Death toll of Christianity
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The death toll of Christianity is a disputed subject, with controversies including the death toll of the events, how much the death toll can be attributed to Christianity, and how it compares to the death toll of communism, which is often blamed on atheism. The most famous estimate is 56 million deaths, but a more critical examination would put Christianity's death toll at 9.064 to 28.734 million, however if you widen responsibility to mean any mass atrocity caused by largely Christians societies regardless of motive [Like how atheist get blamed for the Great Leap Forward which caused half of communism's deaths even though the motivations were economic not anti-religious] then the death toll of Christianity would ascend to 82.069 to 106.734 million deaths more or less equal to the "Black Book of Communism" 85 to 100 million deaths from communism-(Which is disputed by some of the book's own authors)-that all get blamed on atheism regardless of other motives to the killings which is what you'd be doing here if all of these deaths were blamed on Christianity alone. (see details bellow.)
The most notable events contributing to this total were the Thirty Years War, the Crusades (including the Albigensian Crusade, a.k.a. the Genocide of Cathars), the Encomienda system brought by the Spanish colonization of the Americas, and the French Wars of Religion.
- 1 Scriptural and institutional basis
- 2 Estimates
- 3 Christian militancy vs atheist communism
- 4 See also
- 5 External links
- 6 Notes
- 7 References
Scriptural and institutional basis
The Old Testament openly portrayed and condoned the genocide and massacre of Canaanites (Numbers 21:2-3; Deuteronomy 20:17; Joshua 6:17, 21), the Amalekites (Exodus 17:13), the Midianites (Numbers, 31:17-18), 10,000 Moabites (Judges 3:29), the people of Sihon (Deuteronomy 2:33-34), the entire population of Jericho (Joshua 6:21-27), 12,000 people in Ai (Joshua 8:22-25), Gibeonites, the people of Makkedah, the Libnahites, the people of Lachish, the Eglonites, the Hebronites, and the Debirites (Joshua 10:10-39), and the Anakim (Joshua 11:21-23) not to mention dozens other massacres. These events will be excluded from Christianity's death toll since it's disputable if most of the events of the Old Testament are even real.
With regard to heretics two points must be observed: one, on their own side; the other, on the side of the Church. On their own side there is the sin, whereby they deserve not only to be separated from the Church by excommunication, but also to be severed from the world by death. For it is a much graver matter to corrupt the faith that quickens the soul, than to forge money, which supports temporal life. Wherefore if forgers of money and other evil-doers are forthwith condemned to death by the secular authority, much more reason is there for heretics, as soon as they are convicted of heresy, to be not only excommunicated but even put to death. On the part of the Church, however, there is mercy, which looks to the conversion of the wanderer, wherefore she condemns not at once, but "after the first and second admonition", as the Apostle directs: after that, if he is yet stubborn, the Church no longer hoping for his conversion, looks to the salvation of others, by excommunicating him and separating him from the Church, and furthermore delivers him to the secular tribunal to be exterminated thereby from the world by death.
Papal bull of 18 June 1452
The Catholic Church openly allowed and endorsed the conquest and enslavement of "unbelievers" and "pagans" during the Papal bull issued on 18 June 1452 by Pope Nicholas V:
We grant you [Kings of Spain and Portugal] by these present documents, with our Apostolic Authority, full and free permission to invade, search out, capture, and subjugate the Saracens and pagans and any other unbelievers and enemies of Christ wherever they may be, as well as their kingdoms, duchies, counties, principalities, and other property [...] and to reduce their persons into perpetual servitude.
The Rationalist's Manual
A more popular figure from 1897 by The Rationalist's Manual by M. D. Aletheia gave a death toll of 56 million
Let us look for a moment at the number of victims sacrificed on the altars of the Christian Moloch: — 1,000,000 perished during the early Arian schism; 1,000,000 during the Carthaginian struggle; 7,000,000 during the Saracen slaughters. In Spain 5,000,000 perished during the eight Crusades; 2,000,000 of Saxons and Scandinavians lost their lives in opposing the introduction of the blessings of Christianity. 1,000,000 were destroyed in the Holy(?) Wars against the Netherlands, Albigenses, Waldenses, and Huguenots. 30,000,000 Mexicans and Peruvians were slaughtered ere they could be convinced of the beauties(?) of the Christian creed. 9,000,000 were burned for witchcraft. Total, 56,000,000.
This figure has been criticized by self proclaimed "atrocitologist" and author of Atrocitology: Humanity's 100 Deadliest Achievements, Matthew White. For example, Aletheia estimated 9 million deaths for witch hunts, which Matthew believes is almost certainly wrong, suggesting that a death toll of 50,000 to 60,000 is far more reliable. (Some sources give even higher death tolls for witch hunts than the "Rationalist Manual" does, with figures such as 9,442,994, 10,000,000 and even 13,000,000, although White considers these estimates unreliable.)[note 1]
Matthew White's 5 questions method
By Matthew White's standards, when blaming atrocities on Christianity or any other ideology, five questions should be asked, and at least four must be applicable for Christianity to be held responsible. Some events don't answer the question neatly, so in these cases, the statement would be counted as half applicable:
- Were the perpetrators Christian? It's a simple question of what did they call themselves. Even if his faith appears to be purely nominal, the fact that a leader finds it expedient to go through the motions of being a Christian tells a lot about who his supporters are.
- Were the perps from a traditionally Christian society? How deep were the roots of Christianity? Too shallow to have much effect, or so deep that people behaved as Christians, regardless of what the ruling class dictated? And this is a question that cuts both ways. If a nation that only recently converted to Christianity (like, say, Rwanda) is excused or blamed for misdeeds, then a nation that only recently converted away from Christianity (like, say the USSR) should be equally excused or blamed.
- Was the Christianity mainstream? Did the perps practice a Christianity that was recognizably similar to the Christianity practiced all around the world and across time? Was it dangerously close to some type of Christianity that people believe today? Or was it some weird heresy that we can hardly blame on Jesus, Paul, Augustine, Luther, etc?
- Was the conflict mostly religious? Granted, no conflict is ever entirely religious (or entirely anything) in motivation, but was the degree of religious motivation a lot higher than usual? For example, if the only difference between the two conflicting groups is religion, then it probably should be categorized as a religious conflict.
- Was the conflict partly religious? Was religion among the top motivations at all? Also, if you answer yes to question 4 then answer yes here as well. After all, you can't get to mostly without passing through partly.
Estimates using White's standards
Using this standard, White cites the following events as scoring at least 4 on this scale:
- The Spanish colonization of the Americas, scoring a 4, for which he gives a figure of 20 million deaths,
- The Thirty Years War, scoring 4.5, for which he gives a figure of 7.5 million deaths, and
- The Crusades and the Catholic extermination of Cathars, both scoring 5, for which he gives figures of 3 and 1 million deaths respectively.
The Albigensian Crusade, in which the Catholic Church ordered the crusaders to exterminate heretical sects such as the Cathars, is an event that has been characterized by the coiner of the word genocide, Raphael Lemkin, as "one of the most conclusive cases of genocide in religious history". Historians such as Mark Gregory Pegg, Kurt Jonassohn, and Karin Björnson concur with this view. Other sects, such as the Waldensian, were subject to the same extermination policy (if not a worse one), in which possibly 900,000 to 2 million were killed.
Some sources criticize these figures for including a 20 million death toll for the Spanish Conquest of the Americas, in which the deaths were mostly caused by disease. A more reasonable estimate of the Spanish repression of natives is available (explicitly excluding disease) at 1,400,000 to 2,300,000. In addition, the spread of disease was itself exacerbated by the poor conditions of the Encomienda system of forced labor in Spanish colonies.
There are also cases where catholic priest actively participated in the genocide of American Indians. The most notable case of this was the Spanish missions in California in which California Indians had to labor and worship at the mission under the strict observance of the priests and overseers, who herded them to daily masses and labors. If an Indian did not report for their duties for a period of a few days, they were searched for, and if it was discovered that they had left without permission, they were considered runaways. Large-scale military expeditions were organized to round up the escaped neophytes. Sometimes, the Franciscans allowed neophytes to escape the missions, or they would allow them to visit their home village. However, the Franciscans would only allow this so that they could secretly follow the neophytes. Upon arriving to the village and capturing the runaways, they would take back Indians to the missions, sometimes as many as 200 to 300 Indians.
On one occasion," writes Hugo Reid, "they went as far as the present Rancho del Chino, where they tied and whipped every man, woman and child in the lodge, and drove part of them back.... On the road they did the same with those of the lodge at San Jose. On arriving home the men were instructed to throw their bows and arrows at the feet of the priest, and make due submission. The infants were then baptized, as were also all children under eight years of age; the former were left with their mothers, but the latter kept apart from all communication with their parents. The consequence was, first, the women consented to the rite and received it, for the love they bore their children; and finally the males gave way for the purpose of enjoying once more the society of wife and family. Marriage was then performed, and so this contaminated race, in their own sight and that of their kindred, became followers of Christ
A total of 20,355 natives were "attached" to the California missions in 1806 (the highest figure recorded during in the Mission Period); under Mexican rule the number rose to 21,066 (in 1824, the record year during the entire era of the Franciscan missions). During the entire period of Mission rule, from 1769 to 1834, the Franciscans baptized 53,600 adult Indians and buried 37,000. Dr. Cook estimates that 15,250 or 45% of the population decrease was caused by disease. Two epidemics of measles, one in 1806 and the other in 1828, caused many deaths. The mortality rates were so high that the missions were constantly dependent upon new conversions. The main factor for the overwhelming losses were due to epidemics in the missions. Despite being affected before the introduction of missions, the buildings allowed rodents to infiltrate living areas and spread disease more rapidly. Many natives were living in cramped spaces with poor hygiene and poor nutrition. This led not only to high mortality rate, but to low fertility rates as well. It is estimated that every 20 years or so, a new epidemic would wipe out the adult population of natives in many missions, giving no chance for recovery. (Newson, 2005) In total 60,000 to 100,000 Indians perished under the Mission system.
On that note Catholics will often point to the low death toll of the Portuguese (1,846) and Spanish (3,000 to 5,000) inquisitions as an example of the banality of Christian extremism compared to atheist examples, however you consider some of those killed in the Spanish Inquisition such as Nicolas de Aguilar as Alcalde Mayor where those trying to regulate and control the abuses of Franciscan missionaries the number of tertiary deaths from the repression may be much higher.
Using this revised estimate for the Spanish Conquest, Catholic Missions, plus aforementioned inquisitions, the total death toll of Christianity is, at least, between 13.003 and 13.904 million by White's standard.
He excluded other notably deadly events such as the aforementioned elimination of Waldensians (which caused 900,000 to 2 million deaths), the French Wars of Religion (which caused 2 to 4 million deaths), and other European wars of religion such as the War of the Three Kingdoms (315,000 to 868,000 deaths), the Eighty Years' War (600,000 to 700,000 deaths), and the German Peasants' War (100,000 to 200,000 deaths) plus the aforementioned 50,000 to 60,000 deaths for witch hunts, raising Christianity's death toll to 17.168 to 22.451 million.
Another inclusion would be the 200,000 to 400,000 Spanish Republicans and leftists, and 300,000 to 500,000 Serbian killed by the clerical fascist regimes of the Francisco Franco and the Ustaše respectively. This would raise Christianity's death further to 17.668 to 23.351 million.
Some of White's estimates are disputed for being too high, with some stating that the Crusades, Cathar genocide, and Thirty Years War caused 1,000,000, 100,000, and 3,000,000 deaths respectively, while others put some events as having higher totals, estimating that the Thirty Years War caused perhaps as many as 13,000,000 deaths, thus either lowering the figure for Christianity's death toll to 9.064 million or raising it to 28.734 million.
This is not even including other events in which White rated Christianity's responsibility as 3.5 such as the Fall of Rome which would raise Chistianity's death to 16.069 to 35.734 million by White's estimates, events which White rated slightly over a 3 such as the Holocaust and Atlantic Slave Trade raising Christianity's death further to 37.069 to 61.734 million and then by the widest definition include all other grey area events such as the Napoleonic War, the Congo Free State, World War 1, and the Taiping Rebellion the death toll of Christianity would ascend to 82.069 to 106.734 million deaths more or less equal to the "Black Book of Communism" of 85 to 100 million deaths that all get blamed on atheism regardless of other motives to the killings which is what you'd be doing here if all of these deaths were blamed on Christianity alone.
Christian militancy vs atheist communism
Atheist and Christian responsibility for genocides and crimes against humanity
The above estimate 9.064 to 28.734 million deaths for Christianity may seem low in comparison to atheist communism, but it should be noted that this is a death toll for Christianity, and not a death toll of atrocities committed by Christians; the latter would put the tally far higher amounting to between 82.069 to 106.734 million deaths. If one were to apply White's standard for Christianity to atheism, than the Persecution of Christians in the Soviet Union, the destruction of old Chinese culture and religious leaders during the Cultural Revolution, and the extermination of Buddhists and Muslims during the Cambodian genocide could reasonably be attributed the atheism, while other atrocities such as the Dekulakization, or the Great Leap Forward (which are arguably responsible for the vast majority of communism's victims) would be attributed to class and economic ideology rather than a desire to eliminate religion. In fact according to Bruce Lincoln "a commission appointed by [anti-Communist] General Denikin to look into Bolshevik atrocities indicated that more than five times as many teachers and professors, and more than seven times as many physicians, died at the hands of the Bolsheviks than did priests."
Christianity's role in communism
This is further strengthened by the fact that some Christians practiced or condoned said brutal communist economic policies themselves, in contexts such as Ceaușescu's rule of Romania. In fact, Mao's revolution was somewhat inspired by the Taiping Heavenly Kingdom, a Christian theocracy that started the deadliest civil war in history, killing 20 to 30 million people. White excluded the Taipings from the guilty category in his estimates for Christianity's body count, as he considered the sect of Christianity practised by the Taipings as unrepresentative of mainstream Christianity (the leader of the kingdom thought he was Jesus's brother.) On that note, if Christianity can't be held responsible for an odd heresy like the Taipings, then neither can atheism be held responsible for atheist communism.
Atheists against communist genocide, and Christian support of colonial genocide
The Khmer Rouge, arguably communism's most radical and extreme killers, were actually fought back and defeated by other atheist communists from Vietnam, while the Christian United States allegedly supported the Khmer Rouge for geopolitical strategy (although, to be fair, so did atheist communist China.)
Some apologists will often point to how other Christians were first to point out atrocities such as those of colonialism that was justified in part by "spreading Christianity to the savages" such as during the Congo Free State, but will then ignore that other atheist like George Orwell were among the first to condemn the crimes of Stalinism. In addition other members of the "atheist communist" parties such as Yang Jisheng are among the most primary exposers of the crimes committed by said regimes. This also disregards the fact the Christians opposing Leopold were protestants while the form Christianity pushed by the government was Catholic suggesting this wasn't an internal correction of Leopold's priest realizing the cruelties of his reign but rather a rival sect realizing the errors of the regime as bystanders. The notable exception is Roger Casement who was instrumental in documenting the crimes against humanity in the Congo and also Putumayo; but funny thing about Casement was that he was allegedly a homosexual and many Christians wouldn't be too friendly about that. This also fails to take into account the removal of Leopold's rule of the Belgian Congo didn't even stop the atrocities it just made them a little tamer [even though another 1 million people died] and Catholicism continued to be pushed well into that brutal era as well. Matthew White rated Christianity's responsibility for the Congo Free State a 3 out of 5 and estimated it caused 8 million deaths a quarter of the Congo's population.
"Saved the west" defense
In addition, if atrocities committed during the Crusades should be excused because "they saved the west from Islam", should the atrocities by atheist Stalin be similarly condoned because he "saved the west from Nazism" as Vladimir Putin asserts?
Reliability of figures
Additionally, if the death tolls for Christian atrocities needs to be put under heavy scrutiny, then the same applies to atheist atrocities. For example, Stalin is often accused of causing 30 to over 60 million deaths, but the release of Soviet Archives have lowered his body count to 3 to 15 or possibly 20 million. If one is to argue the Soviet Archive figures are unreliable, then one could make the same case for the Catholic archives, which have lowered their estimated body count for the Inquisition significantly; in fact, far more than the estimate for Stalin's death toll has been lowered.
- Taiping Rebellion
- Thirty Years War
- Lord's Resistance Army
- Spanish Inquisition
- Stalin apologetics
- A collection of Christian atrocities
- Christianity and Religion Have Caused More Deaths Than Anything Else in History
- Gottfried Christian Voigt (1740-1791) extrapolated from his section of Germany to calculate that 9,442,994 witches were killed throughout Europe. This is where the common estimate of 9 million came from:
- Mathilde Ludendorff (1877-1966): 9 million
- Friederike Mueller-Reimerdes (1935): 9-10 million
- Erika Wisselinck: 6-13 million
- Ghodsee, Kristen (2017). Red Hangover: Legacies of Twentieth-Century Communism. Duke University Press. p. 140. ISBN 978-0822369493. https://www.dukeupress.edu/red-hangover
- https://www.scaruffi.com/politics/judaism.html Is the Old Testament a Book of Peace? Back to History | by Piero Scaruffi
- Heinrich Kramer, Malleus Maleficarum, trans. Christopher Mackay (Cambridge, 2009) 91-2.
- Hayes, Diana. 1998. "Reflections on Slavery". in Curran, Charles E. Change in Official Catholic Moral Teaching.
- The Rationalist's Manual by M. D. Aletheia (1897) Watts & Co.
- Which Has Killed More People? Christianity? or Gun Control by Matthew White (2003) Necrometrics.
- Selected Death Tolls for Wars, Massacres and Atrocities Before the 20th Century: Witch Hunts (1400-1800) by Matthew White (2012) Necrometrics.
- "Lemkin, Raphael". UN Refugee Agency. http://www.unhcr.org/cgi-bin/texis/vtx/search?page=search&docid=3b7255121c&query=genocide%20convention
- Lemkin, Raphael (2012). Jacobs, Steven Leonard, ed. Lemkin on Genocide. Lanham, Maryland: Rowman & Littlefield. ISBN 978-0-7391-4526-5. page 71
- Page 188 ISBN 087220619X. Pegg, Mark Gregory (2008). A Most Holy War: The Albigensian Crusade and the Battle for Christendom. Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press. ISBN 978-019988371-4.
- Jonassohn, Kurt; Björnson, Karin Solveig (1998). Genocide and Gross Human Rights Violations: In Comparative Perspective. Piscataway, New Jersey: Transaction Publishers. ISBN 978-1-4128-2445-3. Page 50
- Victimario Histórico Militar Capítulo IX De las 16 mayores Guerras y Genocidios del siglo XVI de 60.000 a 3.000.000 de muertos
- Rodolfo Acuna-Soto, David W. Stahle, Malcolm K. Cleaveland, and Matthew D. Therrell (April 2002). "Megadrought and Megadeath in 16th Century Mexico", Emerg Infect Dis., 8(4), pp. 360–362. doi: 10.3201/eid0804.010175. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2730237/
- Missions of California: A Legacy of Genocide
by Rupert Costo
- McWilliams, Carey. "The Indian in the Closet". Archived from the original on 25 May 2017.
- [Chapman, p. 383][Chapman: "Over the hills of the Coast Range, in the valleys of the Sacramento and San Joaquin, north of San Francisco Bay, and in the Sierra Nevadas of the south there were untold thousands whom the mission system never reached...they were as if in a world apart from the narrow strip of coast which was all there was of the Spanish California."]
- https://www.cabrillo.edu/~crsmith/anth6_missions.html ANTHRO 6 - An Introduction to California's Native People MISSIONIZATION
- Silenced Again: Native Americans Insulted after Pope Francis Makes Junípero Serra a Saint by Tara Houska
- Nicolas de Aguilar as Alcalde Mayor
- Data for executions for witchcraft: Levack, Brian P. (1995). The Witch Hunt in Early Modern Europe (Second Edition). London and New York: Longman, and see Witch trials in Early Modern Europe for more detail.
- Sanchez, Joseph P. "Nicolas de Aguilar and the Jurisdiction of Salinas in the Province of New Mexico, 1659-1662", Revista Complutense de Historia de América, 22, Servicio de Publicaciones, UCM, Madrid, 1996, 139-159
- Knecht, Robert J. (2002). The French Religious Wars 1562–1598. Osprey Publishing. p. 91. ISBN 9781841763958.
- Julián Casanova, Francisco Espinosa, Conxita Mir, Francisco Moreno Gómez. Morir, matar, sobrevivir: La violencia en la dictadura de Franco. Editorial Crítica. Barcelona. 2002. p. 8.
Richards, Michael. A Time of Silence: Civil War and the Culture of Repression in Franco's Spain, 1936–1945 Cambridge University Press. 1998. p. 11.
- Yeomans 2013, p. 18.
Yeomans, Rory (2005). "Cults of Death and Fantasies of Annihilation: The Croatian Ustasha Movement in Power, 1941–45". Central Europe. 3 (2): 121–142. doi:10.1179/147909605x69383
- Julian Casanova, Professor of Contemporary History at the University of Zaragoza, The Faces of Terror, in Unearthing Franco's Legacy, p.108
- Unearthing Franco's Legacy, p. 108/1115
- Biondich 2007, p. 383-399.
- Robertson, John M., "A Short History of Christianity" (1902) p.278
- Rodney Stark. Gods, Rituals, and the Moral Order. Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion, Vol. 40, No. 4 (Dec., 2001), pp. 619-636
- Daniel Little, Marx and the Taipings (2009)
- Platt, Stephen R. (2012). Autumn in the Heavenly Kingdom: China, the West, and the Epic Story of the Taiping Civil War. New York: Knopf. ISBN 9780307271730. Detailed narrative analysis.
- Taylor, Philip. "The goddess, the ethnologist, the folklorist and the cadre: situating exegesis of Vietnam's folk religion in time and place (1)." The Australian Journal of Anthropology 14.3 (2003)
- Mayersan, Deborah (2013). "'Never Again' or Again and Again". In Deborah Mayersen, Annie Pohlman. Genocide and Mass Atrocities in Asia: Legacies and Prevention. Routledge. ISBN 978-0415645119. Page 182
- See the Wikipedia article on Allegations of United States support for the Khmer Rouge.
- Boyle, Patrick M. (1995). "School Wars: Church, State, and the Death of the Congo". Journal of Modern African Studies. 33 (3): 451–68. JSTOR 161485. Page 453
- Gray, Robert (11 June 2011). "Orwell vs God – A very Christian atheist". The Spectator. UK. https://www.spectator.co.uk/2011/06/orwell-vs-god/
- https://www.amazon.com/Tombstone-Great-Chinese-Famine-1958-1962/dp/0374533997 Tombstone: The Great Chinese Famine, 1958-1962 Paperback – November 19, 2013
- Marchal, Jules (2008). "2: The Lejeune Report (1923)". Lord Leverhulme's Ghosts: Colonial Exploitation in the Congo. Translated by Martin Thom. Introduced by Adam Hochschild. London: Verso. pp. 27–36. ISBN 978-1-84467-239-4. First published as Travail forcé pour l'huile de palme de Lord Leverhulme: L'histoire du Congo 1910-1945, tome 3 by Editions Paula Bellings in 2001.
- Jules Marchal: postuum interview met eenzaam waarheidsvinder – tegen de Belgische Congo-mythes. http://www.sypwynia.nl/archief/interview-jules-marchal/
- Marchal, Jules 1924-2003. http://worldcat.org/identities/lccn-n96039138/
- Interview de Jules Maréchal. http://www.larevuetoudi.org/fr/story/poursuite-du-travail-forc%C3%A9-apr%C3%A8s-l%C3%A9opold-ii
- Marchal, Jules (2008). "7: The Compagnie Due Kasai Proves to be Worse Than the HCB (1927-1930)". Lord Leverhulme's Ghosts: Colonial Exploitation in the Congo. Translated by Martin Thom. Introduced by Adam Hochschild. London: Verso. pp. 121–128. ISBN 978-1-84467-239-4.
- I recorded no democide for Belgium, although it may have been responsible for close to a million once it took over the Congo https://www.hawaii.edu/powerkills/COMM.7.1.03.HTM
- Wheatcroft, Stephen (1996). "The Scale and Nature of German and Soviet Repression and Mass Killings, 1930–45" (PDF). Europe-Asia Studies. 48 (8): 1334, 1348. doi:10.1080/09668139608412415. JSTOR 152781. "The Stalinist regime was consequently responsible for about a million purposive killings, and through its criminal neglect and irresponsibility it was probably responsible for the premature deaths of about another two million more victims amongst the repressed population, i.e. in the camps, colonies, prisons, exile, in transit and in the POW camps for Germans. These are clearly much lower figures than those for whom Hitler's regime was responsible."
- Conquest, Robert (2007) The Great Terror: A Reassessment, 40th Anniversary Edition, Oxford University Press, in Preface, p. xvi: "Exact numbers may never be known with complete certainty, but the total of deaths caused by the whole range of Soviet regime's terrors can hardly be lower than some fifteen million."
- Rosefielde, Steven (2009) Red Holocaust. Routledge, ISBN 0-415-77757-7 p.17: "We now know as well beyond a reasonable doubt that there were more than 13 million Red Holocaust victims 1929–53, and this figure could rise above 20 million."
- "Soviet Studies". See also: Gellately (2007) p. 584: "Anne Applebaum is right to insist that the statistics 'can never fully describe what happened.' They do suggest, however, the massive scope of the repression and killing."