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During the Russian Civil War (1917–23), thousands of Russians integral to the Volunteer Army and the White Movement fought the Bolshevik Red Army. Cossack Hosts (of which there were eleven at the start of the First World War, 1914–18) composed much of the White Movement, and so were the strongest counter-revolutionary force against the Bolshevik Government. During the Civil War Leon Trotsky imposed Decossackization on the Cossacks, leading to many, especially the Don Cossacks and the Kuban Cossacks, to escape Russia for the Balkans where they established the Russian All-Military Union, the ROVS.
The Cossacks who remained in Russia endured more than a decade of continual repression, e.g. the portioning of the lands of the Terek, Ural, and Semirechye hosts, forced cultural assimilation (i.e. the Ukrainization of the Kuban Host, and repression of the Russian Orthodox Church), deportation, and, ultimately, the Soviet famine of 1932-1933. The repressions ceased and some privileges were restored after publication of And Quiet Flows the Don (1934) by Mikhail Sholokhov.
Read more about this topic: Repatriation Of Cossacks After World War II
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