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

Abstract

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.

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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

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