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Order of the Commander-in-Chief

Antrea
February 23, 1918

To all Karelians of Finland and White Sea Karelia.

On my arrival at the Karelian front I hail those heroic Karelians who have fought so manfully against Lenin's scoundrels and their wretched henchmen, against men who, bearing the mark of Cain on their foreheads, are attacking their own brothers.

Lenin's government which promised independence to Finland with one hand has with the other hand dispatched its troops and hooligans, as he himself has declared, to reconquer Finland and with the assistance of our red guards to drown Finland's newfound liberty in blood.

Now, when he starts to feel our growing strength, he seeks to deceive our people in a similarly treacherous and dastardly manner, bargaining with the rebels in Finland and promising them White Sea Karelia, which his red army is plundering and destroying. We know the value of his promises, and we are strong enough to preserve our freedom and defend our brothers in White Sea Karelia. We do not need the charitable concession of a land which by virtue of its blood-ties belongs to us, and I swear in the name of the Finnish peasant army, whose commander-in-chief I have the honour to be, that I will not sheath my sword before law and order reigns in the land, before all fortresses are in our hands, before the last soldier of Lenin is driven not only from Finland, but from White Sea Karelia as well.

Confident in the Tightness and justness of our cause, confident in the heroism of our menfolk and the sacrifices of our womenfolk, we shall create a mighty, great Finland.

Mannerheim.
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