The Basis of National Social Classes Can Be Created Or Allowed To Form Freely - Which Process Your Country Presents?

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Jopa79

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*This thread is created to get answers, opinions and free discussion about the birth of nations, on what or which their foundations were based on

633px-Jaakaripataljooa_libaussa (1).jpg

The era of Russification during the early 19th and the early 20th century quickly raised the Finnish independence desire and tendency escalating during the WWI. The birth of Jäger Movement offered the Prussian military education for 2 000 Finnish volunteers - picture above.

Founded in 1914, the Jäger Movement was a Finnish idea raised by the Finnish male high school students, to secure Prussian basics in military training and to create a Finnish sovereign state. It resulted 2 000 Finnish volunteers participating and finding their way independently to Lockstedter Lager, Holstein, Germany. After training the Finnish "pfadfinders" - the rookie season, the Jäger Movement resulted founding the Finnish elite infantry - Königlich Preussisches Jägerbataillon Nr.27 - Kuninkaallinen Jääkäripataljoona 27 - the Finnish Royal Jägerbatallion Nr. 27. The Jägerbatallion took part the Eastern Front of the WWI and was demobilized in Libau for the Finnish Civil War.
Väinö Valve Paradoxiin.jpg

Väinö Valve was 20-years old while he joined the Jäger Movement. However, the journey to the Lockstedter Lager almost was to become Valve's destiny. Feeling absolutely desperate and exhausted during the skiing over the frozen Gulf of Bothnia, from Finland to Sweden Valve attempted a suicide twice. At first he tried the end with his revolver, but couldn't make it go off due to the frost. Immediately after failing in attempt, Valve came up with an idea to drown himself at open water between two ice-layers. He prepared a runaway and started running. While he plunged between the ice layers his back-rucksack got stuck between the ice-layers preventing entering in the icy water. Valve braced up himself and continued and made to Sweden and finally to Germany. Later he became the chief of the Finnish Navy, a Jäger-General and the last standing Jäger alive.

The Jäger Movement had its strongest while creating the basics of the Finnish military, During the interwar years and the WWII, 49 former high scool stundents and Jäger Movement volunteers achieved a rank of general. However, the Jäger Movement affected Finland nationwide in every social classes and branches. The media interested this matter with an ascending order during the decades to come, showing the last Jäger participating the Independence Day Reciption in 1995.

The Jäger Movement influenced highly the Finnish class structures. Simultaneously it enabled the rejection of the lower social classes, like working-class and the left-wing movement. The success in global sports and the WWII united the separated Finnish people, there was a poverty saying, - 'Ahem, excuse me...it's the better people's thing, the independence during the peace-time. But now, while in war, they also accept us, the worse people'.

After the WWII the left-wing thinking was again legalized in Finland. However, to remain its sovereignty, Finland had to submit under the Moscow order so much, that a term 'Finlandization' is still used as a political term, if a foreign nation intervenes internal- and foreign policies. Many industrial workers moved to Soviet Union, or lived in Finland, but worked in the SU. On the other hand, many moved to Sweden and to North America while finding their life. UKK ruled almost as a despot nearly 30 years in Finland until his health failed. An educated, but a dithering WWII corporal, MK followed as the president until the fall of the Soviet Union. Finland could not select its own desire not until 1994 and since the days of MA.

Still, today, the Jäger heritage is cherished, the "well-fare" Soviet Union is needed, the good-old UKK could do things, it was always better in sports and no beer-flu in sight:)

How is your country doing?
 
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Can you explain the details as they relate to Finland a bit more. I'm not quite sure what you mean exactly.
 
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Jopa79

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Can you explain the details as they relate to Finland a bit more. I'm not quite sure what you mean exactly.
I might have been slightly inconsistent in the OP...let me clarify a bit.

Briefly and in detail, the Jäger Movement was a Finnish national idea and a national spirit affecting the Finnish thinking, political attitude, giving a desire for national defense and creating a solid basis for the Finnish military as the Jägers constructed the framework of the officers and superior commanders in the Finnish Defense Forces.

Not only affecting in military - during the interim years and after the the WWII the Jägers served in civilian economy, they were teachers, political influencers, industrial- and agricultural directors working in every civilian and public domains using and applying the leadership training - acquired from Germany - in their management style. That's why the Jägers influenced in different social classes. The Jäger tradition and the ideological basis was cherished widely in Finland and the relevance of the Jäger Movement for Finnish policy-making throughout the 20th century is still recognized.

I was asking, if other countries have similarities, events, spirits, ideological movements affecting the national principles.
 
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What you're describing sounds like a less formalized version of the Zivildienst but as some sort of home grown movement. America didn't really have a good tradition with such things. Those that did exist, certain ones organized by labor parties and other worker parties ceased to exist after the second world war.

It makes sense that a nation as young as Finland would have some sort youth organization as the one you're describing though.
 
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Zivildienst
But isn't this civil service? An alternative to military service for those who are conscientious objectors. If so, then it's the opposite of the Jäger Movement.

The idea of Jäger Movement was evoked in the need to release Finland as a sovereign state and cut loose from the Russian Empire. While Finland being the Grand Duchy in the Russian Empire, the Finnish army didn't exist. The Jäger Movement was raised by the young students, circa 18-23 years of age and other activists, to acquire Prussian military education, for the establishment of the Army of Finland and to gain independence.

The Jäger Movement was based on voluntariness, however one of its consequences was founding the Army of Finland, a compulsory conscription which was included a change already in 1922, the civil service as an alternative.
 

JodelDiplom

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Oh yes, Germany had that too. The SA and the SS. Those did wonders for bringing young men from all social classes and all confessions together in brotherly spirit.

Nationalism is a strong drug. If administered properly, it can easily overpower class consciousness, or religious divisions. That's the whole appeal behind the idea. That's why the rich and powerful so often align behind the loudest nationalist demagogues.

I get why some small countries feel like they did really well thanks to having strong nationalism. But in general, nationalism is a pestilence and a poison.
 
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But isn't this civil service? An alternative to military service for those who are conscientious objectors. If so, then it's the opposite of the Jäger Movement.

The idea of Jäger Movement was evoked in the need to release Finland as a sovereign state and cut loose from the Russian Empire. While Finland being the Grand Duchy in the Russian Empire, the Finnish army didn't exist. The Jäger Movement was raised by the young students, circa 18-23 years of age and other activists, to acquire Prussian military education, for the establishment of the Army of Finland and to gain independence.

The Jäger Movement was based on voluntariness, however one of its consequences was founding the Army of Finland, a compulsory conscription which was included a change already in 1922, the civil service as an alternative.
So, these guys who were citizens of the Grand Duchy of Finland, and subjects of the Russian Czar, left Finland (deserting from the armed forces? evading draft?) at the outbreak of WW1 in order to join the German army (an enemy army at that time) and learn all the skills needed to become partisan fighters and underground military organizers against the established political order in Finland. At a time when Finnish people were by and large still loyal to the Russian czar and empire, these young men saw themselves as vanguards of the national fight for independence.

Ok, so far so good. Standards nationalist rebels/terrorists/independence fighters, depending on your point of view.

But what does this aspect of Finnish history (the Jaegers) have to do with social classes? The thread title is a word salad that doesn't make sense with regards to your post. From what I read on your post, the Jaegers had no special role at all in overcoming social classes or bridging any kind of divides in finnish society before or after WW2? That was purely a result of the struggle of WW2 and the social-political reforms after the war, or was it not?
 
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The Czechoslovak First Republic had a bit of a similar story with the Czechoslovak Legions. I would assume their wartime exploits are well known in these parts of the internet. At least the best known bits of the Legionnaires in Russia. The wiki article is short and serves as a useful background for someone not in the know, so to speak.

But to give a TL;DR: Ethnic Czechs and Slovaks finding themeselves in Entente lands during WW1 have estabilished pro-Entente armed forces and fought against the Central Powers. Altogehter, these armed forces numbered 10 000 in France, 10 000 in Italy and about 65 000 in Russia by the end of WW1.

In contrast, about 1 400 000 ethnic Czechs and 400 000 ethnic Slovaks served in Austro-Hungarian armed forces during WW1. Fun fact. the Italian front is still the battlefield where most Czechs in history fought at once, with about 250 000 men on the front at any one point.

The nascent Czechoslovak Republic had to fight to press the claim to its new borders, with the fighting taking place in 1919 and early 1920 (War for Zaolzie, Hungarian communist advance, skrimishes with ethnic Germans in the borderlands). The Russian legionnaires only started arriving later in 1920 and the French and Italian legions were not numerous enough. The bulk of the manpower on the Czechoslovak side in the aforementioned conflicts was therefore, of course, made up of men that served in Austro-Hungarian army. But you could never tell from the new state's fetishization of legions and legionnaires. Their influence and impact on politics, army and economy were vastly outsized compared to their actual numbers. (I won't get into evaluating their contributions to the new state's emergence, because I'm convinced that the collapse of Austria-Hungary was a massive mistake, but that's neither here not there :D )

The soft affirmitive action was everywhere. An entire genre of literature, devoted to the exploits of legionnaires, thrived in the interwar Czechoslovakia. Legionnaires got special pensions, they had the ear of every politician, they were very much first in line to any state jobs like policemen, gendarmes or officers in the military. The new estabilishment actually didn't trust the "Austrians", that is the men that used to serve in A-H army, and actively tried to push them out of state service. Including for example Alois Podhajsky, former Austro-Hungarian Feldmarschall and the highest ranking ethnic Czech in any army during WW1. He was a great staff officer. He fought for the new Czechoslovakia all over the palce with distinction, only to be sidelined in favour of others. He was then posted as a staff officer for Moravia and Silesia, and then as an inspector general of the army. Eventually, in 1933, he caved to the pressure from president and prime minister and retired.
 
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So, these guys who were citizens of the Grand Duchy of Finland, and subjects of the Russian Czar, left Finland (deserting from the armed forces? evading draft?) at the outbreak of WW1 in order to join the German army (an enemy army at that time) and learn all the skills needed to become partisan fighters and underground military organizers against the established political order in Finland.
The Central Committee of the Finnish Independence Movement maintained founding the Finnish Army as inevitable while having the tendency about Finland being a sovereign state. Certainly, the Russian Empire wouldn't train an army for that purpose, so other options should be considered. While Sweden and Denmark refused to give such a training, Germany offered to give the military basics eventually for nearly 2 000 of Finnish volunteers whom later became the officers and superior commanders in the Finnish Army. It was generally thought - no partisan fights, neither underground operations - but, the Jägers leading an armed, perhaps a full-scale conflict against the Russian Empire. No-one thought that the Jägers would lead the Finnish White Guard against the Finnish Red Guard in the Finnish Civil War as it proved to be when the Jägers returned to Finland. The independence and cutting loose of the Russian Empire had already happened earlier peacefully.

Established political order - this was a cruel era of the Russification in the Grand Duchy of Finland during the early 20th century. By repression the Russian Empire gradually began limiting the Finnish autonomy - granted in the early 19th century - with an intention to connect Finland permanently and for good under the Russian Empire.

At a time when Finnish people were by and large still loyal to the Russian czar and empire, these young men saw themselves as vanguards of the national fight for independence.
The two eras of Russification established a counter-reaction among the Finns and only a few remained loyal to Czar, the most rather seeking and supporting the pursuit for own nation. It was not only these young men - the Jägers - experiencing themselves as vanguards. The Jäger Movement was a national spirit, supported widely throughout the Grand Duchy of Finland.

But what does this aspect of Finnish history (the Jaegers) have to do with social classes? The thread title is a word salad that doesn't make sense with regards to your post. From what I read on your post, the Jaegers had no special role at all in overcoming social classes or bridging any kind of divides in finnish society before or after WW2? That was purely a result of the struggle of WW2 and the social-political reforms after the war, or was it not?
While the idea of the Jäger Movement spread, its social-, public- and civic basis and groundings expanded covering all the layers and classes of the nation. The first 15 years after the WWI in the young Finnish nation were highly influenced by German spirits, the Jägers' learning's. The elite adopted a view in their thinking, Germany having superiority and hegemony among the European nations. There are numerous examples about this - monarchy in Finland was an attempt to found the Kingdom of Finland shortly after the Finnish Civil War, the German Prince, Frederick Charles of Hesse was already elected for the King of Finland by the Finnish monarchists, but Fredrick Charles rejected this proposal - Heimosodat-Kindred Nations Wars in 1918-1923 were series of armed Finnish expeditions to the Soviet-Russia. Having the spirits of the Jäger Movement and the ideology of the Greater-Finland 10 000 Finnish volunteered for the Finnish territorial expansion waging war against the Soviet-Russia - banning socialism and communism and the raise of the right-wing happened culminating in founding the Lapua Movement and their attempt to overthrow the ruling party and install a dictatorship in Finland - school education and the management style was role-modeled by German ideology having a principle, 'Under the Russian rule the people of Finland have languished themselves. The German nation is vigorous, it's based on being disciplined, uprightness and pacing-up.'

It's true that the wars during 1939-1945 against the Soviet Union and Germany bridged and united the dissenting Finnish people. But the social-political reforms after the WWII were highly influenced and intervened by the Soviet Union. Only after the collapse of the SU Finland could practice completely free politics in their own liking.
 

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'Under the Russian rule the people of Finland have languished themselves. The German nation is vigorous, it's based on being disciplined, uprightness and pacing-up.'
I assume this sounds catchier in Finnish :D
 

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I assume this sounds catchier in Finnish :D
May be...you decide it...going like this: ’Neuvostovallan alla Suomen kansa on veltostunut. Saksan kansa on voimakasta, sen loistava sietokykyky perustuu kuriin, täsmällisyyteen ja tahdikkuuteen.’;)
 

JodelDiplom

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Jopa,
Can you comment on the following section of the Wikipedia article about the history of the finnish armed forces?


The Grand Duchy inherited its allotment system (Swedish: indelningsverket; Finnish: ruotujakolaitos) from the Swedish military organization. However, for several decades, Russian rulers did not require military service from Finland; operations and defence were mostly taken care by Russian troops based in the Grand Duchy. As a result, officer benefits of the allotment system became practically pensions, as payment was based on passive availability, not on actual service.

During the Napoleonic Wars three 1200-man regiments were formed in Finland and Topographic Corps in Hamina. In 1821 the Topographic Corps was transformed into the cadet officers school. In 1829 one of the training battalions was transformed into the Young Guard Battalion, the Finnish Guard.

During the Crimean War, 1854, Finland set up nine sharpshooter battalions based on a rota system. Conscription was introduced in Finland in 1878. The Finnish Guard took part in fighting to suppress the 1830 November Uprising in Poland and participated in the Russo-Turkish War (1877–1878), after which it gained the status of Old Guard of the Russian Emperor.

The Finnish army was gradually broken up during the "oppression years" just after the turn of the century. As Finnish conscripts refused to serve in Russian Army, conscription ended in Finland and it was replaced with a tax paid from the Finnish Senate to the Imperial treasury.

At the turn of the 20th century, the Russian empire was weakening, and this was reflected in a reduced capacity of the Russian troops to keep public order. Voluntary defence organizations disguised as fire brigades were formed by the Finnish people, especially during the strikes during and after the Russo-Japanese War.

There were socialist Red Guards and conservative, anti-socialist Protection Guards (or White Guards). Also, during the First World War activists secretly travelled to Germany to receive military training and to be trained as Jäger troops (in finnish jääkärit, in swedish jägare).

After independence and beginning of the Finnish Civil War the White government declared the White Guards as government troops, and the war was fought between the Red Guards, assisted by Communist Russians, and White Guards added with the Jägers and assisted by the German Empire.
I'm asking because the version of history that you present, makes the Jagers out to be a wonderful movement from young finnish people from all social classes, who received the German/Prussian education like the twelve disciples of christ received the holy spirit at Pentecost, imbuing them with superior skills and virtues, so that logically they would then became founding fathers of the Finnish nation and their superior virtues became imitated by everyone.
Whereas the article presents a version of history in which the Jagers were just one of several militant groups in Finnland (alongside the mentioned "red fire brigades" and the "conservative fire brigades") and through more or less accidents of history they came out on top of the violent struggles during Finland's independence and civil war. You seem to omit the existence of other movements and groups and totally omit the violent nature of the intra Finnish struggle through which the Jager and other conservative groups emerged as politically dominant groups of the post independence Finland. It makes your version look less than objective, compared to the brief Wikipedia article.

Can you comment on that?
 
Last edited:

Jopa79

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Jopa,
Can you comment on the following section of the Wikipedia article about the history of the finnish armed forces?


The Wikipedia link which you provided is in accordance with the truth and historical events. However, it's rather brief, a narrow mien about the history of the land branch of the Finnish Defence Forces. And when the article discusses about the fire brigades, Red Guard, White Guard and the Jägers, a person unfamiliar and unaware of the matter may easily think those as equals.

I'm asking because the version of history that you present, makes the Jagers out to be a wonderful movement from young finnish people from all social classes, who received the German/Prussian education like the twelve disciples of christ received the holy spirit at Pentecost, imbuing them with superior skills and virtues, so that logically they would then became founding fathers of the Finnish nation and their superior virtues became imitated by everyone.
I've never described the Jäger Movement as a wonderful movement, or never compared the Jägers to a religion, saying they are equals with biblical disciples, neither did I claim they possessed the example of a virtue. All the previous is the image created by yourself.

So far I have only presented the matter with an accordance to the history - if you don't count on my word, you can always double-check the true events. But the volunteers whom became the Jägers were young Finns from all social classes and like the article claims - in the yearly 20th century Finland didn't have a trained, disciplined officers, neither an army - the Jägers held superior skills in military in compared to the untrained paramilitary guards in Finland during the era.

When talking about the Jäger Movement, it doesn't only consider the Jägers, but gathering the Finnish nationwide feeling against the Russification. The Jäger Movement can be equated with the Finnish willingness to stand as undivided in 1939 despite the inner disagreements during the past 20 years.

Whereas the article presents a version of history in which the Jagers were just one of several militant groups in Finnland (alongside the mentioned "red fire brigades" and the "conservative fire brigades") and through more or less accidents of history they came out on top of the violent struggles during Finland's independence and civil war. You seem to omit the existence of other movements and groups and totally omit the violent nature of the intra Finnish struggle through which the Jager and other conservative groups emerged as politically dominant groups of the post independence Finland.
During the 1905 Russian Revolution a general strike was organized in Finland. To maintain the public order during the strike, the Finnish National Guard was established together by both - the labor movement and the Finnish abiturs (persons with the Student Degree). However, already during the one-week-long general strike, the workers and the burghers ended with several disagreements and the National Guard was split resulting the working-class having its own guards and burghers having their own guards. The working-class formed its own guards among the members of its trade unions, the burghers' guards were non-governmental organizations. This was the start of the "red fire brigades", aka. the Order Guard, aka. the Finnish Red Guard, aka., the Forces of the Finnish People's Delegation and the "conservative fire brigades", aka., the Finnish White Guard, aka., the Protection Guard, aka., the Forces of the Finnish Senate. The guards were first unarmed, they weren't trained in militarily, but they possessed the embodiment of the dispute and disagreement of the internal matters in Finland, resulting the Finnish Civil War of 1918.

The Jägers or the movement cannot be paralleled straightforwardly with the other two paramilitary guards in Finland, due to not to exist during the crisis, not until 1918. The Jägers consisted of the both - the working class (the Red Jägers - didn't return to Finland) and the burghers (returned to Finland). The Jäger Movement would have been founded with or without the other militant groups and guards, it was only an expression of the national will and tendency. Also, the ideology could have been named after any other manifestation of the era - it just happens to be the Jäger Movement.

I'm not omitting, or disrespecting any other movements of the age, contrarily I'm very well aware of the crisis considering this period, however I feel, there's always new to learn and I'm eager to learn more, let's say for example, how the Finnish Civil War resulted the routing Red Guard, tens-of-thousands soldiers and civilians fleeing to the Soviet Union, having hopes of an own nation there, the former Red Guard fighting alongside the British intervention troops during the Russian Civil War and how the Red Army established Finnish-speaking infantry units of the descendants of the Finnish working-class fighting for the Soviet Union during 1939-1945. However, this thread is more about the Jäger Movement.
 

JodelDiplom

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Alright, thanks for the clarification and explanation! Although the forum's quote function seems to have messed up the formatting a little.

Anyways you mentioned that there were also "Red Jaegers" but those did not return to Finland. Why was that? Did they go to Russia instead or did they get caught up in Germany's own civil war/Spartakus uprising?
 

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Jopa can probably give more details, but the communist aligned patriots generally joined the Red Guards. Indeed, some of the best formations in the Russian civil war were 'national' units, with the most famous being the Latvian Rifles. Any Finns with communist leanings probably found their way into various guard formations, where anybody with formal military training was highly valued.

It is worth noting that during the civil war period the communists were relatively open to nationalist aspirations, granting considerable independence to various soviet republics. They did not favour full independence for former Russian territories but rather a loose association of communist republics united in a central goal. This idealistic formulation died out during the '20s and was completely crushed during the period of Stalinist centralisation, but for a few years it looked possible to be both a nationalist and a communist. Particularly during 1917-18 the Germans were supporting nationalist movement with the hope of producing client states in Eastern Europe, which most nationalists saw through, leading many left leaning nationalists to be pro-communist.

With the defeat of the Germans the Russians began to be viewed as the primary hegemonic threat and nationalist sentiment turned strongly against them.
 

Jopa79

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Anyways you mentioned that there were also "Red Jaegers" but those did not return to Finland. Why was that? Did they go to Russia instead or did they get caught up in Germany's own civil war/Spartakus uprising?
Approximately 500 of the total 2 000 volunteers had the working-class background and were given the name - Red Jägers. Still now their fate remain mostly unclear.

Before the Jägers got abroad the ship and the return voyage to Finland, they had to sign a contract and to promise not to serve any other party besides the Finnish Senate. While the Jägers were very familiar to each others they were capable to prevent the Red Jägers signing the contract - only very few Reds were accepted on abroad and they usually refused to fight in the Civil War as it would had been fighting against their brothers in arms. Only a few individual Red Jägers managed to fight in the ranks of the Finnish Red Guard.

”Unfit/non-qualified” Jägers were left to Germany voluntarily or compulsorily. I’m not familiar with Altona-Bahrenfelt or the ”Bahrenfelters”, but the rejected Jägers worked near Hamburg as somekind of forced-labor at artillery depot.
 
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