Table of contents        Chapter IX

[page 153]



On May 4 the Czech underground contacted the near-by Vlasov’s anti-Soviet Russian Army. They planned an uprising against the Germans in Prague the next day. Would the Vlasovites help? Vlasov ordered his two and a half divisions into Prague on May 5 [1] and let his men release all their anger and bitterness against the Germans who had treated the Russians as subhumans for the last four years[2]. On May 8, when the Red Army approached, they withdrew from Prague[3] and tried to reach the Americans in Bavaria. About half of them made it; the rest were forced by American armor to surrender to the Soviets[2] [3]. Vlasov was tried in Moscow and hanged[3].

In accordance with the repatriation agreement signed at Yalta the British in Austria at the river Drava turned over to the Soviets a Cossack corps of 90,000 men, plus their wives and children. The British tricked them into captivity by pretending to bring them to the town to be equipped with new weapons[2]. It has been reported that the Soviets massacred the 200,000 men, women, and children with tanks and machine guns[4].


The first Soviet Commandant of Berlin was a Red Latvian born in the Soviet Union who had survived Stalin’s purges, General Nikolajs Berzarins. In the middle of June he was killed in a car accident[5] [6].


On July 17 the Big Three (Truman, Stalin, and Churchill) met at [page 154] Potsdam, southwest of Berlin, the same town in which in February the Latvians had founded the National Committee. Various agreements were reached: on zones of occupation in Germany, reparations, an ultimatum to Japan. The Baltic States were not openly mentioned, except obliquely: Stalin demanded Königsberg for the Soviet Union, claiming that it needs an ice-free port (even though it now had the Latvian ports of Rīga, Ventspils and Liepāja-and Königsberg is less ice-free than the three Latvian ports[7]). Churchill objected to the language of the proposed transfer of Königsberg because it would commit the West to the incorporation of Lithuania into the Soviet Union[8]. While the West was not prepared to make a major issue out of the annexation of the Baltic States, the West continued to maintain that the annexation was illegal.

The newly developed atomic bomb was dropped on Hiroshima on August 6; on Nagasaki on August 9. The Soviet Union declared war on Japan on August 8 so as not to be left out of the spoils of war. On August 14 the Japanese agreed to surrender. The actual signing of the surrender document took place on September 2.

The end of the war had revealed to the world the Nazi horrors committed in the concentration camps, i.e., the mass exterminations in the gas chambers. A tribunal of judges from the U.S., Great Britain, France, and the Soviet Union was established at Nuremberg in November of 1945 to try leading Nazis as war criminals. While the Nuremberg trials of Nazis was certainly justified, the presence of Soviet judges made a mockery out of those proceedings. Hitler had learned his methods from Stalin’s purges and from the mass exterminations of Soviet peasants; now the Soviets sat in judgment of the Nazis as if inept students were being judged by their schoolmasters. Furthermore, in the Soviet Union, a land without justice, there are no judges worthy of the name, only sniveling knaves anxious to do their master’s bidding.


For several days after May 8 there were boats and ships in the Baltic Sea still trying to reach the West from Courland and from the Hela peninsula. Some made it[9].

Several thousand Latvian soldiers scattered into the forests of Courland and formed small bands of national partisans. A large number of such groups was already operating in the rest of Latvia [page 155] which had been occupied by the Reds earlier[10]. For example, in the autumn of 1944 in Zemgale a group of 16 Latvians faced 39 truck-loads of Russian “exterminators” (the Red designation for specially trained units to combat partisans). In the ensuing battle 8 Latvians died and 270 “exterminators” were killed or wounded. The remainder of the Latvians escaped the attempted encirclement[11]. The Lithuanians and Estonians formed similar partisan units[12] [13].

The majority of the 19th Division wound up in Russian captivity. Some, such as Col. Galdiņš, were shot. Some, such as Major Laumanis, were sent to Siberia. Some, such as Major Reinholds, changed their names and lived in disguise[14]. Some, such as Capt. Evalds Vērsāns and three others, after spending a few months in the Latvian forests, decided to attempt to reach the West by land. Two of them reached it in a journey of starvation and danger, traveling three months through Poland and Germany, mostly by night[15]. Capt. Ādamsons, the Dreadful Moroccan, was partially blind when captured. He had injured one eye at Volkhov, the second in Courland during the 3rd Grand Battle[16]. Nevertheless, he attempted to escape Russian captivity and was shot[17].

During the winter of 1944-1945 the Courland warriors consoled each other with: “Enjoy the war, the peace will be horrible!” [18]. That maxim now came to pass. A succession of Ghastly Years descended upon the Baltic States. The first deportations to Siberia started in 1944 as soon as the Reds had occupied some of the regions of the Baltic States[19]. The Soviet advance into the Baltic States was accompanied by robbery, looting, rape, and murder[20]. A major deportation of 40-50,000 Latvians occurred in August of 1945[21].

Quite a few of the deported Latvians found themselves in the Kolyma region of Siberia where they were forced to work in the gold mines. Transportation in that region was provided mostly by ships. During those voyages the criminal prisoners killed, robbed, and raped the political prisoners[22] with impunity because there was no death penalty for murder while the politicals could be executed for anti-Soviet agitation in the camps[23]. One of those slave ships was appropriately named “Sovlatvia” (“Soviet Latvia”) [24], a nationalized Latvian ship, formerly called “Hercogs Jēkabs” (“Duke Jacob,” in honor of the Duke of Courland who had made Courland prosperous in the 17th century) [25]. Thus a ship named after an [page 156] enslaved nation carried slaves to the gold mines so that the Soviet Union could buy goods from the western nations. One of those slave ships, named Dalstroy, was blown up by the Latvian and Lithuanian prisoners in the Nakhodka harbor in 1946. The explosives for the gold mines were aboard the ship. The explosion caused a great destruction in the town. Many Latvians and Lithuanians were shot[26].


The Latvian civilians in Germany (former slave laborers in German industry, former inmates of concentration camps, and refugees from the Soviets) came under the care of the United Nations Relief and Rehabilitation Administration (UNRRA) as “displaced persons” (DPs). UNRRA was later replaced by the International Refugee Organization (IRO). The various Latvian organizations (such as the National Committee) which were formed under German rule were now disbanded. Some new organizations sprang up instead.

Most Latvian soldiers in Germany were at first kept in British prisoner-of-war camps in Germany. In the fall of 1945 most of them were transferred to a POW camp 2227 at Zedelghem in Belgium[27]. They had naively expected the Western Allies to understand the reasons why they had fought on the side of the Germans. Instead of understanding, they at first received beatings, and occasionally they were used for live target practice by the guards[28]. They were released during 1946 when the Western Allies concurred that the Latvians were not Nazis despite their SS uniforms.

The total of Latvian civilians and soldiers in Germany at the end of the war was roughly 120,000. About 2 % decided to return to the Soviet-occupied Latvia. About 90% emigrated in the late 1940’s and early 1950’s to the U.S., Canada, Australia, England, and a few other countries[29].


Roughly 5-6,000 Latvians had taken refuge in Sweden. Most were civilians who had crossed the Baltic Sea in desperation in 1944 [30]. However, some soldiers of the 15th Division also managed to cross the sea to Sweden from the encirclements in northern Germany during the last months of the war[31].

[page 157]

While Sweden was supposedly neutral during the war, it had allowed German troops and war material to be transported across Sweden to Norway, and also from Norway to Finland for use against the Soviet Union[32]. Swedish volunteers fought against the Soviet Union in the Scandinavian SS Division “Viking.” When the war ended with a Soviet victory, frightened Sweden presented the Latvian soldiers to the Soviet Union as a peace offering in violation of all international law. The Latvians went on a hunger strike, some attempted suicide, yet to no avail. In January of 1946 the Swedes dragged 130 Latvian, 7 Estonian, and 9 Lithuanian soldiers to Soviet captivity[30] [33].


The Lithuanian nationalist partisans who called themselves the Lithuanian Freedom Army succeeded in establishing a secret headquarters in Vilnius in January of 1947 [34]. As the largest of the three Baltic partisan groups (the initial size in April of 1945 has been estimated at 30,000 [35]) they caused about 80,000 Russian NKVD casualties between 1945 and 1949 [36], and their own losses from 1944 to 1952 probably exceeded 30,000 [37], with new recruits replacing the fallen. The lack of supplies and replacements for weapons, the collectivization (the forced joining of individual farms into a large single unit [a kolkhoz] to be worked by the whole community together under state supervision; therefore nobody had any interest in the prosperity of the kolkhoz of all farms, most of which had supported the partisans, and the fading of hope for help from the free world forced the Lithuanians to demobilize the Freedom Army between 1952 and 1955 [38], although some individual groups continued the fight after that date.

The exact number of Latvian partisans is not known. Various operations by the partisans have been reported in 135 localities[39]. In return for food from near-by farms the partisans during the summer frequently helped with farmwork[40]. They also attempted to protect the farmers against exceptionally brutal Reds by assassinating such[41]. The threat of action from the forest forced the more eager Reds to moderate their behavior. In some cases the Latvian partisans even submitted some demands to the local Communist officials and got compliance[41].


The forests hid the partisan dug-outs, their workshops for weapons, [page 158] their printing presses for leaflets and underground newspapers[42]. The Baltic partisans continued their fight for many years without any help from the outside world which is unprecedented in modern times; e.g., the Vietnamese guerrillas were lavishly supplied by the Communist world. The Latvian partisans survived because of their tenacity and daring, because of support from the whole nation, and because they had a dream-freedom.

The NKVD “exterminators” were frequently sent on missions to “comb” the forests for partisans, yet with scant success. For example, in February of 1950 at Okte in the township of Talsi 50 Latvian partisans confronted hundreds of searching “exterminators” supported by artillery. A column of Reds passed by the Latvian hide-out without detecting them. The next column did discover them, and the Latvians opened fire on both columns who in confusion began to fire upon each other. Although the Latvians did not escape without casualties, the exchange of fire between the two Red columns filled several trucks with dead “exterminators,” and the local hospitals were overcrowded with their wounded[40].

To destroy the partisan base of support the collectivization of individual farms was accelerated during the winter of 1948-1949, and another major deportation took place in March of 1949 [43] [44] because the Reds were unable to vanquish the Latvian nationalists (in Red nomenclature “counterrevolutionaries”) by any other means. About 60,000 Latvians were deported to Siberia, mostly farmers and their families who resisted collectivization[45]. By special instructions the Baltic deportees were assigned only to the heaviest work[46]. The total number of Baltic people deported until Stalin’s death in 1953 has been estimated at around 600,000: about 140,000 Estonians, 144,000-155,000 Latvians, and 285,000-300,000 Lithuanians[47] [48]. Solzhenitsyn reports that a third of the prisoners in his transit prison in 1950 came from the Baltic States[49].

To subdue the rebellious Latvians the Reds imported trustworthy Russians to replace the deported[50]. Thus began the major threat to the existence of Latvia today: a Russification program. Unneeded factories are built in Latvia and then the workers imported from Russia, Byelorussia, or the Ukraine. Thus Moscow continues the Czar’s Russification drive, started in the 19th century to secure the empire against nationalist secessions.

Stalin died in 1953. The mass terror was gradually relaxed. Some slave camps revolted. The camp at Kengir in Kazakhstan was taken [page 159] over by the inmates in 1954. The rebellion was crushed by tanks[51]. One of the leaders of the rebellion among women slaves at Kengir was the Latvian Biruta Blūms[52]. In 1955 the Reds granted an amnesty to some political prisoners, and some of the Baltic slaves were released from the camps[53]. The life in the camps became more relaxed, yet in 1956 and 1957 the rules governing the camp procedures were again retightened[54]. The camps still exist with millions of inmates forced to work in harsh conditions. However, the prisoners are now given criminal sentences (banditry, parasitism, sabotage) instead of political ones[55].

When the free world failed to support the Hungarian revolution against the Reds in 1956, the Latvian partisans gave up all hope. There are very few reports of their activity beyond 1956 [50].


Alarmed by the influx of Russians and encouraged by the post-Stalin “thaw,” some Latvian Communists attempted to develop a “national communism” in 1958 and 1959. They demanded that the officials of the Latvian puppet government should be able to speak not only Russian but also Latvian[56] (the Soviet Union is made up of 15 republics, including Russia and Latvia, which on paper have some autonomy; in practice everything is run from Moscow). This would exclude from government posts Moscow’s stooges[57], Russians and also Russianized Latvians who had spent most of their life in Russia and had no conception of the mainstream of Latvian culture. The leader of the national communists was Eduards Berklāvs, the Deputy Chairman of the Council of Ministers. He was supported mostly by trade-union leaders, the communist youth organization, and the students[58]. They proposed an end to the increased industrial development which served as a pretext for the flood of Russians into Latvia[59], and they demanded that to reduce the chronic shortages the consumer goods produced in Latvia should be first distributed locally and only the excess sent to the rest of the Soviet Union[57] (for example, fishing is an important Baltic industry, yet canned fish are scarce in the Baltic States[60]). They also proposed increased teaching of Latvian history, geography, and literature in the schools[57].

In June of 1959 Nikita Khrushchev, Stalin’s successor, came to Rīga with some top officials of the secret police and began a purge [page 160] of the national communists[61]. About 800 Latvians were removed from their posts and replaced with Russians[58] (including Berklāvs). Thereafter the Russification drive was intensified.

The percentage of Russians in Latvia was 10.6% in 1935, 26.6% in 1959, 29.8% in 1970 [62] [63], and 32.8% in 1979 [64]. However, the actual situation is even worse since other non-Russian nationalities can be used as substitutes for Russians to achieve Russification because, for example, the language used for communication between Latvians and Ukrainians would be Russian since neither non-Russian nationality is likely to know the language of the other. In 1979 the percentage of Ukrainians in Latvia was 2.7 % , of Byelorussians 4.5 % , of Poles 2.5 % ; Latvians themselves constituted only 53.7% of the population[64] as compared to 75.5% in 1935 [62] [63].

The influx of Russians and other Slavs is achieved by building new industry with a capacity far beyond Latvian needs and then importing the workers from the rest of the Soviet Union. The products are distributed throughout the Soviet Union and do not benefit Latvia. For example, in the 1960’s Latvia produced 29% of all railroad cars manufactured in the Soviet Union, 23% of radios, 12% of washing machines, 11% of light bulbs[65], 16% of trolley cars, 60% of telephones, 47% of mopeds and motorbikes[66] even though the population of Latvia was only 1% of the total population of the Soviet Union. The new workers from outside Latvia are given preferential treatment in the acquisition of apartments, a scarce commodity throughout the Soviet Union[67]. Yet Latvians are forced and enticed to leave Latvia to work elsewhere in the Soviet Union[67]. Apparently the leaders of the Soviet Union hope to achieve a Russianized population by mixing together the various nationalities. The Russians themselves constituted only 52.4% of the total population of the Soviet Union in 1979 [68], and the percentage has been shrinking from one census to the next, mostly because of the rapid growth of the populations in the Moslem and Caucasian republics. The shrinking percentage may have scared the leaders into an acceleration of the Russification.

One of the reasons why the Czar was overthrown was the revolt of the non-Russians against Russian oppression. To guard against such an oppression under the Bolshevik government Lenin warned his comrades as early as 1918 against attempts of the Russians to assert themselves over other nationalities[69]. The new rulers of the Soviet Union ignore Lenin’s warnings. Any ideology which they [page 161] may have had in the early days of the revolution has been long forgotten and has been replaced by Russian imperialism pure and simple. Russification is a part of that imperialism.

The Russians are attracted to Latvia by a high standard of living. In 1968 Latvia had the highest per capita income of the 15 republics of the Soviet Union[70] [71]. The per capita gross national product of Latvia exceeded that of Japan, East Germany, or Italy in 1970 [72]. Yet the fruits of Latvian labor are consumed elsewhere in the Soviet Union, and there are various shortages in Latvia. The Russians are also attracted by the West-European-style culture. Since permission to vacation in Western Europe is rarely given, vacations in the Baltic States are popular throughout the Soviet Union as equivalent substitutes.

Unfortunately, the Russians who are enticed to settle in Latvia are frequently those who do not have deep roots in Russia-criminals, loafers, etc. Rīga has been turned into a drab run-down city with Russian slums and a soaring crime rate.

The Russification is carried out by the subservient puppet government of the republic which receives all orders from Moscow. In 1966 two thirds of the members of the Communist Party in Latvia were non-Latvians[73]. The same was true in 1978 [74], partially because Latvians despise the Reds and are reluctant to join the Party. The first secretary (the nominal head) of the Latvian Party in 1978 was a Latvian born in Russia, Augusts Voss, while the second secretary (the actual head and Moscow’s eyes and ears) was a Russian, Ivan Strelkov[74]. Similar arrangements are customary in most non-Russian republics of the Soviet Union. Usually only half of the officials are natives of the republic[75].

The Russification is described well in an open letter from 17 protesting Latvian Communists to the leaders of the Communist Parties of France, Italy, Austria, Spain, Yugoslavia, and Rumania[76] [77] [78]. The letter was received in the West in 1972 and attracted world-wide attention mostly because it accused the Russians of chauvinism, of a perversion of the officially proclaimed policy toward the various nationalities, and of forcing an assimilation of the smaller nations by Russia. In addition to the industrialization problems mentioned above the letter makes the following points: a) 2/3 of radio and TV broadcasts in Latvia are made in Russian; b) 50% of periodicals are printed in Russian; c) all business in state organizations is conducted in Russian; d) Latvian theatres, orchestras, [page 162] and choirs are forced to include Russian works in their repertoire; e) the schools must conduct their business (other than teaching) in Russian; f) Latvians drafted for military service are stationed outside Latvia while inside Latvia there are large Russian forces which contribute to Russification (these Russians do not contribute to the Russian percentage in the population census of Latvia because they are counted in the populations of their home towns; similarly, Latvians absent because of military service or because of deportation to a labor camp are counted as residing in their home towns in Latvia; thus the ratio of Russians to Latvians in Latvia is much worse than officially indicated[79]); g) the leading officials are non-Latvians or Latvians born in Russia who speak poor Latvian; h) a popular holiday known as “Jāņu diena” (John’s Day, a thousands of years old pagan celebration of the summer solstice, also called “Līgo svētki”) was forbidden for years; it is no longer banned, but it is still omitted from the official list of holidays; i) friendship with Russians is continuously preached as the ultimate blessing of the smaller nations (to paraphrase Orwell: all nations in the Soviet Union are equal, but the Russians are the most equal). Note that this is a complaint by 17 communists; one can imagine what 17 non-communists would have to say.

The human rights of Latvians are violated daily. Churches are persecuted[80] [81]. The people are serfs of the state, forced to take part in various demonstrations on their own time[82], forced to work weekends without pay for various special projects[83], forced to buy government bonds or state lottery tickets[84]. Dissidents are placed in psychiatric hospitals (of course, anyone who objects to the Soviet “paradise on earth” must be nuts) [85].

Lies and omissions of facts are the foundation of the official Soviet information service. History is rewritten to fit the party line of the day[86]. For example, after Stalin’s death some victims of his purges reappeared in the history books, and in the 1960’s several publications were allowed to say that Eidemanis, former Chief of the Soviet Civil Defense, “had become a victim of the illegalities of the cult of personality,” yet more recent publications under Brezhnev’s rule simply state that he “perished in 1937” [87]. Imants Lešinskis, a Latvian from the Soviet Union who worked at the United Nations, defected, and was granted political asylum in the U.S. in 1978. He has described how he published a number of books on direct orders from the KGB, slandering Latvian anti-communists [page 163] living abroad. For example, the guidelines for a book entitled “Who are the Daugavas Vanagi” (Daugavas Vanagi is an organization of Latvian veterans in the free world which cares for war invalids, the elderly, and orphans[88]) were as follows: Latvian leaders of church congregations and exile organizations abroad must be portrayed as Nazi war criminals, sadists, or some other kinds of criminals[89].


The resistance to the Russians in the last couple of decades has been mostly passive: the raising of the Latvian red-white-red flag on the Rīga radio tower or at the Cemetery of Brothers; anti-Soviet graffiti; underground leaflets; annual silent pilgrimages in November to the graves of Čakste and Meierovics by tens of thousands mourning Latvia’s independence (both were popular leaders during the struggle for independence, and the Latvian Independence Day is November 18) [90]. To make the access to Čakste’s tomb more difficult, the Reds planted trees around it. However, the trees were cut down at night; the next set of trees was killed by pouring salt and herbicides on the roots. The NKVD installed an office in the chapel. Students of the graduating class of a secondary school were barred from final examinations because they lit candles on Čakste’s grave; the school principal was dismissed. Yet the pilgrimages continue[90].

A number of dissident groups in Latvia are known[91]: Latvia’s Independence Movement, Latvia’s Democratic Youth Committee, Latvia’s Christian Democratic Association, Latvian Democrats, and Organization for Latvia’s Independence. Some cooperation between the oppressed non-Russians is also evident. The following underground groups have appeared[91]: Representatives of Estonian and Latvian Democrats; Supreme Committee of the National Movements of Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania; Democrats of Russia, the Ukraine, and Baltic Lands; Organization of the Alliance of the Independent Nations of the USSR.

A number of Latvian organizations are active in the free world. The American Latvian Association in the U.S. is devoted to the promotion of information about Latvia and the preservation of Latvian culture. It and similar organizations in Canada, Australia, and Europe are joined into the World Federation of Free Latvians. The [page 164] exile organizations of Latvians, Estonians, Lithuanians, Poles, Czechoslovaks, Hungarians, Bulgarians, Albanians, and Rumanians cooperate and have formed an Assembly of Captive European Nations[92]. United Baltic Appeal (UBA) with a department Baltic Appeal to the United Nations (BATUN) informs the members of the United Nations of conditions in the Baltic States and reminds them of the illegality of the Soviet occupation. The Baltic States are the only states which belonged to the former League of Nations and which are not members of the successor United Nations. If the stateless Palestine Liberation Organization can participate in the UN debates on the question of Palestine, why should not BATUN or some other Baltic organization be allowed to participate in UN debates on questions of human rights in the Soviet Union or on questions of Soviet expansionism?


A meeting of Foreign Ministers in preparation for a European Security Conference (ESC) was held in Helsinki, Finland, in July 1973. The purpose of the conference was to work out agreements among 35 nations (including the U.S. and the Soviet Union) on respect for human rights, self-determination, frontier inviolability, and free movement of men and ideas. Before the meeting the Baltic organizations in the free world established a Baltic World Conference which sent nine observers to Helsinki[93] [94]. When one of the observers, Uldis Grava, confronted the Soviet Foreign Minister Andrei Gromyko at a press reception and asked why the question of Baltic States is not on the agenda, the Soviets browbeat the Finns into arresting the Baltic delegation[95].

ESC was held in Helsinki in 1975, and the final agreement was signed there by President Ford on August 1. The agreement includes a clause that frontiers are inviolable and that borders can be changed only by peaceful means. To make sure that the clause would not be interpreted as recognition of the incorporation of the Baltic States into the Soviet Union, the U.S. Congress passed Senate Resolution No.406 on May 5, 1976, stating that “there has been no change in the longstanding policy of the United States on nonrecognition of the illegal seizure and annexation by the Soviet Union of the three Baltic nations of Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania, and … it will continue to be the policy of the United States not to recognize [page 165] in any way the annexation of the Baltic nations by the Soviet Union” [96].


Some Russians (such as Amalrik) expect the Baltic people to revolt if there is another war; for example, a war with China[97]. There have been some serious disturbances in the last ten years. For example, in May of 1972 a Lithuanian, Romas Kalanta, burned himself to death in protest against the Soviet occupation. On the day of his funeral thousands rioted in the streets of Kaunas[98]. In March of 1979 a student attempted to kill Voss, the First Secretary of the Latvian Communist Party, by firing six shots at his motorcade. Voss escaped with minor injuries, but his driver was killed[99].

On August 23, 1979, the 40th anniversary of the infamous day on which the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact was signed which condemned the Baltic States to an occupation by the Soviet Union, 45 dissident Estonians, Latvians, and Lithuanians signed a petition addressed to the Governments of the Soviet Union, East and West Germany, to the signers of the Atlantic Charter, and to Mr. Kurt Waldheim, Secretary-General of the United Nations. The petition demands that the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact should be declared null and void, the Soviet troops withdrawn from the Baltic States, and the question of self-determination for the Baltic States taken up by the General Assembly of the UN[100]. Despite persecution of the signers[101] the petition has attracted wide support. For example, the Russian dissident leader Andrei Sakharov issued a statement in favor of it; 35,000 Lithuanians signed a declaration supporting it, etc. [100]. The signers face the wrath of the KGB. The complacent West yawns and abides by a pact made by the two bloodiest despots of the 20th century, Hitler and Stalin.


… the documented record is studded with unanswered questions. The very existence of Latvians, first of all. I think that Latvian writers understate the cultural tenacity of this small ethnic group that preserved not only its language but also a vast store of myth and legend, music and song, tradition and folkways. Why did they not disappear long ago, as did many other European [page 166] tribes? What was there in their family structure or environment or network of social relationships that held them together in tight defense of their special culture?

John Roche[102]


Ar varīti jūs, kundziņi,
Ar padomu, bāleliņi;
Ar varīti nevarēja
Padomiņu pievarēt.

With the power, you the masters,
With the wisdom, we the people;
With the power powerless
Wisdom yet to overpower.

Ancient Latvian folksong
(K.Barons, Latvju Dainas, No.31, 276)


[1] Toland, The Last…, pp.568-9.

[2] Solzhenytsin, Parts I-II, pp.258-9.

[3] Toland, The Last…, p.581.

[4] Smal-Stocki, p.69.

[5] Samsons, vol.I, p.216.

[6] Werth, p.890 & 892-5.

[7] C.L.Mee, Jr., Meeting at Potsdam (M. Evans & Co., Inc., New York, 1975), p.158.

[8] Warner, p.282.

[9] Freivalds et al., vol.V, pp.212-3.

[10] Ā.Šilde, Resistance Movement in Latvia (Latvian National Foundation, Stockholm, 1972), pp.10-11.

[11] Ibid., pp.14-16.

[12] Rei, p.350.

[13] Tauras, pp.33-4.

[14] Freivalds et al., vol.V, p.222.

[15] Ibid., pp.233-7.

[16] Siņķis, vol.II, p.180.

[17] Freivalds et al., vol.II, p.154.

[18] Siņķis, vol.I, p.197.

[19] Conquest, Kolyma…, p.98.

[20] Rei, p.349.

[21] Berzins, p.154.

[22] Conquest, Kolyma…, pp.29-34.

[23] Ibid., p.86.

[24] Ibid., p.26.

[25] Ibid., p.233.

[26] Ibid., p.25.

[27] Rutkis, p.322.

[28] Freivalds et al., vol.VII, pp.384-390.

[29] Rurkis, pp.323-7.

[30] Ibid., p.324.

[31] Freivalds et al., vol.VI, p.233 & 237.

[32] Shirer, p.711 & 811.

[33] Freivalds et al., vol.VII, pp.392-6.

[34] Tauras, p.34.

[35] Rei, p.350.

[36] Tauras, p.50.

[37] Ibid., p.96.

[38] Ibid., p.98.

[39] Šilde, pp.10-11.

[40] Ibid., p.13.

[41] Ibid., p.6.

[42] Ibid., p.17.

[43] Rei, p.352.

[44] Rutkis, p.260.

[45] Berzins, p.154.

[46] Solzhenitsyn, Parts V-VII, p.398.

[47] Küng, p.175.

[48] Rei, p.352.

[49] Solzhenitsyn, Parts V-VII, p.47.

[50] Rutkis, p.261.

[51] Solzhenitsyn, Part V, Chapter 12.

[52] N.Vīksniņš, The First Latvian Mass Deportation in 1941, in First Conference on Baltic Studies, Summary of Proceedings, published by the Association for the Advancement of Baltic Studies (1969), p.60.

[53] Rei, p.353.

[54] Solzhenitsyn, Parts V-VII, p.492.

[55] Ibid., pp.493-525.

[56] Küng, p.110.

[57] Berzins, p.255.

[58] Rutkis, p.276.

[59] Šilde, p.27.

[60] Rei, p.373.

[61] Berzins, p.256.

[62] Küng, p.134.

[63] G.J.King, J.Dreifelds, Demographic Changes in Latvia, in A.Ziedonis, Jr., R.Taagepera, M.Valgemae, eds., Problems of Mininations: Baltic Perspectives (Assoc. for the Advancement of Baltic Studies, Inc., California State Univ., San Jose, 1973), p.135.

[64] Latvian newspaper “Laiks” (Time), Match 29, 1980, p.1 & p.5 (published in Brooklyn. N.Y.).

[65] Rei, p.374.

[66] Samsons, vol.II, p.282.

[67] Küng, p.142-3.

[68] The New York Times, Feb. 10, 1980, p.4.

[69] Shapiro, p.226.

[70] R.Taagepera, Dissimilarities Between the Northwestern Soviet Republics, in A.Ziedonis, Jr., et al., op. cit., p.70 & 73.

[71] Y.Bilinsky, The Background of Contemporary Politics in the Baltic Republics and the Ukraine: Comparisons and Contrasts, in A.Ziedonis, Jr., et al., op. cit., p.114.

[72] I.S. Koropeckyj, National Income of the Baltic Republics in 1970, J. Baltic Studies, vol.7, pp.61-73 (1976), Table III.

[73] Rutkis, p.273.

[74] Laiks, Jan.3, 1979.

[75] Shapiro, p.541-2.

[76] Bilinsky, pp.97-8.

[77] Küng, pp.124-9.

[78] Šilde, pp.33-47.

[79] Küng, pp.136-7.

[80] Rei, pp.363-5.

[81] Küng, pp.92-107.

[82] P.Brūvers, Kā Rodas Disidenti (How Dissidents Are Created, in Latvian) (published by the author, recently exiled from the Soviet Union; Köln, 1978), p.12.

[83] Ibid., pp.15-19.

[84] Ibid., pp.8-l0.

[85] Küng, pp.52-3.

[86] Ibid., pp.33-35 & p.188.

[87] M.Rauda, Latviešu lielinieki padomju historiografijas ēnā (Latvian bolsheviks in the shadow of Soviet historiography, in Latvian), Latvian magazine Universitas, No.45 (1980), pp.49-51.

[88] Rutkis, p.276.

[89] United Baltic Appeal (UBA) Information Service, News Release No.309, March 31, 1979, pp.5-8.

[90] Šilde, pp.24-25.

[91] D.Kowalewski, Dissent in the Baltic Republics: Characteristics and Consequences, J. Baltic Studies, vol.10, pp.309-319 (1979).

[92] Berzins, p.289.

[93] M.Kārklis, L.Streips, L.Streips, eds., The Latvians in America 1640-1973 (Oceana Publications, Inc., Dobbs Ferry, N.Y., 1974), p.121.

[94] J.B.Genys, The Joint Baltic American Committee and the European Security Conference, J. Baltic Studies, vol.9, p.247 (1978).

[95] Kārklis et al., pp.122-3.

[96] Genys, pp.254-6.

[97] A.Amalrik, Will the Soviet Union Survive Until 1984? (Harper & Row, New York, 1970), pp.63-5.

[98] Šilde, p.24.

[99] UBA Information Service, News Release No.328, May 27, 1979, p.1.

[100] UBA Information Service, News Release No.330/331, Nov.11, 1979, p. 1 & enclosure (translation of petition).

[101] Ibid., pp.3-4, & News Release No.332, Feb.9, 1980, pp.4-6.

[102] Roche, p.51.

Table of contents        Chapter IX