Journal:Acta Historica Universitatis Klaipedensis
Volume 28 (2014): Paramilitarism in the Eastern Baltics, 1918–1940: Cases Studies and Comparisons = Paramilitarizmas Rytų Baltijos regione 1918–1940: atvejo studijos ir lyginimai, pp. 223–259
This paper deals with concepts of images of ethnic minorities in the ideologies of the Lithuanian Riflemen’s Union, the Latvian Aizsargi, and the Estonian Kaitseliit, with the aim of identifying factors that predetermined qualitative changes in these images in the different periods of activity of these paramilitary organisations. In addition, possible functions of the images of ethnic minorities in the ideologies of the Lithuanian, Latvian and Estonian riflemen are analysed. The study is based on the presumption that, in the ideologies of the Lithuanian Riflemen’s Union, the Latvian Aizsargi and the Estonian Kaitseliit, the formation of the images of ethnic minorities in the different periods of activity of these organisations (the struggles for independence, the formation of the parliamentary system, authoritarian coups and presidential power, and national political crises) was predetermined by the practice of attaching ethnic groups to the relative camps of allies or foes, and by the policy of dividing ethnic minorities into groups of ‘reliable’ and ‘unreliable’.