Khrushchev's Beau Geste: the Return of Porkkala and its Global Significance
Sorila, Jesse (2016-04-01)
Aineistoon ei liity tiedostoja.
The return of the Porkkala naval base, which was leased to the Soviet Union at the end of World War II was unexpectedly returned in early 1956, 42 years before the USSR's lease on the area was to expire. There is no commonly accepted reason, and therefore the purpose of this work is to study the possible motives behind the return of Porkkala. These seem to have been reflected in the new foreign policy after the death of Stalin, which went far beyond returning Porkkala to Finland. The Soviet Union's courting of the non-aligned powers during this time, into which category Finland was assigned, also seems to be more than coincidence. However, the greater events of 1956, and the fact that Porkkala is remembered almost exclusively in Finland may have conspired to trap the events around Porkkala into the smaller narrative of Finnish-Soviet relations and the rise of Kekkonen to the presidency, due in no small part to his presence in negotiating the return of Porkkala. However this does not negate the message that Porkkala was intended to broadcast the USSR's new approach to neutrality. Through primary and secondary sources, gleaned from archives in Finland, memoirs of people involved, and historical literature, this thesis hopes to broaden the view that Porkkala's main and only significance lay in the changes it brought to Finnish-Soviet relations.