70th Anniversary of Operation North
from the Soviet Repression
Operation North, The Whys and Wherefores
What was Operation North and how did it differ from other Stalinist deportations? What drew the attention of the Soviet leadership to Jehovah’s Witnesses? Why did Jehovah’s Witnesses need to worship underground? What grounds for deportation were presented to the Head of State for consideration? What measures were taken in the USSR against Jehovah’s Witnesses before Operation North? What did Stalin and his government hope to accomplish by deporting Jehovah’s Witnesses?
Operation North, What was it like?
Where did the name “Operation North” come from? Is there any proof that Stalin made the decision in person? At what levels of authority was Operation North carried out? How many soldiers and officers took part in the roundups? How many towns and villages were affected? How did the operational groups know whom to gather up? What if a family member was not at home? What if someone was extremely elderly? Was it possible for someone to remain in their home territory? Why were 1,400 more individuals exiled than was planned? How many convoy trains were there? Where were Jehovah’s Witnesses actually deported to? How long did the train journey take? Were the exiles given food? What was the general mood of the exiles?
Operation North, Consequences and Conclusions
Is there a list of train stations at which the exiles were dropped off? How was it decided what work the exiles would perform and where? What accommodation and work were given to the exiles? Was their labor voluntary or compulsory? Did they have the right to move about freely? How did the local population treat the newcomers? How did Stalin’s death affect the plight of the repressed? What did the KGB do about Jehovah’s Witnesses after their deportation? Why was the number of Jehovah’s Witnesses in Siberia increasing? When were Jehovah’s Witnesses given the right to leave Siberia? Why could they not return to their native villages? How did Operation North ultimately affect the establishment of the religion of Jehovah’s Witnesses in the USSR? Have the lists of all those exiled been recovered in our time?