1879 – 1943
Who was Aimo Cajander?
He was a professor of Forestry 1911–34; director-general for Finland's Forest and Park Service 1934–1943; prime minister in 1922, 1924, and 1937–1939; chairman of the National Progressive Party 1933–1943; and Member of Parliament.
Forest researcher Cajander came to politics in 1922 when president Ståhlberg asked him to take office of prime minister. He had not earlier participated actively in politics. Ståhlberg invited him as prime minister second time in January 1924. Cajander's short-lived cabinets were merely caretakers before parliamentary elections.
Cajander joined in 1927 National Progressive Party and in 1928 he was chosen as minister of defence. Cajander was elected to the Parliament in 1929. When Kyösti Kallio was elected President in 1937, Cajander was asked as the chairman of the National Progressive Party to form majority government. Cajander formed a coalition government of the two largest parties in the parliament - Social Democrats and Agrarian League. Cajander was idealist who did not believe yet in August 1939 that Soviet Union would attack Finland. Partly for this reason the Finnish Army was forced to the fight inadequately equipped.
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