Gareth Jones

[bas relief by Oleh Lesiuk]



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Complete Soviet Articles & Background Information


Précis of Gareth's Soviet Famine Articles


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Tell Them We Are Starving




Eyewitness to the Holodomor



More Than Grain of Truth



Manchukuo Incident





'Are you Listening NYT?'  U.N. Speech - Nov 2009


Gareth Recognised at Cambridge - Nov 2009


Reporter and the Genocide - Rome, March 2009


Order of Freedom Award -Nov 2008


Premiere of 'The Living' Documentary Kyiv - Nov 2008


Gareth Jones 'Famine' Diaries - Chicago 2008


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St. Patrick's Cathedral, New York, 

Speech Delivered by Nigel Colley
 for the Holodomor Panykhida
 on Saturday 19th November 2005

st_patricks_new_york.jpg (428542 bytes)

Gareth Jones - Final Victim of the 1933 Holodomor...

To the list of the millions of Ukrainian peasants who lost their lives due to Stalin's man-made famine, the name of the only Welshman, my great uncle, Gareth Jones should perhaps now be added…

Newly discovered evidence at the British Public Records Office points the finger of blame for Gareth's murder in 1935 in the direction of Moscow, quite probably in retribution for his international exposure of the Holodomor… and whose only crime was his dogged pursuit of truth…

Some of you will know that Gareth made an off-limits Ukrainian trek in the snows of early March 1933, stopping off in villages along the way to talk with peasants of their tales of woe and despair.

Immediately on leaving the Soviet Union in late March 1933, he issued a press statement in Berlin publicising that the USSR was in the grips of a famine far worse than in 1921. Credence was given to his version of events, by virtue of his position as Foreign Affairs Advisor to the former British, World War One Prime Minister, Lloyd George …

Nevertheless, he was branded a liar by the Soviet sycophantic press and snubbed by the British Establishment…

However, two years later in January 1935, American press baron, Randolph Hearst personally afforded a carte blanche opportunity for Gareth to repeat his tales of Ukraine during the height of the famine in the Hearst papers. These hitherto and virtually forgotten articles, almost airbrushed out of existence, probably represent one of the most vitriolic attacks on the Stalinist Regime of the time, a series in which he quite possibly first coins the phrase 'man-made famine' in his description of Stalin's atrocities.

Briefly, as time does not permit, the following paragraphs contain a flavour of these articles in which he wrote:

I was determined to fill a rucksack with food, walk in the villages and see for myself how the peasants were really living.

But it was a difficult task. Journalists were not even allowed to go to the countryside.

The only thing to do was to take a ticket to a big city and drop out of the train in a small station without any one noticing me. I thus bought a ticket to Kharkov in the Ukraine and before long I found myself in a dark-smelling, wooden train bound for the south.

When the train stopped in a small station, I said to myself , "Here is my chance to slip off and enter Russia's no man's land."

The first words I heard were ominous, for an old peasant woman moving with difficulty along the track answered my greeting with that phrase, "Hleba nietu" ("there is no bread").

The next village I came upon had an unearthly quietness about it and it was long before I came upon any living being.

From a peasant I heard the same wail: "There is no bread." And he added another phrase which I was destined to hear frequently, and that was: "Vse pukhly," or "all are swollen."

"Come and stay with us." They took me to a hut, and there I noticed crawling on a bed a child with a stomach which was swollen.

The eyes of the child were strange, for there seemed to be a glassy film-like substance in them.

I asked the woman what was the matter, and she replied with one word: "golod," which means "FAMINE."

Yes, famine was raging in that village as it was throughout that district.

I turned to the old farmers and said: "Why has this scourge come upon you?"

One of them stroked his beard and scratched his head and replied: "It is because the Communists have cursed God. They have tried to banish God from our midst, and the punishment has come in the form of death. When Holy Mother Russia believed in God, the fields became a mass of gold and the cattle and horses multiplied.

"But now the revenge has come for all the blasphemy and the evil which has been preached."

But I was buoyed up by the desire to solve a problem - why was there a famine in one of the richest wheat growing countries in the world? And to each peasant I asked; "Potchemu golod? - Why is there a famine?

The peasants replied: "It is not the fault of nature. It is the fault of the Communists.

"The Communists have turned us into slaves and we shall not be happy until we have our own land, our own cows and our own wheat again."

Within an hour, I made my way further towards the south. In each home in which the peasants entertained me with that warm-heartedness for which the Russians are renowned, they would pray me to forgive them that they had no food to offer, and I would look upon the children with their distorted limbs and feel the tragedy of that man-made famine which had the country in its grip.

"Do not pity us," some of the peasants would say, "but pity those who live down around Poltava and more to the south. There, whole villages are empty, for all have died, and in many communities half have perished."

For Gareth to have embarrassed the Soviets by exposing the Holodomor once, at the height of the famine in 1933, he may have expected to face their wrath and to be called a liar, but twice, in this series of vitriolic articles in the Hearst press, and calling it a 'man-made famine' - Sealed his fate.

Even in 1934, in a letter to a friend before setting off on his final journey from Great Britain, he jokingly wrote:

"Alas! You will be very amused to hear that the inoffensive little 'Joneski' has achieved the dignity of being a marked man on the black list of the O.G.P.U. and is barred from entering the Soviet Union. I hear that there is a long list of crimes which I have committed under my name in the secret police file in Moscow and funnily enough espionage is said to be among them… As a matter of fact Foreign Commissar Litvinoff sent a special cable from Moscow to the Soviet Embassy in London to tell them to make the strongest of complaints to Mr. Lloyd George about me."

But did 'little Joneski' realise how marked a man he was?

In July 1935, Gareth during his fact-finding tour of the Far East had been invited by a German Journalist Dr Herbert Mueller to take an adventurous trip into the wilds of Inner Mongolia to see what the Japanese army were up to… Their transport was generously afforded by a company called Wostwag…

Gareth wrote to his parents, "There will be a car at our disposal… Absolutely safe country, no bandits." Unfortunately, this was not to be the case… He and his travelling companion Mueller, were kidnapped - Mueller was released unharmed after just two days in captivity, but Gareth was found shot two weeks later on the eve of his 30th birthday.

Though I have known for over a year that the vehicle from which Gareth was kidnapped by Chinese bandits, belonged to a trading front of the Soviet NKVD and whose local manager Adam Purpiss, was considered by the US intelligence to be, "one of the shrewdest and cleverest men in the Far East…"  but more importantly he was at one time associated with the Cheka, the Soviet Secret Police."

What I discovered by chance only last week at the British Public Records Office in London was that his travelling companion, Dr Herbert Mueller, was a known-Communist, had stayed at a Soviet consulate in China under the alias of 'Gordon', but most tellingly was a representative in China of the Third International, also known as the Comintern - a Soviet organization whose purpose was to fight, "by all available means, including armed force, for the overthrow of the international bourgeoisie and for the creation of an international Soviet republic."

Indeed the British had an active secret dossier on Mueller for 34 years…

It is my belief, that though I don't yet have definitive proof, that these two Soviet secret agents were directly behind Gareth's murder, it now looks more than likely… and Gareth's only crime was his thirst for knowledge and his pursuit of truth…

Finally, this year marks the 100th anniversary of my great uncle's birth.

Let us please celebrate the courage and honesty of an undoubted hero from Wales, who may well have been the last victim of the Holodomor….

Above Hearst Newspaper Sources - New York American / Los Angeles Examiner

Saturday 12 January 1935. "Russia's Starvation"

Sunday 13 January 1935. "There is No Bread"

Monday 14 January 1935. "Reds Let Peasants Starve"

Sources for Soviet NKVD Background on Wostwag and Herbert Muller from British Intelligence:


Herbert Muller

Click here for Nigel Colley's speech at St Patrick's in November 2004 entitled. "The Truth Matters"

Original Research, Content & Site Design by Nigel Linsan Colley. Copyright © 2001-17 All Rights Reserved Original document transcriptions by M.S. Colley.Click here for Legal Notices.  For all further details email:  Nigel Colley or Tel: (+44)  0796 303  8888