‘Lithuanian Nationalists’ against ‘Imperial Russians’? Generational Conflicts between Senior Lithuanian Army Officers

Kęstutis Kilinskas

Abstract


With the creation of the Lithuanian armed forces in the early 20th century, the question ofhaving officers loyal to the idea of the nation-state inevitably arose. It became especially relevantduring the Wars of Independence that followed the First World War. Due to the need tocreate the armed forces urgently, individuals from different backgrounds and with differentexperiences joined the corps of officers in the emerging Lithuanian army. Therefore, a varietyof tensions of a political and social nature arose between them, which in some cases grewinto open conflict. The article examines the question of whether these conflicts were based ondifferences in officers’ education, social background, national engagement or experience. Canwe explain the conflicts between the officers by the generation gap? And what role was playedin these conflicts by the experience of military service acquired by some officers in the ImperialRussian army, including experience in the First World War?

KEY WORDS: Lithuanian army, Russian army, officer corps, relations between officers and politicians,generational conflicts, prosopography.


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