Me and the Finnish Alliance

My name is Ari. I am a member of the Finnish Alliance. It's a cultural organization, founded in 1906.

The next episode happened before the New York Times interviewed our chairman and published an article about Finland on December 25, 2005. This article mentioned our organization.

I have been a member of the board of the Finnish Alliance from 2001 to 2007. In one meeting in 2004 I heard in my own ears, when chairman Heikki Tala told the board that Helsinki district court was ready to ban our organization! An official had told this threat to our chairman in a meeting in the Ministry for Internal Affairs.

A government's threat to ban a peaceful organization (because of its opinions) violates the principles of democracy.

As far as I have understood, leading politicians - president Halonen and prime minister Vanhanen among others - were responsible for this threat to ban the Finnish Alliance - without any reason!

Like any other organization in Finland, the Finnish Alliance has the right to express its opinion about anything, eg bills and laws.

 

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I revealed this on January 18, 2012 under the headline Finnish government to ban our organization?. Had this happened, Finland would have taken a big step toward dictatorship. A dictator does not stand organizations or people who are opposing his or her ideology.

 
The Finnish Alliance is opposing mandatory swedish, and the puppets of Sweden want to get rid of it. Today the Finnish Alliance lives on.

The committee of the Language Law was nominated in 1999, but media (TV and newspapers) was silent on it. I heard about this for the first time in 2000 when I visited the office of the Finnish Alliance and joined it.


Here is a 1937 issue of the magazine of the Finnish Alliance. I have translated its headlines into English. The writers are on the right. You can see names like J. Hampden Jackson and Urho Kekkonen. Most of the writers are skilled or professional and highly educated who have entered into their work with zest.

Here I present some famous names in the Finnish Alliance, who wrote in its magazine in the 1930s. There were surprisingly many prominent persons to write articles in the magazine. The magazine's name was Suomalainen Suomi. Today its name is Suomen Mieli.

Urho Kekkonen and Veikko Heiskanen wrote the most articles in the magazine. Many other writers were famous cultural persons, authors and novelists: Martti Haavio, Ilmari Turja, Arvi Kivimaa (also a poet), Yrjö Kivimies, Toivo Pekkanen, Kaarlo Marjanen, Tatu Vaaskivi, Jorma Pohjanpalo and Mika Waltari.

Elsa Enäjärvi-Haavio was a scientist. She wrote in 1929 a book which suggested that Finnish pupils study English language instead of Swedish.

Esko Aaltonen and Mauno Jääskeläinen were historians. Aaro Pakaslahti became later a diplomat. Tauno Jalanti was an official. Hannes Teppo, Lauri Posti and Lauri Hakulinen were linguists.

Paavo Kastari was a professor and Attorney General. He was president Kekkonen's close friend. Also Jussi Teljo, Päivö Oksala and Ohto Oksala became professors.

Jussi Teljo wrote in 1934 and 1935 that some Swedes wanted in 1917-19 that Sweden annexes Lapland from Finland. He mentioned two Swedish names, Albin Cullberg and Lage Stael von Holstein and a nickname "Camillus", who all used brutal and insulting words against the Finns. They all wanted that Kemi river would be the border between Sweden and Finland. And they insisted on privileges for the Swedes.

In October 1915 a Finnish delegation went to Stockholm, in order to inquire the Swedish government's attitude on Finnish independence movement. The members of the Finnish delegation were Otto Stenroth, Samuli Sario, A. H. Saastamoinen and Axel Lille. In the negotiation Swedish count Douglas said the Finnish delegation that Sweden wants to annex Northern Finland from Finland. The Finns were not willing to cede.

- Finnish sources: Suomen Kuvalehti magazine 4 / 1935, pages 130-131 and 138, diplomat Aaro Pakaslahti's book Suomen politiikka maailmansodassa ("Finland's policy in the world war")

Most of the articles in the magazine dealt with culture, literature, science, politics, linguistics and so on. Some articles presented national issues, such as students' right to study in Finnish at the University of Helsinki.

In the 1930s six foreigners wrote articles in the magazine of the Finnish Alliance. Five of them were Estonians (August Annist, Oskar Loorits, Julius Mark, Harri Moora and Ants Oras) and one Englishman, J Hampden Jackson who presented British views of Finland. The Estonians were famous cultural persons in their own country.

In 1945 communist Minister of Interior Yrjö Leino wanted to ban the Finnish Alliance, but Urho Kekkonen and Juho Kusti Paasikivi resisted this. They both became the presidents of Finland. After 1948 Finland got fresh air and the worst pressure of the Soviet union faded away. Dictators have always resisted freedom.

Female Secretary General as early as 1907

 

In 1907 the Secretary General of the Finnish Alliance was writer Maila Talvio (1871-1951). Her husband was J J (Jooseppi Julius) Mikkola, the chairman of the organization in 1907 after Johannes Linnankoski. Maila Talvio wrote a number of books. She studied Polish and translated Polish writer Henryk Sienkiewicz's books into Finnish.

 


The board of the Finnish Alliance in 1930

Chairman Urho Kekkonen, later the president of Finland. He was the chairman of the Finnish Alliance in 1930-32, and a member of the board in 1927-1941.

Aarne Anerio, jurist
Eljas Erkko, editor-in-chief of Helsingin Sanomat newspaper, in the board in 1928-1930
Einar Fieandt (1879-1936), Doctor of Philosophy and an official
Lassi Hiekkala, editor-in-chief of Suomenmaa newspaper (Centre Party), later a National Progressive Party MP in 1945–1951
Ester Koskelainen (former Linnankoski), Mrs
Hannes Myllylä, director
Matti Pesonen, inspector
Alfred Salmela, who has a title of honor on school, a high rank official

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Later Eljas Erkko broke his Finnish Alliance ties. His newspaper Helsingin Sanomat released some biased articles, eg on December 14, 1933 Rafael Erich did not mention what was the immediate spark for 1933 Helsinki riots - censored: Hertzberg grabbed badges from Finnish female sellers, which caused the fights on November 6, 1933. Rafael Erich was an ambassador to Sweden in 1932-1936. Rafael Erich's nominations for honorary doctorates of the University of Uppsala, Sweden in 1932 was a reward for his deeds. However he acted against his own people.

In 1935 the parliament made the law of changing a foreign surname to Finnish. 14,000 Finns changed their foreign surname to Finnish.

In 1937 the parliament made the law of the University of Helsinki. The law was not good enough for the Finnish students who had fought for their rights.

In 1938 the Finnish Alliance found that censorship had begun in Finnish newspapers. In 1933 most newspapers had published its writings about injustices and language situations in several parts of the country. But in 1938 big newspapers censored this subject (source: history book by Kari Tarasti in 1966). And censorship has continued until today.

Censorship was linked with government and its foreign policy, especially ties with Sweden and other Scandinavian countries. Aimo Cajander's third cabinet ruled the country in 1937-1939. The government tightened censorship during the war. Two government ministers had been in board of the Finnish Alliance, Eljas Erkko (Foreign Minister, Dec 12, 1938 – Dec 1, 1939) and Urho Kekkonen (Minister of the Interior).

Urho Kekkonen was devoted to the Finnish Alliance and its ideals of justices. He marked the jubilee of the organization in 1956 and 1966.

An interesting person is V A Heiskanen who was the chairman of the Finnish Alliance in 1933-1947 and 1955-1956. He was a scientist who worked in the US in 1950-1961. He was a professor in Ohio State University. His secret task in the USA was to study the ballistic flightpath of a long range missile. (Source Finnish TV, YLE TV1 A-piste program on December 18, 2006. Journalist Olli Ainola and television presenter Juho-Pekka Rantala.)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Veikko_Aleksanteri_Heiskanen

 

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As we see the Finnish Alliance is a cultural organization. I hope this is a candid presentation of the organization and its past.

Ari