Secrets of Winter War documentary on Finnishh TV

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Bair
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Secrets of Winter War documentary on Finnishh TV

Post by Bair » 11 Mar 2003 08:16

Dear all,

according to a good friend of mine in Finland, Finnish TV1 Channel will show the Russian TVS documentary about the Winter War on 12.3 and on 19.3

With best regards,

Bair
http://www.mannerheim-line.com

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Juha Hujanen
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Post by Juha Hujanen » 11 Mar 2003 11:30

Thanks for reminder.It's called "Talvisota Venäläissilmin" in Finnish and it starts 19.05 in channel 1.Should be interesting.

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Harri
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Post by Harri » 11 Mar 2003 11:45

Thanks Bair! That is for sure a very interesting program to watch.

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Juha Tompuri
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Post by Juha Tompuri » 12 Mar 2003 22:58

GOOD document.
Specially one Red Army rifleman...
Info kept on coming at breathtaking speed.

Good points:
-VERY informative
-The rehabilitation of the Red Army intelligence: finnish fortifications were known, but the Soviet high command didn´t pass the info to the attacking units.

Some corrections:
-the Lotta organisation didn´t actually take part to the AAA-work itself, but some Lottas worked as aerial observers.
The winter equipment of finnish soldiers were not very good. The SA (army) equipment were not enough to keep the cold away. Personal woolen pullovers, socks, gloves etc were essential. The russian winterboots (vilttitossu) were popular and liked war trophies among the finnish troops.

Eagerly waiting for the next wednesday.
Regards, Juha

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Post by Ike_FI » 13 Mar 2003 11:18

Juha Tompuri wrote:GOOD document.
Specially one Red Army rifleman...
Info kept on coming at breathtaking speed.

Good points:
-VERY informative
-The rehabilitation of the Red Army intelligence: finnish fortifications were known, but the Soviet high command didn´t pass the info to the attacking units.
I think too that the program was surprisingly informative. It was especially interesting to see the quite recently "found" original Soviet documents that have been mentioned in some lately published books of both Finnish and Russian historians. All in all the documentary went clearly beoynd "high school history" level. First-hand accounts were of course very interesting.

The documentary was quite ruthless what it comes to criticism of both the decisions made by Winter War era Soviet leaders and the following Soviet historiography. Having read some other (in that sense more conservative, or apologetic, if you like) comments by some of the interviewed Russian historians, it seems to me that the documentary team took by selection of quotes a stance to underline more critical views. No explanations how USSR sincerely tried to avoid the war until the last moment, etc.

I guess certain things might have needed a bit more explanation, like the Suojeluskunta and Lotta concepts, as well as how huge effort Finland's mobilisation really was compared to our population and resources. Also, I'd like to hear something about the female soldiers and political officer system on Soviet side.

Waiting for the next part...

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Bair
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Post by Bair » 13 Mar 2003 19:14

Dear All,

I was one of the consultants for the documentary (mostly for Mannerheim Line issues) and I can explain a bit:

1. The speed of information is so high because the film had to be made shorter in order to accommodate advertising on Russian Tv - they cut away almost everything about bunkers of the Mannerheim Line, for example.

2. It was impossible to cover entire Winter War in such a short period of time, so they made a selection of facts according to how unknown/shocking/surprising the facts would be for general Russian public.

3. The company which produed the movie is NOT specialised in historical movie making, so they tried to make a movie fit for a regular Russian viewer, not Winter War experts.

I hope that this explains a little bit,

with best regards,

Bair Irincheev

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Harri
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Post by Harri » 13 Mar 2003 21:38

The first part was excellent! There was lots of stuff in a nutshell and no Soviet liturgy at all. Mistakes were minor and partly due to translation I think. It is interesting to watch the second part.

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Post by Ike_FI » 13 Mar 2003 23:04

Thanks for the clarifications, Bair!

Too bad they had to cut off some interesting parts you described.
I guess that working with a documentary team was an interesting experience anyway.

Actually before you wrote your previous message, I thought for a moment that maybe you were involved in the clothing comparison part (knowing your re-enacment experience)...

Any observations what kind of response the program got in Russia by historians and/or general public (do you think such theme in general interests people outside WWII enthusiaist circles)?

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Post by Juha Hujanen » 14 Mar 2003 16:21

I also enjoyed the doc.Pretty good job.

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Bair
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Post by Bair » 14 Mar 2003 20:16

Well, the movie received quite good reviews from both general public and the historians, although everyone agreed that it was quite impossible to put entire history of Winter War into 2 hour film.

The Finnish Ambassador was so pleased that he sent a bottle of Marskin Rypsy (I hope I spell the name of this liquer correctly) to the TV company.

Personally I was not involved in the re-encatment thing, I was mostly doing some translation and phone calls to Finnish veterans, trying to make appointments for interviews.

I also consulted the TV company on the battles in Summa and Lahde sectors, my interview about the battle of Dec 17 - Dec 23 did not fit in the movie, but I am still quite happy as in the second part they used a map from my webpage. :)

regadrs,

Bair
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Post by Juha Tompuri » 20 Mar 2003 00:47

The second one was as good as the first one.
One correction: at the end, peace treaty map: "we" got Petsamo back
note1: the execution of Vinogradov seemed not to be a great morale booster
note2: the historican at the end was quite right. Either the orders to attack after the peace treaty was signed, were revenge, or perhaps attempts to break "our" lines, and so continue the war.

Regards, Juha

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Post by Ike_FI » 20 Mar 2003 12:02

Juha Tompuri wrote:The second one was as good as the first one.
Regards, Juha
Damn! I forgot that... :cry:

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Harri
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Post by Harri » 20 Mar 2003 14:16

Yes, it was a good document, both informative and interesting. I think that Petsamo map was maybe taken from some other document. Other mistakes were probably, like I said earlier, due to translation, for example Sub-lieutenent vs. Second Lieutenent [Vänrikki] and rifle grenade launcher (or maybe 50 mm mortar?) vs. bazooka (that was for sure a translation error!! :P ).

Anyway, a very good document and recommended to everyone interested in Winter war.

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