Winter War, Anti-Communism and the volunteers from abroad, 1939-1940

Twentieth Century Communism - ISSN 1758-6437
Volume 2021 Number 21

Winter War, Anti-Communism and the volunteers from abroad, 1939-1940
Kristo Karvinen pages 9-28


The 1939 invasion of Finland by the Soviet Union attracted more than just journalists to the frigid north. Thousands of volunteers around the world rallied under the Finnish flag, willing to risk their lives for a foreign country. Over ten thousand arrived before the end of the war, with more on their way, coming from Hungary and Estonia, Canada and the USA, Sweden and the UK. Were they all ardent anticommunists or did they have other motives? This article seeks to answer that question, utilising Finnish and British archives as well as contemporary research into war volunteering. The origins and motives of the volunteers are examined, revealing that their motives ran a wide gamut, including such reasons as anti-communism, linguistic fraternity and spirit of adventure, to name a few.

SORRY - you are not registered as being permitted online access to the full text of this article

You have the following options:

  1. If you are viewing this via an institution or academic library you can ask that your institution takes out a Subscription to this journal.
  2. If you already have a Personal Subscription please login below

    Forgotten your username / password? Click here to locate

  3. Purchase an annual Personal Subscription
    PRINT + DIGITAL personal subscription (£30 / year)
    DIGITAL personal subscription (£25 / year)
    A Personal Subscription provides immediate access not only to the single article you are seeking, but also to all past and future articles in this journal up to the expiry of your annual (calendar year) subscription.
  4. Purchase immediate access to this single article (UK£7.00) - Buy article Coming Soon

To cite this article
Kristo Karvinen (2021) Winter War, Anti-Communism and the volunteers from abroad, 1939-1940, Twentieth Century Communism, 2021(21), 9-28

Share this