Democide is a term proposed by R. J. Rummel since at least 1994 who defined it as "the intentional killing of an unarmed or disarmed person by government agents acting in their authoritative capacity and pursuant to government policy or high command". According to him, this definition covers a wide range of deaths, including forced labor and concentration camp victims; killings by "unofficial" private groups; extrajudicial summary killings; and mass deaths due to the governmental acts of criminal omission and neglect, such as in deliberate famines, as well as killings by de facto governments, i.e. civil war killings. This definition covers any murder of any number of persons by any government.
Rummel created the term as an extended concept to include forms of government murder not covered by the term genocide. According to Rummel, democide surpassed war as the leading cause of non-natural death in the 20th century.
Democide is the murder of any person or people by their government, including genocide, politicide and mass murder. Democide is not necessarily the elimination of entire cultural groups but rather groups within the country that the government feels need to be eradicated for political reasons and due to claimed future threats.
According to Rummel, genocide has three different meanings.
The objectives of democide include the disintegration of the political and social institutions of culture, language, national feelings, religion, and the economic existence of national groups; the destruction of the personal security, liberty, health, dignity; and even the lives of the individuals belonging to such groups.
Some examples of democide cited by Rummel include the Great Purges carried out by Joseph Stalin in the Soviet Union, the deaths from the colonial policy in the Congo Free State, and Mao Zedong's Great Leap Forward, which resulted in a famine that killed millions of people. According to Rummel, these were not cases of genocide because those who were killed were not selected on the basis of their race, but were killed in large numbers as a result of government policies. Famine is classified by Rummel as democide if it fits the definition above.
For instance, Rummel re-classified Mao Zedong's Great Leap Forward as democide in 2005. He originally believed that Mao's policies were largely responsible for the famine, but that Mao's advisers had misled him. Therefore, he believed it was not an intentional famine and thus not a democide. However, reports from Jung Chang and Jon Halliday's Mao: The Unknown Story allege that Mao knew about the famine from the beginning but did not care, and eventually Mao had to be stopped by a meeting of 7,000 top Communist Party members. Based on this new evidence, Rummel now believes the famine was intentional and considers it a democide. Taking this into account, the total for Chinese Communist Party democide is 80.86 million, more than the Soviet Union (62 million), Nazi Germany (21 million), or any other regime in the 20th century.
In his estimates, Rummel relies mostly on historical accounts, an approach that rarely provides accurate estimates. His estimates typically include a wide range and cannot be considered determinative..
Thus, Rummel calculates nearly 43 million deaths due to democide inside and outside the Soviet Union during Stalin's regime. This is much higher than an often quoted figure of 20 million, or a more recent figure of 9 million. Rummel has responded that the 20 million estimate is based on a figure from Robert Conquest's 1968 book The Great Terror, and that Conquest's qualifier "almost certainly too low" is usually forgotten. Conquest's calculations excluded camp deaths before 1936 and after 1950, executions from 1939–1953, the vast deportation of the people of captive nations into the camps and their deaths 1939–1953, the massive deportation within the Soviet Union of minorities 1941–1944 and their deaths, and those the Soviet Red Army and secret police executed throughout Eastern Europe after their conquest during 1944–1945. Moreover, the Holodomor that killed 5 million in 1932–1934 is also not included.
His research shows that the death toll from democide is far greater than the death toll from war. After studying over 8,000 reports of government-caused deaths, Rummel estimates that there have been 262 million victims of democide in the last century. According to his figures, six times as many people have died from the actions of people working for governments than have died in battle.
One of his main findings is that liberal democracies have much less democide than authoritarian regimes. He argues that there is a relation between political power and democide. Political mass murder grows increasingly common as political power becomes unconstrained. At the other end of the scale, where power is diffuse, checked, and balanced, political violence is a rarity. According to Rummel, "The more power a regime has, the more likely people will be killed. This is a major reason for promoting freedom." Rummel concludes that "concentrated political power is the most dangerous thing on earth."
Several other researchers have found similar results. "Numerous researchers point out that democratic norms and political structures constrain elite decisions about the use of repression against their citizens whereas autocratic elites are not so constrained. Once in place, democratic institutions—even partial ones—reduce the likelihood of armed conflict and all but eliminate the risk that it will lead to geno/politicide."
Researchers often give widely different estimates of mass murder. They use different definitions, methodology, and sources. For example, some include battle deaths in their calculations.
Afrophobia is a perceived fear of the cultures and peoples of Africa, as well as the African diaspora.David Stannard
David Edward Stannard (born 1941) is an American historian and Professor of American Studies at the University of Hawaii. He is particularly known for his book American Holocaust (Oxford University Press, 1992), in which he argues that the genocide against the Native American population was the largest genocide in history.Ethnic penalty
Ethnic penalty in sociology is defined as the economic and non-economic disadvantages that ethnic minorities experience in the labour market compared to other ethnic groups. As an area of study among behavioral economists, psychologists, and sociologists, it ranges beyond discrimination to take non-cognitive factors into consideration for explaining unwarranted differences between individuals of similar abilities but differing ethnicities.Ethnocide
Ethnocide refers to extermination of national culture as a genocide component.Reviewing the legal and academic history of usage of the terms genocide and ethnocide, Bartolomé Clavero differentiates between them in that "Genocide kills people while ethnocide kills social cultures through the killing of individual souls". In addition, "since cultural genocide can only be the cultural dimension of genocide", the idea of ethnocide is more than just "cultural genocide", but also part of broader genocidal process.Because concepts such as cultural genocide and ethnocide have been used in different contexts, the anthropology of genocide examines their inclusion and exclusion in law and policies.German casualties in World War II
Statistics for German World War II military casualties are divergent. The wartime military casualty figures compiled by German High Command, up until January 31, 1945, are often cited by military historians when covering individual campaigns in the war. A recent study by German historian Rüdiger Overmans found that the German military casualties were 5.3 million, including 900,000 men conscripted from outside of Germany's 1937 borders, in Austria and in east-central Europe, higher than those originally reported by the German high command. The German government reported that its records list 4.3 million dead and missing military personnel. Civilian deaths during the war include air raid deaths, estimates of German civilians killed only by Allied strategic bombing have ranged from around 350,000 to 500,000.
Civilian deaths, due to the flight and expulsion of Germans, Soviet war crimes and the forced labor of Germans in the Soviet Union are disputed and range from 500,000 to over 2.0 million. According to the German government Suchdienste (Search Service) there were 300,000 German victims (including Jews) of Nazi racial, political and religious persecution. This statistic does not include 200,000 German people with disabilities who were murdered in the Action T4 and Action 14f13 euthanasia programs.Gerontophobia
Gerontophobia is the fear of growing old, or a hatred or fear of the elderly due to memento mori. The term comes from the Greek γέρων – gerōn, "old man" and φόβος – phobos, "fear".Khmer Rouge Killing Fields
The Cambodian Killing Fields (Khmer: វាលពិឃាត, Khmer pronunciation: [ʋiəl pikʰiət]) are a number of sites in Cambodia where collectively more than a million people were killed and buried by the Khmer Rouge regime (the Communist Party of Kampuchea), during its rule of the country from 1975 to 1979, immediately after the end of the Cambodian Civil War (1970–1975). The mass killings are widely regarded as part of a broad state-sponsored genocide (the Cambodian genocide).
Analysis of 20,000 mass grave sites by the DC-Cam Mapping Program and Yale University indicates at least 1,386,734 victims of execution. Estimates of the total deaths resulting from Khmer Rouge policies, including death from disease and starvation, range from 1.7 to 2.5 million out of a 1975 population of roughly 8 million. In 1979, Vietnam invaded Democratic Kampuchea and toppled the Khmer Rouge regime; viewed as ending the genocide.
The Cambodian journalist Dith Pran coined the term "killing fields" after his escape from the regime.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, Cambodian Christians, and the Buddhist monkhood were the demographic targets of persecution. As a result, Pol Pot has been described as "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 Cambodia suggests 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.List of types of killing
In the English language, terms for types of killing often end in the suffix -cide.List of wars and anthropogenic disasters by death toll
This is a list of wars and anthropogenic disasters by death toll.
It covers the name of the event, the location and the start and end of each event. Some events may belong in more than one category. In addition, some of the listed events overlap each other, and in some cases the death toll from a smaller event is included in the one for the larger event or time period of which it was part.Mass killing
A mass killing, as defined by a genocide scholar Ervin Staub, is "killing members of a group without the intention to eliminate the whole group or killing large numbers of people without a precise definition of group membership". This term is used by a number of genocide scholars because the term "genocide" (its strict definition) does not cover mass killing events when no specific ethnic or religious group is targeted, and when perpetrators are not intended to eliminate of the whole group or its significant part. This article primarily discusses different models used by genocide scholars to explain and predict the onset of mass killing events.Mass killings under communist regimes
Several Mass killings occurred under 20th-century Communist regimes. Death estimates vary widely, depending on the definitions of deaths included. The higher estimates of mass killings account for crimes against civilians by governments, including executions, destruction of population through man-made hunger and deaths during forced deportations, imprisonment and through forced labor. Terms used to define these killings include "mass killing", "democide", "politicide", "classicide" and a broad definition of "genocide".Massacre
A massacre is a killing, typically of multiple victims, considered morally unacceptable, especially when
perpetrated by a group of political actors against defenseless victims.
The word is a loan of a French term for "butchery" or "carnage".There is no objective definition of what constitutes a "massacre". Various international organisations have proposed a formal definition of the term crimes against humanity, which would however include incidents of persecution or abuse that do not result in deaths.
Conversely, a "massacre" is not necessarily a "crime against humanity".
Other terms with overlapping scope include war crime, pogrom, mass killing, mass murder, and extrajudicial killing.National Day of Mourning (United States protest)
The National Day of Mourning is an annual protest organized since 1970 by Native Americans of New England on the fourth Thursday of November, the same day as Thanksgiving in the United States. It coincides with an unrelated similar protest, Unthanksgiving Day, held on the West Coast.
The organizers consider the national holiday of Thanksgiving Day as a reminder of the democide and continued suffering of the Native American peoples. Participants in the National Day of Mourning honor Native ancestors and the struggles of Native peoples to survive today. They want to educate Americans about history. The event was organized in a period of Native American activism and general cultural protests. The protest is organized by the United American Indians of New England (UAINE). Since it was first organized, social changes have resulted in major revisions to the portrayal of United States history, the government's and settlers' relations with Native American peoples, and renewed appreciation for Native American culture.Power Kills
In Power Kills: Democracy as a Method of Nonviolence by American political scientist Rudolph Rummel (1997), a sequel to his 1994 book Death by Government argues that the more power a government has, the more it tends to kill its own citizens and make war on other countries, and conversely, the less power a government has over its citizens, the less it tends to kill them or to launch wars of aggression, proposing that democracy is the form of government least likely to commit democide.Prolicide
Prolicide is the act of killing one's own offspring. The word prolicide is derived from the Latin word proles (offspring) and the suffix -cide, meaning to kill.It may refer to:
Infanticide (killing of one's infant, 0–12 months)
Neonaticide (killing of one's infant within the first 24 hours after birth)
Rudolph Joseph Rummel (October 21, 1932 – March 2, 2014) was professor of political science who taught at the Indiana University, Yale University, and University of Hawaii. He spent his career studying data on collective violence and war with a view toward helping their resolution or elimination. Rummel coined the term democide for murder by government (compare genocide), such as the Stalinist purges and Mao's Cultural Revolution.
Rummel estimated the total number of people killed by all governments during the 20th century at 212 million, and he estimated that 148 million were killed by communist regimes from 1917 to 1987. To give some perspective on these numbers, Rummel pointed out that all domestic and foreign wars during the twentieth century killed in combat around 41 million. His figures for Communist regimes are higher than those given by most other scholars, which range from 60 to 100 million. In his last book, Rummel increased his estimate to over 272 million innocent, non-combatant civilians who were murdered by their own governments during the 20th century.
He concluded that democracy is the form of government least likely to kill its citizens and that democracies do not wage war against each other. This is known as the democratic peace theory.
Rummel was the author of twenty-four scholarly books, and published his major results in Understanding Conflict and War (1975–81). He spent the next fifteen years refining the underlying theory and testing it empirically on new data, against the empirical results of others, and on case studies. He summed up his research in Power Kills (1997). Other works include Lethal Politics: Soviet Genocides and Mass Murders 1917–1987 (1990); China's Bloody Century: Genocide and Mass Murder Since 1900 (1991); Democide: Nazi Genocide and Mass Murder (1992); Death by Government (1994); and Statistics of Democide (1997). Extracts, figures, and tables from the books, including his sources and details regarding the calculations, are available online on his website. Rummel also authored Factor Analysis Understanding (1970) and Understanding Correlation (1976).
In addition to his extensive research and data analysis, Rummel wrote the Never Again series of alternative-history novels, in which a secret society sends two lovers armed with fabulous wealth and modern weapons back to 1906 with orders to create a peaceful century.Slavery in Japan
Japan had an official slave system from the Yamato period (3rd century A.D.) until Toyotomi Hideyoshi abolished it in 1590.Spree killer
A spree killer is someone who kills two or more victims in a short time, in multiple locations. The U.S. Bureau of Justice Statistics defines a spree killing as "killings at two or more locations with almost no time break between murders".Vietnam War casualties
Estimates of casualties of the Vietnam War vary widely. Estimates include both civilian and military deaths in North and South Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia.
The war persisted from 1955 to 1975 and most of the fighting took place in South Vietnam; accordingly it suffered the most casualties. The war also spilled over into the neighboring countries of Cambodia and Laos which also endured casualties from aerial and ground fighting.
Civilian deaths caused by both sides amounted to a significant percentage of total deaths. Civilian deaths were partly caused by assassinations, massacres and terror tactics. Civilian deaths were also caused by mortar and artillery, extensive aerial bombing and the use of firepower in military operations conducted in heavily populated areas. Some 365,000 Vietnamese civilians are estimated by one source to have died as a result of the war during the period of American involvement.A number of incidents occurred during the war in which civilians were deliberately targeted or killed. The best-known are the Massacre at Huế and the My Lai massacre.