Hitler's Pre-Emptive War by Henrik O. Lunde
The Battle for Norway, 1940

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Synopsis

This book describes the often overlooked World War II campaign for Norway—a complex series of battles in which Hitler out-gambled Churchill in order to secure a vital resource lifeline for the Third Reich.

After Hitler conquered Poland and was still fine-tuning his plans against France, the British began to exert control of the coastline of neutral Norway, an action that threatened to cut off Germany’s iron-ore conduit to Sweden and outflank from the start its hegemony on the Continent. The Germans responded with a dizzying series of assaults, using every tool of modern warfare developed in the previous generation. Airlifted infantry, mountain troops and paratroopers were dispatched to the north, seizing Norwegian strongpoints while forestalling larger but more cumbersome Allied units.

The German navy also set sail, taking a brutal beating at the hands of Britannia, while ensuring with its sacrifice that key harbors could be held open for resupply. As dive-bombers soared overhead, small but elite German units traversed forbidding terrain to ambush Allied units trying to forge inland. At Narvik, some 6,000 German troops battled 20,000 French and British, until the Allies were finally forced to withdraw by the great disaster in France, which had then gotten underway.

Henrik Lunde, a native Norwegian and former U.S. Special Operations colonel, has written the most objective account to date of a campaign in which 20th-century military innovation found its first fertile playing field.

 

About Henrik O. Lunde

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Colonel Henrik (Hank) Lunde, US Army (Ret) was born in Norway and came to this country as a young boy following WWII. After graduating from the University of California with a degree in history, he accepted a Regular US Army commission and remained on active duty until he retired in the 1980s. He obtained an advanced degree in international relations from Syracuse University. In addition to the normal service schools, he is a graduate of the Airborne, Ranger, and Pathfinder courses as well as the Command and General Staff College at Fort Leavenworth and the US Army War College in Carlisle, Pennsylvania. Much of Colonel Lunde's troop assignments were in our airborne divisions or in Special Forces. This highly decorated officer had three combat tours in Vietnam as commander or operations officer at all levels from company to brigade as well as operations advisor at corps level. In non-troop assignments he served as chief of negotiations with the US delegation in Saigon (1973-74), charged with monitoring the implementation of the 1973 Paris Peace Treaty. The negotiations took place in Saigon and Hanoi. Thereafter, Colonel Lunde spent one year (1974-75) at the Political/Military division of the Army General Staff with Southeast Asia as his area of responsibility. From 1976 to 1979 he served in the Plans and Policy Branch of Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe. His last assignment was as Director of National and International Security Studies at the US Army War College. Lunde has authored several books, the last one in 2009 titled "Hitler's Pre-emptive War: The Battle for Norway, 1940." He has also written a number of articles on national security and WWII.
 
Published November 1, 2010 by Casemate Publishing. 600 pages
Genres: History, Travel, War. Non-fiction

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