Central Europe

A Century Ago, The Treaty Of Riga Redrew The Map. It Still Reverberates Today.

A Century Ago, The Treaty Of Riga Redrew The Map. It Still Reverberates Today.
Latvian–Soviet Peace Treaty. Riga. 1920.

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One hundred years ago, a treaty now forgotten by many was signed in the Latvian capital, Riga. It formally ended an undeclared war between Poland, just reemerging on the map after being wiped out centuries earlier, and upstart Bolshevik Russia, which was preaching world communist revolution.

The Treaty of Riga redrew the borders of much of Eastern Europe, but for many it came to be seen as an unmitigated disaster — in particular among Lithuanians, Belarusians, and Ukrainians whose hopes for democratic independent states were largely dashed as a result of the pact.

Instead of unified nations, Belarusians, Ukrainians, Lithuanians, and to an extent Poles found themselves split among competing states that at times viewed them with suspicion at best and hostility at worst, especially during Soviet dictator Josef Stalin’s Great Terror in the 1930s…

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