The Karelian question or Karelian issue is a dispute in Finnish politics over whether or not to try to regain control over Finnish Karelia and other territories ceded to the Soviet Union in the Winter War and the Continuation War. Despite the name "Karelian question", the term may refer to the return of Petsamo, ceded parts of Salla and Kuusamo, four islands in the Gulf of Finland. Sometimes the phrase "debate on the return of the ceded territories" is used; the Karelian question remains a matter of public debate rather than a political issue. The Karelian question arose when Finland was forced to cede territories to the Soviet Union after the Winter War in the Moscow peace treaty in 1940. Most Finnish citizens were evacuated from the ceded areas. Most of them returned during the Continuation War and were evacuated again in 1944; the Soviet Union insisted the ceded areas be evacuated in 10 days. The evacuees were compensated for their losses; the compensation was about one third of the original farm.
Compensation for movable property was much less. However, all evacuee families had a right to receive a small farm, and/or a plot for a detached house or a flat; the land used for these grants was confiscated by the state from private owners. Financial compensation was funded by a general property tax of 10 to 30%, levied over a period of several years; because the vast majority of the evacuees who had to settle in the rest of Finland were from ceded Karelia, the question was labeled The Karelian Question. After the Winter War, Karelian municipalities and parishes established Karjalan Liitto to defend the rights of Karelians in Finland. During the Cold War, the Karelian-born Finnish politician Johannes Virolainen lobbied for the return of Karelia. President Urho Kekkonen tried to reacquire the territory when the Soviet Union returned the peninsula of Porkkala to Finland in 1956. There was, however, no significant public controversy about the case, because Kekkonen wanted to keep it quiet; the last time Kekkonen tried to raise it was in 1972, but he had no success, public discussion died out in the 1970s.
After the breakup of the Soviet Union, the Karelian question re-surfaced. According to an article by the Finnish newspaper Helsingin Sanomat in August 2007, the Russian president Boris Yeltsin unofficially offered to sell ceded Karelia to Finland in 1991 but was declined. However, according to many Finnish political leaders and the Russian vice Prime Minister of the time, there were no such offers, only unofficial probing of the idea. Andrei Fyodorov, an advisor of Boris Yeltsin, told the Helsingin Sanomat that he was part of a group, tasked by the government of Russia in 1991–1992 with calculating the price of returning Karelia to Finland; this price was set at 15 billion US dollars. According to Fyodorov, Finnish president Mauno Koivisto and Finnish foreign minister Paavo Väyrynen were aware of these unofficial discussions. Karjalan Liitto is an interest group of Karelian evacuees which hopes that Karelia will once again become part of Finland at some point, but does not demand it; some smaller groups, such as ProKarelia, continue to campaign for the peaceful return of Karelia.
However, no serious political party has supported this goal, Finnish politicians say there is no need for it, citing Finland's peace treaty with Russia. There are some individual politicians who support the return of Karelia, such as MEP Ari Vatanen, two candidates in the presidential election of 2006: Timo Soini and Arto Lahti. Other candidates have stated that Finland has signed a peace treaty and should not campaign for the return of what are now Russian-developed territories. During a debate prior to the 2012 presidential election Timo Soini reiterated his view that, if elected, he would advance the issue. Both Russia and Finland have stated that no open territorial dispute exists between the two countries. Finland's official stance is that the borders may be changed through peaceful negotiations, although there is no need to hold open talks, as Russia has shown no intention of returning the ceded areas, or discussing the question. In 1994 Boris Yeltsin commented that "seizure of Finnish Karelia" was an example of Stalin's totalitarian and aggressive politics.
In 1997 he stated that the matter was closed. In 2000 President Putin stated that such discussions may endanger Finnish–Russian relations, in 2001 he said that "changing borders is not the best way to resolve problems", but that possible solutions would be "integration and cooperation". In 1998 Finnish President Martti Ahtisaari said that "Finland's official position is that it does not have territorial demands on Russia. However, if Russia wants to discuss returning the ceded areas, Finland is ready for that." Several other politicians holding government office, such as the former foreign minister Erkki Tuomioja and prime minister Matti Vanhanen, have made statements along the same lines. The latest polls show that 26% to 38% of Finns would like to see Karelia return to Finnish control and some 51% to 62% would oppose such a move. In Russia, people associate the word "Karelia" with the Republic of Karelia instead of Finnish Karelia, which makes conducting polls more difficult. In a 1999 poll by MTV3, 34% of the people of Vyborg supported returning Karelia to Finland and 57% were opposed.
Vyborg and the rest of the ceded Karelia outside the Republic of Karelia nowadays contain few ethnic Finns, is exclusively inhabited by people who moved there during the Soviet era and their descendants. In the lates
General Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union
General Secretary of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union was an office of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union that by the late 1920s had evolved into the most powerful of the Central Committee's various secretaries. With a few exceptions, from 1929 until the union's dissolution the holder of the office was the de facto leader of the Soviet Union, because the post controlled both the CPSU and the Soviet government. Joseph Stalin elevated the office to overall command of the Communist Party and by extension the whole Soviet Union. Nikita Khrushchev renamed the post First Secretary in 1953; the office grew out of less powerful secretarial positions within the party: Technical Secretary, Chairman of the Secretariat, Responsible Secretary. In its first two incarnations the office performed secretarial work; the post of Responsible Secretary was established in 1919 to perform administrative work. In 1922, the office of General Secretary followed as a purely administrative and disciplinary position, whose role was to do no more than determine party membership composition.
Stalin, its first incumbent, used the principles of democratic centralism to transform his office into that of party leader, leader of the Soviet Union. In 1934, the 17th Party Congress refrained from formally re-electing Stalin as General Secretary. However, Stalin was re-elected into all other positions and remained leader of the party without diminishment. In the 1950s, Stalin withdrew from Secretariat business, leaving the supervision of the body to Georgy Malenkov to test him as a potential successor. In October 1952, at the 19th Party Congress, Stalin restructured the party's leadership, his request, voiced through Malenkov, to be relieved of his duties in the party secretariat due to his age, was rejected by the party congress, as delegates were unsure about Stalin's intentions. In the end, the congress formally abolished Stalin's office of General Secretary, though Stalin remained one of the party secretaries and maintained ultimate control of the Party; when Stalin died on 5 March 1953, Malenkov was the most important member of the Secretariat, which included Nikita Khrushchev, among others.
Under a short-lived troika of Malenkov and Molotov, Malenkov became Chairman of the Council of Ministers but was forced to resign from the Secretariat nine days on 14 March, leaving Khrushchev in effective control of the body. Khrushchev was elected to the new office of First Secretary at the Central Committee plenum on 14 September of the same year. Conceived as a collective leadership, Khrushchev removed his rivals from power in both 1955 and 1957 and reinforced the supremacy of the First Secretary. In 1964, opposition within the Politburo and the Central Committee led to Khrushchev's removal as First Secretary. Leonid Brezhnev succeeded Khrushchev to the post as part of another collective leadership, together with Premier Alexei Kosygin and others; the office was renamed General Secretary in 1966. The collective leadership was able to limit the powers of the General Secretary during the Brezhnev Era. Brezhnev's influence grew throughout the 1970s as he was able to retain support by avoiding any radical reforms.
Yuri Andropov and Konstantin Chernenko ruled the country in the same way. Mikhail Gorbachev ruled the Soviet Union as General Secretary until 1990, when the Communist Party lost its monopoly of power over the political system; the office of President of the Soviet Union was established so that Gorbachev still retained his role as leader of the Soviet Union. Following the failed August coup of 1991, Gorbachev resigned as General Secretary, he was succeeded by his deputy, Vladimir Ivashko, who only served for five days as Acting General Secretary before Boris Yeltsin, the President of Russia, suspended all activity in the Communist Party. Following the party's ban, the Union of Communist Parties – Communist Party of the Soviet Union was established by Oleg Shenin in 1993; the UCP–CPSU works as a framework for reviving and restoring the CPSU. The organisation has members in all the former Soviet republics. General Secretary of the Communist Party General Secretary of the Communist Party of China General Secretary of the Communist Party of Vietnam First Secretary of the Communist Party of Cuba
Russia the Russian Federation, is a transcontinental country in Eastern Europe and North Asia. At 17,125,200 square kilometres, Russia is by far or by a considerable margin the largest country in the world by area, covering more than one-eighth of the Earth's inhabited land area, the ninth most populous, with about 146.77 million people as of 2019, including Crimea. About 77 % of the population live in the European part of the country. Russia's capital, Moscow, is one of the largest cities in the world and the second largest city in Europe. Extending across the entirety of Northern Asia and much of Eastern Europe, Russia spans eleven time zones and incorporates a wide range of environments and landforms. From northwest to southeast, Russia shares land borders with Norway, Estonia, Latvia and Poland, Ukraine, Azerbaijan, China and North Korea, it shares maritime borders with Japan by the Sea of Okhotsk and the U. S. state of Alaska across the Bering Strait. However, Russia recognises two more countries that border it, Abkhazia and South Ossetia, both of which are internationally recognized as parts of Georgia.
The East Slavs emerged as a recognizable group in Europe between the 3rd and 8th centuries AD. Founded and ruled by a Varangian warrior elite and their descendants, the medieval state of Rus arose in the 9th century. In 988 it adopted Orthodox Christianity from the Byzantine Empire, beginning the synthesis of Byzantine and Slavic cultures that defined Russian culture for the next millennium. Rus' disintegrated into a number of smaller states; the Grand Duchy of Moscow reunified the surrounding Russian principalities and achieved independence from the Golden Horde. By the 18th century, the nation had expanded through conquest and exploration to become the Russian Empire, the third largest empire in history, stretching from Poland on the west to Alaska on the east. Following the Russian Revolution, the Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic became the largest and leading constituent of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics, the world's first constitutionally socialist state; the Soviet Union played a decisive role in the Allied victory in World War II, emerged as a recognized superpower and rival to the United States during the Cold War.
The Soviet era saw some of the most significant technological achievements of the 20th century, including the world's first human-made satellite and the launching of the first humans in space. By the end of 1990, the Soviet Union had the world's second largest economy, largest standing military in the world and the largest stockpile of weapons of mass destruction. Following the dissolution of the Soviet Union in 1991, twelve independent republics emerged from the USSR: Russia, Belarus, Uzbekistan, Azerbaijan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and the Baltic states regained independence: Estonia, Lithuania, it is governed as a federal semi-presidential republic. Russia's economy ranks as the twelfth largest by nominal GDP and sixth largest by purchasing power parity in 2018. Russia's extensive mineral and energy resources are the largest such reserves in the world, making it one of the leading producers of oil and natural gas globally; the country is one of the five recognized nuclear weapons states and possesses the largest stockpile of weapons of mass destruction.
Russia is a great power as well as a regional power and has been characterised as a potential superpower. It is a permanent member of the United Nations Security Council and an active global partner of ASEAN, as well as a member of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation, the G20, the Council of Europe, the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation, the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe, the World Trade Organization, as well as being the leading member of the Commonwealth of Independent States, the Collective Security Treaty Organization and one of the five members of the Eurasian Economic Union, along with Armenia, Belarus and Kyrgyzstan; the name Russia is derived from Rus', a medieval state populated by the East Slavs. However, this proper name became more prominent in the history, the country was called by its inhabitants "Русская Земля", which can be translated as "Russian Land" or "Land of Rus'". In order to distinguish this state from other states derived from it, it is denoted as Kievan Rus' by modern historiography.
The name Rus itself comes from the early medieval Rus' people, Swedish merchants and warriors who relocated from across the Baltic Sea and founded a state centered on Novgorod that became Kievan Rus. An old Latin version of the name Rus' was Ruthenia applied to the western and southern regions of Rus' that were adjacent to Catholic Europe; the current name of the country, Россия, comes from the Byzantine Greek designation of the Rus', Ρωσσία Rossía—spelled Ρωσία in Modern Greek. The standard way to refer to citizens of Russia is rossiyane in Russian. There are two Russian words which are commonly
Moscow Peace Treaty
The Moscow Peace Treaty was signed by Finland and the Soviet Union on 12 March 1940, the ratifications were exchanged on 21 March. It marked the end of the 105-day Winter War. Finland had to cede border areas to the Soviet Union; the treaty was signed by Vyacheslav Molotov, Andrey Zhdanov and Aleksandr Vasilevsky for Soviet Union, Risto Ryti, Juho Kusti Paasikivi, Rudolf Walden and Väinö Voionmaa for Finland. The Finnish government received the first tentative peace conditions from the Soviet Union on 31 January 1940. By this point, the regime had greater claims before the start of the war; the demands were that Finland cede the Karelian Isthmus, including the city of Viipuri, Finland's shore of Lake Ladoga. The Hanko Peninsula was to be leased to the Soviet Union for 30 years. Finland rejected these demands and intensified its pleas to Sweden and the United Kingdom for military support by regular troops; the reports from the front still held out hope for Finland, anticipating a League of Nations intervention.
Positive signals, however inconstant, from France and Britain, more realistic expectations of troops from Sweden, for which plans and preparations had been made all through the 1930s, were further reasons for Finland not to rush into peace negotiations. In February 1940, Finland's Commander-in-chief marshal Mannerheim expressed his pessimism about the military situation, prompting the government to start peace negotiations on 29 February, the same day the Red Army commenced an attack against Viipuri. On 6 March, a Finnish delegation led by Prime Minister Risto Ryti travelled to Moscow. During the negotiations, the Red Army broke through the Finnish defence lines around Tali and were close to surrounding Viipuri; the Peace Agreement was signed on the evening of 12 March, Moscow Time, i.e. 1 hour on March 13, Finnish time. The protocol appended to the treaty stipulated that the fighting should be ended at noon, Leningrad time, the fighting continued until that time. Finnish concessions and territorial losses exceeded.
Finland was forced to cede nearly all of Finnish Karelia though large parts were still held by Finland's army. Military troops and remaining civilians were hastily evacuated to inside the new border. 422,000 Karelians, 12% of Finland's population, lost their homes. There was an area that the Russians captured during the war, which remained in Finnish hands according to the Peace Treaty: Petsamo. However, the peace treaty stipulated that Finland would grant free passage for Soviet civilians through Petsamo to Norway. Finland had to cede a part of the Salla area, the Finnish part of the Kalastajansaarento peninsula in the Barents Sea, in the Gulf of Finland the islands of Suursaari, Tytärsaari, Lavansaari and Seiskari; the Hanko Peninsula was leased to the Soviet Union as a naval base for 30 years at an annual rent of 8 million marks. Contrary to common belief, the Soviet troop transfer rights by railway to the Hanko base were not granted in the peace treaty, but they were demanded first on 9 July, after Sweden had acknowledged railway transit of Wehrmacht troops to occupied Norway.
Additional demands were that any equipment and installation on the ceded territories were to be handed over. Thus Finland had to hand over 75 locomotives, 2,000 railroad cars, a number of cars and ships; the Enso industrial area, on the Finnish side of the border, as it was drawn in the peace treaty, was soon added to the Finnish losses of territory and equipment. The new border was not arbitrary from the Soviet viewpoint. Before the war, Finland had been a leading producer of high quality pulp, an important raw material for explosives. Including the Enso factories, the Soviet Union captured 80% of Finland's production capacity. Finland had to cede 1/3 of her built hydroelectric power in the form of hydroelectric power plants on the Vuoksi River, badly needed in Leningrad, where the industry suffered a 20% shortage of electricity; the location of the new border was consistent with the Soviet defence doctrine, which envisioned taking the fight onto enemy soil through counterattacks and pre-emptive strikes.
Under this doctrine, the ideal border should not allow the enemy to have natural defensible barriers. But those positions were very easy to encircle for an offensive enemy of the Red Army, soon to be shown; the Finns were shocked by the harsh peace terms. It seemed as if more territory was lost in the peace than in the war, the loss was in many ways some of the highest valued parts of Finland: Large parts of the most populated southern region of remaining Finland had been connected to the world via the Saimaa Canal system, that now was severed at Vyborg where it connects to the Gulf of Finland; the southern part of the lost area was Finland's industrial heart. Karelia is considered the origin of the Finnish culture. Before the Winter War, the Soviet sovereignty over the main part of Karelia, Stalinist atrocities there, had been a major source of grief for many Finns. Under the terms of the treaty, the rest of Karelia was lost; this started the Karelian question. Sympathy from world opinion seemed to h
Porkkalanniemi is a peninsula in the Gulf of Finland, located at Kirkkonummi in Southern Finland. The peninsula had great strategic value, as coastal artillery based there would be able to shoot more than halfway across the Gulf of Finland. If the same power controlled the Estonian coast, on the opposite side of the gulf, it would be able to block Saint Petersburg's naval access to the Baltic Sea; the distance to Estonia at the closest point is only 36 km. Porkkala is furthermore located only 30 kilometers from Helsinki, the Finnish capital, a foreign power based there would be able to exert significant pressure on the Finnish government. Nowadays, the coasts of the peninsula are popular bird-watching areas during the Arctic geese and other waterfowls' spring migration. At the end of the Second World War, the Soviet Union secured the rights of lease to a naval base at Porkkala, in accordance with the Moscow armistice agreement that ended the Continuation War between Finland and the Soviets on 19 September 1944.
Porkkala thus replaced the peninsula of Hanko, leased to the Soviets as a naval base in 1940–41. A large area centered on the peninsula, including land from the municipalities of Kirkkonummi and Ingå and the entire area of Degerby, was leased to the USSR from 29 September 1944, ten days after the armistice, it was placed under a military commander, Neon Vasilyevich Antonov, who remained in office till June 1945, when he was transferred to command the Amur River flotilla, in preparation for the war against Japan. According to the armistice of 1944, the area was leased to the Soviet Union for 50 years. On 10 February 1947, the Paris peace treaty reaffirmed the Soviet Union's right to occupy the area until 1994. No Soviet civilian administration was set up, the Soviet Union administered it through the military commander of Porkkala, a post held until 26 January 1956 by Sergey Ivanovich Kabanov, the former Commander of Hanko naval base. While under Soviet control, Finnish passenger trains running between Helsinki and Turku were allowed to use the railway through the area.
However, all train windows had to be closed with shutters, photography was prohibited. During the 1952 Summer Olympics in Helsinki, the Soviet Olympic team was housed on the base rather than in the Olympic village. Although the Soviet lease for Porkkala had been conceded for 50 years, an agreement was reached to return it earlier; the agreement was signed on 19 September 1955 11 years after the armistice, control of the area reverted to Finland on 26 January 1956. This may be attributed to the process of Finlandization and to technological progress making coastal artillery obsolete, but the renunciation of Stalinism by the Soviet Union under Nikita Khrushchev and Finland's neutrality and remaining out of NATO were important contributing factors; the Porkkala area houses one of the main bases of the Finnish Navy, located in Upinniemi, near Porkkala proper. The Soviet lease of Porkkala and the return of the area to former inhabitants are key events in the Finnish Noir mystery, Below the Surface by Leena Lehtolainen.
Details about Hanko and Porkkala leased bases, maps WorldStatesmen- Finland- Hanko and Porkkala
Kliment Yefremovich Voroshilov, popularly known as Klim Voroshilov, was a prominent Soviet military officer and politician during the Stalin era. He was one of the original five Marshals of the Soviet Union, along with Chief of the General Staff of the Red Army Alexander Yegorov, three senior commanders, Vasily Blyukher, Semyon Budyonny, Mikhail Tukhachevsky. Voroshilov was born in the settlement of Verkhnyeye, Bakhmut uyezd, Yekaterinoslav Governorate, Russian Empire, into a railway worker's family of Russian ethnicity. According to the Soviet Major General Petro Grigorenko, Voroshilov himself alluded to the heritage of his birth-country, to the previous family name of Voroshilo. Voroshilov joined the Bolshevik faction of the Russian Social Democratic Labour Party in 1905. Following the Russian Revolution of 1917, Voroshilov became a member of the Ukrainian Council of People's Commissars and Commissar for Internal Affairs along with Vasiliy Averin, he was well known for aiding Joseph Stalin in the Revolutionary Military Council, having become associated with Stalin during the Red Army's 1918 defense of Tsaritsyn.
Voroshilov was active as a commander of the Southern Front during the Russian Civil War and the Polish–Soviet War while with the 1st Cavalry Army. As Political Commissar serving co-equally with Stalin, Voroshilov was responsible for the morale of the 1st Cavalry Army, composed chiefly of peasants from southern Russia. Voroshilov headed the Petrograd Police during 1917 and 1918. Voroshilov served as a member of the Central Committee from his election in 1921 until 1961. In 1925, after the death of Mikhail Frunze, Voroshilov was appointed People's Commissar for Military and Navy Affairs and Chairman of the Revolutionary Military Council of the USSR, a post he held until 1934, his main accomplishment in this period was to move key Soviet war industries east of the Urals, so that the Soviet Union could strategically retreat, while keeping its manufacturing capability intact. Frunze's political position adhered to that of the Troika, but Stalin preferred to have a close, personal ally in charge. Frunze was urged by a group of Stalin's hand-picked doctors to have surgery to treat an old stomach ulcer, despite previous doctors recommendations to avoid surgery and Frunze's own unwillingness.
He died on the operating table of a massive overdose of an anaesthetic. Voroshilov became a full member of the newly formed Politburo in 1926, remaining a member until 1960. Voroshilov was appointed People's Commissar for Defence in 1934 and a Marshal of the Soviet Union in 1935, he played a central role in Stalin's Great Purge of the 1930s, denouncing many of his own military colleagues and subordinates when asked to do so by Stalin. He wrote personal letters to exiled former Soviet officers and diplomats such as commissar Mikhail Ostrovsky, asking them to return voluntarily to the Soviet Union and falsely reassuring them that they would not face retribution from authorities. Voroshilov signed 185 documented execution lists, fourth among the Soviet leadership after Molotov and Kaganovich. During World War II, Voroshilov was a member of the State Defense Committee. Voroshilov commanded Soviet troops during the Winter War from November 1939 to January 1940 but, due to poor Soviet planning and Voroshilov's incompetence as a general, the Red Army suffered about 185,000 casualties.
When the leadership gathered at Stalin's dacha at Kuntsevo, Stalin shouted at Voroshilov for the losses. Voroshilov followed this retort by smashing a platter of roast suckling pig on the table. Nikita Khrushchev said it was the only time he witnessed such an outburst. Voroshilov was nonetheless made the scapegoat for the initial failures in Finland, he was replaced as Defense Commissar by Semyon Timoshenko. Voroshilov was made Deputy Premier responsible for cultural matters. Voroshilov argued that thousands of Polish army officers captured in September 1939 should be released, but he signed the order for their execution in the Katyn massacre of 1940. After the German invasion of the Soviet Union in June 1941, Voroshilov became commander of the short-lived Northwestern Direction, controlling several fronts. In September 1941 he commanded the Leningrad Front. Working alongside military commander Andrei Zhdanov as German advances threatened to cut off Leningrad, he displayed considerable personal bravery in defiance of heavy shelling at Ivanovskoye.
However, the style of counterattack he launched had long since been abandoned by strategists and drew contempt from his military colleagues. Stalin had a political need for popular wartime leaders and Voroshilov remained as an important figurehead. In an embarrassing incident at the 1943 Tehran Conference, during a ceremony to receive the "Sword of Stalingrad" from Winston Churchill, he took the sword from Stalin but allowed the sword to fall from its scabbard onto his toes in the presence of the Big