Finland in Great Power politics, 1939-1940

German documents (transl.) | Deutsche Dokumente | Swedish (transl.) | Svenska | British diplomatic documents and cabinet papers | U.S. foreign relation documents | Soviet foreign policy 1939-1940


German-Soviet nonaggression pact and the secret additional protocol, Aug. 23, 1939

The nonaggression pact and the secret additional protocol (English translation) Aug. 23, 1939
Nichtangriffsvertrag zwischen Deutschland und der Union der Sozialistischen Sowjetrepubliken 23. August 1939
Das geheime Zusatzprotokoll 23. August 1939
Договор о ненападении между Германией и Советским Союзом

  • Правда: Годовщина советско-германского пакта (23 августа 1940 г.)
  • 23 августа 1939 г.
    Секретный дополнительный протокол 23 августа 1939 г.

  • German-Soviet relations 1939-1940 (German diplomatic correspondence in translations) and related documents
    Finland seeking to find out German view on Finnish-Soviet territorial negotiations Oct. 9, 1939
    German reply to Finland Oct. 9, 1939
    German reply to Sweden Oct. 9, 1939
    A report of the German minister in Finland to his superiors Oct. 10, 1939
    Personal instructions of the State Secretary to the German Minister in Finland Oct. 11, 1939
    Molotov makes Soviet territorial demands public in the Supreme Soviet Oct. 31, 1939
    Molotov accuses Finland of shelling Soviet territory and annuls unilaterally the Finnish-Soviet non-aggression pact Nov. 29, 1939
    Instructions of the German Foreign Office to her legations after the Winter War broke out Dec. 2, 1939
    German diplomats should support the Russian points of view in the Winter War Dec. 6, 1939
    Personal letter of the German Minister in Finland to the German Foreign Ministry regretting Germany's decision of leaving Finland on his own Dec. 7, 1939
    Moscow asks German support for Soviet submarines in the Gulf of Bothnia (between Sweden and Finland) Dec. 9, 1939
    The Soviets protest on arms trade Dec. 11, 1939
    Quisling offering a coup in Norway, no arms deliveries to Finland or Sweden Dec. 12, 1939
    German Minister in Oslo reports to the German Foreign Ministry about the opinion of all Norwegian political parties that Finland is fighting for all of Scandinavia Dec. 15, 1939
    The Soviets: Expelling the Soviet Union from the League of Nations was an Anglo-French plot Dec. 16, 1939
    German Minister in Helsinki expresses to the German State Secretary his personal dissatisfaction with the German unconcern relating to the Soviet attack on Finland Dec. 18, 1939
    Hitler, von Ribbentrop and Kuusinen congratulate Joseph Stalin on his 60th birthday Dec. 21, 1939
    Germany makes it clear that it will not permit transit of arms to Finland Jan. 4, 1940
    German Ambassador discusses with Molotov in Moscow about the Russo-Finnish conflict Jan. 8, 1940
    German Minister in Tallinn reports of Estonian General Laidoner's discussions with Stalin Jan. 19, 1940
    German envoy in Finland does not exclude the recent peace treaty as a seed to later conflicts. But escalating of the war is now prevented March 13, 1940
    Völkischer Beobachter: The Finnish policy of the Western Powers frustrated by the Moscow Treaty March 14, 1940
    Germany aims at warming up economic relations with Finland March 28, 1940
    Molotov reporting in the Supreme Soviet about the good relations between the Soviet Union and Germany, and about the Winter War March 29, 1940
    Soviet relief after German victory in Norway April 11, 1940
    Hitler reluctant to sell arms to Finland May. 21, 1940
    Germans sense stiffening in Russia when speaking about Finland Aug. 14, 1940
    Confirmation of rules adopted by German and Finnish army staffs for transit of German troops through Finland (in German) Sept. 12, 1940
    Germany plans to inform the Soviets on transit of troops and arms in Finland Sept. 16, 1940
    The Finns are told about reporting to Moscow Sept. 16, 1940
    Soviet Union tells of not being informed about passage of German troops through Finland Sept. 27, 1940
    Germany allows Finland to purchase German arms. The April arms delivery through Norway to Finland, stopped and used by the Wehrmacht is also compensated Oct. 1, 1940
    Germany assures that transit of troops is of purely technical nature Oct. 2, 1940
    Molotov requests more detailed information about transit traffic Oct. 4, 1940
    Petsamo nickel concession under German and Soviet pressure Oct. 8, 1940
    Foreign Minister von Ribbentrop's letter to Stalin Oct. 13, 1940
    The Soviets mention arms deliveries to Finland Nov. 2, 1940
    Hitler-Molotov discussion in Berlin Nov. 12, 1940
    Second Hitler-Molotov discussion in Berlin
  • Russian notes of the discussion (in Russian)
  • Nov. 13, 1940
    The Soviets yield conditionally to German propositions Nov. 25, 1940
    Hitler's directive on Operation Barbarossa Dec. 18, 1940
    Finns express relief for not being left alone any more in a future conflict with Russia Dec. 31, 1940


  • Beziehungen zwischen Deutschland und der Sowjetunion 1939-1940 (diplomatische Korrespondenz u. Aufzeichnungen)
    Weizsäcker über seine Unterredung mit dem Finnischen Gesandten in Berlin den 9. Oktober 1939
    Drahtanweisung an den Deutschen Gesandten in Finnland den 9. Oktober 1939
    Weizsäcker über seine Unterredung mit dem Schwedischen Gesandten in Berlin den 9. Oktober 1939
    Drahtbericht des Deutschen Gesandten in Finnland den 10. Oktober 1939
    Weizsäcker über die russische Forderungen an die Gesandtschaft in Helsinki den 11. Oktober 1939
    Drahterlaß des Staatssekretärs des Auswärtigen Amts an die deutschen Missionen: keine antirussische Nuance den 2. Dezember 1939
    Ergänzung des Drahterlaßes an die deutschen Missionen den 6. Dezember 1939
    Persönlicher Brief der deutschen Gesandten in Finnland (Blücher) an Staatssekretär Weizsäcker den 7. Dezember 1939
    Die Russen schlagen Nachschub für ihre U-boote vor den 9. Dezember 1939
    Der Reichsaußenminister: Der Waffengeschäft mit Finnland den 11. Dezember 1939
    Bericht des Oberbefehlshabers der Kriegsmarine, Großadmiral Raeder, an den Führer über Quislings Rolle und Unterstützung Finnlands den 12. Dezember 1939
    Gesandter Blücher über Gegensatz deutscher u. italienischer Haltung in Finnland den 14. Dezember 1939
    Persönlicher Brief Blüchers an Staatssekretär von Weizsäcker den 18. Dezember 1939
    Die Durchfuhr für Finnland bestimmten Kriegsgeräts nicht möglich den 4. Januar 1940
    Molotow: Die Sowjetregierung hat Schweden und Norwegen verwarnt den 8. Januar 1940
    Estnischer General Laidoner: Der Krieg ist jetzt ein Prestigefall den 19. Januar 1940
    Blücher: Blitzfriede wird weitgehende Folgen für Nordeuropa haben den 13. März 1940
    Völkischer Beobachter: Finnland-Politik der Westmächte durch Moskauer Vertrag vereitelt den 14. März 1940
    Verbesserung wirtschaftliche Beziehungen mit Finnland den 28. März 1940
    Erleichterung der Sowjet-Regierung nach der deutschen Besatzung von Norwegen den 11. April 1940
    Hitler: zur Zeit Waffenlieferungen nach Finnland nicht in Betracht den 21. Mai 1940
    Die baltische Staaten und Deutschland den 17. Juni 1940
    Gibt es eine Versteifung in den russisch-finnischen Beziehungen den 14. August 1940
    Das Auswärtige Amt wird über die russische Landtransporte nach Hanko informiert den 11. September 1940
    Truppen- und Materialtransporte der deutschen Luftwaffe durch Finnland den 12. September 1940
    Reichsaußenminister: Wie mann die Russen über Truppen- und Materialtransporte durch Finnland informiert den 16. September 1940
    Molotow: Die Sowjetunion hatte keine Vorhandsinformationen über die Truppen- und Materialtransporte den 27. September 1940
    Waffenlieferungen an der finnischen Regierung vereinbart den 1. Oktober 1940
    Ribbentrop an Molotow: Der Durchtransport der deutschen Truppen ist nur eine verkehrstechnische Anordnung den 2. Oktober 1940
    Die Sowjetregierung fordert genauere Informationen über Truppentransport in Finnland den 4. Oktober 1940
    Nickelkonzession Petsamo unter wachsenden Druck von Russen den 8. Oktober 1940
    Der Brief des Reichsaußenministers von Ribbentrop an Stalin den 13. Oktober 1940
    Mikojan: Deutsche Waffenlieferungen an Finnland aber nicht an die Sowjetunion den 2. November 1940
    Unterredung zwischen Hitler und Molotow in Berlin den 12. November 1940
    Zweite Unterredung zwischen Hitler und Molotow in Berlin den 13. November 1940
    Sowjetische Bedingungen an die politische Zusammenarbeit den 25. November 1940
    Weisung des Führers: Fall Barbarossa den 18. Dezember 1940
    Die Finnen seien jetzt beruhigt wenn mann in einem künftigen Konflikt mit Rußland nicht allein stehen werde den 31. Dezember 1940


  • Decisions and opinions of the Nordic governments 1939-1940 (original Swedish texts in the next section)
    Communiqué expressing neutrality issued by the conference of Nordic prime and foreign ministers in Copenhagen Sept. 18-19, 1939
    Démarche of Nordic ambassadors in Moscow Oct. 12, 1939
    Communiqué issued by the meeting of Nordic heads of state and foreign ministers. Telegrams of Roosevelt and King Gustav Oct. 18-19, 1939
    Statement of the Swedish government to the Swedish parliament after the Soviet Union had started invasion against Finland Dec. 13, 1939
    Common declaration of Sweden, Norway and Denmark at the assembly of the League of Nations discussing the condemnation of the Soviet invasion against Finland Dec. 14, 1939
    Political evaluation: Norway in the Russo-Finnish War (by German minister in Norway) Dec. 15, 1939
    The Soviet Foreign Commissariat's statement on Soviet relations with Sweden and Norway Jan. 15, 1940
    Speech of Foreign Minister Günther at the full dress opening of the Swedish parliament Jan. 17, 1940
    King Gustaf V's statement for the Cabinet minutes concerning rejection of demands for Swedish intervention in the Winter War Feb. 19, 1940
    Speech of Foreign Minister Günther in the Swedish parliament after Soviet-Finnish conclusion of peace March 13, 1940
    Presentation by the foreign minister Günther at the Press Club for reasons of Swedish rejection to resort to military intervention in Finland and that of the request of the western allies to use Swedish territory for transport of troops to Finland March 16, 1940
    Reminder from the German government requesting Sweden to maintain strict neutrality in the German occupation of Denmark and Norway April 9, 1940
    Agreement on transit of Wehrmacht troops and material through Sweden June 29, 1940 (July 8, 1940)
    Announcement of the Swedish Foreign ministry concerning transit traffic for German army goods and soldiers on leave July 5, 1940
    Speech by Prime Minister Hansson about Norway and the transit traffic on in Ludvika, Sweden July 7, 1940
    Communiqué of the Swedish government concerning passing a German division in transit from Norway to Finland. July 25, 1941


  • Nordiska regeringarnas beslut och ställningstagande 1939-1940
    Neutralitetskommuniké utfärdat i de nordiska stats- och utrikesministrarnas möte i Köpenhamn 18-19 september 1939
    Nordisk démarche i Moskva 12 oktober 1939
    Kommuniké utfärdat i de nordiska statschefernas och utrikesministrarnas möte i Stockholm 18-19 oktober 1939
    Statsminister Hanssons regeringsförklaring för Sveriges riksdag efter Sovjet börjat sitt anfall mot Finland 13 december 1939
    Den gemensamma deklarationen av Sverige, Norge och Danmark i Nationernas Förbunds församling om fördömande av Sovjetunionens anfall mot Finland 14 december 1939
    Utrikesminister Günthers tal i riksdagens remissdebatt 17 januari 1940
    Kung Gustaf V:s yttrande till stadsrådsprotokollet ang. tillbakavisandet av Sveriges militära intervention i vinterkriget 19 februari 1940
    Utrikesminister Günthers anförande i riksdagen efter finskt-ryskt fredsslutet 13 mars 1940
    Utrikesminister Günthers föredrag inför Publicistklubb om orsaker till Sveriges vägran att militärt deltaga i finska vinterkriget och tillbakavisandet av de allierades krav att använda svenskt territorium för genommarsch till Finland 16 mars 1940
    Tyska regeringens påminnelse krävande Sveriges stränga neutralitet ang. tysk ockupation av Danmark och Norge (på tyska) 9 april 1940
    Avtal om transitering av tyska försvarsmaktens försändelser och trupper genom Sverige 29 juni 1940 (8 juli 1940)
    Utrikesdepartementet meddelade angående tysk permittent- och transitotrafik från och till Norge 5 juli 1940
    Statsminister Hanssons tal i Ludvika om transitotrafik 7 juli 1940
    Regeringens kommuniké om transitering av en tysk division från Norge till Finland 25 juli 1941

  • British diplomatic dispatches and Cabinet papers 1939-1940
    Finnish refusal to act the Baltic way in accepting Soviet terms was a surprise to Stalin and Molotov. Resorting to attack the only way to save face 7 Dec. 1939.
    The assurances of Potemkin and Voroshilov that the war will be over in four days were proven to be empty. No military laurels to be laid at the feet of Stalin on his 60th birthday 20 Dec. 1939.
    Swedish Government maintain neutrality but are willing to give any assistance without appearing to take part in an international action 4 Jan. 1940.
    British War Cabinet meeting: evaluation of war situation in Finland. Brigadier Ling's report about discussions with Field-Marshal Mannerheim. Mannerheim considers cutting of Russian oil supplies in Baku as the best way to make them to stop war against Finland. 13 Jan. 1940.
    British ambassadors in Portugal, Italy and U.S.A. are requesting urgent assistance to Finland 17 Jan. 1940.
    British War Cabinet meeting: despatch of up to 50 bomber aircraft to Finland authorised. A definitive answer concerning sending Allied land forces to Finland expected from the Finns 7 March, 1940.
    Daladier in the French parliament: France is ready to send men to Finland 12 March, 1940.
    Molotov's speech at the Supreme Council was for home consumptíon. Abuse of France and Britain on familiar lines. The man in the streets was haunted by the spectre of a famine. In Moscow, the spoilt child of the Union, the situation in control but in many country districts it is extremely serious. Stalin is now diverting national interest and energies to other channels, and to campaigning the weaknesses revealed both in the army and organisation of deomestic supply and distribution. 31 March, 1940.
    The British Government takes a serious view in the Finnish decision to allow German troops to cross Finnish territory. The Soviet transit to Hanko is no parallel to this. The same applies to Sweden. In the latter case only replacement of troops is allowed, no garrison increases. 25 Sept. 1940.
    Swedish Foreign minister sees the transit of troops in Finland also as a German political gesture towards the Soviet Union. In Sweden it is only a technical matter. 27 Sept. 1940.
    British minister Mallet in Stockholm is reporting about Swedish rumors from Germany concerning a change of attitude at the Germans towards Finland. Germany is supposed to warn the Soviet Union to "go no further" in Finland. 27 Sept. 1940.
    The British ambassador in Helsinki: There are extenuating circumstances for recent actions of the Finns. The British leaving Northern Norway on her own devices gives the impression that assistance in seeking means to be alive and free must be found elsewhere than in Britain. As well as the British nickel policy in Petsamo driving Finland into the arms of Germany. People are against the German presence but government circles feel that now one must clutch even at straws. 9 Oct. 1940.
    Molotov is very annoyed at the anti-Russian feeling in Finland. He thinks that Finnish Minister Paasikivi in Moscow as well as Prime Minister Ryti genuinely desire friendly relations with Russia but there are others with a different outlook. Molotov thinks that there is no likelihood of any Russian action for the present, but if Germany were to make an offensive in the Balkans it might be that Russia would take action to prevent Finland from being penetrated by Germany 19 Oct. 1940.

  • The Winter War and its aftermath as reflected by the U.S. diplomatic correspondence, statements and reactions
    Germany completely disinterested in supporting Finland 8 Oct. 1939.
    The British Minister in Helsinki: Finnish policy may not be sufficiently flexible 9 Oct. 1939.
    The Crown Prince of Sweden appeals to President Roosevelt 11 Oct. 1939.
    President Roosevelt's appeal to the President of the USSR Kalinin 11 Oct. 1939.
    The Minister for Foreign Affairs of Finland deeply affected by the friendly attitude of the United States, Great Britain, France and Scandinavia 11 Oct. 1939.
    Molotov: Negotiations friendly with Latvia and Lithuania with the Soviet Union respecting their independence 12 Oct. 1939.
    Molotov: The United States should clean her own nest before giving advice to others 1 Nov. 1939.
    The US deplores that Pravda has resorted to fabrications 3 Nov. 1939.
    Quick liquidation of the Finnish question may be motivated by desire to win tactical advantages soon elsewhere 1 Dec. 1939.
    Molotov: The US, situated 8000 km away, cannot see how the Soviet air force holds the best interests of the Finnish people in high esteem 2 Dec. 1939.
    The Soviet ambassador in the U.S. espresses his dissatisfaction about the reactions of the U.S. Government and the general public 2 Dec. 1939.
    Finding the guardian of the Finnish interests in Moscow causes embarrassment 2 Dec. 1939.
    Sweden is willing to assume the role the guardian but expects to become rebuffed by the Soviet government 2 Dec. 1939.
    Finland seeking financial assistance from the US 3 Dec. 1939.
    President Roosevelt sends a telegram on the occasion of the 22nd anniversary of Finland's independence. President Kallio's reply 6-7 Dec. 1939.
    The war in Finland is growing into a question of prestige 18 Dec. 1939.
    The US is refusing a loan to Finland but is seeking other ways to financial assistance 2 Jan. 1940.
    Lord Halifax is ruminating the British approach to the war in Finland 4 Jan. 1940.
    The Export-Import Bank will give the loan but not for arms 30 Jan. 1940.
    Hull: The US Government can't sell the arms but try private markets 8 Feb. 1940.
    Molotov: Russia and the US might have common interests in the future 28 Feb. 1940.
    The US démarche at Moscow greeted in Finland. Kuusinen no obstacle for peace 8 March 1940.
    Discussions about Imatra. Setting up a republic in Karelia is the way out for Kuusinen government 12 March 1940.
    The Soviet Union will be at war with Germany within a year 13 June 1940.
    The directors of the Petsamo Nickel Company don't object selling nickel ore from their mines to the Germans and the Russians 29 July 1940.
    Finland in no position to refuse Russian transit traffic to Hanko 1 Aug. 1940.
    A notable change for the better from the Finnish point of view in the official attitude of Germany 11 Sept. 1940.
    Occasional bursts against Finland in the Soviet press 25 Sept. 1940.
    The Finnish Minister Witting expresses the hope that the US-Finnish relations would not be unfavorably affected 26 Sept. 1940.
    German Ambassador at Moscow is concerned of the somewhat defiant attitude of the Finnish Government towards the Soviet Union 9 Nov. 1940.
    The confusing situation in Petsamo continues 9 Dec. 1940.

    German documents (transl.) | Deutsche Dokumente | Swedish (transl.) | Svenska | British diplomatic documents and Cabinet papers | U.S. foreign relation documents | Finland in the Soviet foreign policy, 1939-1940

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