Risto Ryti (Finish President WW2) and Carl Gustav Mannerheim (Finnish WW2 Military Chief) who both collaborated with the Nazis, are now Finnish National Heroes.
All Finnish German Volunteers were in the SS.
Finland had over, 1,400 Finnish volunteers in the Nazi Waffen SS, 300 of whom were killed in the Ukraine and in the Caucasus. Finland concluded a secret agreement with Nazi Germany before the invasion of the USSR that would allow Finland to secretly send Finnish volunteers to Heinrich Himmler’s Waffen SS forces. Himmler formed a Finnish Waffen SS Volunteer Battalion from these Finnish troops called “Nordost”.
This Finnish Battalion was attached to the “Nordland” Waffen SS Regiment of the 5th SS Division “Wiking”, one of the most brutal and fanatical Nazi SS Divisions of World War II, commanded by Felix Steiner. Finnish Nazi SS troops formed the vanguard and spearheaded the German Wehrmacht assault against the Stalingrad and Caucasus regions in 1942 and advanced to the Grozny oil fields in Chechnya.
This was the farthest Nazi advance into the Soviet Union by the Axis, spearheaded by Finnish Nazi Waffen SS volunteers. It is important to remember that the Finnish government of Risto Ryti sent the Finnish Nazi SS volunteers. There was government action on the part of Finland. Ryti should have been prosecuted for war crimes and for genocide. But he never was.
Finland in WW2 and its relations with Nazi-Germany, is one of the most important and interesting pieces of the Finnish history. The WW2 memory still lives in the Finnish souls through the war veteran activities and ever-open Karelian question by the people who lost their homes in the treaties in 1940 and 1944 with the Soviet Union.
Two critical causes Nazi Collaboration in Finnish war history:
Winter War 1939-40 was Soviet Union's direct aggression against the Finnish independence.
Continuation War 1941-44 (continuation regarding the Winter War) began with a collaboration with Nazi-Germany and ended with the war against it.