International: For a Radical Improvement

After Czechoslovakia, Finns thought their turn had come. Last week, Finland's aging (77) President Juho Kusti Paasikivi received a handwritten letter in the scrawling script of Stalin. It was a polite but imperative summons which Finns construed as the end of their uneasy, nominal independence.

Wrote Stalin: "I assume that Finland, not less than Rumania and Hungary, is interested in a pact of mutual assistance with the U.S.S.R. against possible German aggression. . . . Wishing to establish conditions for a radical improvement in the relations between our countries . . . the Soviet government proposes the conclusion of a Soviet-Finnish pact....

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