Finland History – From 1932 to 1948 Part IV

By | December 17, 2021

The war, for Finland, was practically over, even if on March 3, 1945 it declared itself at war with the dying Germany; even if in the months of October-November 1944 the country was still crossed by some flashes of the huge fire, many of the German units (especially the Edelweiss Alpine division) were very late to withdraw, and some of them having nested, with tenacious resistance, in the Northern part of the country from which they could be displaced only at the end of November (Soviet occupation of Kirkenes, 25 October; Vuotso, 29 October; Petsamo, 17 November.

In correspondence with the new situation of the country, the governments, mainly conservative, of Hackzell and then of Urho J. Castrén had given way to a center-left government chaired by the Paasikivi (November 1944). The elections of March 17-18, 1945 confirmed this new orientation of the country, although many were reluctant to adapt to the new state of affairs. A novelty in the elections of 17-18 March was the strong affirmation of the popular democratic bloc (mainly communist): a communist, Yrio Leino, entered a ministry for the first time as interior minister, always under the presidency of Paasikivi. One could not ignore the powerful neighbor, Russia, which had the lion’s share of the control commission set up by virtue of the armistice; which guarded the main points of the country; who supported, on hand, the local parties of the extreme left; who demanded the exemplary condemnation of the so-called “war criminals” and demanded the surrender of a thousand “white Russians” who had taken refuge in Finland since the 1917 revolution. A satisfaction for the occupying power and the communist elements of the country was the trial against the politicians primarily responsible for Finland’s participation in the war against Russia. Since the first sentences seemed too mild, the trial was held a second time: ex-president Ryti, ex-minister Tanner, etc., were sentenced to a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison (February 21, 1946). Mannerheim’s resignation as president of the republic (March 4, 1946) led Paasikivi to succeed him and, after a laborious crisis, M. Pekkala as Prime Minister. On February 10, 1947, the peace signed in Paris only confirmed the conditions of the armistice of September 17, 1944. The country, exhausted by the war, but healthy in its intimate fibers, bravely resumed the work of reconstruction and regained international standing that he had already enjoyed. The burden of reparations to be paid to Russia, food difficulties, aid to Karelian refugees, and, morally, the sense of defeat and overwhelming Russian preponderance weigh on the country. work of reconstruction and regain the international consideration it had already enjoyed. The burden of reparations to be paid to Russia, food difficulties, aid to Karelian refugees, and, morally, the sense of defeat and overwhelming Russian preponderance weigh on the country. work of reconstruction and regain the international consideration it had already enjoyed. The burden of reparations to be paid to Russia, food difficulties, aid to Karelian refugees, and, morally, the sense of defeat and overwhelming Russian preponderance weigh on the country. For Finland 2017, please check mathgeneral.com.

The coup d’état in Czechoslovakia took place which anchored this country to the political-military organization of the Soviet Union, Russia, which was alarmed by the outcome of the municipal elections in Finland (December 1947) where the center and right parties had won 58 per cent of the seats, he invited President Paasikivi with a letter from Stalin made known on February 26, 1948, to sign a pact of friendship with the Soviet Union; pact signed in Moscow on April 6, subject to ratification by the Finnish parliament. The pact, lasting 10 years, establishes that Finnish troops will be used only for the defense of the national territory; that in the event of external aggression the two governments will consult on whether Soviet troops should contribute to the defense of Finland; that the two countries will not conclude alliances with countries hostile to either of the two contracting parties; which will respect their respective sovereignty and territorial integrity.

After this forced settlement of relations with the USSR, the Finnish government had to worry about the internal situation disturbed by the split within the People’s Democratic Party due to the Socialists who did not intend to submit to the political control of the Communist Party headed by Y. Leino, Interior Minister. Following a vote against the parliament, which he did not want to submit, Leino was dismissed (May 21, 1948) from Paasikivi pursuant to art. 36 of the Finnish constitution. The new political elections of June 1948 marked the victory of the right and especially of the Agrarian Party which rose from 49 to 56 seats, while the popular democrats, controlled by the Communists, dropped from 49 to 39 seats.

Finland History - From 1932 to 1948 Part IV