While I realize that Mannerheim was controversial, I was not aware of his tacit approval of imprisoning his own countrymen as you had mentioned. I did not envy him, particularly when having to deal with Stalin's bullying, and especially when considering just how close Finland is (geographically) to its giant neighbor; and one that has not always been very friendly. It's pretty clear that Mannerheim was walking a tightrope then- first with the Russians, then with the Germans, and finally with the Russians yet again.Carcass wrote:Mormegil wrote:Mannerheim is not entirely uncontroversial. With his silent approval thousands of his countrmates died in prison camps after the civil war.miditek wrote:Well, I'm not sure about that...Mormegil wrote:The same one. Probably the only remarkable person in Finland's history.browneyedgirl wrote:BTW, isn't Lauri Porra's Great-Grandfather this Sebelius composer fellow himself?
What about Field Marshal Mannerheim?
Or Simo Hayha- the world's deadliest sniper?
Just my $0.02, but I would say that the entire Finnish army in WWII was nothing short of remarkable.
Mannerheim might be another one, but I don't think anyone, not even all the Finns themselves, have heard of Simo Häyhä, unless they really are into history of WWII (like you I suppose).
Regarding Mr. Häyhä, I personally consider him to be a true Finnish patriot. I do not believe that he was a war-monger, but was simply a normal guy who did what he had to do under extremely difficult circumstances, and he did it extraordinarily well.
I envy some of the tourists that had the opportunity to meet him before his death a few years ago. From what I have read, he was very polite to the people that had traveled thousands of miles to meet with him. Many of these men were gun collectors, I guess you would call them "Finnophiles" that had respect for the country's marital history, and were also interested in the Finns' well-known skill at weapons manufacturing. There is an interesting page dedicated to Mr. Häyhä at the link below-