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Betraying their Motherland: Soviet Military Tribunals of Izmenniki Rodiny in Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan, 1941–1953

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The immediate aftermath of the Second World War saw a transnational effort to identify and prosecute those individuals who committed war crimes and crimes against humanity in such fora as the International Military Tribunal at Nuremberg. However, parallel national processes were carried out across Europe to punish those citizens who, by a range of definitions, allegedly collaborated with enemy occupiers and committed treason. In the Soviet Union, suspected collaborators were tried as counterrevolutionaries in both the areas where crimes were committed and also those distant from regions of German or Romanian occupation. By examining tribunals in Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan in this article, I argue for the importance of identifying and prosecuting alleged collaborators to the Soviet postwar project – a project which was far from limited to areas in the western parts of the country and which remained intimately linked to prewar, Stalinist understandings of justice and revolution.

Affiliations: 1: Ph.D. Candidate, Department of History, University of Pennsylvania, USA,


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