Download 1939: The Year that Changed Everything in Lithuania's by Šarūnas Liekis PDF

By Šarūnas Liekis

ISBN-10: 9042027622

ISBN-13: 9789042027626

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Extra info for 1939: The Year that Changed Everything in Lithuania's History (On the Boundary of Two Worlds: Identity, Freedom, & Moral Imagination in the Baltics, 20)

Sample text

62 However this remained a wish and an illusion among all military analysts of the time. The Lithuanian military then had, on average, 28,000 officers, non-commissioned officers and privates every year. 63 Overall, the situation of a country which had a low ranking in terms of GDP, territory, population and military capabilities looked rather bleak, especially in light of the approaching European conflict. 42 Šarūnas Liekis Germany The New Plan, conceived in 1934, arose out of the necessity to guarantee conditions for economic recovery and rearmament.

But soon, with the advent of National-Socialism in Germany, the Nazi movement grew in strength in Klaipėda (Memel). Relations between the two countries worsened after the Lithuanian government arrested 122 members of Nazi groups in Klaipėda and put them on trial for planning a Nazi uprising in the district. The perpetrators were punished with serious sentences that were announced in March 1935. The loss of Klaipėda dealt a severe blow to the reputation of the ruling regime of Antanas Smetona and to the economy of the country.

Supported by Soviet Russia both financially and militarily, they attempted to capture the entire Lithuanian territory. On February 27, 1919 the Soviet puppet government of Lithuania joined the Belarusian Soviet government, thus founding the Lithuanian and Belarusian Soviet Socialist Republic. However this government collapsed under the joint assault from the Lithuanian and German volunteer units serving for the Lithuanian army. The Polish military advances in the south and the east of Lithuania also played an important role in undermining Soviet presence on Lithuanian soil.

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