Latvia in World War II

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Fordham Univ Press, 2006 - History - 547 pages
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Valdis Lumans provides an authoritative, balanced, and comprehensive account of one of the most complex, and conflicted, arenas of the Second World War.

Struggling against both Germany and the Soviet Union, Latvia emerged as an independent nation state after the First World War. In 1940, the Soviets occupied neutral Latvia, deporting or executing more than 30,000 Latvians before the Nazis invaded in 1941 and installed a puppet regime. The Red Army expelled the Germans in 1944 and reincorporated Latvia as a Soviet Republic. By the end of the war, an estimated 180,000 Latvians fled to the West. The Soviets would deport at least another 100,000.

Drawing on a wide range of sources--many brought together here for the first time--Lumans synthesizes political, military, social, economic, diplomatic, and cultural history. He moves carefully through traditional sources, many of them partisan, to scholarship emerging since the end of the Cold War, to confront such issues as political loyalties, military collaboration, resistance, capitulation, the Soviet occupation, anti-Semitism, and the Latvian role in the Holocaust.


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User Review  - Shrike58 - LibraryThing

While meant as a survey of the post-Cold War scholarship of the Latvian experience in World War II, Lumans comes with the attitude of one who grew up with Latvian refugee nostalgia in regards to the ... Read full review


Prewar Latvia
Latvias Road to War
Latvia and the Outbreak of War
The Soviet Occupation and Annexation
Sovietizing Latvia The Year of Terror
The German Invasion and Occupation of Latvia
Latvia and the Ostland
Latvia and the Holocaust
Latvians at the Front
German Retreat and Soviet Return
Bibliographic Essay

The Latvian Legion

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Page 56 - Round us are small countries which dream of great adventures or allow iireat adventurers to manipulate their territory. We are not afraid of these little countries but if they do not mind their own business, we shall be compelled to open our borders and it will be too bad if we are compelled to use the...

About the author (2006)

Valdis O. Lumans is the Cleora Toole Murray Professor of History at the University of South Carolina Aiken. He is the author of Himmler's Auxiliaries: The Volksdeutsche Mittelstelleand the German National Minorities of Europe, 1933-1945.

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