The Third Year of War in Pictures

Stalin protects his frontiers November 1939— June 1940 GERMAN ADVANCE IN SOUTHERN POLAND. The German drive towards Kiev was made byway of Lwow and Luck which fell on 30 June and 1 July respectively after fierce air and tank battles. The dreadful destruction wrought in these battles is shown by this aerial picture of Luck taken after the Germans had passed. Stalins next move came in November 1939, when he made territorial demands on Finland, and when these were refused took what he wanted by force of arms. The war dragged on until 12 March 1940 and the Finns put up a magnificent resistance but in the end they were forced to cede the whole of the Karelian Isthmus an area in central Finland and the Rybachi Peninsula in the north. In this way Stalin was able to protect three vital areas— Leningrad the railway to Murmansk and Murmansk itself—from possible attack from the west. THE BUFFER InSTATES June whilst Hitlers forces were still tied up in the west reorganizing after their lightning push through France and the Low Countries Russia demanded Bessarabia and Bukovina from Ruma­nia and occupied these areas on the 28th and in the following month when Latvia Estonia and Lithuania decided to become Soviet republics the last link in the chain was added. The pre-war western frontier of the U.S.S.R. was now well buffered for its whole length against any attempt at encroachment upon Russia proper. Stalin had timed these moves with consummate skill. Hitlers hands were full and Stalin knew it and it was not until after the German plans for invading Britain had come to nought that the German dictator was able to turn his attention to other theatres. Meanwhile Hitlers ally Italy was getting her­self into difficulties. In Libya and in East Africa her armies were in full retreat whilst her much heralded invasion of Greece had resolved itself into a not very successful defence of Albania. By the end of April Germany was ready to take a hand once again in the war in Europe. She began by forcing Bulgaria to join the Axis and a similar attempt to persuade Yugoslavia to do the 4
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