders were given to "completely exterminate the Zunghar tribes, and this successful genocide by the Qing left Zungharia mostly unpopulated and vacant.

Qianlong ordered his men to- "Show no mercy at all to these rebels. Only the old and weak should be saved. Our previous campaigns were too lenient." The Qianlong Emperor did not see any conflict between performing genocide on the Zunghars while upholding the peaceful principles of Confucianism, supporting his position by portraying the Zunghars as barbarian and subhuman. Qianlong proclaimed that "To sweep away barbarians is the way to bring stability to the interior.", that the Zunghars "turned their back on civilization.", and that "Heaven supported the emperor." in the destruction of the Zunghars.

According to the Encyclopedia of genocide and crimes against humanity, Volume 3, under Article II of the United Nations Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide, Qianlong's actions against the Zunghars constitute genocide, as he massacred the vast majority of the Zunghar population and enslaved or banished the remainder, and had "Zunghar culture" extirpated and destroyed.

26.  Japanese colonization of Hokkaido

The Ainu are an indigenous people in Japan (Hokkaidō).  In a 2009 news story, Japan Today reported, "Many Ainu were forced to work, essentially as slaves, for Wajin (ethnic Japanese), resulting in the breakup of families and the introduction of smallpox, measles, cholera and tuberculosis into their community. In 1869, the new Meiji government renamed Ezo Hokkaido and unilaterally incorporated it into Japan. It banned the Ainu language, took Ainu land away, and prohibited salmon fishing and deer hunting."  Roy Thomas wrote: "Ill treatment of native peoples is common to all colonial powers, and, at its worst, leads to genocide. Japan's native people, the Ainu, have, however, been the object of a particularly cruel hoax, because the Japanese have refused to accept them officially as a separate minority people." In 2004 the small Ainu community living in Russia wrote a letter to Vladimir Putin, urging him to recognize Japanese behaviour against the Ainu people as genocide, which Putin declined to do.

27.  Australia

Further information: Australian genocide debate and Genocide of indigenous peoples § Colonization of Australia and Tasmania.  According to research published from 2009, in 1789 the British deliberately spread smallpox from the First Fleet to counter overwhelming native tribes near Sydney in New South Wales. In his book "An Indelible Stain", Henry Reynolds described this act as genocide.  Many scholars disagree that the initial smallpox was the result of deliberate biological warfare and have suggested other causes.

The Black War was a period of conflict between British colonists and Tasmanian Aborigines in Van Diemen's Land(now Tasmania) in the early 19th century. The conflict, in combination with introduced diseases and other factors, had such devastating impacts on the Tasmanian Aboriginal population that it was reported the Tasmanian Aborigines had been exterminated. Historian Geoffrey Blainey wrote that by 1830, "Disease had killed most of them but warfare and private violence had also been devastating." In the 19th century, smallpox was the principal cause of Aboriginal deaths.

Lemkin and most other comparative genocide scholars present the extinction of the Tasmanian Aborigines as a textbook example of a genocide, while the majority of Australian experts are more circumspect.  Detailed studies of the events surrounding the extinction have raised questions about some of the details and interpretations in earlier histories.  Curthoys concluded, "It is time for a more robust exchange between genocide and Tasmanian historical scholarship if we are to understand better what did happen in Tasmania."
On the Australian continent during the colonial period (1788–1901), the population of 500,000–750,000 Australian Aborigines was reduced to fewer than 50,000.  Most were devastated by the introduction of alien diseases after contact with Europeans, while perhaps 20,000 were killed by massacres and fighting with colonists.

28.  New Zealand

In the early 19th Century Ngāti Mutunga and Ngāti Tama (local Māori tribes) massacred the Moriori people. The Moriori were the indigenous people of the Chatham Islands (Rekohu in Moriori, Wharekauri in Māori), east of theNew Zealand archipelago in the Pacific Ocean. These people lived by a code of non-violence and passive resistance (see Nunuku-whenua), which led to their near-extinction at the hands of Taranaki Māori invaders in the 1830s.  In 1835, some Ngāti Mutunga and Ngāti Tama from the Taranaki region of North Island invaded the Chathams. On 19 November 1835, the Rodney, a European ship hired by the Māori, arrived carrying 500 Māori armed with guns, clubs, and axes, followed by another ship with 400 more warriors on 5 December 1835. They proceeded to enslave some Moriori and kill and cannibalise others. "Parties of warriors armed with muskets, clubs and tomahawks, led by their chiefs, walked through Moriori tribal territories and settlements without warning, permission or greeting. If the districts were wanted by the invaders, they curtly informed the inhabitants that their land had been taken and the Moriori living there were now vassals."

A council of Moriori elders was convened at the settlement called Te Awapatiki. Despite knowing of the Māori predilection for killing and eating the conquered, and despite the admonition by some of the elder chiefs that the principle of Nunuku was not appropriate now, two chiefs—Tapata and Torea—declared that "the law of Nunuku was not a strategy for survival, to be varied as conditions changed; it was a moral imperative."  A Moriori survivor recalled: "[The Maori] commenced to kill us like sheep.... [We] were terrified, fled to the bush, concealed ourselves in holes underground, and in any place to escape our enemies. It was of no avail; we were discovered and killed – men, women and children indiscriminately." A Māori conqueror explained, "We took possession... in accordance with our customs and we caught all the people. Not one escaped..."  After the invasion, Moriori were forbidden to marry Moriori, or to have children with each other. All became slaves of the invaders. Many Moriori women had children by their Maori masters. A small number of Moriori women eventually married either Maori or European men. Some were taken from the Chathams and never returned. Only 101 Moriori out of a population of about 2,000 were left alive by 1862.  Although the last Moriori of unmixed ancestry, Tommy Solomon, died in 1933 several thousand mixed ancestry Moriori are alive today.

29.  France -- Mass shootings at Nantes, 1793

In 1986, Reynald Secher argued that the actions of the French republican government during the revolt in the Vendée (1793–1796), a popular mostly Catholic uprising against the anti-clerical Republican government during the French Revolution was the first modern genocide.  Secher's claims caused a minor uproar in France and mainstream authorities rejected Secher's claims.  Timothy Tackett countered that "the Vendée was a tragic civil war with endless horrors committed by both sides—initiated, in fact, by the rebels themselves. The Vendeans were no more blameless than were the republicans. The use of the word genocide is wholly inaccurate and inappropriate."

However, historians Frank Chalk and Kurt Jonassohn consider the Vendée a case of genocide. Historian Pierre Chaunu called the Vendée the first ideological genocide. Adam Jones estimates 150,000 Vendeans died in what he also considers to be genocide.
30.  Ireland -- War of the Three Kingdoms
Toward the end of the War of the Three Kingdoms (1639–1651) the English Rump Parliament sent the New Model Army to Ireland to subdue and take revenge on the Catholic population of the country and to prevent Royalistsloyal to Charles II from using Ireland as a base to threaten England. The force was initially under the command of Oliver Cromwell and later under other parliamentary generals. The Army sought to secure the country, but also to confiscate lands of Irish families involved in the fighting.

This became a continuation of the Elizabethan policy of encouraging Protestant settlement of Ireland, because the Protestant New Model army soldiers—could be paid in confiscated lands rather than in cash.  During the Interregnum (1651–1660), this policy was enhanced with the passing of the Act of Settlement of Irelandin 1652. Its goal was a further transfer of land from Irish to English hands. The immediate war aims and the longer term policies of the English Parliamentarians resulted in an attempt by the English to transfer the native population to the western fringes to make way for Protestant settlers. This policy was reflected in a phrase attributed to Cromwell: "To Hell or to Connaught" and has been described by historians as ethnic cleansing, if not genocide.

31.  Great Irish Famine – This one seems a bit debatable – I guess the argument is that it would have been easy to keep the Irish fed by shutting off exports, and then letting the local market (Ireland) drive prices down so that everyone could eat.  So it’s the act of not engaging in the protectionist policy of shutting down exports that was the cause of all those deaths.  So it’s kind of a genocide by laissez faire/free enterprise/capitalism, more than a deliberate genocide.  You’d think this would be used more frequently as an indictment of unrestrained capitalism.

During the Irish Potato Famine (1845–1852), approximately 1 million people died and a million more emigrated from Ireland, causing the island's population to fall by between 20% and 25%. The proximate cause of famine was a potato disease commonly known as potato blight.  Although blight ravaged potato crops throughout Europe during the 1840s, the impact and human cost in Ireland – where one-third of the population was entirely dependent on the potato for food – was exacerbated by a host of political, social, and economic factors which remain the subject of historical debate.  

During the Famine, Ireland produced enough food, flax, and wool to feed and clothe double its nine million people. When Ireland had experienced a famine in 1782–83, ports were closed to keep Irish-grown food in Ireland to feed the Irish. Local food prices promptly dropped. Merchants lobbied against the export ban, but government in the 1780s overrode their protests. There was no such export ban in the 1840s. Some historians have argued that in this sense the famine was artificial, caused by the British government's choice not to stop exports.

Francis A. Boyle claimed that the government violated sections (a), (b), and (c) of Article 2 of the CPPCG and committed genocide in a formal legal opinion to the New Jersey Commission on Holocaust Education on May 2, 1996. Charles E. Rice issued another formal opinion, also based on Article 2, alleging that the British had committed genocide.

The claims were contested by Peter Gray, who concluded that UK government policy "was not a policy of deliberate genocide", but a dogmatic refusal to admit that the policy was wrong. James S. Donnelly, Jr., split the difference, writing, "while genocide was not in fact committed, what happened ... had the look of genocide to a great many Irish".  Cecil Woodham-Smith claimed that while the export policy embittered the Irish, this did not implicate the policy in genocide, but rather in excessive parsimony obtuseness, short-sightedness, and ignorance.  Irish historian Cormac O' Grada rejects the term, stating that the English exhibited no desire to exterminate the Irish and that the challenges for providing relief were enormous.  W.D. Rubinstein also rejected the genocide claim.

32.  Russia – killing the Circassians

Main article: Ethnic cleansing of Circassians.  T
he Russian Tsarist Empire waged war against Circassia in the Northwest Caucasus for more than one hundred years, trying to replace Circassia's hold along the Black Sea coast. After a century of insurgency and war and failure to end the conflict, the Tsar ordered the expulsion of most of the Muslim population of the North Caucasus. Many Circassians, Western historians, Turks and Chechens claimed that the events of the 1860s constituted one of the first modern genocides, in that a whole population was eliminated to satisfy the desires (in this case economic) of a powerful country.[citation needed]  Antero Leitzinger flagged the affair as the 19th century's largest genocide.  Some estimates cite that approximately 1-1.5 million Circassians were killed and most of the Muslim population was deported. Ossete Muslims and Kabardins generally did not leave. The modern Circassians and Abazins descend from those who managed to escape the onslaught and later returned another 1.5 million Circassians and others. This effectively annihilated (or deported) 90% of the nation.  Tsarist documents recorded more than 400,000 Circassians killed, 497,000 forced to flee and only 80,000 were left in their native area.  Circassians were viewed as tools by the Ottoman government, and settled in restive areas whose populations had nationalist yearnings- Armenia, the Arab regions and the Balkans. Many more Circassians were killed by the policies of the Balkan states, primarily Serbiaand Bulgaria, which became independent at that time.[citation needed] Still more Circassians were forcefully assimilated by nationalist Muslim states (Turkey, Syria, Iraq, etc.) who looked upon non-Turk/Arab ethnicity as a foreign presence and a threat.In May 1994, the then Russian President Boris Yeltsin admitted that resistance to the tsarist forces was legitimate, but he did not recognize "the guilt of the tsarist government for the genocide." In 1997 and 1998, the leaders ofKabardino-Balkaria and of Adygea sent appeals to the Duma to reconsider the situation and to apologize, without response. In October 2006, the Adygeyan public organizations of Russia, Turkey, Israel, Jordan, Syria, the USA, Belgium, Canada and Germany sent the president of the European Parliament a letter with a request to recognize the genocide.[citation needed]On 5 July 2005 the Circassian Congress, an organisation that unites representatives of the various Circassian peoples in the Russian Federation, called on Moscow to acknowledge and apologize for the genocide.

33.  Turkification of the Dersim Kurds

The Dersim Massacre refers to the depopulation of Dersim in Turkish Kurdistan, in 1937–38, in which approximately 65,000–70,000 Alevi Kurds were killed and thousands more were driven into exile. A key component of the Turkification process was a policy of massive population resettlement. The main document, the1934 Law on Resettlement, was used to target the region of Dersim as one of its first test cases, with disastrous consequences for the local population. Many Kurds and some ethnic Turks consider the events that took place in Dersim to constitute genocide. A prominent proponent of this view is İsmail Beşikçi. Under international laws, the actions of the Turkish authorities were arguably not genocide, because they were not aimed at the extermination of a people, but at resettlement and suppression.  A Turkish court ruled in 2011 that the events could not be considered genocide because they were not directed systematically against an ethnic group.  Scholars such as Martin van Bruinessen, have instead talked of an ethnocide directed against the local language and identity.

34.  Soviet Union – see the links

Main articles: Human rights in the Soviet UnionPopulation transfer in the Soviet UnionFamines in Russia and USSRDecossackizationGreat PurgeGulagHolodomorSürgün and Polish operation of the NKVD.  Multiple documented instances of unnatural mass death occurred in th
e Soviet Union. 
These include Union-wide famines in the early 1920s and early 1930s and deportations of ethnic minorities.Soviet diplomatic efforts removed the extermination of political groups from the United Nations Convention on Genocide. This left many of the Soviet atrocities outside the United Nations definition of genocide, because the atrocities targeted political or economic groups rather than the ethnic, racial, religious, or national groups listed in the UN convention.

35.  Decossackization

During the Russian Civil War the Bolsheviks engaged in a genocidal campaign against the Don Cossacks. The most reliable estimates indicate that out of a population of three million, between 300,000 and 500,000 were killed or deported in 1919–20.

36.  Holodomor

During the Soviet famine of 1932–33 that affected Ukraine, Kazakhstanand some densely populated regions of Russia, the scale of death in Ukraine is referred to as the Holodomor and is recognized as genocide by the governments of Australia, Argentina, Georgia, Estonia, Italy, Canada, Lithuania, Poland, the USA and Hungary. The famine was caused by the confiscation of the whole 1933 harvest in Ukraine, Kazakhstan, the Kuban(a densely populated Russian region), and some other parts of the Soviet Union, leaving the peasants too little to feed themselves. As a result, an estimated ten million died, including over seven million in Ukraine, one million in the North Caucasus and one million elsewhere.  American historian Timothy Snyder wrote of "3.3 million Soviet citizens (mostly Ukrainians) deliberately starved by their own government in Soviet Ukraine in 1932–1933"  

In addition to the requisitioning of crops and livestock in Ukraine, all food was confiscated by Soviet authorities. Any and all aid and food was prohibited from entering the Ukrainian republic. Ukraine's Yuschenko administration recognised the Holodomor as an act of genocide and pushed international governments to acknowledge this.  This move was opposed by the Russian government and some members of the Ukrainian parliament, especially the Communists. A Ukrainian court found Joseph Stalin, Vyacheslav Molotov, Lazar Kaganovich, Stanislav Kosior,Pavel Postyshev, Vlas Chubar and Mendel Khatayevich posthumously guilty of genocide on 13 January 2010.  As of 2010, the Russian government's official position was that the famine took place, but was not an ethnic genocide;  former Ukrainian president Viktor Yanukovych supported this position.  A ruling of January 13, 2010 by Kyiv's Court of Appeal declared the Soviet leaders guilty of 'genocide against the Ukrainian national group in 1932–33 through the artificial creation of living conditions intended for its partial physical destruction.'"

37.  Polish Russia

Main article: The Polish Operation of the NKVD (1937–1938)A few scholars argue that the killing, on the basis of nationality and politics, of more than 120,000 ethnic Poles in the Soviet Union during 1937–38 was genocide.

38.  Chechnya

Main article: Operation Lentil (Caucasus)On February 26, 2004 the plenary assembly of the European Parliament recognized the deportation of Chechen people during Operation Lentil (23 February 1944), as an act of genocide, on the basis of the 1907 IV Hague Convention: The Laws and Customs of War on Land and the CPPCG.  The event began on 23 February 1944, when the entire population of Checheno-Ingushetia was summoned to local party buildings where they were told they were to be deported as punishment for their alleged collaboration with the Germans. The inhabitants were rounded up and imprisoned in Studebaker trucks and sent to Siberia.
  • Many times, resistance was met with slaughter, and in one such instance, in the aul of Khaibakh, about 700 people were locked in a barn and burned to death. By the next summer, Checheno-Ingushetia was dissolved; a number of Chechen and Ingush placenames were replaced with Russian ones; mosques and graveyards were destroyed, and a massive campaign to burn numerous historical Chechen texts was nearly complete.

  • Throughout the North Caucasus, about 700,000 (according to Dalkhat Ediev, 724297, of which the majority, 412,548, were Chechens, along with 96,327 Ingush, 104,146 Kalmyks, 39,407 Balkars and 71,869Karachais). Many died on the trip, of exposure in Siberia's extremely harsh environment. The NKVD, supplying the Russian perspective, gives the statistic of 144,704 killed in 1944–1948 alone (with a death rate of 23.5% for all groups). Estimates for Chechen deaths alone (excluding the NKVD statistic), range from about 170,000 to 200,000, thus ranging from over a third of the total Chechen population to nearly half being killed (of those that were deported, not counting those killed on the spot) in those 4 years alone. Both the Chechen Republic of Ichkeria and the European Union Parliament marked it as genocide in 2004.

39.  Deportations of Lithuanians, Latvians and Estonians

The mass deportations of up to 17,500 Lithuanians, 17,000 Latvians and 6,000 Estonians carried out by Stalin were allegedly the start of another genocide. Added to the killing of the Forest Brethren and the renewed Dekulakization that followed the Soviet reconquest of the Baltic states at the end of World War Two, the total number deported to Siberia was 118,559 from Lithuania, 52,541 from Latvia, and 32,540 from Estonia. The high death rate of deportees during the first few years of exile, caused by the failure of Soviet authorities to provide suitable clothing and housing at the destination, led some sources to label the affair an act of genocide. Based on the Martens Clause and the principles of the Nuremberg Charter, the European Court of Human Rights held that the March deportation constituted a crime against humanity. According to Erwin Oberlander, these deportations are a crime against humanity, rather than genocide.

Lithuania began trials for genocide in 1997. Latvia and Estonia followed in 1998. Latvia has since convicted four security officers and in 2003 sentenced a former KGB agent to five years. Estonia tried and convicted ten men and is investigating others. In Lithuania by 2004 23 cases were before the courts, but as of the end of the year none had been convicted.

In 2007 Estonia charged Arnold Meri (then 88 years old), a former Soviet Communist Party official and highly decorated former Red Army soldier, with genocide. Shortly after the trial opened, it was suspended because of Meri's frail health and then abandoned when he died.  A memorial in Vilnius, Lithuania, is dedicated to genocidal victims of Stalin and Hitler, and the Museum of Genocide Victims in Lithuania, which opened on 14 October 1992 in the former KGB headquarters, chronicles the imprisonment and deportation of Lithuanians.

40.  Japan

During the Nanking Massacre in the period of the Second Sino-Japanese War, the Japanese engaged in mass killings against the Chinese. Bradley Campbell described the Nanking Massacre as a genocide, because the Chinese were unilaterally killed by the Japanese en masse during the aftermath, despite the successful and certain outcome of their battle.
 41.  Ancient Rome

Ben Kiernan states in his book Blood and Soil that imperial powers have often resorted to genocidal massacres to control difficult minorities within their empires. He gives as an example the actions by two Roman legions who were sent in 68 AD to quell Jews rioting in Alexandria in support of Jews taking part in the First Jewish–Roman War. The Roman governor Tiberius Julius Alexander ordered two legions to massacre the inhabitants of the Jewish quarter, which was carried out to the letter, sparing none whatever their age or sex. The massacre ended after about 50,000 had been killed when Alexander, listening to the pleas of some yet to be killed, felt pity for them and ordered an end to the killings.
Here's how Josephus describes it:
[Alexander] then let loose among them the two Roman legions, and with them 2,000 soldiers who happened to have come from Libya, with fearful consequences for the Jews. He gave the men leave not merely to kill them but also to plunder their property and burn down their houses. The soldiers rushed into the area called Delta where the Jews were concentrated, and proceeded to carry out their orders, but not without bloodshed on their own side; for the Jews stood shoulder to shoulder with their most heavily armed men in front and held their ground magnificently, but when once the line gave they were destroyed wholesale. Death came upon them in every form; some were overtaken in the open, others driven into their houses, which the Romans first looted and then burnt down. They felt no pity for infants, no respect for the aged; old and young were slaughtered right and left, so that the whole district was deluged with blood and 50,000 corpses were heaped up: even the remnant would not have survived had they not begged for mercy till Alexander, pitying them, ordered the Romans to retire. 


  1. I dispute your assertion that thanatic mayhem lies deep within the human unconscious. It is true that some people, in a kill-or-be-killed situation, choose to kill (actually, only about a quarter of all people -- though the numbers go up if they are defending their families!), but there is a qualitative difference between a genocide where a stronger nation extirpates a harmless weaker group and a genocide where two different tribes are locked in a struggle for survival, and one side happens to do to the other side what the other side wanted to do to them. The first type is pretty rare -- it is usually accompanied by exaggerated rhetoric pretending that the victims are really aggressors -- just as genuine murderers are infrequent in the population. Israelites vs. Midianites was a tribe on tribe thing. The number killed stretches credulity, but wasn't that the battle where three hundred Israelites defeated over thirty thousand Midianites? And didn't the Midianites want to wipe out the Israelites? Tribal survival rather ideological difference motivates most genocides (and even ideological genocides, like the Soviet and Cambodian ones, were accompanies by survivalist rhetoric).

    1. Well, I hope you're right. But I'd be curious to know where you get your statistics. You say "a quarter of all people," but I suppose if you include women and children in your sample, maybe that means it's just about adult men, and all of them have the instinct. As noted in my original post, genocides are mostly carried about by "men and boys."

      And of course, there is a cultural component -- I personally am positive that "I" would never do that, but that doesn't mean that a genetically-equivalent "I" wouldn't do it if born into another culture.

      Your point about tribes and tribal survival is well taken, and it does allow us to draw some lines between really bad and even worse genocides. But in the end, doesn't it all support my point? I'm just saying that deep within us, there is something that can be triggered to move us toward genocide, including the killing of non-combatant women and children. That thing might be an appeal to tribalism that most of us modern westerners will never experience, but it's there. And as you suggest, the tribal instinct can in some cases be induced by those who would motivate us to commit genocide.

      Yes, there are still "tribes" in the world, but the recent genocides have not been about tribes locked in a struggle for survival; they have been about cynical leaders using the tribal instinct to carry out their murderous agendas, even though no tribe was in any danger of extirpation.

      I also see a parallel between the genocidal "instinct," and the practice among "absolute" political rulers of killing not just their rivals, but their rivals' offspring. The murder of Tsar Nicholas's family by the Bolsheviks might be the most recent western example, but doubtless there have been many others through the years. This is probably the same kind of kill-or-be-killed pragmatic killing that you are talking about in the context of warring tribes, but for me it's another example of how even modern and educated people can be induced to kill innocent children.

  2. All genocides are appalling -- but some are more appalling than others. I have never met anyone who wasn't from the Baltic states that didn't feel there was some sort payback involved in the Soviet re-occupation of Latvia, Estonia and Lithuania: considering the near-complete cooperation of the Baltic populations in the holocaust and their eager embrace of National Socialist teachings. The Turks, the Germans and the Americans stand out on your list, as opportunistic genocidal criminals rather than survivalist ones.

    1. I do see a distinction of sorts, but I'd still like to push back a little bit. I agree that in cases where there is a real war going on (e.g. over territory), in very primitive cultures two tribes might engage in a fight to the death that includes expectations of genocide on both sides. And perhaps that includes the slaughter of the Midianites.

      But it doesn't account for the vast majority of genocides on the list; i.e. I don't think the Germans, the Americans, and the Turks stand out all that much from most of the others..