Today in Military History: Nov. 30, 1939, The Winter War

Finnish soldiers during The Winter War, 1939, courtesy Finnish Army

The USSR invaded Finland over a border dispute on this day in 1939, beginning The Winter War.  Finland had rejected the Soviet Union’s request for a signed agreement handing over The Grand Principality of Finland, which was part of the Russian Empire from 1809 – 1917.  The USSR wanted this territory back to better defend Leningrad since World War II had recently kicked off.  When Finland said no, the Red Army invaded at several spots along the Russo-Finnish border.

The Moscow Peace Treaty ended the conflict in March 1940. A portion of the Finnish territory was turned over to the Russians but Finland remained independent.