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The Winter War, Eloise Engle and Lauri Paananen

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The Winter War, Eloise Engle and Lauri Paananen

The Winter War, Eloise Engle and Lauri Paananen

This is a classic account of the Winter War, the conflict between Finland and the Soviet Union that helped convince the Germans that the Red Army would be an easy opponent. Instead of the easy victory that Stalin had expected, it took the Red Army over 100 days to force the Finns to make peace, and even then the Soviet Union was forced to offer comparatively generous terms (in that Finland survived as an independent state).

The book is written almost entirely from the Finnish point of view, perhaps inevitably given that it was written in the 1970s at a time when Soviet archives were closed and Soviet accounts of the war of dubious accuracy. Eyewitness accounts are almost entire Finnish, as is the narrative.

The book could do with more maps - there is one good overview map of Finland, and some useful maps showing key battles, but I'd have also liked to see a map showing the areas claimed by the Soviets before the war and the areas actually taken at the end of the conflict. There is a good section of pictures, and some contemporary Finnish cartoons that give some idea of the mood in the country during the war.

This is an excellent account of this war, albeit largely written from one point of view (rather than bias), and the focus on the Finnish experience also means that we get a good idea of the impact of the war on the country.

Chapters
1 - 'It is not possible for you [in Finland] to remain neutral'
2 - November 30, 1939: 'Our borders are burning'
3 - Helsinki Aflame
4 - Marshal Mannerheim and the 'Blitz' at the Karelian Isthmus
5 - Russian Panzers - and the State Liquor Board - Go to War
6 - The Frozen Hell of Talvisota
7 - Russian Bombs - and the Big Sympathy War Rages Abroad
8 - The Air War
9 - The First Major Russian Offensive in Karelia: On-the-Job Training for the Red Army
10 - The Karelia Defenders Counterattack
11 - In the Northern Wilderness
12 - Inside the Pincer Claws
13 - The Motti Battles
14 - Timoshenko's Offensive
15 - The Terrible Decision
16 - The Miracle of Kollaa
17 - Finland in Mourning
Epilogue: Snow Covers the Tracks
Appendices
A - Assistance from Winter War Participants
B - Help from Abroad
C - Comparative Strength and Structure of the Finnish and Russian Division
D - Location of Russian and Finnish Divisions
E - Understanding Place Names in Finland

Author: Eloise Engle and Lauri Paananen
Edition: Paperback
Pages: 336
Publisher: Stackpole Books
Year: 2014 edition of 1973 original



The Winter War The Russo-finnish Conflict, 1939-1940

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The Winter War The Soviet Attack on Finland 1939-1940 by Eloise Engle and Lauri Paananen

The Winter War The Soviet Attack on Finland 1939-1940 by Eloise Engle and Lauri Paananen is one of the few books in English devoted to the Winter war the campaign between Finland and the Soviet Union in the early stages of the second world war. This directly led to Finland's involvement and the continuation war against the Soviet Union when Nazi Germany attack the USSR.

The book describes the political maturation that led to the outbreak of war as well as the defense tactics of Finland's forces. One thing I learned was that the famous Molotov cocktail was actually mass-produced by Finland's liquor board.

most of the sources drawn upon our translated this gives access to the English reader to information otherwise unavailable. A good book on a relatively an obscure campaign. The book could have perhaps been served by research in Finland's archives. I'm not sure if this was available in the 1970s when the book was originally written.


The winter war

The Red Army was ill-equipped, poorly led, and unable to deal with the Finnish terrain and winter weather. Its casualties constituted nearly two percent of the nation’s population. Finnish reservists leave their homes and go to war. Some of the books, like the legendary ”Kollaa kestää” by Erkki Palolampi which described the battles in the Kollaa front, soon became iconic. 30 November 1939 - 13 March 1940. Years of international tension and aggressive expansion by Fascist Italy and Nazi Germany culminated in the German invasion of Poland on 1 September 1939. One of these was the claim of the incapability of the Swedish speaking soldiers of th… On November 30, 1939, following a series of ultimatums and failed negotiations, the Soviet Red Army launched an invasion of Finland with half a million troops. It is based on The Winter War, a novel by Antti Tuuri . ― William R. Trotter, A Frozen Hell: The Russo-Finnish Winter War of 1939-1940. For the Soviets, meanwhile, victory came at a heavy cost. Eric and fellow warrior Sara, raised as members of ice Queen Freya's army, try to conceal their forbidden love as they fight to survive the wicked intentions of … After Nazi Germany invaded Poland in September 1939, Russia attacked Finland in November 1939. It’s one of the millions of unique, user-generated 3D experiences created on Roblox. Buy Winter War 1939. The Winter War (Finnish: Talvisota) is a 1989 Finnish war film directed by Pekka Parikka, and based on the novel Talvisota by Antti Tuuri. $4.99 Add to Cart . Quotes Tagged “Winter War”. The film focuses on two farmers from the municipality of Kauhava in the province of Pohjanmaa/Ostrobothnia, brothers Martti and Paavo Hakala, serving in a Finnish platoon. Directed by Pekka Parikka. The 'Molotov Cocktail' proved to be a primitive but effective anti-tank weapon against Soviet forces. The Battles of the Winter War. New Winter War main menu backgrounds (see Known Issues) New daily missions for new paths and powers. Citing concerns about a potential attack by the Germans, Stalin demanded that Finland’s border with Russia be moved back 16 miles along the Karelian Isthmus to create a buffer zone around the city of Leningrad. $79.55 : $4.99: Paperback $9.93 28 Used from $4.99 1 New from $79.55 Previous page. With Taneli Mäkelä, Vesa Vierikko, Timo Torikka, Heikki Paavilainen. The Winter War proved a costly victory for the Soviets. The Winter War may have also carried important consequences for World War II. On November 30, 1939, following a series of ultimatums and failed negotiations, the Soviet Red Army launched an invasion of Finland with half a million troops. The Winter War . Print length. However, it was only a matter of time before the balance of power tipped in the Soviet Union’s favour. In these the war was described as a heroic battle of a unified nation in the harsh circumstances of the Finnish nature. Their guerilla tactics were only aided by the freezing Finnish winter, which bogged the Soviets down and made their soldiers easy to spot against snowy terrain. Russia’s feud with its Nordic neighbor began in 1939, when Soviet leader Joseph Stalin looked to expand his influence over Eastern Europe. The Soviet's poor performance in the Winter War led Hitler to believe that Stalin's … The World War had not yet directly affected France, the UK or the United States, the Winter War was the only real fighting in Europe at that time and thus held major world interest. In February 1940, following one of the largest artillery bombardments since World War I, the Soviets renewed their onslaught and overran the Finnish defenses on the Karelian Isthmus. “One Soviet general, looking at a map of the territory Russia had acquired on the Karelian Isthmus, is said to have remarked: "We have won just about enough ground to bury our dead”. The Huntsman: Winter's War 2016 Movie BluRay EXTENDED Dual Audio Hindi Eng 400mb 480p 1.2GB 720p 3GB 9GB 1080p As two evil sisters prepare to conquer the land, two renegades—Eric the Huntsman, who aided Snow White in defeating Ravenna in Snowwhite and the Huntsman, and his forbidden lover, Sara—set out to stop them. Less than two years before the Soviet Union faced off against Nazi Germany during World War II, it waged a bloody war with another adversary: the tiny nation of Finland. The Winter War was a military conflict between the Soviet Union and Finland. But if you see something that doesn't look right, click here to contact us! The Finns refused, as this was sovereign land. Russo-Finnish War, also called Winter War, (November 30, 1939–March 12, 1940), war waged by the Soviet Union against Finland at the beginning of World War II, following the conclusion of the German-Soviet Nonaggression Pact (August 23, 1939). Episode 10: As mobile warfare came to an end in 1914, both the Allied and German armies built trenches as a means of defence. A Finnish ski patrol, lying in the snow on the outskirts of a wood in northern Finland, on the alert for Soviet troops, 12 January 1940. Called The Winter War, Mythgard's new expansion sees the addition of a whopping 140 cards, alongside a plethora of other content, including two brand-new paths and two new powers. Elsewhere on the frontier, Finnish ski troops used the rugged landscape to conduct hit-and-run attacks on isolated Soviet units. See all formats and editions Hide other formats and editions. The Winter War (30 November 1939 - 13 March 1940) was a conflict fought between the Soviet Union and Finland. While the Finns put up a spirited resistance during the winter of 1939-1940, their troops were ultimately no match for the sheer immensity of the Red Army. The Winter War. Though vastly outnumbered and outgunned in what became known as the “Winter War,” the Finns had the advantage of fighting on home turf. Hear about life in the trenches and the freezing conditions for soldiers. With Chris Hemsworth, Jessica Chastain, Charlize Theron, Emily Blunt. Casualties for the Finns numbered around 26,662 dead and 39,886 wounded. One Finnish sniper, a farmer named Simo Häyhä, was eventually credited with over 500 kills. 0 Reviews 2,500+ Ratings You might also like The war began when the Soviet Union attacked Finland on 30 November 1939 and it ended 13 March 1940. The epic battle of Finland against the Soviet Invasion . Finland believed the Soviet Union wanted to expand into its territory and the Soviet Union feared Finland would allow itself to be used as a base from which enemies could attack. Champions Tier will use Kismet to rank players. In the fighting, they lost approximately 126,875 dead or missing, 264,908 wounded, and 5,600 captured. The ‘Winter War’ of 1939-1940, also known as the Russo-Finnish War, saw the tiny Finnish Army take on the might of the Soviet Union’s gigantic Red Army. Kismet will only be at stake in ranked vs. ranked games. Winter War, un film de David Aboucaya FACT CHECK: We strive for accuracy and fairness. He also wanted the Finns to hand over several islands in the Gulf of Finland and lease the Soviets territory on the Hanko Peninsula for construction of a naval base. In addition, they lost around 2,268 tanks and armored cars. Led by Marshal Carl Gustaf Mannerheim, they hunkered down behind a network of trenches, concrete bunkers and field fortifications on the Karelian Isthmus and beat back repeated Soviet tank assaults. It began when the Soviet Union tried to invade Finland soon after the Invasion of Poland. "The Battles of the Winter War!" All Rights Reserved. Even the first Winter War myths were born. Regardez la bande annonce du film Winter War (Winter War Bande-annonce VF). Check out The Winter War. A faked border incident gave the Soviet Union the excuse to invade on 30 November 1939. Finland declared itself neutral at the start of the Second World War, but the Soviet Union demanded concessions. 0 likes. There was mistrust between the two countries. In 1939, two Finnish brothers are conscripted in the army to fight in the war between Finland and the Soviet Union. The treaty ending the Winter War forced Finland to cede 11 percent of its territory to the Soviet Union, yet the country maintained its independence and later squared off against Russia a second time during World War II. The Winter War (Talvisota) is a Finnish war film directed by Pekka Parikka. The film was released in Finland and Sweden on 30 November 1989, the 50th anniversary of the beginning of the Winter War, and in the United States in December 1989. The winter war by Eloise Paananen, Eloise Engle, Lauri Paananen, unknown edition, Read More on This Topic World War II: The Baltic states and the Russo-Finnish War, 1939–40 Order your units to follow, stay, or charge the enemy lines. Finland lost 10 percent of its territory and the Karelian Isthmus, whose remaining inhabitants took refuge in Finland rather than remain in place as Soviet subjects. With Finland involving merely mathematical equations would be a short one indeed Union and Finland terrain. 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The Winter War: The Soviet Attack on Finland, 1939-1940 by Eloise Engle and Lauri Paananen

There are a number of books available on the now little-known Winter War between Finland and the Soviet Union, which was fought from December 1939 to March during the Sitzkrieg, and just before the Nazi invasions of Norway and Denmark. Finland held off the Soviet onslaught for 100 days before superior numbers and equipment finally wore the Finnish defenders out. Meanwhile, the world debated whether to aid the Finns, occupied as they were with Nazi aggressions.

Written back in 1973 by a husband and wife team, this small (200 pages) book is a good but relatively lightweight (compared to other books on the subject) introduction to the Russo-Finnish War of 1939-1940. It seems to be the most commonly seen book on the Winter War and is the one you can find in most libraries. It’s well written, easy to follow and read and provides a clear broad (not detailed) outline of the causes and events leading up to the outbreak of the war, and then of the war itself. A lot of the diplomatic twists are lightly treated and the overall geo-political context of the war is more or less ignored. The book itself is very much a general outline and history of the Winter War, and this, it accomplishes well.

On the war itself, the writers use a lot of first-hand anecdotes (one of the books strong points – you will find a lot of first hand material here you will not see in any of the other books on the war) as well as a summation of Finnish tactics in the unequal struggle. The book is also well-illustrated with a good collection maps and an excellent selection of black and white photographs, as well as Finnish cartoons of the times (and having worked with a group of Finns at one time a few years ago and been introduced to some drinking games of theirs, the humor rings true to this reader). The writers do however seem to romanticize the Finnish struggle somewhat and play down somewhat the final weeks of the war where the Soviet forces reorganized themselves and launched a series of overwhelming attacks.

The Russo-Finnish war was both a prelude to, and a footnote in, the Second World War. The authors more or less make this clear and also do a good job of illustrating the vacillation of both the western countries and the other Scandinavian democracies as Finland was faced with first the threat, and then the application of, overwhelming military force from the Soviet Union. This book is told from the Finnish point of view and the heroism of the Finnish Armed Forces is evident in every page of this book – the small and ill-equipped Finnish Army killed or wounded one million Russian soldiers at a cost of 25,000 Finnish dead and 55,000 wounded.

The book is very much an overview, the strategic military situation is not presented overly well, and the battles on the Karelian isthmus are covered far more lightly than the less strategic but more (from the Finnish point of view) successful battles elsewhere. The political negotiations leading up to the war are treated fairly lightly (unavoidable in a book of this length) as is the conclusion of the war. Don’t let this put you off though – the book is a great and easy to read overview with some excellent photographs, some humor, and gives a very good portrayal of the Finnish attitude to the war – determined! Incidentally, one of the authors (Lauri Paananen) was a teenager at the time of the war and served in the Finnish Home Guard.

If you’re looking for books on the Winter War with rather more meat, I would recommend following up this book with Trotter’s “A Frozen Hell”, and also with Robert Edwards “White Death” as these cover the causes and political aspects of the war more thoroughly as well as providing a clearer strategic overview of the military situation. I would also mention that this book does not cover the Continuation War – where the Finns attempted to reclaim the land that the Soviet Union had stolen through aggression. To their credit, the Finns advanced only up to their borders and no further, refusing to join the German attack on Leningrad for example. In the end, Finland lost the war due to sheer disparity in size and resources, but they gave the Soviets enough of a bloody nose that at the end of WW2, Finland was the one country aligned with Germany that was not occupied.

All in all, an excellent introduction to the subject and well worth reading, as are a number of other books on the Winter War which I will review separately.


Finland and the Holocaust

Fire and Ice
The Winter War of Finland and Russia

Produced, directed and written by Ben Strout
A MasterWorks Media Production
DVD Format only : $20.00
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Letters from Karelia
Father, Brother, Comrade, Spy

Directed and Edited by Kelly Saxberg
A National Film Board of Canada Production
Available in DVD or VHS format (please specify) $29.00
*****************************


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Old Friends Strong Ties
Edited by Vilho Niitemaa
Hardcover, 347 pages, photos

$12.00
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Sow the Golden Seed
A History of the Finnish-American
Newspaper RAIVAAJA 1905-55

By John I. Kolehmainen
Hardcover 150 pages, photos

$ 19.95

Ancient Powers
of the
Baltic Sea
An Historical Outline Outline
by Matti Klinge

An Historical Outline Outlines the Historical background to the events in the Finnish epic, The Kalevala. It discusses the historical developments in Sweden-Finland, Estonia, and the entire Baltic Sea during the Middle Ages, when the sea united the countries border ing on it. Ancient Powers of the Baltic Sea is a significantly updated version in English translation of Professor Klinge's 1984 book Muinaisuutemme merivallat in Finnish and östersjövälden in Swedish. The volume was translated by Professor Ain Haas who is a prominent professor of sociology in the USA. Finland's pre-eminent historian, Matti Klinge has enhanced the book with 75 wonderful historical documents and maps as illustrations. The book has generated some degree of controversy and serves as a thoughtful, eye-opening contribution to Medieval history and the European connections of old. ISBN: 978-0-9783488-0-9

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The Winter War, Eloise Engle and Lauri Paananen - History

(WFYI is not responsible for incorrect links or information)

A Frozen Hell By William Trotter - more info

The Winter War By Eloise Engle & Lauri Paananen - more info

Mannerheim: Marshall Of Finland By Stig Jagerskiold

The Memoirs Of Marshall Mannerheim: C.G. Mannerheim

The White Death By Allen F Chew

Tampellasta Patrieaan: 70 Vuotta Suomalaista Raskasta

Aseenvalmistuta : From Tampella To Patria - 70 Years Of Finnish Heavy Weapons By Vesa Toiven

Sotilaskäsiaseet Suomessa 1918 - 1988, 1 - 3 : Finnish Small Arms 1918-1988 Volumes 1-3 By Markku Palokangas

Itsenäisen Suomen Kenttätykit 1918 - 1995. By Jyri Paulaharju

Soldier Under Three Flags: The Exploits Of Special Forces Captain Larry A Thorne By H.A. Gill III

Estonian Arms Dot Com - The Nordic Wars Forum
A site dedicated to the military history of Estonia but also hosting the Nordic Wars Forum. These forum boards detail the Finnish-Soviet wars of 1939-1944.

(The) Finnish Air Force
Details on the Finnish Air Force of the World War II Era.

Finnish Armor
Site with information on the Finnish armored forces.

(The) Finnish Defense Forces
The offical site of the FDF. In their links section one will find sites of Finnish history and a number of military museums.

Finland In World War II: A good site with overviews of the Finnish struggles as well as an outstanding links page.

(The) Finnish Navy
The Finnish Navy of the World War II Era.

(The) Home Page Of Mannerheim
Mannerheim's life and his work in great detail.

Kev Os 4 Finnish Re-enactor Site
The Web site of the only American based Finnish Winter War re-enactors. The site also has sections dealing with Finnish military history and an outstanding wartime photo gallery, Finnish Army wartime photos with information on the Winter and Continuation wars. This Web site link gives background information about the Lotta Svärd

(The) Mannerheim Line
Background information about the Winter War with information about battles, maps and diary entries of Finnish and Soviet soldiers

MastersWork Media
Learn about the making of the Fire and Ice: The Winter War of Finland and Russia documentary

Military and War
Web site links to the Winter War

Mosin Nagant Dot Net - Gunboards.com
The largest and most detailed sites on the Internet regarding Finnish and Soviet issue arms. There are active discussion boards on Gunboards and featured on Mosin Nagant Dot Net are articles in place detailing Finnish issue gear such as tunics and helmets.

Reader’s Companion to Military History
Discusses the influence of weather on war strategies

(The) Russian Battlefield:
Russian-Soviet military history site.

Virtual Finland, Your Window on Finland
Information on the lessons of the Winter War

Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia
Resource for information on communism and fascism


Suomalainen sänky (The Finnish Bed), by ethnologist Leena Sammallahti and researcher Marja-Liisa Lehto (SKS 2006), is an illustrated history of Finnish sleeping arrangements, from simple benches along the wall, once common in many farmhouses, to elaborately carved and cushioned laps of luxury from upper-class homes. Sammallahti wanted to place the Finnish bed into … Continue reading &rarr

The Winter War: The Soviet Attack on Finland, 1939-1940 by Eloise Engle and Lauri Paananen There are a number of books available on the now little-known Winter War between Finland and the Soviet Union, which was fought from December 1939 to March during the Sitzkrieg, and just before the Nazi … Continue reading &rarr


Kniha Zimní válka

Hodně dobrá kniha, jako první seznámení s "neznámým" konfliktem - jak píše kolega woodward, to nejlepší možné. Historici dodnes nedošli ke spolehlivému závěru, jestli finský odpor ještě před válkou (charakteristický například onou masovou brigádou - výstavbou vesměs polních opevnění na Karelské kose) počítal skutečně s vojenským konfliktem a nebo se finští představitelé domnívali, že Sověti jenom zastrašují a blufují. Jejich akce v Polsku, pobaltských státech i později v Rumunsku (Besarábie a Severní Bukovina) nikde nenarazily na rozhodný vojenský odpor a Finové se možná domnívali, že necouvnou-li, couvne Stalin. Sám Mannerheim se domníval, že finská armáda má sílu tak na tři týdny odporu. nakonec z toho byly tři měsíce a dvanáct dní.

Podpora ze strany demokratického Západu byla kromě řečí a vesměs zastaralých zbraní (s výjimkou pár Hurrikanů) nulová a je otázkou, jak by dopadl střet mezi britsko-francouzskými vojsky z Norska s Rudou armádou, jak si plánoval Churchill, který chtěl v rámci této akce zastavit export železné rudy ze Švédska do Německa. tentýž Churchill přednesl srdceryvný proslov na adresu Finů, když museli podepsat příměří, aby jim za rok a něco vyhlásil na Stalinovu žádost válku a poslal bombardéry RAF nad Finsko.

V kontextu těchto skutečností, ale i znalostí dějin Finska (pánů Jutikkaly a Pirinena) si je třeba uvědomit, jak dětinské je povykování některých čecháčků, kteří se přímo vybíjejí v údajném porovnávání finského hrdinství a české zbabělosti. Pro ty, kteří o událostech přece jenom mají schopnost přemýšlet bych rád uvedl několik nezpochybnitelných faktů:
- předválečné Finsko mělo rozlohu 388 tis. km2 a necelé čtyři miliony obyvatel, v důsledku války přišlo o 50 tis. km2
- 9/10 finského území je pokryto hlubokými lesy, bažinami a vodními plochami, s výjimkou pár zpevněních cest neprostupných jak v létě tak v zimě
- na rozdíl od Československa mělo se Sovětským Svazem pouze východní hranici a delší než ona hranice byla pobřežní "čára" i hranice se Švédskem a Norskem na severu
- Finsko sousedilo s "přátelským" Švédskem, odkud do Finska proudila ne nevýznamná vojenská i hospodářská pomoc včetně skoro deseti tisíc švédských dobrovolníků
- na území Finska neexistovala situace, kdy by jeho neprostupné a pusté pohraničí (s výjimkou Karelské kosy) bylo osídleno ruskou menšinou, tvořící pětinu obyvatel a zfanatizovanou natolik, že by se domáhala připojení k Sovětskému Svazu včetně útoků z týlu na finské vojáky a policisty
- s výjimkou SSSR tedy nemělo Finsko s nikým dalším "nepřátelskou" hranici a nebylo obklíčeno ze všech stran, dokonce i jeho průmyslová centra byla od sovětských základen vzdálena min. 120 kilometrů, ale s tím, že sovětská letadla se musela vracet a nemohla tato centra po bombardování přeletět a přistát na opačné straně ve stejné vzdálenosti, nabrat bomby i palivo a vzít to opačným směrem

Tato fakta je třeba brát v úvahu bez ohledu na obdiv, sympatie a pochopení pro finský odpor mezi 30. listopadem 1939 a 12. březnem 1940. A že by ani onen houževnatý odpor proti Sovětům a to i včetně tzv. Pokračovací války neuchránil Finsko před sovětizací je zcela zřejmé z již zmíněných dějin Finska. Oba autoři píší, že Finsko před osudem Československa zachránily tři faktory: negativní reakce západu po únorovém puči v ČSR, poloha Finska mimo hlavní konfrontační linii v Evropě a ohled Sovětů na Švédsko. A teprve dále píší o reminiscencích Stalina s ohledem na ztráty, které Rudá armáda ve složitém terénu utrpěla. A jen tak mimochodem, ony tajné sklady zbraní, vytvořené demobilizovanými finskými vojáky úspěšně odhalovala - finská policie plně v rukou jistého Yrjö Leina, samozřejmě finského komunisty řízeného z Moskvy. Paradoxně, únor 1948 u nás zachránil Finsko před stejným scénářem, před celkovou sovětizací jako třeba v Polsku, i když na druhou stranu - Finsko Sovětskému Svazu potichu "patřilo" a oněch 40 nebezpečných let skončilo až v roce 1990.

A jen tak nakonec, i když ne poslední v řadě, skvělý finský film Zimní válka byl natočen až v roce 1989, do té doby bylo téma tohoto konfliktu ve Finsku tabu stejně jako u nás.

Vždy když začne debata o tom, zda jsme se měli 1939 bránit a utvrzujeme se v tom, že to bylo dobře, objevíme třeba ve Finech inspiraci, že ač mnohem hůř vyzbrojeni, v malém počtu a s dlouhou hranicí je možno se nepříteli postavit. Jen zázrakem by takový stát mohlo čekat vítězství, ale minimálně by kůži nedali lacino. To přesně jsou Finové v rámci zimní války, nečekající až zázrak spadne z nebe, poctivě se snažili, přeskupovali se, útočili. Věděli, že jde o všechno. Velmi inspirující.


Contents

The Winter War started in November 1939. In February 1940, a Soviet offensive broke through the Mannerheim Line on the Karelian Isthmus, which exhausted Finnish defenses and forced the country's government to accept peace negotiations on Soviet terms. As the news that Finland might be forced to cede its sovereignty to the Soviet Union, public opinion in France and Britain, which already supported Finland, swung for military intervention. When rumors of an armistice reached governments in Paris and London, both decided to offer military support.

Finland's resistance to the Soviet invasion, from November 1939 to March 1940, came while there was a military stalemate on the continent called the "Phony War". Attention turned to the Nordic Theatre. Months of planning at the highest civilian, military and diplomatic levels in London and Paris saw multiple reversals and deep divisions. [1]

Finally, the British and French agreed on a plan that involved uninvited invasions of Norway, Sweden, Iceland and Denmark's Faroe Islands with the goals of damaging the German war economy and assisting Finland in its war with the Soviet Union. An Allied war against the Soviet Union was part of the plan. The main naval launching point would be Royal Navy's base at Scapa Flow, in the Orkney Islands. [2]

The Soviet invasion of Finland excited widespread outrage at both popular and elite levels in support of Finland not only in Britain and France but also in the neutral United States. [3] The League of Nations declared the Soviet Union to be the aggressor and expelled it. [4] "American opinion makers treated the attack on Finland as dastardly aggression worthy of daily headlines, which thereafter exacerbated attitudes toward Russia". [5]

The real Allied goal was economic warfare: to cut off shipments of Swedish iron ore to Germany, which was calculated to weaken German war industry seriously. The British Ministry of Economic Warfare stated that the project against Norway would be likely to cause "An extremely serious repercussion on German industrial output. [and the Swedish component] might well bring German industry to a standstill and would in any case have a profound effect on the duration of the war". [6] The idea was to shift forces away from doing little on the static Western Front to playing an active role on a new front.

The British military leadership, by December, had supported the idea enthusiastically after it had realised that its first choice, an attack on German oil supplies, would not get approval. Winston Churchill, now leading the Admiralty, pushed hard for an invasion of Norway and Sweden to help the Finns and to cut the iron supplies. Likewise, political and military leaders in Paris strongly supported the plan because it would put their troops in action. The poor performance of the Soviets against the Finns strengthened the confidence of the Allies that the invasion, and the resulting war against the Soviets would be worthwhile. However, the civilian leadership of Neville Chamberlain's government in London drew back and postponed invasion plans. Also, neutral Norway and Sweden refused to co-operate. [7]

The first intervention plan, approved on 4–5 February 1940 by the Allied High Command, consisted of 100,000 British and 35,000 French troops, which would disembark at the Norwegian port of Narvik and support Finland via Sweden while they secured supply routes along the way. Plans were made to launch the operation on 20 March under the condition of a formal request for assistance from the Finnish government to avoid German charges that the Franco-British forces were an invading army. On 2 March, transit rights were officially requested from the governments of Norway and Sweden. It was hoped that Allied intervention would eventually bring the neutral Nordic countries, Norway and Sweden, to the Allies by strengthening their positions against Germany, but Hitler had by December declared to the Swedish government that Franco-British troops on Swedish soil would immediately provoke a German invasion.

The Franco-British plan, as initially designed, proposed a defence of all of Scandinavia north of a line Stockholm–Gothenburg or Stockholm–Oslo (the British concept of the Lake Line following the lakes of Mälaren, Hjälmaren, and Vänern), which would provide a good natural defense some 1,700–1,900 kilometres (1,000–1,200 miles) south of Narvik. The planned frontier involved Sweden's two largest cities but also could result in large amounts of Swedish territory to be occupied by a foreign army or to become a war zone. The plan was revised [ when? ] to include only the northern half of Sweden and the narrow adjacent Norwegian coast.

The Norwegian government denied transit rights to the proposed Franco-British expedition.

The Swedish government, headed by Prime Minister Per Albin Hansson, declined to allow transit of armed troops through Swedish territory although Sweden had not declared itself neutral in the Winter War. The Swedish government argued that since it had declared a policy of neutrality in the war between France, Britain and Germany, the granting of transit rights by Sweden to a French-British corps, even if it would not be used against Germany, was still an illegal departure from international laws on neutrality.

That strict interpretation appears to have been a pretext to avoid angering the Soviet and the Germans German governments. [ according to whom? ] Another interpretation was to deny the Allies an opportunity to fight Germany far from Britain or France and to destroy the Swedish infrastructure in the process. [ according to whom? ]

The Swedish Cabinet also decided to reject repeated Finnish pleas for regular Swedish troops to be deployed in Finland and the Swedes and made it clear that their present support in arms and munitions could not be maintained for much longer. Diplomatically, Finland was squeezed between Allied hopes for a prolonged war and Swedish and Norwegian fears that the Allies and Germans might soon be fighting each other on Swedish and Norwegian soil. Norway and Sweden also feared an influx of Finnish refugees if Finland lost to the Soviets.

Fifteen months later, the Swedish government conceded to German demands for transit rights of one division across Sweden for German troops on their way from occupied Norway to Finland to join the German attack on the Soviet Union. [8] A total of 2,140,000 German soldiers on leave and more than 100,000 German military railway carriages crossed neutral Swedish territory during the next three years. [9]

Germany and Sweden pressured Finland to accept peace on unfavourable conditions, but Britain and France had the opposite objective. Different plans and figures were presented for the Finns. France and Britain promised to send 20,000 men, who were to arrive by the end of February. By the end of that month, Finnish Commander-in-Chief, Field Marshal Mannerheim was pessimistic about the military situation and on 29 February, the government decided to start peace negotiations. The same day, the Soviets commenced an attack against Viipuri.

When France and Britain realized that Finland was considering a peace treaty, they gave a new offer of 50,000 troops, if Finland asked for help before 12 March. Finland hoped for Allied intervention, but its position became increasingly hopeless. Its agreement to an armistice on 13 March signalled defeat. On 20 March, a more aggressive Paul Reynaud became prime minister of France and demanded an immediate invasion Chamberlain and the British cabinet finally agreed and orders were given. [10] However, Germany invaded first and quickly conquered Denmark and southern Norway in Operation Weserübung, repelling Allied counter-efforts in Scandinavia. [11] With the British failure in Norway, Britain decided it immediately needed to set up naval and air bases in Iceland. Despite Iceland's plea for neutrality, Britain considered its occupation as a military necessity. The British occupied the Faroe Islands on 13 April, and the decision made to occupy Iceland on 6 May. [12] [13]


Watch the video: COUNTRYBALLS. WINTER WAR 1939-1940 (December 2022).

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