The Keys ep44 The long road leading up to 18 November
The moment of Latvia’s birth – 18 November 1918 – was short. Only a single photo remains of this significant day. However, the road leading up to it was long. The struggle to survive was longer still. Latvia was not made in a single day; its birthday party was not even the most important part of it all.
The statehood of Latvia became a matter of political debate in 1917. The following year, Zigfrīds Anna Meierovics set out to London. He faced the monumental task of persuading the Brits that they should not cede Latvia to Germany or Russia. The discussion lasted for just 20 minutes, but these were crucial for establishing our country. The United Kingdom became the first to recognise Latvia de facto. A week later, we were ready to proclaim our country. However, the morning after 18 November, it was evident that true freedom had yet to be attained. Nobody else in the world was eager to see Latvia independent. It was up to us to fight for our freedom – both in the trenches and through diplomatic negotiations.