In
Soviet judges usually ignored the letter of the law, but the rest of the party and state apparatus understood its spirit. Often the most enthusiastic enforcers of the law were younger people, educated in the new Soviet schools, who believed in the promise of the new system. Members of the official youth organization were told that their “main task” was “the struggle against theft and the hiding of grain as well as kulak sabotage.” For the young generation in the cities, communism had offered social advance, and the world demonized in this agitation was one that they had left behind. The...
peasants from taking anything for themselves. In the Odessa region alone, more than seven hundred watchtowers were constructed. Brigades went from hut to hut, five thousand youth organization members among their members, seizing everything they could find. Activists used, as one peasant recalled, “long metal rods to search through stables, pigsties, stoves. They looked everywhere and took everything, down to the last little grain.” They rushed through the village “like the black death” calling out “Peasant, where is your grain? Confess!” The brigades took everything that resembled...
to be killed.30 Disinformation was the key to the entire operation.
Note: From here for the next several paragraphs the murder of the Kievan Jews.