Allied Forces South Norway

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Allied Forces South Norway
Active 1952 - 1994
Allegiance NATO North Atlantic Treaty Organization
Part of Allied Forces Northern Europe, Kolsås, Norway
Location Stavanger, Norway

Allied Forces South Norway (SONOR) was a NATO command tasked with the defense of Southern Norway. SONOR's area of responsibility included all of Norway with the adjacent sea territory excluding the three northernmost counties of Norway, which were under Allied Forces North Norway.

History[edit]

Allied Forces South Norway (SONOR) and was activated in 1962 along with Allied Forces North Norway (NON) and Allied Forces Baltic Approaches. Unlike most other NATO commands SONOR was a staffed entirely by members of the Norwegian Armed Forces. Its operational headquarters was located in Stavanger and today houses NATO's Joint Warfare Centre. The commander of SONOR had three deputies: Commander Land Forces South Norway, Commander Air Forces South Norway and Commander Naval Forces South Norway. Incoming allied units would have come under the command of these three deputy commanders.[1]

Structure 1989[edit]

In case of war SONOR had the following units at its disposal:

Commander Naval Forces South Norway[edit]

Naval Forces South Norway (NAVSONOR) was tasked with the defence of Southern Norway's coastal waters against Soviet naval incursions and amphibious landings. Operations to the South of Norway's coastal waters were under the command of NATO's Allied Command Channel and Allied Forces Baltic Approaches.[citation needed] Therefore, most major naval units of the Norwegian Navy would have come under other NATO commands, with NAVSONOR retaining control of coastal artillery units and smaller coastal defense boats.[citation needed] NAVSONOR also dispatched a squadron of fast attack crafts to NAVNON on a rotational basis.[citation needed]

Royal Norwegian Navy Fleet[edit]

In 1989 the Royal Norwegian Navy had the following ship and submarines in service. While these units were all based in Southern Norway, in wartime the submarines and frigates might have been dispatched to the various NATO commands defending the North Sea and the Baltic Approaches, while some of the patrol boats would have been sent to reinforce NAVNON in Northern Norway.

All submarines of the navy were under command of the 1st Submarine Flotilla and homeported in Haakonsvern. In 1989 the navy began to replace some of its Kobben class submarines with the more modern Ula class. The Kobben staying in service were extensively modernized.

In times of war the Royal Norwegian Navy would have been reinforced by the Sea Home Guard, which manned older vessels taken out of service by the navy:

Additionally the Royal Norwegian Navy would have been reinforced in wartime with three offshore patrol vessels of the Coast Guard:

Commander Air Forces South Norway[edit]

Norwegian Air Force bases in Southern Norway
A US Air Force F-16 Fighting Falcon from the 363rd Tactical Fighter Wing at Rygge Air Station during Exercise Coronet Gauntlet '83.
A Norwegian NF-5A and a US Air Force F-4D Phantom II of the New Jersey Air National Guard over Southern Norway during exercise Coronet Rawhide '82.

Commander Land Forces South Norway[edit]

  • Commander Land Forces South Norway (LANDSONOR), commanded by a Norwegian major general:
    • Distriktskommando Trøndelag in Trondheim covering Central Norway
      • Brigade 12 (Norwegian Home Guard District 12 mobilization unit) in Trondheim
        • 1st Armored Battalion with 26 Leopard 1 tanks, 29x NM135 infantry fighting vehicles
        • 2nd Infantry Battalion with Bandvagn 206, 4x NM142 ATGM carriers and 4x M106 mortar carriers
        • 3rd Infantry Battalion with Bandvagn 206, 4x NM142 ATGM carriers and 4x M106 mortar carriers
        • 4th Infantry Battalion with Bandvagn 206, 4x NM142 ATGM carriers and 4x M106 mortar carriers
        • Field Artillery Battalion with 18x M109G 155mm self-propelled howitzers
        • Reconnaissance Squadron with 3x NM135 infantry fighting vehicles
        • Anti-tank Missile Company with 4x NM142 ATGM carriers and 4x NM116 light tanks
        • Anti-Aircraft Battery with 6x NM195 anti-air missile vehicles and 6x 40mm L/60 anti-aircraft guns
        • Engineer Company
        • Artillery Observation Platoon in Setermoen with 2x Cessna O-1A planes
      • Brigade 13 (Norwegian Home Guard District 13 mobilization unit) in Steinkjer
        • 1st Infantry Battalion with 4x TOW ATGM missile launchers and 4x M30 107mm mortars
        • 2nd Infantry Battalion with 4x TOW ATGM missile launchers and 4x M30 107mm mortars
        • 3rd Infantry Battalion with 4x TOW ATGM missile launchers and 4x M30 107mm mortars
        • Field Artillery Battalion with 24x M114 155mm towed howitzers
        • Reconnaissance Squadron with 3x NM135 infantry fighting vehicles
        • Anti-tank Missile Company with 4x NM142 ATGM carriers and 4x NM116 light tanks
        • Anti-Aircraft Battery with 6x RBS 70 man-portable air-defense systems and 6x 40mm L/60 anti-aircraft guns
        • Engineer Company
        • Artillery Observation Platoon in Setermoen with 2x Cessna O-1A planes
      • Norwegian Home Guard District 11 Møre og Romsdal - Molde and Setnesmoen (Home Guard militia in Møre og Romsdal)
        • Infantry Battalion with 4x TOW ATGM missile launchers and 4x M30 107mm mortars
        • Artillery Battery with 8x M101 105mm towed howitzers
      • Norwegian Home Guard District 12 Sør-Trøndelag - Trondheim (Home Guard militia in Sør-Trøndelag)
      • Norwegian Home Guard District 13 Nord-Trøndelag - Steinkjer (Home Guard militia in Nord-Trøndelag)
    • Distriktskommando Sør- og Vestlandet in Bergen covering Southern Norway and Western Norway
      • Brigade 7 (Norwegian Home Guard District 7 mobilization unit) in Kristiansand
        • 1st Infantry Battalion with 4x TOW ATGM missile launchers and 4x M30 107mm mortars
        • 2nd Infantry Battalion with 4x TOW ATGM missile launchers and 4x M30 107mm mortars
        • 3rd Infantry Battalion with 4x TOW ATGM missile launchers and 4x M30 107mm mortars
        • Field Artillery Battalion with 24x M101 105mm towed howitzers
        • Reconnaissance Squadron with 3x NM135 infantry fighting vehicles
        • Anti-tank Missile Company with 4x NM142 ATGM carriers and 4x NM116 light tanks
        • Anti-Aircraft Battery with 6x RBS 70 man-portable air-defense systems and 6x 40mm L/60 anti-aircraft guns
        • Engineer Company
        • Artillery Observation Platoon in Setermoen with 2x Cessna O-1A planes
      • Brigade 8 (Norwegian Home Guard District 8 mobilization unit) in Stavanger
        • 1st Infantry Battalion with 4x TOW ATGM missile launchers and 4x M30 107mm mortars
        • 2nd Infantry Battalion with 4x TOW ATGM missile launchers and 4x M30 107mm mortars
        • 3rd Infantry Battalion with 4x TOW ATGM missile launchers and 4x M30 107mm mortars
        • Field Artillery Battalion with 24x M101 105mm towed howitzers
        • Reconnaissance Squadron with 3x NM135 infantry fighting vehicles
        • Anti-tank Missile Company with 4x NM142 ATGM carriers and 4x NM116 light tanks
        • Anti-Aircraft Battery with 6x RBS 70 man-portable air-defense systems and 6x 40mm L/60 anti-aircraft guns
        • Engineer Company
      • Brigade Vestlandet (Norwegian Home Guard District 9 and 10 mobilization unit) in Bergen
        • 1st Infantry Battalion with 4x TOW ATGM missile launchers and 4x M30 107mm mortars
        • 2nd Infantry Battalion with 4x TOW ATGM missile launchers and 4x M30 107mm mortars
        • 3rd Infantry Battalion with 4x TOW ATGM missile launchers and 4x M30 107mm mortars
        • Field Artillery Battalion with 24x M101 105mm towed howitzers
        • Reconnaissance Squadron with 3x NM135 infantry fighting vehicles
        • Anti-tank Missile Company with 4x NM142 ATGM carriers and 4x NM116 light tanks
        • Anti-Aircraft Battery with 6x RBS 70 man-portable air-defense systems and 6x 40mm L/60 anti-aircraft guns
        • Engineer Company
      • Norwegian Home Guard District 7 Agder – Kristiansand (Home Guard militia in Agder)
      • Norwegian Home Guard District 8 Rogaland – Vatneleiren (Home Guard militia in Rogaland)
        • Tank Company with 17x M48A5 tanks
      • Norwegian Home Guard District 9 Bergenhus in Ulven (Home Guard militia in Hordaland)
      • Norwegian Home Guard District 10 Sogn og Fjorande in Eid (Home Guard militia in Sogn og Fjordane)
    • Distriktskommando Østlandet in Oslo covering Eastern Norway
      • Brigade 1 (Norwegian Home Guard District 1 mobilization unit) in Fredrikstad
        • 1st Infantry Battalion with 4x TOW ATGM missile launchers and 4x M30 107mm mortars
        • 2nd Infantry Battalion with 4x TOW ATGM missile launchers and 4x M30 107mm mortars
        • 3rd Infantry Battalion with 4x TOW ATGM missile launchers and 4x M30 107mm mortars
        • Field Artillery Battalion with 24x M101 105mm towed howitzers
        • Reconnaissance Squadron with 3x NM135 infantry fighting vehicles
        • Anti-tank Missile Company with 4x NM142 ATGM carriers and 4x NM116 light tanks
        • Anti-Aircraft Battery with 6x RBS 70 man-portable air-defense systems and 6x 40mm L/60 anti-aircraft guns
        • Engineer Company
      • Brigade 3 (Norwegian Home Guard District 3 mobilization unit) in Heistadmoen
        • 1st Infantry Battalion with 4x TOW ATGM missile launchers and 4x M30 107mm mortars
        • 2nd Infantry Battalion with 4x TOW ATGM missile launchers and 4x M30 107mm mortars
        • 3rd Infantry Battalion with 4x TOW ATGM missile launchers and 4x M30 107mm mortars
        • Field Artillery Battalion with 24x M101 105mm towed howitzers
        • Reconnaissance Squadron with 3x NM135 infantry fighting vehicles
        • Anti-tank Missile Company with 4x NM142 ATGM carriers and 4x NM116 light tanks
        • Anti-Aircraft Battery with 6x RBS 70 man-portable air-defense systems and 6x 40mm L/60 anti-aircraft guns
        • Engineer Company
      • Brigade Sør-Norge (Norwegian Home Guard District 2 and 4 mobilization unit) in Onsrud
        • 1st Armored Battalion with 38 M48A5 tanks, 29x NM135 infantry fighting vehicles
        • 2nd Infantry Battalion with Bandvagn 206, 4x NM142 ATGM carriers and 4x M106 mortar carriers
        • 3rd Infantry Battalion with Bandvagn 206, 4x NM142 ATGM carriers and 4x M106 mortar carriers
        • 4th Infantry Battalion with Bandvagn 206, 4x NM142 ATGM carriers and 4x M106 mortar carriers
        • Field Artillery Battalion with 18x M109G 155mm self-propelled howitzers
        • Reconnaissance Squadron with 3x NM135 infantry fighting vehicles
        • Anti-tank Missile Company with 4x NM142 ATGM carriers and 4x NM116 light tanks
        • Anti-Aircraft Battery with 6x NM195 anti-air missile vehicles and 6x 40mm L/60 anti-aircraft guns
        • Engineer Company
        • Artillery Observation Platoon in Setermoen with 2x Cessna O-1A planes
      • Norwegian Home Guard District 1 Østfold – Ravneberget (Home Guard militia in Østfold)
        • Artillery Battalion with 24x M101 105mm towed howitzers
      • Norwegian Home Guard District 2 Stor-Oslo – Oslo (Home Guard militia in Greater Oslo Region including Akershus)
        • Hans Majestet Kongens Garde Battalion
        • Infantry Battalion with 4x TOW ATGM missile launchers and 4x M30 107mm mortars
        • Infantry Battalion with 4x TOW ATGM missile launchers and 4x M30 107mm mortars
        • Infantry Battalion with 4x TOW ATGM missile launchers and 4x M30 107mm mortars
        • Infantry Battalion with 4x TOW ATGM missile launchers and 4x M30 107mm mortars
        • Infantry Battalion with 4x TOW ATGM missile launchers and 4x M30 107mm mortars
        • Infantry Battalion with 4x TOW ATGM missile launchers and 4x M30 107mm mortars
        • Infantry Battalion with 4x TOW ATGM missile launchers and 4x M30 107mm mortars
        • Infantry Battalion with 4x TOW ATGM missile launchers and 4x M30 107mm mortars
        • Infantry Battalion with 4x TOW ATGM missile launchers and 4x M30 107mm mortars
        • Artillery Battalion with 24x M101 105mm towed howitzers
        • Artillery Battalion with 24x M101 105mm towed howitzers
        • Tank Company with 13x Leopard 1 tanks
      • Norwegian Home Guard District 3 Telemark og Buskerud – Heistadmoen (Home Guard militia in Telemark and Buskerud)
        • Infantry Battalion with 4x TOW ATGM missile launchers and 4x M30 107mm mortars
        • Infantry Battalion with 4x TOW ATGM missile launchers and 4x M30 107mm mortars
        • Artillery Battalion with 24x M101 105mm towed howitzers
      • Norwegian Home Guard District 4 Hedmark – Kongsvinger (Home Guard militia in Hedmark)
      • Norwegian Home Guard District 5 Opplandske – Terningmoen (Home Guard militia in Oppland), would raise Brigade 5 for Allied Forces North Norway
      • Norwegian Home Guard District 6 Hønefoss – Hønefoss (Home Guard militia in Greater Oslo Region), would raise Brigade 6 for Allied Forces North Norway
        • Infantry Battalion with 4x TOW ATGM missile launchers and 4x M30 107mm mortars
        • Infantry Battalion with 4x TOW ATGM missile launchers and 4x M30 107mm mortars

US Forces in Southern Norway[edit]

US Marine Corps Norway Air-Landed Marine Expeditionary Brigade (NALMEB) Prepositioning Program material at the Bjugn Cave Facility

In 1981 the governments of Norway and the United States signed a Memorandum of Understanding that in case of war the U.S. Marine Corps' 4th Marine Expeditionary Brigade would be deployed to Norway as the Norway Air-Landed Marine Expeditionary Brigade (NALMEB).[citation needed] To facilitate a rapid deployment of the brigade and its associated air and logistical units via strategic airlift the two nations agreed to preposition equipment and materiel for 15,000 troops, and war stocks for 30 days in Norway. Because of the harsh Norwegian climate it was decided that unlike the REFORGER depots in Germany, the depots in Norway would be underground facilities. Thus between 1985 and 1989 American and Norwegian engineers drilled nearly 63,000 square meters of underground storage tunnels into the mountains around Trondheim. After the sites had been filled with materiel and equipment, Norwegian troops were tasked with its maintenance, with two exceptions: the two stored fleet hospitals were maintained by two small US Navy detachments.

By 1990 the eight artificial caves were filled with all the equipment and the Norway Air-Landed Marine Expeditionary Brigade could have been deployed to Norway within 48h.[4]

The eight underground depots were:[citation needed]

Additionally the U.S. military maintained a small number of units in Southern Norway in peacetime:

References[edit]

  1. ^ Till, Geoffrey (1988). Britain and N. A. T. O.'s Northern Flank. London: MacMillan Press. p. 143. ISBN 978-0-333-43931-9. 
  2. ^ Lund, John (1989). Don't Rock The Boat - Reinforcing Norway in Crisis and War (PDF). Washington DC: Rand Corporation. ISBN 0-8330-0960-5. 
  3. ^ "Service List". Norwegian Navy Veterans. Norwegian Navy Veterans. Retrieved 13 November 2016. 
  4. ^ "Prepositioning Programs Handbook" (PDF). www.marines.mil. Headquarters Marine Corps. 2015. Retrieved 23 October 2016.