NATURAL DUTIES OF THE POPULATION OF EASTERN GALICIA AND NORTHERN BUKOVYNA UNDER CONDITIONS OF THE RUSSIAN OCCUPATION (1914 – 1917)
Keywords:World War I, World War II, Eastern Galicia, Bukovyna, the Russian Empire, Galicia-Bukovyna Military Governor-General, the Russian occupation, natural duties.
The purpose of the article is to study the mechanism of establishment and organization of natural duties by the Russian occupation authorities in the occupied territories of Eastern Galicia and Northern Bukovyna during World War I and the attitude of the local population to the problem of performing these natural duties. The methodological basis of a scientific research is a set of general scientific and special research methods. Special historical methods characteristic of socio-economic history have been widely used: historical-comparative, retrospective, diachronic (periodization), historical-systemic, historical-typological, historical-genetic and the method of a historical economic analysis. The scientific novelty of the study consists in the following: for the first time in historiography on the materials of the archival documents, introduced by the author into a scientific circulation, there has been analysed the mechanism of natural duties (labour duties), organized by the Russian occupation authorities in the occupied territories of Eastern Galicia and Northern Bukovyna during World War I. The Conclusions. Thus, the natural duties imposed by the Russian occupation authorities during World War I were a heavy burden to the local population of Eastern Galicia and Northern Bukovyna, bankrupt and devastated by war. The natural duties were one of the elements of the financial policy of the country-occupant. Extremely difficult, especially for women and adolescents, were the natural duties in the form of trench work, deforestation, restoration of rail and land routes, etc. The natural duties were extremely difficult for livestock owners, as a result of which the local population was forced to get rid of horses, which negatively affected the quality of agricultural work and worsened the level of food supply in the region. At the same time, the Russian occupation authorities practised paying low salary, which was not even always paid. The performance of the natural duties by the local population was coercive, which was exacerbated by the imposition of severe liability in the form of high fines or imprisonment (arrest). At the same time, it was advantageous for the occupation authorities to exploit the local population, because during the war the exploitation allowed them to save significant financial resources.Having done a comparative analysis of the occupation authorities actions, established in the lands of Eastern Galicia and Northern Bukovyna, – the Russian occupation authorities (during World War I) and the German occupation authorities (during World War II), we concluded that in both cases the local population was subjected to severe coercion measures and had to work in the interests of the occupation military forces and civilian authorities. According to the author, the whole set of the natural duties should be divided into two groups, taking into account the peculiarities of establishment: military occupation natural duties, civil occupation natural duties. In general, under conditions of both world wars, the process of introduction of natural duties for the needs of both the army and the civilian occupation authorities by the conquering countries – the Russian Empire and the Nazi Germany – was characterized by many common features. Therefore, further research requires the establishment and collection of taxes, fees and other non-tax payments from the population of Western Ukraine by various occupation regimes during the First and Second World War I and World War II. In our opinion, a comparative analysis of these problems will be especially important and perspective for scientific consideration.
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