Chapter

Isolation, 1939–1941

John Gilmour

in Sweden, the Swastika and Stalin

Published by Edinburgh University Press

Published in print March 2011 | ISBN: 9780748627462
Published online September 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780748671274 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.3366/edinburgh/9780748627462.003.0004
Isolation, 1939–1941

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In early September 1939, Sweden responded diplomatically, economically and militarily to the outbreak of war in Europe. Swedish fears that the Winter War would result in threats to the country’s security were fully justified. The strategic importance of supplies of Swedish iron ore to Germany had begun to divert the attention of the Allies. On 9 April 1940 Denmark and Norway were invaded by Germany After the Allies left Norway once hostilities had ceased in in June, Britain and France, who only a few months previously had been strong-arming Sweden into conceding transit for their troops to Finland were now reduced to diplomatic hand-wringing that Sweden was on the slippery slope to becoming a German satellite. Sweden now began to live with the realities of encirclement, transit, German hegemony, Allied criticism and Russian concerns about future Swedish neutrality. Sweden increasingly found herself on the receiving end of unwelcome attentions from Germany with regard to further concessions and closer relations.

Keywords: Winter War; Finland; Stalin; Iron Ore; Weserübung; Transit Concessions; Permittenttrafiken eller tysktåg; Engelbrecht Division; Ribbentrop; Prytz Telegram

Chapter.  15449 words. 

Subjects: Modern History (1700 to 1945)

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