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Yle to live-tweet Winter War in English

The 1939-40 Winter War is an iconic event in Finnish history, in which the country stood alone against the Soviet Union and secured its independence. Yle is bringing the history to life as part of a new social media project which is also available in English.

#sota39-nettiprojektin bannerikuva.
Yle's #sota1939 project will now be available in English. Image: Yle

Finland’s role in the Second World War is an important part of the nation’s mythology. The conflict started with the Winter War—a surprise attack from the Soviet Union intended to realize the division of Europe according to the secret protocols of the Molotov-Ribbentrop pact.

To commemorate the 75 anniversary of the conflict Yle is tweeting events as-live from the @sota1939 Twitter account, and in English from the @WinterWar1939 account.

The tweets draw on historical documents, speeches, letters from the front and contemporary news reports. Government debates were researched by Ohto Manninen and Kauko Rumpunen, who have together written a book on the Winter War.

The Yle team has also created several historical characters who will tweet from their own perspective. Otto-Ville Kuusinen, who was Prime Minister of the Terijoki government supported by the Soviets and expected to take over in Helsinki once the Soviet side won, has his own Twitter profile.

Others with Twitter voices include Kyösti Kallio, President of Finland, Arndt Pekurinen, a pacifist who refused to fight, and the Estonian ambassador Aleksander Warma.

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