Gov. Gretchen Whitmer
WHEREAS, 88 years ago, Soviet leader Joseph Stalin and his totalitarian regime committed an act of genocide through the implementation of an engineered famine, confiscating all foodstuffs from the Ukrainian people, resulting in the deaths of 7 - 10 million innocent men, women, and children; and,
WHEREAS, the genocide, Holodomor, meaning "murder by starvation," was specifically designed by the Soviet regime to punish independent-minded Ukrainians for their resistance to Stalin's political, economic, and social oppression; and,
WHEREAS, even as the Soviets continued to export Ukraine's grain to the rest of the world, Ukrainian farmers, who tended to the farms in the breadbasket of Europe, were purposefully starved to a slow and painful death; and,
WHEREAS, hundreds of archival KGB documents created during this genocide detailed and described the Soviet regime's actions and intention to destroy Ukraine's national identity by deporting and executing Ukraine's religious, intellectual, and cultural leaders, and prosecuting or executing others who dared to speak of the Holodomor; and,
WHEREAS, through the newly released major motion film entitled "Mr. Jones," depicting Welsh journalist Gareth Jones who reported on the Holodomor, the world is afforded an opportunity to understand the realities of the Soviet crime, and,
WHEREAS, under the theme "Ukraine Remembers, the World Acknowledges," it is incumbent upon the global community to recognize the Ukrainian Holodomor (1932-1933) as a genocide and a crime against humanity, all the while learning from the past to prevent similar tragedies from occurring in the future;
NOW, THEREFORE, I, Gretchen Whitmer, Governor of Michigan, do hereby proclaim the month of November 2021 as Ukrainian Genocide Remembrance Month in Michigan and urge all individuals, groups, organizations, and institutions to remember the Holodomor with appropriate activities designed to honor its victims and educate the world about this tragic episode in the world's history. Throughout this 88th anniversary year, let us recommit ourselves to reflect upon the historical truth of the heinous crimes of totalitarian regimes so that we may one day eliminate tyranny from our world.