Communist Power in Europe 1944–1949 by Martin McCauley (eds.)

By Martin McCauley (eds.)

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The following day, Molotov summoned the Estonian Ambassador and bluntly informed him that as the Estonian government was incapable of protecting its coastline and territorial waters, the Soviet Baltic fleet had been authorised to undertake this task. 10 A week later, the Estonian Foreign Minister was invited to Moscow, ostensibly to sign a trade agreement for which the negotiations had just been completed. The true nature of the invitation was revealed when Molotov presented an ultimatum demanding the immediate conclusion of a military alliance, which would allow certain strategic bases in Estonia to be manned by Soviet troops.

Began a press campaign, accusing the Baltic countries of harbouring pro-Allied sympathies. The Lithuanians were also accused of permitting the abduction of Soviet troops. These complaints increased in volume as the German offensive in the west got under way, but the Baltic governments failed to see the underlying menace behind them and sought desperately to appease the Soviet government. On 30 May, the Lithuanian government decided to send its Foreign Minister to Moscow to discuss the Soviet complaints about the abduction of Red Army troops.

In sharp contrast to this expansion was the industrial development of the General Government of Poland. In the first part of the war the Germans showed no interest in the industries of the territory and encouraged a considerable amount of dismantling of plant for transport to the Reich. According to recent Polish estimates 10 industrial production in the General Government in I 940 was no more than go per cent of the pre-war level. R. an attempt was made to revive industry, although the same Polish source estimates that industrial production never recovered to more than 8o per cent of its pre-war level.

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