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World War II Re-explored

Some New Millenium Studies in the History of the Global Conflict

Edited By Jarosław Suchoples, Stephanie James and Barbara Törnquist-Plewa

This volume is a collection of thirty papers written by authors from around the world. The writers focus on topics related to their own research interests. As a result, readers obtain a worldwide perspective on World War II from academics working on nearly every continent, proving that World War II was, probably, the first ever truly global experience for humanity. Present are many and different perspectives on the war. Eighty years after the end of World War II, these academics share their knowledge and reflections about a gruesome, but still not very remote time. In the new millennium, their studies should remind readers that the ‘end of history’ has been an impossible illusion and warn that peace and stability in international relations are not a given.

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Hitler’s Satellites?

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Finland and Romania in Nazi Foreign Policy and War Strategy, 1940/1941–1944

Abstract: This analysis deals in a comparative historical perspective with 2 peculiar examples of smaller states being absorbed into an alliance, and eventually extracting themselves from that alliance again: Finland and Romania in the Nazi German orbit of the early 1940s. Against a more recent trend in Finnish Second World War Studies, it argues that the Finnish position in Hitler’s coalition war against the Soviet Union was exceptional, less in a war economic perspective, but rather in terms of alliance politics and the actual conduct of war. Whilst Nazi Germany’s perception of, and policies towards, Romania reflected the country’s situation as a volatile state in an even more volatile region, Finland remained special throughout – a case sui generis, as frequently reported. Combined with its reasonably solid military performance, Finland’s unusual stability as a state was mirrored in more affirmative perceptions and a generally more accommodating political behavior on the part of Berlin. Especially in comparison with Romania’s shifting position in the Axis alliance, it appears almost bizarre that a country like Finland, whose institutions and elites were – generally speaking – most unlike the Third Reich, fared better than those whose ideological and systemic compatibility was rarely in doubt.

Keywords: Finland, Romania, Second World War, Third Reich, Axis coalition, Operation Barbarossa

Introductory Remarks

This analysis deals in a comparative historical perspective with two peculiar examples of smaller states being absorbed...

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