Earl F. Ziemke
Department of the Army Pamphlet No. 20-271
For sale by the Superintendent of Documents, U.S. Government Printing Office
Washington, D.C. 20402
DEPARTMENT OF THE ARMY
WASHINGTON 25, D.C., 15 December 1959
Department of the Army Pamphlet 20-271 is published for the information and use of all concerned.
[AG 385 (9 Jun 59)]
By Order of Wilber M. Bruckner, Secretary of the Army:
L. L. LEMNITZER,
General, United States Army,
Chief of Staff.
R. V. LEE,
Major General, United States Army,
The Adjutant General
Distribution: OS Maj Comd (5) except Active Army: USAEUR (15) DCSPER (5) Hist Div, USAEUR (5) ACSI (5) USAR/J/SIXLOGCOM (15) DCSOPS (5) Hist Div, USAR/J/SIXLOGCOM (5) DCSLOG (5) MDW (5) ACSRC (5) Armies (5) CA (2) Corps (5) CoA (2) Div (5) CUSARROTC (2) Bde (2) CoF (2) Rgt/Gp/Bg (5) CINFO (12) Bn (4) CNGB (2) USAWC (10) CLL (2) USACGSC (10) CRD (2) Br Svc Sch (2) CMH (25) Joint Sch (2) TIG (2) Specialist Sch (2) TJAG (2) PMST Sr Div Units (1) TPMG (2) PMST Jr Div Units (1) TAG (2) PMST Mil Sch Div Units (1) CofCh (2) MAAG (5) Tech Stf, DA (5) Mil Msn (5) Tech Stf Hist Ofc (2) ADGRU (NG) (1) UUSCONARC (15) ADGRU (USAR) (1) NG: State AG (3). USAR: USAR Sch (2). For explanation of abbreviations used, see AR 320-50.
Foreword iii Preface v PART ONE. THE CAMPAIGNS IN NORWAY AND DENMARK Chapter 1. The Background of German Operations in Norway and Denmark 1 The Scandinavian Dilemma 1 A Siege of Britain 7 The Hitler-Quisling Talks, December 1939 7 The First Planning Phase 10 Studie Nord 10 The Krancke Staff 13 The Decision to Occupy Norway 16 The Appointment of Falkenhorst 16 The Fuehrer Directive 17 Hitler's Decision 19 Allied Objectives and Intentions 22 2. The Plan WESERUEBUNG 26 The Problem 26 The Navy 27 Group XXI 30 The Command Organization 30 The Ground Forces, Norway 32 The Ground Forces, Denmark 35 The Air Force 36 Political Planning 38 3. The Landings 40 WESERUEBUNG Begins 40 Narvik and Trondheim 44 Bergen, Stavanger, Egersund, Kristiansand, and Arendal 48 Oslo 51 The Return of the Warships 53 Supply and Troop Transport 55 Diplomatic and Political Moves 56 The Occupation of Denmark 59 4. Operations in Southern and Central Norway 63 The Command Crisis 63 The Advance Northward from Oslo 65 The Breakout 65 To Trondheim 73 Operations at Trondheim 77 Bergen, Stavanger, Kristiansand 82 5. Operations in Northern Norway 87 The Siege of Narvik 87 The Advance of the 2d Mountain Division Toward Narvik 95 Defeat and Victory 99 Operation JUNO 104 6. The Campaign in Norway--Summary 109 PART TWO. OPERATIONS IN FINLAND 7. Plans and Preparations 113 The Change of Course in German-Finnish Relations 113 Planning for Combined Operations 121 The BARBAROSSA Directive (The Strategic Plan) 121 The Army of Norway Staff Study SILBERFUCHS 124 The Army Operation Order 125 The Revised Army Operation Order 127 The Army of Norway Operation Orders 128 The German-Finnish Conversations, May-June 1941 132 8. Operation SILBERFUCHS (I) 137 Concentration of Forces 137 PLANTINFUCHS (Operations of Mountain Corps Norway) 140 To the Litsa River 141 Stalemate on the Litsa 144 The Last Attempt 148 Summary 154 9. Operation SILBERFUCHS (II) 157 POLARFUCHS (Operations of XXXVI Corps and Finnish III Corps) 157 Salla 158 Stalemate at Kayrala 163 Finnish III Corps Operations in July and August 1941 167 Encirclement at Kayrala-Mikkola 170 To the Verman Line 172 Finish III Corps Final Operations 179 The Army of Lapland 183 SILBERFUCHS in Retrospect 184 10. Finland's War 188 Operations in 1941 188 Ladoga-Karelia 190 The Karelian Isthmus 192 Eastern Karelia 195 Cobelligerents and Brothers-in-Arms 203 A Thrust to Belomorsk 208 11. The Northern Theater in 1942 213 Norway 213 Falkenhorst Returns to Norway 213 The Civil Administration 219 Operations in Finland 221 The Soviet Spring Offensive 223 Abortive Plans 229 Operations Against the Arctic Convoys 235 12. In the Backwater of War 242 The Stagnant Front 242 Norway, 1943 252 The Problem of a Defensive Strategy for Scandinavia 252 Internal Affairs and the Situation at the End of the Year 264 The Arctic Convoys 267 13. Finland Leaves the War 272 The Stagnant Front, January to June 1944 272 BIRKE and TANNE 276 The Soviet Summer Offensive 278 The Attack 278 Political Developments and German Aid 282 The Last Phase 284 Armistice 287 14. The Undefeated Army 292 TANNE and BIRKE 292 NORDLIGHT 300 Norway and Surrender 310 15. Conclusion 315 Appendix A. Rank Designations of German and Finnish General And Flag Officers 318 B. Chronology of Events 319 C. List of Major Participants 325 Bibliographical Note 330 Glossary 331 Code Names 333
MAPS 1. The Occupation of Narvik, 9 April 1940 47 2. The Landings in Norway, 9 April 1940 50 3. The Occupation of Denmark, 9-10 April 1940 61 4. Operations in Southern and Central Norway, 9 April-2 May 1940 67 5. The Zone of Operations of Group Trondheim, 9 April-4 May 1940 79 6. The Bergen-Stavanger-Kristiansand Zone of Operations, 9 April-1 May 1940 83 7. The Situation at Narvik, 7 May 1940 89 8. The Advance of 2d Mountain Division Toward Narvik, 5 May-13 June 1940 96 9. The Situation at Narvik, 17 May and 6 June 1940 100 10. The First Attack Across the Litsa, 13-17 July 1941 facing 143 11. The Second Attack Across the Litsa, 13-17 July 1941 facing 147 12. The Last Attack Across the Litsa, 8-20 September 1941 facing 151 13. Salla and the First Attack on Kayrala, 1-30 July 1941 161 14. Operations of Group F, Ukhkta, July-November 1941 facing 169 15. Group J and SS-"Nord", Loukhi, June-November 1941 facing 171 16. Encirclement at Kayrala and the Advance to the Verman Line, 19 August-15 September 1941 173 17. Finnish Operations, June-December 1941 facing 191 18. Soviet Offensive in the Kesten'ga-Loukhi Sector, 24 April-23 May 1942 facing 225 19. The Soviet Offensive on the Litsa, 27 April-14 May 1942 facing 227 20. Study for an Operation Against Sweden, 1943 259 21. The Soviet Summer Offensive Against Finland, June-July 1944 facing 281 22. The German Withdrawal from Finland, 6 September 1944-30 January 945 facing 297 23. The Soviet Offensive Against XIX Mountain Corps, 7-28 October 1944 305
Photographs are from captured German files
Mountain Troops Boarding the Cruiser Hipper 42 JU 52 Transports 52 Bandsmen Emplaning for Oslo 58 Improvised Armored Train 68 Infantry Advancing North of Oslo 71 Infantrymen Taking Cover 74 German Troops Clearing Fallen Rocks 76 Infantrymen Trudging up a Snow-Covered Slope 80 Mark II Tank 85 Waiting to Attack 98 Commanding General, Army of Norway 135 Tundra in the Pechenga-Litsa River Area 143 Engineer Using Jackhammer 151 Mountain Troops Picking Their Way through the Forest 160 Half-Tracked Motorcycles Pulling Antitank Guns 165 Motorcycle Stuck in the Thick Mud 175 German Submarine in a Northern Fiord 178 Finnish Letta on Aircraft Spotting Duty 189 Finnish Engineers Using Bangalore Torpedo 195 The President of Finland, Risto Ryti 197 German Railway Gun 215 Winter Position on the Verman Line 222 Snow-Covered Road in Northern Finland 224 The New Marshal of Finland, Baron Carl Gustaf Mannerheim 229 Troop Quarters on the Litsa Front 246 Snow Tunnel on Reichsstrasse 50 265 German Submarine on Arctic Patrol 269 Reindeer Patrol 277 German Ships at Nickel Ore Docks 301 Camouflaged Supply Trail 303 The Tirpitz in a Northern Fiord 311
The Office of the Chief of Military History of the Department of the Army is currently preparing a series of studies on German military operations in World War II against forces other than those of the United States. In addition to the volumes already published dealing with Poland and the Balkans and the present volume on Norway and Finland, these monographs will cover German operations in Russia, France and the Low Countries. These campaign studies are being made available to the General Staff and to the Army schools and colleges as reference works. They will also prove of value to all who are interested in military affairs.
The German campaigns in Norway and Finland established landmarks in the evolution of military science even though they failed in the long run to influence the outcome of the war. In the invasion of Norway the Germans executed the first large-scale amphibious (in fact triphibious) operation of World War II. The subsequent German operations out of Finland provided the first, and still unique, instance of major military forces operating in the Arctic and created a precedent, at least, for the inclusion of that region, once considered almost totally inaccessible, in strategic considerations. In these respects the operations in the German Northern Theater have a direct association with concepts of warfare which have not yet reached their final stage of development and are, therefore, of current and possible future interest.
[B L A N K]
This volume describes two campaigns that the Germans conducted in their Northern Theater of Operations. The first they launched, on 9 April 1940, against Denmark and Norway. The second they conducted out of Finland in partnership with the Finns against the Soviet Union. The latter campaign began on 22 June 1941 and ended in the winter of 1944-45 after the Finnish Government had sued for peace.
The scene of these campaigns by the end of 1941 stretched form the North Sea to the Arctic Ocean and from Bergen on the west coast of Norway, to Petrozavodsk, the former capital of the Karelo-Finnish Soviet Socialist Republic. It faced east into the Soviet Union on a 700-mile-long front, and west on a 1,300-mile sea frontier. Hitler regarded this theater as the keystone of his empire, and, after 1941, maintained in it two armies totaling over a half million men.
In spite of its vast area and the effort and worry which Hitler lavished on it, the Northern Theater throughout most of the war constituted something of a military backwater. The major operations which took place in the theater were overshadowed by events on other fronts, and public attention focused on the theaters in which the strategically decisive operations were expected to take place. Remoteness, German security measures, and the Russians' well-known penchant for secrecy combined to keep information concerning the Northern Theater down to a mere trickle, much of that innacurate. Since the wear, through official and private publications, a great deal more has become known. The present volume is based in the main on the greatest remaining source of unexploited information, the captured German military and naval records. In addition a number of the participants on the German side have very generously contributed from their personal knowledge and experience.