Sneaky, sneaky Roosevelt... or not

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antwony
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Sneaky, sneaky Roosevelt... or not

Post by antwony » 19 Dec 2022 14:04

I'm currently reading "Talvisodasta Turvakokoukseen" Huttunen, Veikko (1974). It's pretty good. It's a bit dated, but he's put a lot of effort in and I got it for free. Quite a lot of stuff I didn't know, some interesting perspectives and lots of fun satirical cartoons of the period. Isn't properly referrenced though and while that's pretty common for 1974, it's very annoying.

On page 156 he claims that on the 4th of August 1941 Stalin sent a personal rauhantarjous (trans: peace offer) to Roosevelt and asking Roosevelt to forward it to the Finnish government. Huttunen explains that the offer was forwarded epämääräisessä muodossa (this isn't a literal translation, but in the context I would translated the phrase as: heavily editted) and that the US didn't tell Finland the offer came directly from Stalin. Finland choose not to follow up on the offer. In Huttunen's opinion, Stalin felt personally affronted by Finland not even bothering to address his personal appeal. Then, according to Huttunen, the US made public Stalin's offer which, in Huttunen's opinion, made Stalin angry and he withdrew the offer.

Huttunen says America used the peace offer for its own purposes. I'm not really sure what he means by that.

Does any one have any more information about the offer and what the offer Finalnd received was?

Also, and this question isn't so important, the book claims that Mannerheim was familiar with pre war diplomacy between Finland the Soviet Union. Huttunen claims that Mannerheim advised the government, pre Winter War, that Finland should agree to move the border back on Kannas Isthmus. Is that true?

Art
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Re: Sneaky, sneaky Roosevelt... or not

Post by Art » 19 Dec 2022 15:35

Stalin's message to Roosevelt of 4 August 1941:
https://www.revolutionarydemocracy.org/ ... 2_1941.htm

Memorandum of conversation between US under secretary of state and the minister of Finland:
https://history.state.gov/historicaldoc ... 1v01/pg_56

antwony
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Re: Sneaky, sneaky Roosevelt... or not

Post by antwony » 19 Dec 2022 18:16

Thanks for that Art.

My translation was questionable, I was putting context onto a statement that didn't need any. Stalin's two line message to Roosevelt is too short to edit and what Huttunen was saying was the American offer was vague and non- committal.

Yes, Huttunen was correct that Sumner Welles didn't specifically mention Stalin's name. But, that's neither really here nor there.

Have no idea where Huttunen gets his ideas about how Stalin was feeling, but presume he's making it up.

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