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B19/B003562-68

German Minister in Finland to the German Foreign Ministry

most urgent Helsinki, March 13, 1940—8:10 p.m.
No. 120 of March 13, 1940 Received March 14—3:30 a. m.

With reference to telegram No. 117 of March 13.
The sudden peace [Blitzfriede] concluded in Moscow will have far-reaching consequences for Northern Europe:
1) Russia will in future dominate the Gulf of Finland and the central portion of the Baltic Sea, and has definitely improved her strategic position on land vis--vis Finland by taking possession of the Karelian Isthmus, the gateway to Southern Finland, with wide (two groups garbled) and acquiring access to Northern Finland through the Kandalaksha-Kemijärvi railroad.
2) Russia has strengthened her position vis--vis Sweden by the annexation of Hangö, which is like a pistol aiming at Stockholm, as well as through the future direct railroad connection between Russian Karelia and Kiruna, which will bring the Swedish ore mines within easy reach at any time.
3) The Scandinavian countries have shown themselves too weak to help Finland in her fight against a great power. In Finnish eyes, orientation toward Scandinavia has thus failed the test of fire.
4) The neutrality of the Scandinavian countries has proved itself, inasmuch as the Western Powers did not dare to violate it by marching through them.
5) The League of Nations has again produced only paper decisions and suffered a defeat in Finland.
6) The Western Powers did not get beyond attempts at military intervention and could not have given decisive help to the Finnish Army. Confidence in the Western Powers, especially England, is shaken.
7) Germany has caused deep disappointment in Finland and incurred hatred in many circles, because, of her attitude in the Russo-Finnish conflict, and her press and radio. Political realists, however, are becoming aware that actually only two great powers, Germany and Russia, have any influence in the Baltic region and that a correct orientation toward both is of vital importance to the Finnish nation.
8) Since it is not to be expected that the Finns will resign themselves definitely to the new boundary, and since it is uncertain whether the Russians regard the peace as an interim phase or temporary measure, further tension in the Baltic region must be anticipated. But spread of the Great Powers' War into that region has been prevented.

Blücher


Source: Documents on German foreign policy 1918-1945. Series D. Volume VIII. No. 672. Washington, Department of State, publication 5436, 1954.

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