Browsing by Author "Maasalo, Erkki Tapio"

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  • Maasalo, Erkki Tapio (2004)
    This dissertation deals with the personal history of the Finnish Foreign Minister Henrik Ramsay as a political actor in the Finnish foreign policy during the Continuation War 1943-1944. The Linkomies Regime 5.3.1943– 8.8.1944 was formed in order to conclude peace with the Soviet Union. This study aims at determining who the leading decision-makers in the Finnish foreign policy were during 1943-1944 and what the role of Ramsay was in the formulation of foreign policy. Why did Ramsay have such a decisive position in the Finnish foreign policy while the Finnish constitution granted the final powers in foreign policy to the President of the republic?. Ramsay had an extraordinarily large network of relations in his available thanks to his personal contacts as CEO of a shipping company. In particular, the Swedish Foreign Ministry gave him extensively information from their legations all over the world, and most importantly, the USSR. Furthermore, he had the possibility to receive military and diplomatic radio intelligence from all over the world because of the excellent code-breaking ability of the Finns. Perhaps the most crucial determinant pf Ramsay’s position was that he was a close friend of commander-in-chief Marshal Mannerheim for a long time. As the former Minister of Supply he was well informed about the problems of providing food for the nation in periods of crisis. Finland was between two superpowers in Europe: the Soviet Union and Germany. Determining the correct time to withdraw from the war was extremely delicate because both sides wanted Finland to assist in their war efforts. Finland had had unfortunate experiences with the Soviet Union during 1939-1940. Therefore, there was little or no confidence towards the giant of the East. This study concludes that Ramsay was in no time in darkness regarding the world-wide diplomatic happenings, as it has been previously argued in Finland. In conclusion, four men decided the Finnish destiny in the end: Mannerheim, Ramsay, Minister of Treasury VäinöTanner and and Minister of DefenceRudolf Walden. The armistice came to force on September 4, 1944, and the interim peace on September 19, 1944.