What Canadians put Ukrainians in concentration camps in the First world

History 26/12/19 that Canadians put Ukrainians in concentration camps in the First world

it is considered that the first concentration camps appeared, whether with the filing of Hitler, whether as part of the punitive system of the Stalinist regime. In fact, the first real GULAG arose several decades earlier, and in a completely non-totalitarian state in Canada.

Ukrainians in Canada

the Ukrainian Diaspora is one of the largest ethnic communities in Canada to date. She has more than 1.25 million people (according to 2011). The first settlers from Western Ukraine, Galicia and Bukovyna began to arrive North of the New world in the 1890s. the government of the British dominion took hardworking farmers gladly gave them virgin lands in the prairies of Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba. The fact that Ukrainian immigrants are subjects of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, the canadian government then does not bother.

Everything changed with the outbreak of the First world war. Ukrainians lived mainly in the sparsely populated provinces of Canada and in no hurry to assimilate and accept the citizenship of the new country. After Britain declared war on Austria-Hungary, all the subjects of the enemy had to be forcibly interned as “potentially hostile civilians”. The same fate expected and other representatives of the warring parties — the Germans, Austrians and Italians.

the GULAG Ukrainians

there is still no exact data how many Ukrainians were subjected to forced relocation to concentration camps or expelled from the country. More or less can confidently say at least half of the 171 thousand of Ukrainian immigrants living in Canada then. More than 80 thousand people during the war and some time after it was registered by the police or forcibly detained in camps on the territory of the country was 24, and all were built by hands of Ukrainian imprisoneddata.

Such a fate was all the more humiliating that the European “hostile citizens” were subjected to reprisals much less frequently, were kept in better conditions and were not involved in heavy work. The Ukrainians, who were for freedom and a new life, went to hard labor in the logging, road construction, etc.

The worst thing is that repression suffered not only healthy single men but also families, who without a twinge of conscience exiled to the Northern regions of the country. Accurate data on mortality among the prisoners there, but the survivors in his memoirs said that the work was backbreaking and conditions and food were terrible. Because of this, many died, someone tried to escape, but there were a lot of those who chose to commit suicide.

Yaroslav Gorbunov

© Russian Seven

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