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in power in Russia, a government which the bourgeois parties on the other hand were reluctant to recognize as the legal government of Russia.

Since Finland had made its definite break with Russia, it was important that the step taken meet with Russia's approval. The Senate first tried to get Germany to assist in procuring Russian recognition of Finnish sovereignty, and the Senate believed this assistance would be readily forthcoming since Germany, victorious on the eastern front, was now negotiating a peace treaty with the Russians at Brest-Litovsk. However, the Germans did not help, and since they frankly reminded the Finns that if they wanted subsequent German recognition they had to make direct contact themselves with the Russians, the Senate decided to turn directly to the Soviet of the Peoples' Commissars. A delegation headed by Svinhufvud himself went to Petrograd, but even before this a socialist group had already been in touch with leading Bolsheviks on the same matter. On the last day of December 1917, Russia, the first nation to do so, recognized Finland as an independent republic. Four days later came recognition from Sweden, France and Germany; a week later, from Denmark and Norway; before the end of January, from Austro-Hungary, the Netherlands and Spain. On the other hand, England and the United States delayed to the point where their definite recognition did not come until the World War had come to an end.

In the period extending from the end of November 1917 to the end of November 1939, Finland's history shows both the deepest division which can befall a nation and the greatest unanimity to which a democratically governed nation can rise.

When the declaration of independence was made, the nation seemed to be plunging toward complete disintegration and the maelstrom of civil war. This cup of bitterness came early in 1918, and after the battles were fought, it was hardly possible to imagine anything more battered and torn than the Finnish people.

There in the land were the victors and the vanquished, and between them there was bitterness. A schism split the Socialists the leaders tried to unite the ranks of labor behind western democracy and parliamentarianism, which was opposed to a sharply revolutionary wing organized in 1918 under the banner of world revolution, in close cooperation with the new order in Russia. The battle between the two factions was harsh, but the Social Democrats were able to take advantage of their legal status

15. op. cit. Juhani Paasivirta, "Suomen Itsenäistyminen", II, pp. 421-468.


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