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Guerrilla war in the Baltic states

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Guerilla war in the Baltic states
Part of Occupation of the Baltic states
Ants Kaljurand.jpg

Mugshot of Ants Kaljurand, a famous Estonian resistance fighter of the Forest Brothers, taken in the Soviet Union some time before his death in 1951.

Soviet victory

  • Defeat of national partisans

Forest Brothers

Supported by:
 United Kingdom
 Soviet Union
~50,000 partisans Unknown
Casualties and losses
561 killed, 4,285 injured
1,458 killed, 5,052 injured
20,103 killed[1][2]

Soviet armed forces:
In Lithuania:
13,000 killed[3]
In Latvia:
1,562 killed, 560 wounded[4]
In Estonia:

Jump up ^
4,000 pro-Soviet collaborators killed by Forest Brothers[5]

The Guerrilla war in the Baltic states or the Forest Brothers resistance movement was the armed struggle against Soviet rule that spanned from 1940 to the mid-1950s.[6] After the occupation of the Baltic territories by the Soviets in 1944, an insurgency started. According to some estimates, 10,000 partisans in Estonia, 10,000 partisans in Latvia and 30,000 partisans in Lithuania and many more supporters were involved. This war continued as an organised struggle until 1956 when the superiority of the Soviet military caused the native population to adopt other forms of resistance. While estimates related to the extent of partisan movement vary, but there seems to be a consensus among researchers that by international standards, the Baltic guerrilla movements were extensive. Proportionally, the partisan movement in the post-war Baltic states was of a similar size as the Viet Cong movement in South Vietnam.[7]

See also


  1. ^ Lietuvos istorijos atlasas. Compiled by Arūnas Latišenka. Briedis. 2001. p. 25
  2. ^ Clodfelter, p. 538
  3. ^ Clodfelter, p. 538
  4. ^ Plakans, Andrejs. The Latvians: A Short History, 155. Hoover Institution Press, Stanford, 1995.
  5. ^ Clodfelter, p. 538
  6. ^ Statiev, Alexander (2010). The Soviet Counterinsurgency in the Western Borderlands. Cambridge University Press.
  7. ^ Ziemele, Ineta (2005). State Continuity and Nationality: The Baltic States and Russia. Martinus Nijhoff Publishers. p. 25. ISBN 90-04-14295-9.
  • Tauras, KV (1962). Guerrilla Warfare on the Amber Coast. New York: Voyages Press.
  • Clodfelter, M. (2017). Warfare and Armed Conflicts: A Statistical Encyclopedia of Casualty and Other Figures, 1492-2015 (4th ed.). McFarland.
This page was last edited on 8 March 2019, at 13:56
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