“Killing little Romanov children was justified,” says founder of democratic socialist magazine

New York, October 5, 2020

Photo: mtdata.ru Photo: mtdata.ru     

Bhaskar Sunkara, the founder of Jacobin magazine, the top publication among democratic socialists, angered many with a now-deleted tweet over the weekend in which he declared that the brutal slaying of the holy Romanov children was justified.

Sunkara launched Jacobin in 2010. In 2016, Vox termed it “perhaps the most relevant and important publication of the American political left today,” stating that, “In 2016 it’s bigger than ever, thanks to Bernie Sanders.” Its website receives more than 2 million hits a month.

Sunkara also writes for Vice, The New York Times, The Guardian, and The Washington Post, among other outlets. He has appeared on programs on PBS, MSNBC, and FX, and this year, he was named to Fortune magazine’s “40 Under 40” list in the Government and Politics category. He has also served as vice-chair of the Democratic Socialists of America, which has successfully gotten two candidates elected to Congress.

In a conversation with fact-checker Alex Colston, in which Colston declares that people should want President Trump, recently found to have contracted the coronavirus, to die, Sunakara replies: “Wishing death upon other humans is generally frowned upon. Even the ones that seem basically irredeemable.”

When Colston responds that President Trump is guilty of America’s coronavirus deaths and that “maybe justice demands more than being sentimental about Trump’s humanity,” Sunkara responds: “The question isn’t what we think justice demands. I think killing little Romanov children was justified. But it’s not surprising why these views are controversial given most people’s ethical and moral frameworks.”


In response to Sunkara’s callous statement, the Russian Imperial Union-Order East Coast quoted a short account of the murder of the Royal Martyr Grand Duchess Anastasia, of which Sunkara approves: “She kept running about and hid herself behind a pillow, on her body were 32 wounds. The Grand Duchess Anastasia Nicholaevna fell down in a faint. When they began to examine her she began to scream wildly and they dispatched her with bayonets and butt ends of their rifles."

In his article on Sunkara’s comments, “Child Regicide and Jacobin,” Rod Dreher quotes from Robert Massie’s account of the murders in his classic Nicholas and Alexandra:

When all were assembled, Yurovsky reentered the room, followed by his entire Cheka squad carrying revolvers. He stepped forward and declared quickly, “Your relations have tried to save you. They have failed and we must now shoot you.”

Nicholas, his arm still around Alexis, began to rise from his chair to protect his wife and son. He had just time to say “What…?” before Yurovsky pointed his revolver directly at the Tsar’s head and fired. Nicholas died instantly. At this signal, the entire squad of executioners began to shoot. Alexandra had time only to raise her hand and make the sign of the cross before she too was killed by a single bullet. Olga, Tatiana and Marie, standing behind their mother, were hit and died quickly. Botkin, Kharitonov and Trupp also fell in the hail of bullets. Demidova, the maid, survived the first volley, and rather than reload, the executioners took rifles from the next room and pursued her, stabbing with bayonets. Screaming, running back and forth along the wall like a trapped animal, she tried to fend them off with the cushion. At last she fell, pierced by bayonets more than thirty times. Jimmy the spaniel was killed when his head was crushed by a rifle butt.

The room, filled with the smoke and stench of gunpowder, became suddenly quiet. Blood was running in streams from the bodies on the floor. Then there was a movement and a low groan. Alexis, lying on the floor still in the arms of the Tsar, feebly moved his hand to clutch his father’s coat. Savagely, one of the executioners kicked the Tsarevich in the head with his heavy boot. Yurovsky stepped up and fired two shots into the boy’s ear. Just at that moment, Anastasia, who had only fainted, regained consciousness and screamed. With bayonets and rifle butts, the entire band turned on her. In a moment, she too lay still. It was ended.

As Rod Dreher writes “The founding editor of the leading intellectual voice of the American Left believes this was all fine. This is who he is. This is who they are.”

Sunkara, however, declares: “History has absolved me. No more tsars.”


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Parviz Shushtari10/6/2020 5:22 pm
Grew up in Iran reading and learning bitter history of Russo Persian wars of early to mid 1800s all instigated by the ambitious Romanovs. So no love lost there. That aside Mr.B.Sunkara over a century after the fact you still justify child regicide? and for what cause? cracking a few eggs to make omelets?. If I didn't know any better I'd erroneously surmised you were either a communist scum or a democratic socialist scum. Please forgive me Mr. Bhaskar Sunkara. I didn't mean to get personal and insult a crumb-bum like your good self by calling you those unjustifiably bad names.
Michael Pastukhov10/6/2020 12:48 pm
Tim! Now you know one!
OrthodoxNet10/6/2020 1:57 am
Modern communists are just as murderous, violent, and remorseless as the old communists. Once they have power and neutralize the legal system they will imprison, torture, and murder as many conservatives and non-communists as possible, just as they have done in every single country they took over in the last one hundred years.
Mikhail10/5/2020 11:10 pm
For those of you who are familiar with the French Revolution, the blood thirsty murderer named Maximilien Robespierre, belong to a group called, "The Jacobin Club". It is no coincident that the magazine is named after them. If the Americans elect Joe Biden...they will usher in a government of Marxists. Sadly, many of the young people are not aware of this because their teachers and professors have been brainwashing them for generations. America may be heading for persecution and martyrdom.
Michael10/5/2020 9:26 pm
The reality is that in the West, both the left and the right have always believed that the Romanov murders were justified. Mr. Sunkara just accidentally said out loud what the entire Western political establishment believes. The right laments the fact that the murderers were communists, but not their methods as such. If they had supported freedom and democracy instead, it would have been fine. After all, if it's ok to murder a few children with bombs in Iraq for the greater good of bringing democracy to the land, why is it not ok to murder a few children with bayonets in Russia? Or think about how many people in the US - on both sides of the political spectrum - are willing to say that the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki were justified. Murder, even mass murder, is fine when it is done for the right reasons. Or when you can argue that worse things would have happened if you hadn't pulled the trigger. That is the dominant secular worldview.
Alex10/5/2020 8:38 pm
Mister Bhaskar Sunkara, you are a despicable no-life, low-life. May God have mercy on your wicked soul.
Tim10/5/2020 6:19 pm
I'm getting very sick and tired of the politicking going on here. Lies. Almost every Democratic Socialist society is still a monarchy and with an Established Church: Norway, the Netherlands, Denmark, Sweden, etc. I know of no Democratic Socialist who would support violent revolution let alone regicide. Maybe someone should do a little research before leveling skewed information in order to slander a political movement they don't like? For instance just because "Jacobin" calls itself "Democratic Socialist" doesn't mean it is. Is the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church really "fully Orthodox but in communion with the See of Rome" as they claim? Yes or no? Thats what they say so it must be true, right? This is a new low
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