Norwegian Legion

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Norwegian Legion
Den Norske Legion, Freiwilligen-Legion Norwegen
Norske Legion1.jpg
Standard of Den Norske Legion
Active29 June 1941 (1941-06-29) — March 1943
DisbandedMarch 1943
Country Norway
Allegiance Nazi Germany
BranchWaffen-SS
TypeInfantry
RoleRear security
SizeAround 1900
Commanders
Notable
commanders
Finn Kjelstrup
Arthur Qvist

Norwegian Legion (Norwegian: Den Norske Legion, German: Freiwilligen-Legion Norwegen) was a Norwegian collaborationist formation of the Waffen-SS during World War II. It was formed in German-occupied Norway on 29 June 1941, in support of the war aims of Nazi Germany. The unit was disbanded in 1943.

History[edit]

Norwegian Legion in Northern Russia, summer 1942.

The unit was formed from volunteers who were assured that it would be a Norwegian unit with Norwegian officers, uniforms and language and that its area of operations would be Finland. Instead, the unit was deployed to Northern Russia in the occupied Soviet Union, in the Army Group North Rear Area. This was done by the Germans to avoid reinforcing any Norwegian territorial claims to the Kola peninsula and the Finnish Petsamo region, which were desired by the Quisling regime.[1] Initially, Quisling hoped to deploy over 30,000 Norwegian legionaries to Finnish Lapland, but this was rejected by both the Germans and the Finns.[2]

Coming under the control of the 2 SS Infantry Brigade, the Legion was stationed at Krasnoye Selo near Pushkin in February 1942. In May 1942, the unit was withdrawn, returning in June 1942. The Legion left the occupied Soviet Union in 1943, having suffered over 180 casualties in a year. During that period, it had been reinforced by the 1 SS and Police Company under the command of the head of the Norwegian Allgemeine-SS, Jonas Lie. The Legion was disbanded in March 1943. The personnel who wanted to continue the SS service were transferred to the SS Division Nordland.

Commanders[edit]

References[edit]

Citations[edit]

  1. ^ Ueberschäer 1998, pp. 1018–1019.
  2. ^ Hitlerin Saksa ja sen vapaaehtoisliikkeet, p. 121, Mauno Jokipii, 2002, Suomalaisen Kirjallisuuden Seura ISBN 951-746-335-9 [1] (in Finnish)

Bibliography[edit]