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General Concerns and Questions
Q1: Why does this article exist?
A1: This article exists because so far there has been no consensus to delete it. The latest AfD (2021) said that the Wikipedia editing community has been unable to come to a consensus as to whether "mass killings under communist regimes" is a suitable encyclopaedic topic. Six discussions to delete this article have been held, none of them resulting in a deletion:
Q2: Why isn't there also an article for "mass killings under _________ regimes"? Isn't this title biased?
A2: Each article must stand on its own merits, as justified by its sources. The existence (or not) of some other similar article does not determine the existence of this one, and vice versa. Having said that, there are other articles such as Anti-communist mass killings and Genocide of indigenous peoples which also exist. This article has a descriptive title arrived at by consensus in November 2009.
Mass killings under communist regimes is part of WikiProject Cambodia, a project to improve all Cambodia-related articles. The WikiProject is also a part of the Counteracting systematic bias group on Wikipedia, aiming to provide a wider and more detailed coverage on countries and areas of the encyclopedia which are notably less developed than the rest. If you would like to help improve this and other Cambodia-related articles, please join the project. All interested editors are welcome.CambodiaWikipedia:WikiProject CambodiaTemplate:WikiProject CambodiaCambodia articles
Let us work in the best reference and presentation of archaeological sites of Cambodia beyond Angkor like Sambor Prei Kuk, Angkor Borei (Takeo), etc. --Albeiror24 - English - Español - Italiano - ខ្មែរ 14:59, 6 July 2015 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I'm looking for the best picture or any informations about the KAF's U-6 (Beaver). It seem that the KAF had 3 aircrafts.
But in 1971, during the viet cong's sapper attack at the Pochentong Air Base,at least 1 Beaver was destroyed.In 1972
at leat 1 Beaver was refurbished with a new engine.
Thankfull for this info. [Unsigned]
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Rough consensus for option B with some caveats. In general, participants agree that the article should cover the academic debate on the potential correlation between mass killings and comunist regimes as documented in reliable sources. The article should cover the main hypothesis, proposed causes for the correlation, and major challenges to the hypothesis. To maintain a neutral point of view, these topics should be covered in proportion to their prominence in reliable sources. Individual regimes should be mentioned only when used as evidence by specific sources; editors must avoid naming specific governments when sources do not cite them as examples as this constitutes original research via improper synthesis. An extended summary precedes the discussion. — Wug·a·po·des 03:08, 23 January 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
The following discussion is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.
The options presented are interrelated and selecting among them involves complex policy considerations. Ultimately, the question is how development of the article should proceed, but given the complexity of options, relying on numerical counts alone can be misleading (see Condorcet paradox). Because Wikipedia discussions are note votes, the outcome of this discussion relies on finding a consensus path forward, informed by Wikipedia policies as interpreted by participants in this discussion.
The rough consensus achieved in the discussion is primarily for option B with some notable caveats informed by discussion of other options. In general, participants agree that the article should cover the academic debate on the potential correlation between mass killings and communist regimes as documented in reliable sources. The article should cover the main hypothesis, proposed causes for the correlation, and major challenges to the hypothesis. To maintain a neutral point of view, these topics should be covered in proportion to their prominence in reliable sources. Individual regimes should be mentioned only when used as evidence by specific sources; editors must avoid naming specific governments when sources do not cite them as examples as this constitutes original research via improper synthesis.
The debate on each individual option is summarized below.
Consensus against A Editors generally oppose the idea of an article which only lists individual regimes accused of mass killings. Participants variously point to WP:NPOV, WP:OR, and WP:SYNTH. Participants point out that an article in the style of A would omit discussion of the concept as a whole which is a neutrality issue (specifically due weight). The choice of entries would also pose a problem of improper synthesis as the list would imply a connection between entries without sources necesarily discussing the specific group. Numerically, participants were overwhelmingly against this option, and so there is a rather clear consensus against an article which solely lists communist regimes accused of mass killings.
Rough consensus for B Given the concerns expressed in A, editors generally preferred an article which discussed the wider concept rather than individual regimes. Opposition to B tended to be weak with the main argument being that some mention of particular regimes is necessary context for a reader to understand the academic debate. This argument was contemplated by those in support who reiterated the WP:WEIGHT and WP:SYNTH policies: option B does not prevent citing specific regimes as evidence where sources already do so. Necessary context and information would still be included, but the determination as to what is "necessary" should be determined based on the sources themselves, not by editors selecting examples on their own. As a practical suggestion based on the NPOV policy, these examples should generally be folded into existing prose and mentioned in the context of the arguments that cite them rather than listed as the current article does, though further editing and discussion can clarify exactly how to do this.
Summary of C Unlike A and B, it's hard to distill C into a single sentence. On the one hand, participants note that opposition to A is opposition to A combined with something else. While that seems correct, the proposal is so vague that participants disagree on what C would look like. Some argue that C is essentially the status quo, but there seems to be a rough consensus against maintaining the status quo. The results of A and B suggest that the article needs to be seriously rewritten which contradicts endorsing the status quo, and a number of editors in favor of C explicitly reject endorsing the current article. Instead, the consensus of the discussion around proposal C is generally a reiteration of the outcome of B: the article should discuss the wider correlation hypothesis and criticism, avoid listing regimes, and only mention specific regimes as evidence when reliable sources do so.
Consensus against D Similar to A, there is clear opposition to this idea. Editors generally see this proposal as a WP:POVFORK prohibited by policy.
The four approaches that are being considered are listed below. Please reply as to each approach, indicating whether it is acceptable, with a brief explanation.
A. The article should be reorganized as a summary style article, providing an overview of mass killing events under communist governments, and linking to articles on each of the mass killing events.
B. The article should discuss the concept of a correlation between mass killings and communist governments, including proposed causes and critiques of the concept
C. The article should be an amalgamation of A and of B.
D. The article should be split into two articles, as described above.
Instructions to Editors: Please enter your approval or disapproval of each approach in the Survey subsection for that approach, by entering Yes or No with a brief statement. That means that you are requested to enter four statements, one in each lettered Survey. You may reply to the statements by others in the Threaded Discussion section. Note that this RFC, and the article, are subject to Eastern Europe discretionary sanctions for disruptive editing of this RFC or this talk page or article. (You don't need to worry about discretionary sanctions if you observe Wikipedia policies and guidelines.) Robert McClenon (talk) 06:13, 19 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Closer: Please determine what approach is most strongly supported by strength of arguments. Robert McClenon (talk) 06:13, 19 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Yes - An overview of the major events seems appropriate for wikipedia. Option B, while interesting, it would make the article very lengthy, and may give ground for important major events to be excluded from the article where there is no RS to explain the connection between the event and the government. Deathlibrarian (talk) 07:40, 19 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
No - Would effectively remove important information from Wikipedia rather than reforming it or adequately presenting it. MarioSuperstar77 (talk) 13:28, 19 December 2021 (UTC) This is by far and large the worst option on the list due to how contentious the estimate section is compared to the remainder of the information within the article. This option serves no purpose other than that it will make the SYNTH problem tenfold more apparent, all the while erasing useful information from Wikipedia. Of course, the "Estimates" section could be fixed, but in that case you might as well vote yes for C or D. MarioSuperstar77 (talk) 23:18, 20 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
No if discussing all Communist regimes but if limited to its proper scope, it would be an improvement — if we limit it to proper universally recognized mass killings, i.e. to Stalin, Mao, and Pol Pot (three Communist leaders), and the only debate about famines is limited to the Holodomor, as I noted in my addendum.
It also depends on whether it is to be treated as a single phenomenon or not; most of the events are treated individually, and as noted by The Four Deuces, "[a] list of MKuCR implicitly says they are is a consensus that the events are connected", which is the biggest issue and is the reason why we do not have any other Mass killings under ... regimes article. If we are going to use country experts, we can achieve NPOV but may violate OR/SYNTH because they do not discuss them within such a global or single phenomenon context (e.g. Soviet specialists about the Great Purge); if we are going to use genocide scholars, the grouping may be justified as a generalization but we cannot achieve NPOV because we would have to rely on non-experts when describing the events; hence, while this approach may easily improve issues, I am not sure all NPOV and OR/SYNTH issues would be solved — certainly, it is better than the status quo or C. In conclusion I would prefer that we expand Mass killing and/or create Mass killings in history (akin to Genocides in history), irrespective of regime types, as the simplest way to avoid NPOV and OR/SYNTH issues and still discuss Communist regimes.
Notes — I do not know why but I thought the topic also included excess deaths and mortality, which is why I mentioned it; instead, it appears to be exactly what I proposed (e.g. Stalin, Mao, and Pol Pot), and may be fine if we highlight both similarities and diversities [Added Davide King (talk) 19:51, 19 December 2021 (UTC)]Reply[reply]
This is in line from the genocide and mass killing literature I have read. Communism is placed within the context of genocides (basically Cambodia, which is compared to the non-Communist Holocaust and Rwanda) and mass killings in general, and mainly limited to Stalin's, Mao's, and Pol Pot's regimes (I do not think chapters about Stalin, Mao, and Pol Pot, with passing mentions about the obvious facts that people were also killed in other Communist regimes, make this particularly topic, as proposed, stand out on its own — the only reason is due to space, but we should at least attempt to expand Mass killing first rather than assume a priori it will be necessary; as there is literature that summarizes that for us, and that events can simply be linked without wasting space to describe each one by one as we do here, it can be done in short paragraphs). This will also likely solve any content forks issues between Mass killing and this article, as this approach will allow us to remove any inconsistency between the two articles.
Another thing to consider is that such scholars focus on universally recognized mass killing events, not excess mortality; it is country experts who focus on the latter, and it is only a minority of scholars (Courtois and Rummel) who mix the too, further adding demographic losses, to create a global Communist death toll. Again, I do not exclude that this topic, as proposed here, is not possible or will not be possible in the future (I would like to see a draft and a list of sources first) but I do not think this is a good choice that would help us fixing the article, it is likely the hardest because I still see many disagreement among us. Davide King (talk) 14:11, 19 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Addendum — another possibility is taking the Communist mass killing(s) name from Valentino but limiting the scope only to mass killings under Stalin's, Mao's, and Pol Pot's regimes (e.g. as I discussed in my comment about D). Excess mortality is better discussed in separate articles by each state (e.g. Excess mortality in the Soviet Union under Joseph Stalin) because having a general article focused on all deaths under Communism would be too close to OR/SYNTH, for (1) country experts do it for each country, and do not engage in a global Communist death toll, and (2) the latter of which has been controversially done by Courtois. As currently worded, A is too close to OR/SYNTH.
Besides that, I would like to make an important note to participants. During the preparation of this RfC, there was a disagreement among DRN participants about a description of A and C. I, and DK insisted that it was necessary explain that WP:SS must include all important aspects, and if the source analysis demonstrates that the linkage between Communism and mass killings is seen as important by at least significant minority sources, the discussion of this linkage will be added to A-style article per WP:NPOV. This reservation was removed from the final version, but I (and, I assume, DK too) believe it was implied by default. Therefore, posts made by North8000, @ModernDayTrilobite: and @Cloud200: and some other may be partially a result of misunderstanding of our proposal. I apologise for that.--Paul Siebert (talk) 21:17, 22 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
No A list of MKuCR implicitly says they are is a consensus that the events are connected, which is POV OR. TFD (talk) 18:19, 19 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Yes This seems fine. A listing of all qualifying events with short summaries culled from the ledes of their primary pages seems straightforward and useful. There are enough sources tying the events together such that the page itself needs little justification for its existence. 220.127.116.11 (talk) 18:49, 19 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Maybe This one really depends on how strictly we curate entries, which is a debate that I can already see never ending. If we can find a reasonably strict list that actually relies on widely recognized mass killings, this could be good, but I can see it becoming a quagmire very quickly. BSMRD (talk) 20:29, 19 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Preferable to C / current or to D, but not ideal (ie. prefer B). It'd be better than the current version by reducing the directness of the synthesis the list is presented to support, and clear inclusion criteria would certainly reduce the problems it causes somewhat, but it would be a backwards way to solve the underlying dispute in that we'd be omitting any discussion of the underlying controversy that gives the list meaning and context while retaining a list whose meaning is still mostly synthy. --Aquillion (talk) 22:05, 19 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Comment - Since we all accept Valentino’s definition of mass killings as “50,000 killed within five years”, we should also accept Valentino’s topology of mass killings too, where he groups communist governments together because they share the common mass killing scenario of collectivisation and political terror that is unique to them. Valentino groups USSR, PRC and Cambodia together as confirmed mass killers, and adds Bulgaria, East Germany, Romania, North Korea and Vietnam as possible mass killers. So can we stop with this "the grouping is WP:SYNTH", Valentino has published such a grouping. --Nug (talk) 01:01, 20 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Yes, but I don't know how feasible it is. There would have to be an inclusion criteria, and that criteria would have to be defined in prose. There would also probably have to be some definition of terms. However, I think that this would be the most NPOV, and therefore the best, version possible, as there wouldn't be any fiddling with motives and critiques of one scholar verses another. Grouped together, the events would pass WP:NLIST, and that may just be the best way to go. schetm (talk) 01:57, 20 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
No as it will result in significant loss of well-sourced content mentioned in "B". Cloud200 (talk) 15:02, 20 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Confused. I am not sure what such option means. According to Wikipedia:Summary style, "Sections of long articles should be spun off into their own articles, leaving summaries in their place." and so on. Yes, sure. But this page is already organized this way. How it should be reorganized? My very best wishes (talk) 05:15, 10 January 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
No This option as a stand-alone (i.e. not as a part of "D") would eliminate coverage of a possible cause-effect relationship. IMO, the possible cause-effect relationship should be covered somewhere, and such is the main thing that is uniquely covered in this article. Sincerely, North8000 (talk) 20:57, 22 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
No - This would eliminate the core debate of the topic, which is definitely notable. Fieari (talk) 03:59, 23 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
No, hard to see how this could follow NPOV and NOR. An article like this would implicitly endorse the claim that there's a connection between communism and mass killings, but apparently without explaining the analysis behind that claim or describing opposing views. —Mx. Granger (talk·contribs) 16:49, 23 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
No: we need to have sources that analyse a topic as a whole to host an article/list on that topic, something I'm constantly declining drafts at AFC on the basis of. We need to see that there is a shared historical connection between all events considered by mainstream historians to be "mass killings under communist regimes"—non-obvious as there are primitive communisms, communisms that predate Marx and communist regimes across at least four different continents that I'm aware of; and because the mass killings could have completely unrelated causes. Consider what separates this topic from Mass killings in countries beginning with "E" in English. It is that there are sources describing the group as a whole (otherwise we need another AFD). — Bilorv (talk) 21:27, 26 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
No A 'summary' or 'overview' cannot comply with WP:NPOV, since it would necessarily involve Wikipedia contributors deciding for themselves which events constituted 'mass killing events under communist regimes'. There is a clear disagreement between sources regarding this, and Wikipedia should document the disagreement, not decide the result. AndyTheGrump (talk) 19:20, 27 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
No The discussion and debate around the possible relationship between communist states and acts of mass killings is the notable topic here. When lists of mass killings under communist regimes specifically are given, they are usually done so in the context of this discussion. Furthermore, excluding debate over the validity of such groupings would introduce a bias into the article. Vanteloop (talk) 22:28, 27 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
No Editors more eloquent than myself have outlined why they see this a failing NPOV and NOR, and I agree. Santacruz⁂Please ping me! 22:09, 28 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Yes Providing a list of killings implies that there is a connection, which is implicit synthesis and contrary to neutrality. TFD (talk) 07:53, 19 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
No - Would effectively remove important information from Wikipedia rather than reforming it or adequately presenting it. MarioSuperstar77 (talk) 13:28, 19 December 2021 (UTC) It will not solve SYNTH issues as that spares the sections "Proposed causes" and "Debates over famines" which are overtly opinionated and up to interpretation. Therefore, once the RfC concludes, editors should have to edit both sections of the article repeatedly until the issue is resolved which admittedly is very unlikely as this article just brings about dispute after dispute about the content therein. The least that could be done and should be done is to add a paragraph that states that they are entirely subjective and the opinions of experts in that field of research. Additionally, particularly since the article is 290 thousand bytes in size, it won't fix the LENGTH problem : They would have to be removed outright and I feel that this would effectively remove information from Wikipedia. MarioSuperstar77 (talk) 23:12, 20 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
B will still run the issue of synthesis since it still gives opinionated sources weight and will still very much lead to the article being highly controversial. B includes "Proposed causes" and "Debate over famines" which are both highly subjective and up to interpretation. Some will choose to believe what the scholars and specialists say are entirely true, others will be more skeptic - ultimately leading back to the issue that was originally posed by the "Estimates" section. That was why I proposed what tantamounts to D since we could have a fully fact-based article (Example: Adolf Hitler) and a fully theory-based article (Example: Principle of relativity) which would include the estimates, the proposed causes and the debates, mainly my concern was about the proposed causes section originally. MarioSuperstar77 (talk) 20:53, 19 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Yes — this is the best approach to fix the article, and does not necessarily exclude any of the other option. By choosing this topic, we will commit to source analysis to weight scholarly sources and individuate majority, minority, and fringe views. If Courtois and Rummel are majority views, there would be no problem in following their approach.
If there is no universal agreement among scholars on the link, other options (e.g. the events themselves, or "providing a list of killings implies that there is a connection, which is implicit synthesis and contrary to neutrality") may violate NPOV and SYNTH. Again, compare the Soviet Union with Cambodia, the former used forceful collectivization of peasantry to accelerate urbanization, while the latter used revolutionary peasants to suppress and destroy urban population. An events-based-and-focused article, by the mere fact of grouping them together, implies that there is a clear connection but that is not there, and scholarly sources also emphasize their differences, and more importantly give each event and country separate causes; it is only a minority of sources, some of it significant, some of it fringe, that gives general causes for mass killings; even genocide scholars, who give generalizations and correlations, do not say communist ideology was the main cause as Courtois and Malia claim — Mann says they were a perversion of both democratic (Rwanda) and socialist ideals (Communism), and Valentino (who writes within the context of mass killings in general) is more concerned about leadership than ideology, and concludes that by removing leaders who engaged in genocides or mass killings, that can stop them from happening, which is based on reality.
Valentino's work is Final Solutions: Mass Killing and Genocide in the 20th Century, not Final Solutions: Mass Killing and Genocide under Communist Regimes. Mann's work is The Dark Side of Democracy: Explaining Ethnic Cleansing, not The Dark Side of Communism: Explaining Ethnic Cleansing. I could go on and on, but there is cherry picking in treating Communism as a single or special phenomenon when that is not what scholarly sources do. Purify and Destroy: The Political Uses of Massacre and Genocide is about "demonstrat[ing] that it is indeed possible to compare the Holocaust, the Rwandan genocide, and ethnic cleansing in Bosnia-Herzegovina while respecting the specificities of each appalling phenomenon." No emphasis or mention of Communism. We can only discuss the theories and link about the events, not the grouped events themselves as a single, special phenomenon, as is done by Courtois and Malia in The Black Book of Communism. Why Not Kill Them All?: The Logic and Prevention of Mass Political Murder is not Why Not Kill Them All?: The Logic and Prevention of Communist Mass Murders. Both of those sources may be used for this topic but they are clearly misunderstood to imply they discuss Communism as a separate or special new topic on its own; rather, they place it in the proper context of a general topic. In regards to events, they can simply be linked when mentioned or discussed, or through 'See also' links, where they are discussed in context; there is no need to coatrack them here too.
[As I wrote here, no information is going to be lost and should not be.] See also proposed topic and non-primary literature.Davide King (talk) 14:41, 19 December 2021 (UTC) [Edited to add] Davide King (talk) 19:44, 21 December 2021 (UTC) I do share Levivich's views here. As I wrote here, I think that this, plus this, is a good structure and how I understand a possible Communist-focused B structure article to be. If we cannot write a NPOV article about it, I do support Levivich's proposal to make it general, rather than narrow focused on Communism, the former actually being the way it is done by majority of scholars. Davide King (talk) 06:02, 7 January 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Yes This seems fine. There is a clearly an ongoing debate on the effect communist founding principles had on the actions chosen by the resultant governments. There are enough sources to justify the existence of this page, though I expect it will be a battleground for years. 18.104.22.168 (talk) 18:49, 19 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
No - as this could invite disputes over the topic. GoodDay (talk) 19:31, 19 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Yes This is the actual topic here. Simply listing Communist deaths is something only done by some proponents of the idea that mass killings are inherent to Communism, but that question, whether or not they are inherent, has a much larger body of scholarship and will lead to a much more neutral and informative article. This won't remove any information from WP, all the articles on the individual events are still right there and will be linked when discussed. This version of the article would in fact add information to Wikipedia, as an analysis of this debate does not exist elsewhere on WP. BSMRD (talk) 20:38, 19 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
No, an article cannot discuss any debate on the correlations or causes without mentioning the government actions that has led to that debate in the first place. It would be like discussing Causes of World War II without having the article World War II. --Nug (talk) 21:24, 19 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
In fact I can't think of any source, Valentino, Bellamy, Courtois, Rummel, Mann, anyone, who doesn't use a C like structure combining data in one section with the discussion in another, listing all the episodes of mass killings and then having the discussion about the potential causes. A discussion cannot be had without defining the scope and extent of the data set. --Nug (talk) 20:05, 20 January 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Also the notion that a B article will somehow magically resolve the endless debates is wishful thinking, given that the discussion of the causes is the very core of these debates, while there is more acceptance over the scope of events which grounds MKuCR to some degree. A B type article without reference to the events would essentially be a distillation of the worse aspects of MKuCR in terms of disputation and debate. --Nug (talk) 20:31, 20 January 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Yes, with the caveat that individual killings can be mentioned when referenced by specific authors, in the context of describing their views and how they believe they are connected - ie. we can say "author X has thesis and Y says that this and this and this support their thesis", if we have appropriate cites. What we can't do is perform WP:OR to argue their thesis for them - we ought to be reporting notable research that others have done (and any notable debates over that research), not doing our own. --Aquillion (talk) 21:57, 19 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
No - I can't see a faster way to get this page permalocked again than by going down this route. There are very strong willed individuals with strong POV's on both sides of this issue active in the article/on this talk page, and I'm not sure that those POV's can be set aside to create an NPOV article. I'm also not sure as Option B would even pass the GNG or could avoid being entirely SYNTH. If someone wants to go this route, they should draft Option B first so that the community could see if it is at all encyclopedic - I'm unsure it ever could be. Nonetheless, if Option B is chosen, individual killings/historical events must be at least mentioned to give the reader context. schetm (talk) 01:58, 20 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
No as it will result in significant loss of well-sourced content mentioned in "A". Cloud200 (talk) 15:02, 20 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
No. Should "the article discuss [only] the concept of a correlation between mass killings and communist governments, including proposed causes and critiques of the concept" as suggested in B? Yes, sure, but such discussion is not possible without providing basic facts and data on the subject, as current version of the page does. This is like saying, "hey, let's publish only main conclusions of your research, but without providing any supporting data". This option is ridiculous. My very best wishes (talk) 19:39, 21 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Yes - This is the best option, in my opinion. There are certain prominent scholars who draw a correlation between Communism and mass killing – enough to make a discussion of the concept notable, even if it is not a majority viewpoint. ModernDayTrilobite (talk • contribs) 16:27, 22 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Yes I consider B,C & D to all be fine, and in an ideal world "C" would be best (see my notes there), but if you include being pragmatic, this is the one I most recommend. This would be trickier to write (it would need to refer to mass killings without actually covering them) but much better in the long run because it is the one most likely to avoid the eternal unsolvable debates of which should be covered under killings and what to call them. It sticks to the thing that covered only in this article vs. a summary or condensed version of what is covered in other articles. North8000 (talk) 21:08, 22 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Yes - I also support option C, as I think including the data under scrutiny is important from the sources, but I do believe more weight of the article should be focused on the meta-discussion of cataloguing these lists. Fieari (talk) 04:02, 23 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Yes – seems like the best option. I understand this option to mean that specific historical events would be mentioned and explained in context where relevant and discussed by sources, but they would not each have their own section with a standalone summary like they do now. —Mx. Granger (talk·contribs) 16:49, 23 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Yes This is the only option compatible with Wikipedia policy. As has been amply demonstrated through endless discussions over this article, sources disagree over what constitutes 'mass killing', what constitutes 'communist regimes', and whether it is even useful to engage in creating generalising hypotheses around any causative linkage between the two. What the article needs to do, is to discuss the debate as a debate, rather than building itself around one particular perspective - that of the 'generalisers': a few, largely polemical and frequently dated, sources that have presented themselves as 'specialists' in a subject, while ignoring the far larger body of academic work that treats individual events in context, largely refrains from polemic, and questions the validity of the all-encompassing approach taken by the self-appointed 'specialists'. When discussing a particular source, it is of course entirely appropriate to report what they say regarding 'mass killings' as a topic, which events they consider as examples of 'mass killings' and to report any conclusions they arrive at, in regard to casual linkage etc. Report as the opinion of the author. And then report any critiques of their conclusions. Including critiques that question the validity of their entire premises. This is how you write about a debate. As a debate. Not as an article built around one perspective, taking its conclusions as read. AndyTheGrump (talk) 19:21, 27 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Yes, 2nd Choice Objections to this option because of feeling it would artificially limit the scope of the article are valid, however with this option there will still be references made to killings commonly cited as examples and used by scholars. So lists of mass killings under communist regimes will be included, just not in 'wikivoice' and attributed, which I think would still be consistent with policy. The article can then properly examine the proposed causes , as well as critiques, reflecting the ongoing academic debate. I also should point out the academic debate is not what is exclusively important here. If there is a widespread belief that these mass killings were the responsibility of communism, and that phenomenon is notable ( I believe it is easy to evidence it is) , a discussion of that and potential reasons would also be in the scope of this article. Vanteloop (talk) 22:28, 27 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
State facts that may be obvious to you, but are not necessarily obvious to the reader. Some consideration should be given to the reader arriving on this page with a limited knowledge and background. Not at all well done in the current article, but i think the B option might exclude more basic information required by some readers. I see the difficulties, but i think the RfC is forgetting readers need some grounding in A, and that finding the individual articles through links from here might be a burden to understanding for some readers.
I think many of the "revisionist" sources are country specific, will the article end up excluding these sources? (i'd ask for @Paul Siebert:'s input on this) With a natural presentation of those by country, aren't we just back to a country list? Presenting a "revisionist" source we have to say what they are "revising" (tho i hate to put things in those terms). The Gulag numbers revised lower than the earlier "totalitarian sources". Isn't a natural organization of such material by country?
A positive of this option might be an increased presentation of the historiography, maybe helpful for such disputed history. But likewise that might at times be country specific.
Anyway, NO, but i may be misreading what the B content would actually look like when all is said and done fiveby(zero) 14:50, 30 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
No - discussion about proposed causes alone doesn't give a comprehensive overview if information about events themselves is excluded.--Staberinde (talk) 16:16, 30 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
No, 1st choice because I don't think the sources are there to justify the scope of mass killings under communist regimes, as opposed to mass killings overall or mass killings under other types of regimes (e.g., totalitarian v. democratic, secular v. religious, but not capitalist v. communist, or communist alone). I would be an unreserved "yes" if the scope was "the study of the connection between mass killings and political ideology", "the connection between systems of government and state violence", but I think the framing of the article as limited to "under communist regimes" is presenting a non-mainstream view as a mainstream view. The theory that mass killings and communism are inherently linked should be covered in a section in articles about communism and mass killings, but not in an article of its own. However, voting "no" on this would lead me to the position of having voted "no" on every option in this RFC, and I am very grateful to the dogged work by Robert and others to try and push towards consensus, so in the interests of picking one from among these four, Yes, 2nd choice because as between the four options, this is the one that is most neutral and the most faithful presentation of the sources. I think there are more sources written about the controversy regarding mass killings and communism than there are about mass killings under communist regimes; there's more historiography than history here. Levivich 00:48, 7 January 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
No - The current article is not presented correctly and that is why the article got a hefty amount of criticism. Additionally, I can see the length of the article being a problem as it is fairly difficult to read through. MarioSuperstar77 (talk) 13:28, 19 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Yes - to clarify, this option represents the current status quo with respect to scope, which should include the events, discussion about possible causes of those events, as well as the current reactions in terms of memory politics, etc —-Nug (talk) 14:49, 19 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Further, imagine we have some phenomenon X and several theories that explain it. Can we write an article that discusses only the theories without mentioning the phenomenon X? Obviously not. That is explicitly prohibited by our policy, which says all facts and significant points of view on a given subject should be treated in one article. The phenomenon X here is the mass killings that have occurred under communist governments (option A), and the possible causes/linkages are discussed are in an appropriate section (option B). --Nug (talk) 22:27, 19 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
The problem with B is that it has a narrow focus on Communism as a causative factor. Everyone agrees that mass killings did occur under several communist regimes, so as a reader I want to find out which regimes and what the other causative factors or enablers were. Scholarship does exist that looks at common causes and there is also scholarship that looks at country specific causes. Hence a C type article would best fulfill that goal, with a section on common enabling factors and country specific factors under the respective regime sections. --Nug (talk) 02:44, 8 January 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Note that the Karlsson adopts a C approach to his literature survey "Crimes against humanity under communist regimes”, where he lists all the relevant events (mass kiliings, deportations and forced labour) as well as discussing the analysis around the causes of those events. So clearly combining events and causes is accepted academic practice. --Nug (talk) 22:08, 19 January 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
No — as noted by Nug, this is essentially the current version, on which the the latest AfD (2021) ruled that "the Wikipedia editing community has been unable to come to a consensus as to whether 'mass killings under communist regimes' is a suitable encyclopaedic topic." It is not a good approach either to fix the article because it is too close to OR/SYNTH, and a split would be better. We tried this approach for over a decade by now, it is time to change it. We also cannot synthetize those writing within a broad context of genocide/mass killings and totalitarianism (Chirot, Jones, Mann, Valentino), and those discussing 18 cases but still finding only the "Big Three" of engaging in mass killings in the most accepted definition and criteria (Valentino), with those discussing Communism as a whole and with a much broader methodology (Courtois, Rummel), which is controversial.
Again, this does not exclude it cannot be written but I do not think that this is the good approach to fix it. B is the best one because if we find scholarly sources saying there is a universal link, and this is a majority view, then the automatic results will be this. The only possibility could be to rely on country experts and specialists for A and genocide scholars and other mainstream scholars for B; however, this is still too close to OR/SYNTH, as A scholars do not write within the context of Communism as a single phenomenon and give different causes or interpretations from B scholars, who write within the context of finding generalizations and correlations, which may be at odds with each other. Nonetheless, this approach would be the easiest way to fix the article in the now but I do not think it is going to fix the greater OR/SYNTH issues later on.
Addendum — Even if we may not have given the exact same '!comments', I appreciate and share ModernDayTrilobite, North8000, and Fieari's comments and think all of them gave very good arguments, and I feel myself closer to them than my mere 'Yes' or 'No' difference may say. Thanks to everyone else too for participation and civility.
See also this as my short summary of the grouping issue based on source analysis and comparison. Davide King (talk) 05:30, 4 January 2022 (UTC) Also note that Nug appear to have changed their mind about Karlsson 2008. Despite being published in 2008, it has only 9 citations (Rummel's high citation numbers has been used as an argument by them and others) most of which obscure or irrelevant, proving that the current article, and C, are not notable. Davide King (talk) 13:00, 20 January 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Neutral (Actually, a neutrally written A and neutrally written C are the same articles. --Paul Siebert (talk) 17:09, 19 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
It seems there is a misunderstanding of what people are voting for. The @Nug:@Aquillion: posts are a good example. They both are right, but they focus on different aspects. Nug is right that a discussion of a theory that explains X should include a description of X, provided, but only provided, that this theory is a majority view. In the context of the option C, the opposite question is legitimate: should the theory that describes X be presented in the article about X? The answer is obvious: "Yes, but it must be presented along with all other voewpoints, fairly, proportionally, and without editorial bias. That inevitably makes C and A the two identical options: if we describe mass killings in Communist states, we must discuss all important theories that explain them, as a group and/or as separate events. If the concept that Communism was a primary factor in mass killings is a majority or a significant minority view, this topic will be discussed in the A-type and C-type articles, and it will be discussed at the same level of detailisation. Our policy simply does not allow anything else.
Therefore, "A" and "C" is intrinsically the same, and "C" is not necessarily the status quo. It may be the status quo, if our prospective analysis of sources will demonstrate that "Communism as a primary reason of mass killings" is a mainstream view shared by majority of genocide scholars and country experts. Paul Siebert (talk) 01:57, 20 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
No for the same reasons I opposed A. Having a list of incidents implies there is consensus that they are connected, which is POV OR. TFD (talk) 18:21, 19 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
No I do not think these topics can coexist and produce a useful article. 22.214.171.124 (talk) 18:49, 19 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Yes - as that's basically what we've already got. GoodDay (talk) 19:32, 19 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
No All this debate and consternation is happening because the status quo is obviously not satisfactory. If we want to improve this article in any way, it needs structural change. BSMRD (talk) 20:17, 19 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
No, such an amalgamation (as we have currently) effectively uses the list from A as synthesis to support the arguments presented in B; it's an inherently non-neutral article. --Aquillion (talk) 21:55, 19 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Yes - this is what we have, and it's fine. Not super (that would be Option A), but fine. The historical events are treated with accuracy and, most helpfully, there are wikilinks to the main articles of each of these events. Theories about those mass killings, their connection to communism/their connection to communist regimes are dealt with, and a coherent, albeit lengthy, article is the result, to the benefit of our readers. schetm (talk) 01:58, 20 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Comment The purpose for including this option is because the community did not reach a consensus to delete the article as it is (nor to keep) in the AfD. Therefore to not include an option to represent the article as it currently is would be controversial and could be seen as a way to 'backdoor' a deletion of the article following the unsuccesful AfD. In this sense Nug, Davide King, and others' interpretation of this option reflecting the current version are correct. Also a reminder to please use the section below for replying to other people's comments, or for multiple paragraphs of statements if possible. Ta Vanteloop (talk) 21:24, 20 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Yes, 1st choice Having waited to read the entirety of the RFC (so far) I share the sentiment that if done well, this is the ideal option. It doesn't limit the article too much nor invite POV forks. This, and option B (see my comments there) are similar. Ideally this article would reflect on the academic disucssion surrounding mass killings under communist regimes, giving a summary of the killings that are commonly used by groups as evidence for this. Vanteloop (talk) 22:28, 27 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
NoYes I think the meaning of this version is simply not clear. I had to ask the proposer if they mean keeping status quo in this version, and they said "yes"  (yes, this is what I would suggest, hence my vote). However, this is hard to say after looking at the text of the RfC, and I am sure that many participants understood this option differently, just as all other A,B, D options. I am not sure this is a valid RfC - as framed. I think that current version of this page is actually pretty good, thanks to many contributors who spent a a lot of time here to improve it. I would say this page probably falls into 30% best pages in WP. My very best wishes (talk) 00:28, 23 January 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
No - Although the discussion of the underlying concept makes this option preferable to A, it still retains Option A's OR/SYNTH issues. ModernDayTrilobite (talk • contribs) 16:27, 22 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Yes, but my #2 choice Ideally, this could make the best article. Coverage of possible correlation, and a short summary of key killings which would support and optimize that coverage. But this is basically the status quo, which under current realities and current wiki policies and guidelines has been an eternal painful unsolvable situation. North8000 (talk) 21:14, 22 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
'Yes - But to be clear, I'm not necessarily voting for "the status quo". I feel that both the data/list and a discussion of the list is important, but I feel that the discussion of the list should take precedence over the list itself... and I don't think that is how the article is currently. Fieari (talk) 04:03, 23 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Maybe, but probably not ideal. The current state of the article makes it look like Wikipedia is endorsing the claim that all of these events were killings and that all were due to communism (both controversial in some cases). It would be better to explain individual events as needed to support explanation and analysis of the overall topic, not to give each one its own section. If we do go with this option, I agree with User:Fieari that the focus should be on the discussion rather than the list. —Mx. Granger (talk·contribs) 16:49, 23 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Yes. An article that discusses "Mass killings under communist regimes" should be summary style on that topic: it should include a summary of the killings, a summary of the debates regarding proposed causes, a summary of reactions to the killings outside of the academic world, etc. The whole point of WP:Summary Style is that we should be trying to create a summary of the topic that exists. And the topic of mass killings is exactly at the intersection of these sorts of things. I disagree with those above that write that doing this is novel synthesis when there are a plethora of sources that already do so and treat them as unique from other sorts of mass killings. Aside from Rummel and Valentino, who have been discussed to death on this page, these sources include: Bellamy, who distinguishes communist from non-communist mass killings both in scope and in the differences in moral ideologies between Communist and non-Communist states and Wayman & Tago, who open by reviewing differences between the conclusions in Rummel's work and those of (for example) Valentino and then goes on to predict the probability that at least one mass killing event will occur in a communist regime by year. There are also many mainstream Cold War historians, like Miscamble, who write that the reality that every Marxist regime that existed proved to be an experiment in mass murder or even genocide as well as the location for political repression on a vast scale. — Mhawk10 (talk) 22:16, 24 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Maybe, per my rationale under A. So long as sources tie the events together, I don't see the harm in a bit of context for some of the most major mass killings under communist regimes. — Bilorv (talk) 21:27, 26 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
No This is essentially the status quo, and simply cannot work in a manner compliant with Wikipedia policies. One cannot both properly report on a debate and 'summarise' the conclusions it has arrived at, because the debate is unresolved. The mess we are in now is the consequence of trying to do the impossible. AndyTheGrump (talk) 19:22, 27 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Yes as to the RfC question, No as to this being an endorsement of the current structure. I think the structurally problem is just poor organization and presentation in general, and inclusion or exclusion of a summary-style country list may solve one issue but not solve other issues. fiveby(zero) 14:57, 30 December 2021 (UTC)~Reply[reply]
Yes - the relevant events, modern reactions to those events in form of prosecutions and memorials, and discussion about possible causes of those events, are all important to provide a comprehensive overview of the topic.--Staberinde (talk) 16:16, 30 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
No - exactly what Aquillion said. Because 'no' to A on essentially OR/SYNTH grounds, 'no' to A+anything else on the same OR/SYNTH grounds (methinks combining A with anything else would be even more SYNTH than A alone). Levivich 00:39, 7 January 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Yes - Per proposal. The article, as it, does not give proper weight to the facts while it focuses too much on the opinions of academics. Hence, it is partially the causality for WP:SYNTH, and the article itself, as mentioned earlier, is already very lengthy. However, I should add that I am completely opposed to A and B and would prefer status quo over the previous two options as that information could still be used either separetely (The preferable option) or mutually to teach people about the horrors of auth-leftCommunism that plagued the Earth for decades and continues to do such in present day. With all due respect, Deathlibertarian you could have picked option D, so that this article is not so lengthy. MarioSuperstar77 (talk) 13:24, 19 December 2021 (UTC)
I do note that I changed my mind from my original proposal on the prospect of possibly removing entirely a section of the article, I do not think that will do much good in the long run since it can, at any time, be reintroduced accidentally or intentionally. MarioSuperstar77 (talk) 13:54, 19 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Comment - When I originally voted for this, I was not aware of an article with my expressed idea above already existing (Thanks @Davide King:), that article is Criticism of communist party rule which is a noncontroversial opinion-focused article that repeats verbatim several paragraphs from Mass killings under communist regimes. I do not know which article plagiarized the other, but one fact I know for sure is that several opinion pieces within MKUCR are very ill-fitted to be here, whereas they belong in that other article as highlighted previously. My new proposal would be to just nuke the estimates section, the proposed causes section and the debate section off MKUCR since they already exist elsewhere, and due to how the other article is much better presented in contrast to this one (MKUCR) which has a heavy focus on facts, therefore, partly the cause for the SYNTH issues within MKUCR with its improper synthesis of textual content + the sources implying something that isn't necessarily true. I am not voting in support of A or B as they still spare those sections and instead will propose a procedural close for status quo, afterward those sections should be removed, and I wish to hear no "but" nor "wait", just nuke them off MKUCR please. MarioSuperstar77 (talk) 18:48, 22 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
To quote Davide King: No information is actually going to be lost, as we already discuss all the events either indivdiually or by each Communist state as is done by majority of scholarly sources, and the current "Proposed cause" section as well as "Estimates" are already at Criticism of communist party rule, and estimates are further discussed at Democide, which is a more accurate category, since it is very broad. I am gonna ping other people who had similar concerns to mine about information erasure, so to make sure that they are aware that removing information from here will not completely remove said information off Wikipedia since it already exists elsewhere: @Cloud200:@Schetm:@My very best wishes:@X-Editor:MarioSuperstar77 (talk) 19:06, 22 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I definitely agree on that idea, someone else already attempted to scavenge some parts of this section for the other article. MarioSuperstar77 (talk) 12:23, 24 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Yes | No — only if | unless they are general articles and not limited to Communism
As I showed in my comments, genocide scholars write general works about genocide and mass killings, they do not limit themselves to Communism or treat it as a special category that represents a separate or new topic. Causes of genocide and/or Causes of mass killing would be more in line with genocide scholarship, majority of which does not necessarily emphasizes regime types or treat them as separate categories, and those who do can easily be discussed in an appropriate section, including one about correlations in general and correlations by regime type or other characteristics that scholarly sources analyze or compare, which should make everyone happy.
If there were mainstream academic books fully dedicated to Communist Mass Killings rather than chapters about it, like is done for any other regime type, and most of them limited to Stalin, Mao, and Pol Pot (three Communist leaders rather than Communist regimes), establishing this as a separate and new topic, I can accept such possibility. As things stand, I can only propose a separate article about Mass killings under Joseph Stalin, Mao Zedong, and Pol Pot. Davide King (talk) 15:09, 19 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Yes - The article is a bit long, so splitting it in two as proposed would make reading more comfortable for the reader. I also think it would be counterproductive to remove information about either topic, as both the mass killings and the causes of them are notable topics. The two articles, in my opinion, should be named Mass killings under communist states and Proposed causes of mass killings under communist states. There should also be a third article named Terminology of mass killings under communist states and a fourth article named Estimates of the death toll for mass killings under communist states. The sections "Debate over famines", "Legal status and prosecutions", and "Memorials and museums" should be kept in the Mass killings under communist states article as they relate most to the killings themselves. If the terminology section is too problematic to be split into a separate article as suggested below by Paul Siebert, then the section and its information should be removed entirely, as terminology is the least important factor of Communist mass killings. Any information in the Mass killings under communist states article that cannot be backed up by sources calling them Communist mass killings should be removed, as that would be original research and synthesis. As for the concern that calling these mass killings "communist" is not neutral, calling them communist states would create a distinction between the ideology itself and the execution of the ideology in real life as a form of state. Per WP:COMMONNAME, we would also have no choice but to use the term communist, since it is the most common term used to refer to these mass killings. This is my proposal for dealing with this topic. X-Editor (talk) 16:06, 19 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I'm honestly not sure what should be done about this article. MarioSuperstar77's proposal sounds interesting, but I'm still not so sure about it, as it wouldn't make sense to have an article discussing these mass killings without also explaining their causes and the debates surrounding them. As for the Criticism of communist party rule article containing better information about the estimates and debate over famines, why can't that information just be added to this article instead of removing the information in this article entirely? X-Editor (talk) 01:47, 23 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
No per POVFORK. We would then have one article that implcitly states the events were connected and another that examines whether or not they were. TFD (talk) 18:23, 19 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Yes The only real solution here, to my mind, is to segregate the "article about the bodies" from the "article about the debate." This isn't because the two topics are disjoint; this is a practical matter as I do not believe editors drawn to the first topic can coexist with editors invested in the second. Perhaps in some decades these two subjects can come together again, but for now we should split the baby and take advantage of the notability of the resultant parts. 126.96.36.199 (talk) 18:49, 19 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
No - as we can't deny that Communist regimes were destructive to humans, who dared to oppose them. GoodDay (talk) 19:33, 19 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
No This really is just asking to become a WP:POVFORK issue. These articles will inevitably diverge from each other despite theoretically very similar content, which is explicitly not allowed by WP. Keeping it all one article is the best way to avoid these issues. BSMRD (talk) 20:22, 19 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
No, too likely to result in a WP:POVFORK. Arguments that tie together individual mass killings should be presented (with appropriate attribution and discussion) in a central article; a laundry-list of mass killings without that key secondary framing is going to turn into editors using their own WP:OR / WP:SYNTH to argue the point of the main article. --Aquillion (talk) 22:00, 19 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
No, as I'm not sure Option B could stand on its own - see my comments above. schetm (talk) 01:59, 20 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Yes for the sake of making the article more readable in editorial sense. Cloud200 (talk) 15:02, 20 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
No, please keep status quo. Spitting factual information/data from conclusions which follow from the data would be ridiculous. My very best wishes (talk) 19:39, 21 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Yes, but B would be preferable. This solution would create one article about the concept of communism/mass-killing linkages, which would be a useful encyclopedic article in line with other articles on historical theories. The other, summary-style, article would likely be problematic under WP:SYNTH or WP:POVFORK; however, splitting it off could be a first step toward the establishment of a more balanced summary article on mass killing events. ModernDayTrilobite (talk • contribs) 16:27, 22 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Yes but my #3 choice It includes coverage of the possible correlation which is essential. And the "possible correlation" article is less likely to have the huge unsolvable questions that have kept this article in pain for over a decade. It would be a bit tricky to write the "possible correlation" article without covering the killings themselves, but that is likely to get solved. Those "huge unsolvable questions that have kept this article in pain for over a decade." would likely remain with the "cover the killings" article. Also, without the purpose of supporting the "possible correlation" coverage, the criteria is a bit POV'ish. So this would be my #3 choice of the 4. North8000 (talk) 21:24, 22 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Probably not – I agree with those above who say it's likely to lead to some kind of POVFORK. Seems like asking for trouble. But I'm open to being convinced if someone has an argument for this being workable. —Mx. Granger (talk·contribs) 16:49, 23 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
No per my rationale under A (we can't have an article solely with the scope of A). — Bilorv (talk) 21:27, 26 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
No. Hell no. Even ignoring my comments on the validity of A above, this is a proposal to create POV forks. Wikipedia doesn't do that. Or shouldn't. Not over a topic as significant as this. AndyTheGrump (talk) 19:23, 27 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
No This was option was included for completeness, however I believe that this is not the answer for this article. I agree that the only outcome I can see arising from this is a POV fork. Furthermore, my objection to A would apply to the standalone list as well. Vanteloop (talk) 22:28, 27 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
No I agree completely with the POV fork concerns outlined above. I think the list has significant potential to also become a source of wp:battleground drama in the future as well, per the whole "how do we define a Communist regime" issue. Santacruz⁂Please ping me! 22:15, 28 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
No - I agree, this would be creating a POVFORK, plus it would be creating an "A" article, so per my "no" to "A". Levivich 00:40, 7 January 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
As I explained during the DRN discussion, if we stick with NPOV, the options "A" and "C" must be the same, so addition of "C" just dilutes the voices, and "A"/"C" option may not win. Just think: the article of the type "A" tells a story about mass killings in Communist states, and if Communism, according to majority RS, was an important factor, then its discussion must be added to the "type "A"" article. As an example, take a look at the World War II article: it includes such general sections as "Background" or "Aftermath", and, similarly, if we choose SS AND Communism is seen as a significant factor by majority RS, we will inevitably have the section about the role of Communism in the SS (type A) article. It would be against NPOV to do otherwise. Similarly, the "Type "C"" article is a combination of the story of mass killings and their linkage with Communism, which is described "fairly, proportionally, and without editorial bias". Actually, these two options are the same, and that if why I initially proposed to remove "C" as redundant. However, since other DRN participants didn't support removal, I agreed on "C". I am neutral about the outcome of this RfC, and I am pretty comfortable with any result. Happy voting :)
Are anonymous users usually allowed to comment on a RfC? Especially on an article that they cannot edit as it is semi-protected? MarioSuperstar77 (talk) 18:56, 19 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
MarioSuperstar77, WP:RFC says: "All editors (including IP users) are welcome to respond to any RfC." I am also not concerned, since RfCs are not a vote and Robert McClenon has made it clear that the closer has to "determine what approach is most strongly supported by strength of arguments."Davide King (talk) 20:13, 19 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
User:Davide King - The statement that the RFC is not a simple vote is always the policy. I didn't make it as a special rule.
User:MarioSuperstar77 - The closer can decide how much credence to give to any editor including unregistered editors.
Thanks for your comments, I have clarified that RfC is not a vote not per you but per policy. I am fully aware of it, I just wanted it to be clear for IPs and users who did not take part to any RfC before. Davide King (talk) 23:00, 19 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I think that giving extra emphasis on strength of arguments in the close as Robert McClenon did is a good idea and serves many purposes. One of them is that it provides emphasized notice that canvassed votes will not count for much thus discouraging that activity. Also I think that it is fine for the person who has moderated parts of this to suggest extra emphasis on that from the closer. North8000 (talk) 17:32, 23 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
@North8000: That is a rare case when I think that strength of arguments doesn't matter. I see several reasons for that.
First, I have no idea who will analyse strength of arguments, and how deep this analysis will be. I suspect that a uninvolved user will hardly be capable of diving into all details of what was discussed here, and, therefore, the analysis will almost inevitably be superficial.By "will hardly be capable", I mean not intellectual capabilities, but readiness to invest a significant amount of time for analysis of all aspects of this (very complex) issue. It would be unfair to expect that from an uninvolved user.
Second, this is a rare case when rational arguments do not matter. We pro;posed an RfC that is fully consistent with our policy, and implementation of each of those options will not result in a loss of any information from Wikipedia. Thus:
- If the community chooses "A", it will be a summary style article about all significant facts and opinia on this topic. Therefore, if a subsequent source analysis will demonstrate that Communism was a significant common cause, the section about Communism as a common cause will be added in the "A-style" article. If teh source analysis will show that that issue is a subject of controversy, the section about that controversy will be added to the "A-style" article. We just have to do that, for NPOV leaves us no choice.
- If "B-style" will be implemented, the story about each individual mass killings/mass mortality events still can be found in other article, and that was a main reason for the last AfD: this article (in its present form) tells a different story about the facts and events that are already described in other Wikipedia articles.
-If "C-style" will be selected, the result will be essentially the same as "A": if source analysis demonstrate that Communism is a significant causative factor and is extensively discussed by country experts, then a big section will be added to the article as a part of the rest summary-style narrative. If the source analysis does not confirm that, and Communism is not seen as a significant factor, then that section will be very small. Again, everything depends in the results of the future source analysis (which we have already started). NPOV does not give us much freedom of maneuver in this aspect, and I sincerely don't understand why some people who vote for "C" believe this option reflects the status quo". It doesn't.
-And, if the community votes for "D", no important information will be deleted either: we create two articles, and one of them (the role of Communism as a causative factor) will be a spinoff article of the SS-article in the same sense as Race and crime in the United States is a daughter article of the Crime in the United States article.
Therefore, all four options comply with our policy, and the choice of one of those options will not remove any significant information from Wikipedia. Therefore, I don't see how any rational argument can be proposed in support or against each of those option. All of that is just a matter of the community's taste, and the most important factor here is the vote count. In that sense, I see absolutely no problem with canvassing: the more votes, the better.
Thanks for your post. I don't agree with various things there, but feel no need to pursue here. Sincerely,North8000 (talk) 19:01, 23 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
@North8000: Frankly, I would be grateful if you explained what you disagree with. I am not sure that will lead to a real dispute, but it would be very useful for me to know your opinion on what I wrote. Paul Siebert (talk) 19:27, 23 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I think that you are being too optimistic. I also disagree that all options are in line with our policies, and I am not the only one to think so, e.g. TFD's comment that "[a] list of MKuCR implicitly says they are is a consensus that the events are connected, which is POV OR", Aquillion's comment that "such an amalgamation (as we have currently) effectively uses the list from A as synthesis to support the arguments presented in B; it's an inherently non-neutral article", and Aquillion's, BSMRD's, Fieari's, and ModernDayTrilobite's comments about content POV forks. You would be right if there were academic books fully devoted to Communist Mass Killings rather than chapters in works about Genocide and Mass Killing in the 20th Century and in general; as things stand, the only structure in line with sources and full respect of our policies is B and the strength of arguments so far reflect this. Davide King (talk) 19:43, 23 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
If they were not in agreement with policy, I would vetoed the DRN, and this RfC never started. Of course, they are. As I already demonstrated, each of those choices perfectly allow us to write an article that complains with all policies. Therefore, the concrete outcome of this RfC absolutely does not matter: any choice is good.
The main obstacle that prevented improvement of this article was ambiguity of its topic. Different users interpreted it differently, and that almost totally prevented its improvement. After this RfC will lead to come definite outcome, everything will be much easier. Paul Siebert (talk) 20:17, 23 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I agree that is the main obstacle and we are making progress; whether they are not violating them will greately depend on source anslysis. For me A, means discussion of universally recognized mass killings (no famines) under Stalin, Mao, and Pol Pot (the Red Terror is also a mass killing event but I have not seen it discussed within this context because it was within the context of the Russian Civil War), and that would be fine by me, yet as you noted once, we already have articles for each event and very little comparative analysis, so what does it add? C (status quo) obviously violates our policies, but as you should know by now and as I wrote in my comment, C in general may also violate NPOV and OR/SYNTH because the only way to write it is to merge country specialists (A) with genocide scholars (B), which may constitute OR/SYNTH because country specialists do no write within the context of Communist mass killings or Communism in general, and may not be SYNTH/OR only if they actually relied on each other but they seem to mostly act in isolation from each other; in this sense, I think AmeteruEditor, Nug, and TFD were right (it is not your fault though, it is the structure that is totally wrong), but you and TFD are obviously right about the article's problems. Without source analysis, D likely violates content POV fork but may be a good means to fix the article in the end. I do not disagree that a NPOV article may be written for each option, without also engaging in OR/SYNTH, but I am very skeptical of it and preliminary source analysis leads me to see B as the only solution and really notable topic, and thus the only option that does not violate our polices and guidelines (e.g. the only option for which an NPOV article can be written about it). Davide King (talk) 21:37, 23 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I'll add myself to the list of users who also disagree with your post, but I am comforted by the fact you have previously committed to respect the outcome of the RfC. That includes if you misinterpret the stated options , as this is a community consensus that is not required to satisfy one user. Vanteloop (talk) 19:52, 23 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
@Fiveby: I am responding to your ping. You write: "I think many of the "revisionist" sources are country specific, will the article end up excluding these sources? (i'd ask for @Paul Siebert:'s input on this)"
Actually, not only "revisionist" sources are country-specific. Generally speaking all sources that are relevant to MKuCR can be subdivided on the following categories:
1. Country-specific/event-specific sources. Contrary to what you say, not only "revisionist" sources, but majority (or an overwhelming majority) of all sources are country-specific. They explain each event mostly based on its own historical context.
2. Books and articles authored by "genocide scholars". These scholars try to identify some commonalities between different events, and most of them group each mass killing according to different criteria: genocides in Asia", "revolutionary vs counterrevolutionary genocides", "politicides", "democide" etc. They are not about Communist mass killings sensu stricto: usually they study either some subset or a bigger set of events, and sometimes the set of events that they study just partially intersect with what this article calls "Communist mass killings": "democide" is broader, "politicide" is in some aspect broader (it covers not only Communist politicide, but not all "MKuCR" events fall under a category of "politicide", "classicide" is a narrow concept that is applicable only to Cambodia, and, to much smaller extent, to USSR and China, etc. These sources (sometimes) make some general conclusion about the role of Communism (or its ideology, or similar factors), but that is, as a rule, not their central point.
3. Few sources, such as Courtois introduction to the Black Book, that directly link some "generic Communism" and killing of 100+ people.
4. Some sources that directly and openly criticise these views.
It is easy to see that if we include all there categories of sources, we inevitably get an "A-type" narrative that must be dominated by the first type (counrty-specific) sources, simply because they are more numerous, more informative, and contain more factual details and more recent facts. The type 2-4 sources must be moved down, to the very end, and combined in a section devoted to various generalisations and criticism thereof. And, as you can easily see, per our policy, the "A-typ" and "C-type" articles must converge: we cannot have a "summary-style" article (A-type) without a discussion of some commonalities, but the discussion of commonalities and the linkage of Communism (in a "C-type" article) cannot be big (because the majority of sources are the type 1 sources). That means it does not matter if we select "A" or "C": if we observe NPOV, both articles will be essentially the same.
Therefore, "B-type" article is not a discussion of events (each of which already has their own articles), but a discussion of attempts to make generalisations, including a discussion of the historical context of these generalisation attempts, their political implications, strengths, weaknesses and criticism of these theories etc.
In addition, that partially addresses Staberinde's argument. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Paul Siebert (talk • contribs) 21:09, 30 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Note that the above user has on multiple occasions misrepresented the arguments of others, and when asked for explanation just ignored the comments . For any uninvolved editors it is worth taking his 'analysis' with a pinch of salt, considering the misrepresentations and refusal to acknowledge them seem to be a theme. Vanteloop (talk) 21:24, 30 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Please, stop doing this, which may be considered a form of badging and a personal attack, especially when Fiveby have not complained about it, and I am interested in their discussion, which may be helpful in improving the article, and better understand both sources and our own understanding of them and the topic. Both Siebert and I have been misinterpreted too by, but we are not going to put a note, it is just disrupting and does not help in solving any genuine misunderstanding there may have been. Their source analysis has been positively reviewed in an academic journal (here you complained that they have not published it, I think getting secondary coverage like this is better, so perhaps it is time you and Nug get your review of Siebert's source analysis published in an equally reliable academic journal?) also did not ignore comments, they have made it clear that they are only going to discuss source selection.12 Please, reply to me on my talk page or on yours, and let us leave space for Fiveby to answer. Davide King (talk) 21:56, 30 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
It is a note that provides context for an uninvolved editor. More recently, this user has been publicly rebuked for their behaviour which could be interpreted as Civil POV pushing. Not by me, but by an uninvolved moderator of the dispute resolution. So I suggest it is time they stick to WP policies. They have also been criticised for acting as if they WP:OWN the page by that same neutral moderator. Part of our role in ensuring that doesn't happen is ensuring arguments are properly vetted. Discussing on user talk pages doesn't accomplish this. If you would like to increase the readability of the talk page I suggest you reduce the verbosity of your comments. Vanteloop (talk) 22:11, 30 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
That is false or a clear oversimplification — it was due to a real misunderstaning (that I thought we all solved?) because Robert McClenon thought that Siebert was vetoing at the DRN, and you too thought the same, but it was a misunderstanding, as the moderator themselves wrote here. I have been less verbose, now drop this. Davide King (talk) 22:32, 30 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
That was actually not the time Paul Siebert was rebuked by the neutral moderator for his behaviour that I was referring to, but the fact there are enough instances to get confused proves my point. Yes lets drop this and hopefully Paul will now clarify his continued misinterpretation of sources Vanteloop (talk) 22:43, 30 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
...and we should accept the main conclusion made by Valentino: that regime type is not an important factor that explains mass killings. You may speculate about the meaning of each of his phrases, but that does not change the fact that the core if his theory is: "leader's personality is the main factor, so removal of few persons from power eliminates a risk of mass killings even without political transformations of the regime." Paul Siebert (talk) 01:18, 20 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Again, you confuse his grouping of the phenomena into a communist type with his conclusions as to the causes of the phenomena. I've told you this multiple times, yet you seem to instantly forget. I'm starting to think this may be some kind WP:NOTGETTINGIT. --Nug (talk) 01:24, 20 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Frankly, I think there is some confusion here: it was me who says that Valentino's grouping does not imply he saw Communism as a significant cause. The current version of this article carefully attenuates this fact. Paul Siebert (talk) 20:24, 20 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
The purpose for including this option is because the community did not reach a consensus to delete the article as it is (nor to keep) in the AfD. Therefore to not include an option to represent the article as it currently is would be controversial and could be seen as a way to 'backdoor' a deletion of the article following the unsuccesful AfD. In this sense Nug, Davide King, and others' interpretation of this option reflecting the current version are correct. Also a reminder to please use the section below for replying to other people's comments, or for multiple paragraphs of statements if possible. Ta Vanteloop (talk) 21:24, 20 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
And that is why I was insisting on clear and detailed explanation of "A-D". You disagreed, and as a result, different people understand each of four options differently. I am afraid after closure of this RfC we may have another RfC to resolve a dispute on how exactly the results of this RfC should be interpreted. Paul Siebert (talk) 21:45, 20 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Please move your reply and my response to the section below, to avoid clutter - and do the same for your other replies in the wrong section. So far you are the only one who has failed to understand the instructions of the RfC not to reply to other's top level comments (and the only one who has misunderstood the meaning of C). Vanteloop (talk) 22:07, 20 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I referred to "C" as essentially the status quo only with respect to scope (which is the core topic of this RFC), not as a statement that the current article has achieved the goal of "C" aspires to be. North8000 (talk) 16:38, 23 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Adding to my comment, regarding whether or no "summary style" represents the status quo regarding scope, I think that the status quo regarding scope definition inevitably includes summary style to some extent. Many of the killings that are a whole article elsewhere (necessarily) have only a much shorter section in this article. North8000 (talk) 18:40, 10 January 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
MarioSuperstar77 say B is still synthesis like C but what do they respond from both BSMRD and The Four Deuces that D is a content fork? "[With D,] [w]e would then have one article [A] that implcit[i]ly states the events were connected and another [B] that examines whether or not they were." If they think B is SYNTH, how can they support D, which is essentially A and B as separate articles? What did I miss in their arguments? I invite them to clarify and discuss this. Davide King (talk) 21:56, 19 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I had stated it in several different ways, but apparently I am not able to make myself clear. I checked on the net for something that I'd like to call "Interpreting an opinion as fact" since I am certain that I have not invented this, but the best citation I could find relating to my point is from the philosopher's mag.<1> Any way, I will attempt to reiterate what I have said above one more time; my idea is to split the article into two articles: one that is based in facts with all the data and statistics fact-checked several times and the other based in theories, hypotheses, and debates. My proposal intends to clearly highlight that one of the articles is fully objective and factual and must be read as such, and the other is fully subjective and the opinion of academics, scholars, researchers and specialists, and therefore, must be read as such, therefore, no synthesis because the reader knows what to expect from both articles. Option B does not fix the synthesis issue that plagues the article, to fix the synthesis issue, first you would have to remove the Proposed causes section which heavily implies that the motives of Communism are always going to cause massive democides. The paragraphs that start in "The concept of mass killing as a phenomenon unique to communist governments-" and "Many commentators on the political right state that the mass killings-" were added to the article solely as a means to add balance to the section, not because of POV mind you, but because the section implies something that none of the sources attested for. If you go to any major article relating to politics on Wikipedia such as Donald Trump, Conservative, Liberal, Adolf Hitler, etc, none of them have any major focus on opinions from experts that can are implied to be true and, therefore, misinterpreted for facts; whereas, this article has multiple. B only removes the estimates which, for all intent and purpose, are one of such implications, "Proposed causes" and "Debates on famines" are the other two, and there are a few paragraphs across the article with similar synthesis. If B or A do pass, I can stipulate that we will continue to hear about this article for weeks on end because as I said multiple times now, this does not fix the synthesis problem from the article. At the very least, there ought to have been an option E that proposes to remove everything that I previously mentioned above and more to make the article fully objective. MarioSuperstar77 (talk) 00:06, 20 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I am not sure it still clear what you are saying, and I think you may get a better response from Aquillion, BSMRD, The Four Deuces, Siebert, and other users in this regards, and indeed I may update this comment to give you a better reply and better address your points. For now, let me tell you that you seem to assume B must imply "Proposed causes" and "Debates on famines" as currently written rather than completely changed; B will require significant rewrite, so any issues you may have about SYNTH can be solved and I hope that this is clear (indeed, both sections as currently written are SYNTH but I am not advocating for them, I am advocating for rewrite, which will solve major issues), if you did not take in consideration that B would require significant rewrite. Secondly, the topic will be about theories and narratives, and it will be made clear, so I do not get your point about presenting opinions as facts and vice versa. If I get you right, pretty much any A and B article (e.g. Race and intelligence), which is how I imagine B to be similarly named, is SYNTH to you because you think it presents opinions as facts but that is not the case, and will not be the case for B. To conclude, it appears that your issues are mainly with the article's current structure, and because of this it is hard to check sources, and you are indeed correct "the article is so bloated in size that nobody would bother to properly check the information on the article and simply assumed that the article had no issue." We both want the same thing — a NPOV article without any SYNTH issue; I see B as the only possibility to achieve that, and I am skeptical about D because I am afraid it may give defenders of the current structure yet another excuse to not improve the article because we can simply create a separate article, so we need not to worry about this article. Davide King (talk) 01:52, 20 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Race and intelligence's opinions are presented as being unreliable, yet historically relevant. Again, the presentation is one important thing that makes D a proper option as all the elements that cause synthesis will no longer do so if they are written on the prospect that they are hypotheses, all the while keeping all the information intact. I have read WP:SYNTH page 5 times now because I don't think we're on the same line, so to make sure, we define synthesis as An implication which results into an incorrect conclusion that was never attested by the sources themselves. With this definition in mind, assuming we both agree that this is the correct definition in other words, an article on the subject of "Possible explanation for the democides within Communist regimes" would very clearly highlight that the article is entirely focused on opinionated theories such as Principle of relativity and Obesity paradox rather than hard facts like other pre-existing articles, and that distinction would prevent synthesis as the conclusion is never reached, there is a difference between "This person is probably evil" and "I think this person is probably evil", the former reaches a conclusion thanks to its implication, the latter does not and specifies that the person is thinking about it. Now, one valid concern here is POVFORK and I admit that I did not think about that, though if both articles are monitored frequently that issue should not occur, if it does occur an AfD could be created for the offending article. MarioSuperstar77 (talk) 13:20, 20 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Have you looked at my sandbox possibility? Change Race and intelligence's opinions are presented as being unreliable, yet historically relevant to [B]'s opinions are presented as being disputed, yet historically notable, and there should be no issue; there are indeed authors who see a link between race and intelligence, or between Communism and mass killings, that is indeed their conclusions but the article does not, and will not, treat it as a fact or even a mainstream position that is uncontroversial or not disputed; both articles are about notable yet controversial discussions. Again, see Race and crime in the United States. A really SYNTH article is Communism and Jews — that is truly SYNTH and even antisemitic, which is why it has been deleted. B does not even come close to it, and would be perfectly in line with all others and articles we already have discussion correlations and links, whether they are supported or not, whether they are controversial or not, all of which is to be made clear per NPOV and WEIGHT; what matters is whether they are notable and B clearly is — again, look at non-primary literature I proposed at sandbox.
You do not seem to understand SYNTH — it is grouping events without a clear connection (e.g. they happened in Asia, were Communists, their common language is Indo-European, therefore we must have an article about mass killings in Asia or mass killings under Indo-European languages — this is SYNTH), not B. If the issue is you think an article discussing Communist regimes and mass killings, and that this implies all communists support mass killings or something like that — well, I do not know what to tell you because by this standard every options, from A to D, is SYNTH and you should have supported 'Deletion' in the AfD. As for POV forks, the problem is that both articles will be seen as POV forks of each other and thus both should be deleted. Davide King (talk) 14:46, 20 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Your sandbox would definitely improve the article by a margin, but that is assuming that all the offending sources within the article are removed, but from your previous comments I learned that you intended to remove them anyway, so it would be a step toward the right direction. Comparing option B to an article that was deleted ensuing an AfD is not a good look, I trust that you will clean up the article proper once this RfC concludes, regardless of which option passes, but if that is not done well the article will continue to draw ire from other Wikipedians.
You do not seem to understand SYNTH — it is grouping events without a clear connection Here comes what is written on WP:SYNTHDo not combine material from multiple sources to reach or imply a conclusion not explicitly stated by any source. Similarly, do not combine different parts of one source to reach or imply a conclusion not explicitly stated by the source.-. I think this is clear and concise to me, so I have to return the favor that I believe that you may not understand WP:SYNTH, although you have been on Wikipedia for much longer than I, so perhaps I am missing something from the page in spite of reading it 6 times now. DublinDilettante actually thinks that this article was synthesis on the premise of it being about Communist mass killings; however, the information can be presented in such a way that only data and facts are present on the article which would void the synthesis. First off, the article should not be called "Mass killings under Communist regimes" which is a clear implication that mass killings would occur majoritarily within Communist regimes and that was what the AfD mainly focused on. Then, it should be void of any opinion piece, regardless of the expertise of the person who writes said opinion, so to make this article not-synthesis, Kotkin, Rummel, etc should be removed entirely, or per my proposal moved into its own article focusing on the theories of what led to Communist mass killings in the first place. I had opposed the AfD because I was afraid that extremists were attempting to whitewash the bloodstains of statist Communism. Additionally, although that was fairly paranoid on my part, I was afraid that would give the green light to Fascists to remove articles critical of Fascism. I genuinely do not understand why you bring up my vote on the AfD as that is completely unrelated to the current RfC. MarioSuperstar77 (talk) 16:57, 20 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Chiming in here, there is no implication in article title that communist regimes are more prone to mass killings, any more than the title War crimes of the United States implies that the USA is more prone to committing war crimes than any other country. --Nug (talk) 02:33, 21 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
No, that is cheating. The "War crimes of the United States" is a quite legitimate title simply because "the US" is a quite concrete single entity. In contrast, there is no consensus among scholars that such an entity as "Communist regimes" or "generic Communism" exists. Many authors discuss, e.g. genocides in Cambodia, China and Indonesia, or discuss Stalin and Hitler. A similar situation is impossible for the US, for, e.g. "War crimes in California and Baja California" is hard to imagine. Paul Siebert (talk) 04:27, 21 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
First of all, thanks for your kind words and for engaging with me, it is really interesting, which is why this reply is going longer than usual and I hope to you can forgive me for that. The problem is that it has been a decade that we have tried to cleanup the article, and any major attempt to fix it, including removing stuff or adding stuff, has been reverted and is opposed by those who were for 'Keep' and denied that the article had not even issues in the first place; indeed, my comment in the AfD was for 'Delete' but it essentially was for 'Rewrite' because I saw that, and I still saw it, as the only way to fix issues once and for all. I also did not compare B but a delete article (Jews and Communism), if that is what you think; Jews and Communism was an article that was indeed SYNTH, while B is not, just like Race and intelligence, and like-minded article, are not SYNTH either. Speaking of which, do you understand the difference between causation and correlation? If some authors say there is a causal connection, whereas other say there is not, it should be not "Proposed causes", but "Discussion of possible causal linkage between mass killings and Communism", or "Communist states and mass killing" for short. If B (again, keep in mind the difference between causation and correlation) and SYNTH, then Race and intelligence, Race and crime in the United States, and a majority of article structured as B are SYNTH. If B is SYNTH, so is D, which includes B, and would also be content POV fork; nonetheless, I myself can support D as a means to improve things, but I think that you are being contradictory if you think B is SYNTH, since D entails that A and B are discussed separately rather than together like in C — it appears to be that A is the option that would fit better what you actually put forward, if you think B is still SYNTH, or I persuaded you that is not the case.
I will try to explain this better — if there was agreement among scholars that communism caused mass killings in those states, it is not SYNTH to treat them as a single group; indeed, for A not to be SYNTH, that communism caused mass killings, or was the major cause, and that this represent the mainstream and majority view among scholars, this would have to be true. Do not combine material from multiple sources to reach or imply a conclusion not explicitly stated by any source. Similarly, do not combine different parts of one source to reach or imply a conclusion not explicitly stated by the source. It means that we cannot combine country-specific sources about mass killings about Stalin, Mao, and Pol Pot (e.g. taking one book about mass killings under Stalin, another book about them under Mao, and so on, and us concluding that since they happened under three or more Communist regimes, we can write Mass killings under communist regimes, if that is not what the sources also conclude or make) to imply there is a MKuCR grouping, or that sources that do discuss Stalin, Mao, and Pol Pot together to imply it is a MKuCR, which means a much broader discussion, rather than Stalin–Mao–Pol Pot grouping, which is a much more narrow scope and is how I understand A to be. In addition, sources that discuss together Stalin's, Mao's, and Pol Pot's mass killings are a minority, while the overwhelming majority of them discuss them separately and individually, or are country-specific, and thus the former would be a content POV fork of the latter and NPOV violation. NPOV requires that all majority and minority views are discussed but that cannot be done if only a few sources group Stalin–Mao–Pol Pot together, and even then they disagree (Jones discusses Stalin–Mao together and Pol Pot separately).
I agree that there should be a name change, though that mass killings would occur majoritarily within Communist regimes and that was what the AfD mainly focused on is an oversimplification, since the main reason for delete was that while all events indeed happened, majority of sources discuss them individually or by country, and only a minority of them discuss them together — again, there is no Communism Mass Killings scholarly book, only chapters in general works about mass killings, and they are limited to Stalin, Mao, and Pol Pot, even thought the name may imply they are talking about every nominally Communist regime. I do not know why I brought up your AfD comment, but I think that since you are critical of the article perhaps you should have considered 'Delete' as a bigger possibility than you thought, especially since 'Delete' can also result in reducing the article to a stub or totally rewrite, rather than total removal of information, which seems to be one of the reasons you did not consider it as a serious possibility. In this regards, I suggest you to reconsider this. No information is actually going to be lost, as we already discuss all the events either indivdiually or by each Communist state as is done by majority of scholarly sources, and the current "Proposed cause" section as well as "Estimates" are already at Criticism of communist party rule, and estimates are further discussed at Democide, which is a more accurate category, since it is very broad. Finally, that the AfD was the result of extremists ... attempting to whitewash the bloodstains of statist Communism is part of right-wing misinformation, as has been noted in the closure, since the overwhelming majority of 'Delete' comments had a totally different reasoning. Again, that we are going to remove the Holocaust next is an absurd strawman, as noted by several users.
"We have a lot of books and monographs that provide a neutral and balanced description of WWII as a topic. However, we have virtually no such books about MKuCR: a couple of sources that discuss this topic are highly controversial, and other works do not discuss the topic as a whole, and they focus on subtopics (or more global topics) instead." —Paul Siebert
"WWII is also a single unified topic with no serious (overarching) dispute over what falls under it, or over if and how the things that fall under it are connected. None of this is true here, which means that collecting events, framing them as mass killings, and lumping them together into a single unified topic becomes WP:SYNTHESIS unless the discussion is informed by, structured according to, and attributed to secondary sources, with appropriate text in each case being devoted to underlying academic disputes." —Aquillion
"The reason there is an article on WWII is that there is academic consensus that the various wars were part of a larger war, viz, WWII. There is no consensus that killings in Stalin's Soviet Union, etc., are part of a pattern of MKuCR." —The Four Deuces
And because of WP:LENGTH, because you can theoretically go for C and fix the synthesis. But, what is the point when the article is so long that it is difficult to read? This makes editing the article take more time, this makes checking the citations and the text take more time, and this is what introduced the synthesis because the article is so bloated in size that nobody would bother to properly check the information on the article and simply assumed that the article had no issue. This is one thing that I am thankful for the AfD as that brought so much attention to the article. Finally, we are now trying to fix it after years! The least that could be done is to make the article shorter. MarioSuperstar77 (talk) 00:18, 20 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
This is because Mass killings under communist regimes was created many years before Mass killing, which is the NPOV article. Before rasining any issue about length, we should at least first attempt to expand Mass killing in the first place. Finally, have you considered a Mass killings in history, akin to Genocides in history, as an alternative? I do not understand this obsession for Communism as a separate topic when there is not a non-controversial academic work (apart from The Black Book of Communism and Red Holocaust) that treats it as a single phenomenon, so why should we too? Chirot, Jones, Mann, Valentino, and others all place Communist mass killings within the context of mass killings in general, and this can be easily done at either Mass killing and/or Mass killings in history. Again, this article may be justified only if we first attempted to do this. Davide King (talk) 01:52, 20 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I do not understand this obsession for Communism as a separate topic when there is not a non-controversial academic work (apart from The Black Book of Communism and Red Holocaust) that treats it as a single phenomenon I like when things are properly categorized, it makes it easier to research a certain topic. I should note that I am also supportive of a mass killings under Capitalist regimes article and a mass killings under Fascist regimes article. As for the mass killings article, it should be improved, but not everybody is necessarily enticed to overlook it. MarioSuperstar77 (talk) 13:20, 20 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I believe The Four Deuces can explain you this in a simpler way but that is why we have policies about SYNTH; for a grouping, there must be a connection, it is not sufficient that something was nominally capitalist, Communist, or fascist. It is the reason why we only have Mass killings under communist regimes and not for any other regime type; it is SYNTH without majority of scholarly sources making a clear connection, and your proposal is simply a recipe for further OR/SYNTH. Indeed, that was one scholarly criticism of The Black Book of Communism, see below. Why must we give so much weight to such a controversial work and discuss Communism as a separate and single phenomenon, rather than how majority of genocide scholars treat it (e.g. chapters in works about general mass killings book)?
Dallin, Alexander (Winter 2000). "Review. Reviewed Work: The Black Book of Communism: Crimes, Terror, Repression by Stéphane Courtois, Nicolas Werth, Jean-Louis Panné, Andrzej Paczkowski, Karel Bartošek, Jean-Louis Margolin, Jonathan Murphy, Mark Kramer". Slavic Review. Cambridge, England: Cambridge University Press. 59 (4): 883. doi:10.2307/2697429. JSTOR2697429. Whether all these cases, from Hungary to Afghanistan, have a single essence and thus deserve to be lumped together—just because they are labeled Marxist or communist—is a question the authors scarcely discuss.
David-Fox, Michael (Winter 2004). "On the Primacy of Ideology. Soviet Revisionists and Holocaust Deniers (In Response to Martin Malia)". Kritika: Explorations in Russian and Eurasian History. Bloomington, Indiana: Slavic. 5 (1): 81–105. doi:10.1353/kri.2004.0007. S2CID159716738. Malia thus counters by coining the category of 'generic Communism,' defined everywhere down to the common denominator of party movements founded by intellectuals. (Pol Pot's study of Marxism in Paris thus comes across as historically more important than the gulf between radical Soviet industrialism and the Khmer Rouge's murderous anti-urbanism.) For an argument so concerned with justifying The Black Book, however, Malia’s latest essay is notable for the significant objections he passes by. Notably, he does not mention the literature addressing the statistical-demographic, methodological, or moral dilemmas of coming to an overall communist victim count, especially in terms of the key issue of how to include victims of disease and hunger.
Do you still think this is a good idea? Have you considered my Mass killing expansion and Mass killings in history spinoff (general article about mass killings irrespective of regime type) proposals? Concerns about length are not legitimate if we do not even try first. Davide King (talk) 14:23, 20 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
The only issue from my proposal is POVFORK and that is assuming the article will not be monitored enough to keep it fresh and encyclopedic, therefore, I still do not think my idea is a bad one, only that it would require effort to manage both articles. As for your idea - yeah, it is a decent idea. You could and should expand on that. MarioSuperstar77 (talk) 16:57, 20 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I think you are being too optimistic about it; we discussed this over the last year and nothing has actually been truly changed or improved. I do think that D may be a way to actually incentivize improvement and a means to that end, but I also ask you to seriously consider some of my arguments, and if you think they are wrong, I am missing something, please let me know and rebuke them; in particular, I would like to see you discussing sources and your thoughts about my sources research and analysis; again, if I missed anything or you disagree about something, feel free to tell me.
(e.g. to actually discuss Communist mass killings together, there must be a correlation; since there is not but some authors have proposed correlations, we cannot discuss them together or separately but only the discussion of correlations put forward)
notes about sources
(there are no Communist Mass Killings books that would establish it as a separate topic, only "Communist Mass Killings — Stalin, Mao, and Pol Pot" chapters within the context of mass killings in general, which is how I propose to have them discussed — cft. Google Scholar results for "communist mass killings" and "mass killings under communist regimes" — do you see the difference?)
Nug say "an article cannot discuss any debate on the correlations or causes without mentioning the government actions that has led to that debate in the first place. It would be like discussing Causes of World War II without having the article World War II." The problem is that there is no academic work fully dedicated to mass killings under Communist regimes,1 or Communist mass killings — they are mostly chapters of works about the general topic and are limited to Stalin, Mao, and Pol Pot; indeed, there are a bunch of books about World War II as a whole, there are no academic books about Communist mass killings as a whole (again, they are mainly chapters limited about Stalin, Mao, and Pol Pot — Chirot, Jones, Mann, and Valentino, all of which are within the context of mass killings in general). I can accept an article limited to those three Communist leaders, but I do not accept Nug's premise if by A they mean Communism as a single phenomenon and exclude country experts by default, and broad it to include any other Communist regime.
1.The Black Book of Communism and Red Holocaust (limited to Stalin, Mao, Kim, Ho Chi Min, and Pol Pot) appear to be the exceptions, and it is those kind of works that we need, e.g. works fully devoted to Communism as a special phenomenon rather than chapters in books about mass killings in general. The Red Holocaust's "[s]ubsequent chapters make comparisons with Germany and Japan under Hitler and Hirohito, respectively. Although several topics are raised, the book's message can be easily summarized. Totalitarian ideologies have taken different forms in the twentieth century (communism, Nazism, and fascism), but they have all produced similar results: mass terror and crimes against humanity. Some distinction are also made." In light of this, we may have an article focused on totalitarian crimes and mass killings, and discuss their similarities and differences.
WRT @Nug:'s It would be like discussing Causes of World War II without having the article World War II. We have a lot of books and monographs that provide a neutral and balanced description of WWII as a topic. However, we have virtually no such books about MKuCR: a couple of sources that discuss this topic are highly controversial, and other works do not discuss the topic as a whole, and they focus on subtopics (or more global topics) instead.--Paul Siebert (talk) 22:34, 19 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
WWII is also a single unified topic with no serious (overarching) dispute over what falls under it, or over if and how the things that fall under it are connected. None of this is true here, which means that collecting events, framing them as mass killings, and lumping them together into a single unified topic becomes WP:SYNTHESIS unless the discussion is informed by, structured according to, and attributed to secondary sources, with appropriate text in each case being devoted to underlying academic disputes. --Aquillion (talk) 23:03, 19 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Except that it isn't WP:SYNTHESIS, otherwise why would some authors be disputing the grouping of events as communist mass killings if that grouping didn't exist in published sources, are they hallucinating? Can we finally stop this "it's WP:SYNTH" bs? --Nug (talk) 00:42, 20 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Ok, by combining Valentino (who considered Stalin's mass killings as "Communist mass killings", but Afghan mass killings as non-Communist) with Courtois, who considered Afghan victims as vicrims of Communism, but didn't use Valentino's term "Communist mass killings", the article is doing no synthesis?
Actually, the article is a collection of events that were called as "mass killings"/"genocide"/"politicide" etc by at least one author. If that is not synthesis, then what is? Paul Siebert (talk) 00:59, 20 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Valentino did mention "Communist" as an "additional motive" for the killings in Afghanistan in his typology table on page 83. --Nug (talk) 01:18, 20 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
"Communist" is, to some degree, an additional motive in all events that we discuss. But the claim that it was a main motive in all cases is a minority POV, as my analysis of sources demonstrates. Grouping some events together based on some minor trait is a clear and unequivocal POV-pushing.
So far, you provided no such analysis, and I have no reason to believe you are expressing a majority POV. Paul Siebert (talk) 01:27, 20 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Again you are trying to conflate Valentino's mass killing types with his mass killing causes. --Nug (talk) 02:04, 20 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Actually, it seems you described your own point of view. In contrast, I am objecting your attempts to conflate grouping with causation, which you do for Valentino, Bellamy and some other authors. Yes, Valentino put some mass killings in Communist states in one group, which called "dispossessive a.k.a. Communist mass killings". However, from that, it does not follow that he saw Communism as a cause. Paul Siebert (talk) 20:00, 20 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Well, if we have authors making the connection, we can rely on those (as I specified in my comments above.) But it isn't enough just to vaguely say they exist; we actually have to cite them, and rely on them, and use them to determine how we structure and discuss the events in question, without relying on any sources that don't make that broad topical connection. Put simply, it's WP:SYNTH / WP:OR to make or imply a connection that the sources we're using don't. Obviously this is a sweeping RFC so it's hard to drill down into the individual examples, but if you're confident that you can write a version that carefully documents and attributes each example in the context of an author connecting it to the concept of mass killings as a specifically Communist thing, then doing so should make a lot of the objections go away and will, basically, be B - a focused, specific article that reflects actual arguments people make. You can't, though, just point to a source that said "this mass killing occurred in this communist regime" because building a list out of that to imply that the commonality is significant, using sources that don't say or discuss things like "this mass-killing happened because Communism", is synthesis and means you're making the argument yourself as an editor - you need to rely on the sources that specifically discuss that commonality. --Aquillion (talk) 03:04, 20 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Let's put this in perspective for the closer, shall we? One user is relying on their personal reading of Valentino (Nug), while another is relying on academic secondary coverage of Valentino (Siebert); if Nug's reading is correct, surely it would be reflected in academic secondary coverage already? But those sources, in fact, give a more nuanced picture that is closer to what Siebert is summarizing for us, and I do not have no reason to believe Siebert got this one wrong. So please, I ask that everyone rely on secondary coverage rather than cherry picking from Valentino. Again, surely if you are right and what you are citing or quoting from Valentino is due, it has been reported and mentioned in academic secondary coverage of him, and should be easy to provide, don't you think? Davide King (talk) 01:33, 20 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
What the heck? Priselac's review of Valentio's book explicitly mentions the three mass killing types: communist, ethnic and counter-guerrilla and takes no issue with it while praising the book as excellent. I don't to see how Paul Siebert's view is "a more nuanced picture", given he seems to not understand the basic difference between case study type and conclusion. --Nug (talk) 02:04, 20 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
And? No one is denying that Valentino outlines such mass killing types; however, as noted by Straus, Communist mass killing is a subtype, not a major type, which means it can be discussed at Mass killing, not as a separate topic. To quote Straus:
"Valentino identifies two major types, each with three subtypes. The first major type is 'dispossessive mass killing,' which includes (1) 'communist mass killings' in which leaders seek to transform societies according to communist principles; (2) 'ethnic mass killings,' in which leaders forcibly remove an ethnic population; and (3) mass killing as leaders acquire and repopulate land. The second major type of mass killing is 'coercive mass killing,' which includes (1) killing in wars when leaders cannot defeat opponents using conventional means; (2) 'terrorist' mass killing when leaders use violence to force an opposing side to surrender; and (3) killing during the creation of empires when conquering leaders try to defeat resistance and intimidate future resistance."
"One of Valentino's central arguments is that 'characteristics of society at large, such as pre-existing cleaves, hatred and discrimination between groups and non-democratic forms of government, are of limited utility in distinguishing societies at high risk for mass killing. Valentino's strongest arguments in support of this statement are his comparative studies of regimes that committed mass killing with similar regimes that did not." Did you also miss this from Prisalec? This is literally what Siebert have been saying the whole time. Davide King (talk) 02:11, 20 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
No, it can't be discussed in Mass killing because the article would be absolutely huge if it discusses all the types, this communist type is already almost 300kB, so it would have to be split up anyway. You also don't understand the difference between type topology and conclusion, or are you purposely confusing them? And coming back to my original point, it proves that grouping mass killings based on communist type is not WP:SYNTH. --Nug (talk) 03:14, 20 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
You ignore that much of the space is occupied by non-free, lengthy quotes, and that even if we have space issues, we can have a Mass killings in history article; you also act as if this article is the be-all and end-all, and cannot be rewritten or restructured to make it much more concise and space-saving. As I said, Valentino's Communist mass killing is not even a major type but a subtype, which makes it undue as a separate topic. Even if you are right, such category must be the mainstream, majority view and not be disputed or controversial; Aquillion gave a good summary and criteria. None of Valentino's scholarly publications emphasize Communism or are publications about Communism. Chapters or passing mentions are not good enough to establish it as a separate topic, and they are placed within the context of mass killings in general, therefore they must be discussed together generally; they can be grouped together as part of the structure but it must be a general article.1 This is what genocide scholars do, and their main concerns are correlations and generalizations, which fits B; they rely on country experts and specialists to summarize the events. Davide King (talk) 04:08, 20 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
1. If it is not so clear, by this I mean that the article's grouping will be irrespective of regime type (it will be a general article about mass killing events irrespective of categories) but we can have a section categorized by Communist regimes, if not geographically or other fitting categorizations used to have a well-organized table of contents. What I oppose is having separate articles about the events for each regime type, whether it is capitalist, Communist, fascist, or whatever, when we already discuss them individually. There are simply no sufficient scholarly sources that treat them as separate topics, and it is better to discuss them in short paragraphs together (e.g. no need to say what happened in great details, just mention and link the events themselves, there is no need to provide a coatracked summary there too). Davide King (talk) 04:19, 20 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
WP:GNG is the criterion by which we determine if a standalone article is warranted, it states "Significant coverage is more than a trivial mention, but it does not need to be the main topic of the source material". The fact we have a chapter in Valentino (and in Bellamy and others) meets the requirement. --Nug (talk) 04:39, 20 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I am curious to see Aquillion's response to this, since you did mention at least two sources now and your back-and-forth discussion was interesting and useful, so I hope that you can discuss that further; however, Bellamy and Valentino fit B more than anything, and is fine by me because that is what I support — my issue is how such sources are used to support A or C rather than the more proper B.
I do not think that excludes my proposal of general mass killings either; in addition, Bellamy puts Communism within the context of the Cold War, while Valentino puts it within that of mass killings in general and as a subtype of dispossessive mass killings. If there is consistency, then a similar article about capitalism must be created due to Bellamy's chapter about "Capitalist Atrocities" — I do not think A-style articles for both are good, but at least there would be consistency. I also do not think this solves NPOV and WEIGHT issues, and the contradictions between country experts and historians, and genocide scholars and their weight (majority, minority, fringe), which is necessary to have for an NPOV article.
Bellamy has the chapter "Totalitarian Mass Killing", so I do not see why we should not go for a general article, with Communist regimes being a section, or a general mass killings article divided into Capitalist, Communist, and Totalitarian as Bellamy does. Indeed, now that I think about it, Bellamy's work is perfect for my proposal of Mass killings in history. It may well be such article's table of content.
2. State Terror in the Long Nineteenth Century
3. Totalitarian Mass Killing
4. Terror Bombing in the Second World War
5. The Cold War Struggle (1): Capitalist Atrocities
6. The Cold War Struggle (2): Communist Atrocities
7. Atrocities and the 'Golden Age' of Humanitarianism
8. Radical Islamism and the War on Terror
I fail to see how you can read Bellamy and come to the conclusion that Communism is a single phenomenon and must be discussed as a new topic. Davide King (talk) 05:15, 20 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
And? I already acknowledged it when I said the book places it within the context of the Cold War. My issue has never been if we can discuss mass killings that happened under Communist regimes, my issue has always been how to do that and make it encyclopedic, which is what the AfD tried to rule and said there is no consensus among us. If Bellamy and Valentino are perfectly acceptable sources for the topic of mass killings, can you explain why they cannot be used for Mass killings in history (or a general article about mass killings, a spin off of Mass killing that analyzes the concept in greater details, using summary style for each event, etc.)? Why must we cherry pick chapters about Communism only, and ignore all the others? You said a chapter is sufficient to establish a topic, I have at least two full books about mass killings in history, why is not this proposal preferable? You simply cannot assume space or length a priori, so that is not a good rebuttal, find a better one. Davide King (talk) 14:01, 20 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
@Nug: I think a symmetry in the Bellamy's book is clearly seen: he groups Cold war perpetrators by camps, and he analyzed atrocities committed by both camps. It should be clear to any good faith logical thinker that Bellamy does not connect Communism with atrocities: he forms two groups of perpetrators, each of which belong to one of opposing camps. Therefore, a proper context here is not Communism, but Cold war.
In general, I find your position non-constructive and disruptive. It is absolutely clear to any good faith user that picking one more source and claiming "My source says this" is totally senseless. As I (and admins panel) noted, we need a detailed source analysis. I already proposed to establish the majority viewpoint by collecting a representative sample of sources and analyzing them. I am expecting to see your thoughts on what other users have already posted at WP:DRNMKUCR, as well as your own ideas. If you will not do that in next few days, I will not consider you as a party of the DRN process, and my voluntary obligation not to take any actions against you will not be in effect any more. Paul Siebert (talk) 17:17, 20 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Re Nug's comment: "an article cannot discuss any debate on the correlations or causes without mentioning the government actions that has led to that debate in the first place. It would be like discussing Causes of World War II without having the article World War II."
The reason there is an article on WWII is that there is academic consensus that the various wars were part of a larger war, viz, WWII. There is no consensus that killings in Stalin's Soviet Union, etc., are part of a pattern of MKuCR.
There was a similar discussion about Jewish Bolshevism, aka Jewish Communism. Some editors argued that the article explained one theory connecting Jews and Communism but there should be an article about the facts behind the theory. Therefore, Jews and Communism was created as a fork. At AfD, I argued that although there was literature about Jewish involvement in Communist movements in different times and places, there was none about the topic as a whole. The article was therefore a POVFORK which implied that Jews had a propensity to become Communists or had a "disproportionate" influence on it.
Nug's reasoning is circular because he begins with the assumption that there is a correlation or causal connection. But there is no consensus for that view in reliable sources, just as there is none for Jews and Communism. This could be an example of apophenia, "the tendency to perceive meaningful connections between unrelated things." Or it could be because the theory precedes the evidence, which is collected to support a predetermined theory.
I said "correlation or causal connection." Do you not beleive there is a correlation? TFD (talk) 06:36, 20 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
@Nug: Do you realise that if some authors say there is a causal connection, whereas other say there isn't, the section's title should be not "Proposed causes", but "Discussion of possible causal linkage between mass killings and Communism"?
And, in reality, your description is still desperately incomplete: in reality, some authors see a strong connection between mass killings and Communism, other authors disagree, and another group of authors just ignore this dispute, and prefers to discuss mass killings not in a context of Communism. My preliminary source analysis demonstrates that the last group is an overwhelming majority. Paul Siebert (talk) 19:29, 20 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Okay, by your logic if source analysis reveals that the majority of sources do not discuss the education system in communist countries, we can conclude that the overwhelming majority view is that no education system existed in these countries. That's basically your argument about the "third group" in a nutshell. --Nug (talk) 22:28, 20 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
No. If according to my logic, majority of sources discuss education system in each communist country taken separately, then we can write an article that discuss each country separately, and discuss commonalities in a small section at the very bottom. And that would be pretty much ok, keeping in mind that e.g. Vygotsky's works are discussed in almost all sources not is a context of Mao's China, and not in a context of Marxism. Paul Siebert (talk) 22:35, 20 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
No. Your logic is if we have 10 sources that discuss the education system of a group of communist states, and 40 sources that discuss education system in each communist country separately, then the argument is that commonalities discussed in the 10 sources are a minority viewpoint because the 40 sources that discuss the individual countries make no mention of any commonalities with other communist states. --Nug (talk) 02:45, 21 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
That is not that simple. Let's make a situation even more extreme: we have 5 sources that discuss the education system of a group of communist states, and 500 sources that discuss education system in each communist country separately. However, if majority (or a significant fraction) of those 500 sources cite those 5 sources, we still can speak about some significant commonality or a linkage. If the same were true for mass killings, then the current article (in it's current shape) would be Ok. The problem is that so far my analysis does not confirm that. "Genocide scholars" work in separation from country experts, the latter cite the works of genocide scholars very rarely. And even genocide scholars themselves (e.g. Harff) do not see Communism as an important factor affecting mass killings.
One way of the other, this is becoming fruitless. I propose to switch to a real source analysis at DRNMKUCR and to let this RfC come to some logical end. We have done our part of the job. We could have done that better, but now it is too late. Let's wait for results.
Okay, list these 500 sources at DRNMKUCR so that we can analyze them. --Nug (talk) 11:01, 21 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
In the example, we would have an article that compares and contrasts education in communist countries. East Germany for example inherited a well developed education system onto which they imposed their own ideology. Someone reading a brief article does not want to read how East German universities developed in the Middle Ages or how Prussia developed a system that was later imposed on the states of East Germany. If they did, they can go to "Education in Germany" or "Education in East Germany." Basically it would be filled by cut and paste information rather than what the reader wanted to know. TFD (talk) 00:47, 22 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Consider the article Education in the United States. (Education is a state matter in the U.S.) It doesn't have separate sections for each state. It merely points out the commonality and differences between states. TFD (talk) 01:40, 22 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
We want to have plenty of time for feedback and discussion. But also to eventually move forward because IMO this is the necessary next step on this article. May I suggest that if input from new folks has slowed down a lot by then to close for closing 2 weeks after it's December 19th inception date which would be January 2nd? Also that once it is "closed for closing" that new comments be firmly excluded and put elsewhere? North8000 (talk) 14:30, 29 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I'd rather wait until the RFC tag expires, which occurs after a month. GoodDay (talk) 18:02, 29 December 2021 (UTC)Reply[reply]
There is no point waiting if no further comments are made, we just keep arguing with each other and create new threads every day. North8000, I say let's have one or more admins close it, and see the results, which hopefully will make follow-up discussions much more clear and focused. Davide King (talk) 02:10, 3 January 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
My idea was 2 weeks if input from new folks has died down by then. But if people object and say we should go 30 days, then we probably need to to be safe. Regarding the close, I'd be more concerned about getting a very thorough admin than trying to get two or more. Having everyone comment on every idea (to avoid math problems) doing a thorough closing job bigger.North8000 (talk) 20:21, 3 January 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Looks like zero new posts for 5 days. @GoodDay: and any others who might advocate longer, what do you think about closing at 3 weeks which would be January 10th? The whole article and situation is sort of "frozen" until then. North8000 (talk) 19:01, 5 January 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I wouldn't say the article is "frozen". We are currently working on the sections that must be cleaned anyway, independently on the RfC's outcome. The DRN discussion of sources is also hardly affected by the RfC decision. Keeping in mind that this article was a subject of the longest AfD, which was accompanied by an enormous canvassing and comments in a blogosphere, it would be highly desirable to observe our standard procedure. Let's wait for one month, and then ask some uninvolved admin to formally close it. Paul Siebert (talk) 19:48, 5 January 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Why the repeated insistence on an admin closure? Is there any particular reason this RfC needs admin tools to close, as opposed to being closed by any non-involved wikipedian with experience and understanding of the relevant policies? It's established convention that RfCs with non-admin closures are not any less reliable than those with admin closures, and there's even a dispute process in case there's disagreement (which to my understanding rarely ever happens, even with contentious RfCs, as the more contentious, the more thorough the closure tends to be). Fieari (talk) 07:53, 13 January 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I think the admin closure is absolutely required here because the subject is highly contentious, because this page was previously locked by admins for a long time, and because this RfC was posted by admin who anticipates WP:AE sanctions related to this closure . This is not about tools. This is about authority and experience. On the other hand, the closing does not look very difficult. Clearly, there is no consensus (at best) for A, B and D. As about C - yes, maybe, this is judgement call (I would say no consensus as well). My very best wishes (talk) 16:15, 13 January 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
For clarification, the RFC opener isn't an admin. I don't understand the meaning of his comment you linked above, that he will take people who !voted C to WP:AE if option C becomes the consensus? --Nug (talk) 20:47, 13 January 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Question. Which of the versions (A,B,C or D) corresponds to keeping "status quo" for the page? And if there is no such option, then this is probably not a valid RfC? I mean that version "none of the above" should always be included. That is what me and many other paricipants probably would vote for. My very best wishes (talk) 02:58, 11 January 2022 (UTC) Thank you for answering my question . I realize this is "C". My very best wishes (talk) 16:05, 11 January 2022 (UTC) It was not my intention to ask such question here. It was misplaced by BSMRD . My very best wishes (talk) 03:14, 12 January 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
The structure described by option C matches the current structure of the page, though it is poorly executed. If you wish to see an article patterned off the current structure that is the option you should vote for. BSMRD (talk) 03:42, 11 January 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Additionally, despite your insistence, nowhere in WP:RFC does it state that an RFC must have a status quo option in order to be valid. This RfC asks for comment on a variety of possibilities to restructure the article which was found inadequate in the AfD. Your vague declarations of the RfC being "invalid" feel an awful lot like trying to get it shut down on non-existent policy grounds, and I recommend you stop pursuing such a course. BSMRD (talk) 03:56, 11 January 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I concur with BSMRD. With respect to the question at hand (defined scope), the status quo is "ambiguous / no defined scope", but "C" matches the defacto status quo scope. North8000 (talk) 04:06, 11 January 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Please, do not make attacks towards BSMRD. They did not misplace anything, it should be common sense not to write something as a response to the RfC's OP as you did here but rather to open a subthread about it as BSMRD correctly did for you here. Davide King (talk) 13:12, 12 January 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I have reviewed the bolded !votes and have counted the !votes, and I count as follows:
A - Yes, 4; No, 16; Neutral, 1; Confused, 1
B - Yes, 13; No, 9; Neutral, 1;
C - Yes, 10; No, 10; Neutral, 1; Maybe, 2
D - Yes, 4; No, 12; Neutral, 1; Yes-No, 1; Probably Not, 1, multiple struck comments
I have not reviewed the supporting statements or tried to assess strength of arguments. I think that it is clear that there is consensus against A, and against D, splitting the article. There appears to be a rough numerical consensus in favor of B. There appears to be no consensus on C, but C appears to be the status quo, and it has been clear for a long time, both before the close of the AFD and from the conclusions of the closers of the AFD, that the status quo is not satisfactory.
Robert McClenon (talk) 21:05, 22 January 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Thank you Robert for tabulating the votes. As a person who was neutral in this RfC, I think that would be helpful for a closer. I invite all participants to comment if they agree with this summary. Paul Siebert (talk) 23:06, 22 January 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Disagree - along with this comment threatening WP:AE action if there is a consensus for option C, I don't see Robert's comment as appropriate here. --Nug (talk) 23:36, 22 January 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
@Robert McClenon: " have not reviewed the supporting statements or tried to assess strength of arguments". Given that the job of any closer is to do exactly that, I suggest you leave the closer(s) to decide what the consensus is, rather than preempting them.
We're lucky to have Robert McClenon's substantial expert & neutral efforts here. The summary work that they did is straightforward neutral objective (= not subjective) work, and IMO that and the appropriateness of it is further reinforced by their history of assistance at this article. Sincerely, North8000 (talk) 23:50, 22 January 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Robert's comment: "C appears to be the status quo, and it has been clear for a long time, both before the close of the AFD and from the conclusions of the closers of the AFD, that the status quo is not satisfactory" is clearly not a neutral comment, he should participate along with the rest of us in !voting in the appropriate section. --Nug (talk) 00:21, 23 January 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
That may have been true before the last AfD but we can no longer act as if it has no issues — there is no longer a consensus to 'keep' the article, therefore their comments are perfectly neutral, reasonable, and in line with what the admin panel ruled in late 2021. Davide King (talk) 00:25, 23 January 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
They also did not 'threat' anything, they simply stated the obvious, something that Levivich also discussed as a possibililty to resolve the dispute, and admin's attention was again called at AN; of course, you are free to disagree, but I think there is no issue with their comments. Davide King (talk) 00:33, 23 January 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I have changed my vote to help to achieve consensus. This is now C - Yes, 11; No, 9. I should say though this is a very poorly phrased RfC, where different participants have interpreted the meaning of options differently. For example, option B say "The article should discuss the concept of a correlation between mass killings and communist governments...", but the page already does that, so it is not clear what exactly changes have been proposed. Option B does not say "The article should discuss only the concept...", and probably for a good reason: it can not discuss any concept without providing the underlying factual materials for different countries - as the current version of this page does. My very best wishes (talk) 00:49, 23 January 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
You know what's funny? I was the last person to !vote in this RFC before the RFC tag was removed. When I voted on Jan 7, it had already been quiet since the end of Dec (2nd-to-last votes were Dec 28 or Dec 30). I already thought I might have been voting in a "done" RFC, because to me, the outcome was already clear at that point. This RFC has sat quiet for almost a month, and it's amazing that some editor--who have been editing this page every day during that month--have only now realized that the RFC should be reopened, or their vote changed, or their friend should come vote, etc. What an interesting chronology of events we have here. Levivich 01:04, 23 January 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
The discussion above is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.
I never reallyu figured why. Genocide in several continents is a key part of the history of capitalism. Dimadick (talk) 15:10, 16 October 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
That topic could probably be supported as there are actual sources about the connection between capitalism and genocide. But not all mass killings are genocides and not all genocide includes mass killings. TFD (talk) 16:30, 16 October 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
The RFC above was closed almost a year ago, but very little was done to actually implement it. By my reading, the conclusion is that we should remove / rewrite the sections on specific regimes, removing any sources, and anything cited to them, that does not discuss the broad topic of mass-killings under communist regimes as a whole (ie. any sources that discuss a particular regime without relating it to the discussion of whether mass-killing is a fundamental aspect of Communism.) Individual examples can remain only when cited to sources discussing them in relation to the broader topic. To be clear, this means that the bulk of the sections "Soviet Union", "People's Republic of China", "Cambodia", and "Other states" need to go, as well as all subsections - the consensus was clear that we wouldn't have those sections and would avoid citing sources that only talk about specific regimes without relating them to the core topic, yet currently, by my reading, nearly half the article is still goes against that. Is there anything in those that particularly needs to be retained (ie. because the source directly relates it to the topic of Communist regimes as a whole?) --Aquillion (talk) 15:17, 16 October 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I must admit, I didn't expect this page's many discussions to come to a virtual halt, once the RFC was closed. GoodDay (talk) 00:19, 17 October 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
All right, I've removed the sections in question for now. Given the drastic nature of the removal I imagine some people might have objections, but it seems to follow directly from the RFC conclusion and at least it will get the ball rolling; anyone who wants to retain stuff from there can edit it to be compliant with that by elaborating on how the sourcing discusses its relation to the larger topic. Other stuff could possibly be moved to sub-articles specific to those regimes, though I think in most cases we already have them and they're already fairly complete. --Aquillion (talk) 07:35, 17 October 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
@Ficaia: Since you reverted, you'll have to explain in detail how you feel retaining those sections is compliant with the RFC's outcome, which clearly said we should avoid focusing on individual regimes. The closing statement says that Individual regimes should be mentioned only when used as evidence [for the potential correlation between mass killings and communist regimes] by specific sources; editors must avoid naming specific governments when sources do not cite them as examples as this constitutes original research via improper synthesis. Those sections basically don't mention the correlation at all. If you insist on going over this sentence by sentence we can, but since this is implementing the RFC's outcome I'm going to remove it again if you don't provide a more clear rationale for how retaining those sections is compliant with it; I know removing such a large amount of text at once is a shocking, but we need to move forwards and right now nobody has provided an explanation for how having such sections could avoid violating the RFC. --Aquillion (talk) 08:12, 17 October 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
From the RfC: "Individual regimes should be mentioned only when used as evidence by specific sources; editors must avoid naming specific governments when sources do not cite them ..."
Clearly a lot of the information you removed is mentioned by specific sources, but you just removed everything. 𝕱𝖎𝖈𝖆𝖎𝖆 (talk) 08:25, 17 October 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I think you are reading the RFC outcome out of context. Its outcome is that the article should not focus on specific regimes or governments (an article which discussed the wider concept rather than individual regimes), with individual regimes only mentioned in the context of the arguments that cite them; it is not enough for something to be mentioned in some source somewhere in any context - it can only be included here in the context of a specific argument about the correlation between mass killings and communist regimes. Which specific parts of the existing regional sections do you feel directly discuss that, so I can retain it when removing the rest? If there are parts which you feel could be rewritten to reflect that, you are going to have to actually commit to doing that rewrite, since the RFC is clear. I want to actually move forwards on implementing the outcome, so you will need to point to specific sentences, in the sections in question, that you feel are directly about the correlation between mass killings and communist regimes, or commit to rewriting things so they are complaint with the RFC's outcome, in cases where the argument is not currently stated in the article but could be reasonably pulled out of a source and placed there. --Aquillion (talk) 08:32, 17 October 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Can you be more specific? That is, could you provide the specific quote from that section that you feel discusses a sourced argument about the relationship between Communism and mass killings, relying on a source that directly makes that connection? I read the section carefully before deleting it; I didn't delete it blindly. I didn't see anything in there that discussed a cited argument about the relationship between communism and mass killings. And more broadly, part of the point of the RFC's conclusion is that we need to avoid WP:SYNTH - it being something you feel "treats on the historiography" isn't enough. Per the RFC, the purpose of this article is specifically not to be a general histography of all mass killings in any Communist regimes; it is solely for discussing sourced arguments or threads of scholarly thought about the connection between mass killings and Communist regimes. It is completely unacceptable (and obviously WP:OR) to use the historiography to argue for such a connection. If you want to say "X people died in Y, and this implies that there is a connection between Communism and mass killings" (which is the topic of the article), you need a source specifically stating that; you cannot include something in this article that just says "X people died in Y" without that context. Reading the section you pointed to again, I'm still not seeing anything in that section directly discussing the connection between Communism and mass-killings, so unless you can point to a specific quote from there I'll remove it again. (Of course, if you think it can be rewritten to focus on such an argument from one of the sources, by all means - but you have to actually perform that rewrite, or point to a specific sentence where it directly discusses the article topic. If your point is that it could be used elsewhere, then use it elsewhere, don't just restore stuff that violates the RFC as it stands.) EDIT: I've tagged that specific section as off-topic per the above (although obviously I feel that the entire regime-specific sections are off-topic, we can start small to try and work out how to approach the rest.) Can you explain how you feel it's on-topic for an article about the scholarly debate over the connection between Communism and mass killings, without delving into any sort of WP:OR? --Aquillion (talk) 09:07, 17 October 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
This source is clearly looking at the Chinese example in the context of "communist" doctrines on page 98 and elsewhere, and is cited in that section I linked above. 𝕱𝖎𝖈𝖆𝖎𝖆 (talk) 09:50, 17 October 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
It says the Cultural Revolution "cannot be explained by the communist doctrine of a classless society." It then briefly explains how some writers have attempted to make a link. But none of that is mentioned in this article and p. 98 isn't cited. There is nothing in the section IOW that should be kept. If you want to include the author's analysis, then you need to blow it up and start again. TFD (talk) 13:23, 17 October 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
If the community voted for the option "B", then @Aquillion:'s action was completely justified. The "article should cover the academic debate on the potential correlation between mass killings and communist regimes as documented in reliable sources", which means that:
All facts should be presented only in a context of those debates, for the article is NOT a "summary style" article for the topic "mass killings under communist regimes". Therefore, all facts, figures etc must be removed, and they should be re-introduced only if we demonstrate that they may serve as an illustration for one or another aspect of some scholarly dispute.
The article must clearly state that its topic is not some set of events, but various controversies and debates about those events, which means the whole style should be changed.
In my opinion, Aquillion's interpretation of the RfC's outcome is correct, so anyone who restores the material removed by them is acting against consensus.--Paul Siebert (talk) 02:42, 18 October 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
In addition, this revert is made under a totally wrong pretext. Yes, all this material is reasonably well sourced. However, per WP:ONUS, does not guarantee inclusion, and this RfC demonstrated that that material, despite the fact that it is sourced, does not belong to this article. I think it should be removed. We must respect the outcome of this RfC. Paul Siebert (talk) 02:48, 18 October 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I concur. Sometimes the "broadsword approach" is the necessary first step before we can move on to more refined tools. XOR'easter (talk) 18:49, 19 October 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]
All right, since almost everyone seems to agree that the removal reflects the RFC's outcome, I've re-deleted it. Note that the relevant text is of course still in the history and anyone who wants to pull stuff out of it and integrate it back into the article in a way that reflects the RFC's outcome is welcome to do so; I just feel we need to move forwards, which requires taking it out until / unless someone has come up with a way to change bits in ways that reflect the RFC and avoid WP:OR / WP:SYNTH. I deleted the "Legal status and prosecutions" section as well, since it seems to be largely a list of country / regime-specific facts rather than arguments; there's, however, a few sentences in there that might be salvageable (In 1992, Barbara Harff wrote that no communist country or governing body has ever been convicted of genocide. In 1993, the United States Congress unanimously passed Public Law 103–199, which is current United States law that says communism is "responsible for the deaths of over 100,000,000 victims."[improper synthesis?] In his 1999 foreword to The Black Book of Communism, Martin Malia wrote: "Throughout the former Communist world, moreover, virtually none of its responsible officials has been put on trial or punished. Indeed, everywhere Communist parties, though usually under new names, compete in politics.") but I'm unsure where to put them; it seems like a disconnected list of opinions, albeit possibly relevant opinions in this case. Also, the "memorials and museums" section is perhaps largely tangential (it doesn't really address the debate at all; it just seems to list a bunch of memorials and museums that exist), though I didn't delete it just yet. --Aquillion (talk) 22:54, 20 October 2022 (UTC)Reply[reply]