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January 13, 1989

Man-made Death

Author Affiliations

Toano, Va

Toano, Va

JAMA. 1989;261(2):248. doi:10.1001/jama.1989.03420020100034

To the Editor.—  In enumerating the causes of man-made deaths, Mr Rhodes1 omits the second most common cause (after war) of man-made deaths in this century: the incompetent centralized management of the economy. The peacetime mortality caused by the Great Leap Forward in China (20 to 30 million excess deaths) and the collectivization of the Ukraine (8 to 12 million excess deaths) dwarfs the number of man-made deaths due to guerilla conflicts, political repression, torture, and capital punishment.