Activities in the West to Free Lithuania 1940–1975 Juozas Banionis

Activities in the West to Free Lithuania 1940–1975

Published: 2010

ISBN: 9786098037036

Number of pages: 492

Dimensions: 130 mm x 200 mm

Cover: Hardback

Publisher: Lietuvos gyventojų genocido ir rezistencijos tyrimo centras

The publication covers the campaign in the West for the liberation of Lithuania, which began soon after the Soviet occupation of Lithuania in 1940 and grew into the Movement for the Liberation of Lithuania, which was active throughout the period of occupation. The liberation of Lithuania is shown through the activities of the Lithuanian organisations abroad (Lithuanian American Council [LAC], Chief Committee for the Liberation of Lithuania [VLIK], Lithuanian Freedom Committee [LLK], and Lithuanian World Community [PLB]). The joint and individual contributions of each of the organisations in expressing the main and unchangeable objective of the Lithuanian people to re-establish a free and independent Lithuania is shown. The Lithuanian struggle in the West for freedom is followed until 1975, when the European Conference on Security and Cooperation took place and the final Helsinki Act was signed, which was a sign of a change in the international situation.

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In the 1940s, at the onset of the Soviet occupation of Lithuania and other Baltic States, the old Lithuanian émigré community in the USA was the first in the West to defend Lithuania’s independence and freedom. The Lithuanian American Council (LAC, lith. ALT), after the assurance received from the USA President F. D. Roosevelt that “Lithuania’s independence has been just temporarily suspended”, was the first to rally around Lithuania’s liberation action. Its predecessor was the Council to Aid Lithuania (CAL, lith. LGT), established on August 10, 1940, in Pittsburgh, on the proposal by the most important Lithuanian political organization – the Roman Catholic Federation of Lithuanian Americans. Thus the CAL became the first organization in Lithuania’s resistance struggle against the Soviet occupation. Later its ranks were replenished with new forces. After the main political trends – Catholics, sandariečiai (equivalent to the present-day centrists), socialists and tautininkai (nationalis

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