Alternative re-entry of the Winter War volunteers .------------------------ The Winter War 1939-40 - en.wikipedia
.......webmaster on Suomussalmi motti-tactics [danish text]

Counterfactual discourse or WHAT IF -study. - Historian Max Jacobsen wrote: "Many a modern day Byron on skies voluntarily appeared on the battleground, and though only a few reached the frontline, in most western countries there are men, who with a little drop of sadness think of Finland as the one country they nearly did die for." Trotter, da. p. 338.

Danes of the Winter War: 1018 danes volunteered for active duty in the Finnish Army, mostly army officers and men and a dozen military pilots. The Danish Finland-Volunteers Battalion was formed in Oulu, neighbourghing the American Volunteers Battalion**. The force was partly finances by the Danish Finland Volunteers Society: Per-man equipment sums to Finland and travel. Prime contributors and negotiator facing a most reluctant danish government: The Copenhagen businessman H.P.Daehl (Daehls Varehus) and the shipowner, A.P.Møller (Now Mærsk). When after three month of hard fighting, 25.000 finns killed, 200.000 russsian, and finnish army reserves zero, by March 1. and 2., the colonel commanding the danish force was asked to commit two rifle coys (the Americans were asked for one coy) - he said no: The force still needed weapons... This turning down caused anger in all levels of the force. The finns had to sign a grim peace-treaty by March 12. 1940. Expecting fighting to break out again, they asked the danes to stay and moved the force south.

Some 300 left during the week after the peace-treaty, among them the first CO (Battalion strengh by March 13th note 3 bottom). And some returned, when Denmark hersef was attacked by the Nazi-Germany on April 9. 1940. Cabinet"") Decision not to fight except for a symbolic couple of hours became a rough turn to the force (note 4). - Our source fifty years later left it to his listeners to do the experimental thinking by themselves: - 600 danes under arms and ready but 500 nautical miles away: What if you had been there yourself?

This idea (source, see top front) of the early hours of Apr. 10th 1940 orbited among officers of the battalion. (This website do not discuss the history of individuals in any way of which some had nazi-sympaties, others certainly not) The scope of this "wargame" is to point out, that even this small force fighting the nazi-german invasion had served as an "eye-opener".

"Why not retake Bornholm! - The finns recon our rigth to go. This force is capable of taking out the one german regiment there."

I. NOW, WHAT IF... OUTLINE (rough draft) WHAT-IF" games are fiction.

Instant allied cooperation: - TWO FRENCH destroyers visiting Helsinki got a SIGNAL D'ACTION from Amiral d'Escadre Skagerrak (Quai d'Orsay consent) to take Le Corps Danois 440 nautical miles to Bornholm, Denmark, and land it. [FACT: April 1940 french PM Paul Renaud was one prime-mover combating Nazi-Germany.]
So T-114 and T-124 each embarked one reinforced jaeger compagny, six Nimbus messenger motorcycles and two Morris C8 Quads#. HQ, B-coy and Support with ten Chevolet 1937 trucks, two fi. bus-trucks, six Packard ambulances, two Triangel crashtenders, four Triangel semi-trailers, two hundred bicycles, gunsmiths, cooks, nurses, sappers, snipers and welldrillers, two field kitchens, four C8 Quads with two 25 pdr field guns, 182 tons of ammunition, 60 tons of petrol, 102.000 cigarettes, 6.000 field rations, juice, coffee, drugs and other necessities engaged a 1.260 tons steam ferry and three schooners.
(Jaeger coys.: fi. army vocabulary: Fast-moving rifle-coys. fx bikes or skies)

The two "Torpilleurs", at 26 knots 17 hours, will be the first to disembark the troops, at 01:45 AM. Then they run at 35 knots, west and north through the Sound to join The Allied Skagerrak Force of three Fantasque-class destroyers (This force is a historical fact) eight hours later. Passing Skagen, northern "edge" of Jutland, at 07:00. - The Danish Battalion now moving uphill Bornholm numbers 662 officers and other ranks.

Finland and Germany not at war with each other, the Volunteers could not engage Wehrmacht wearing finnish uniforms. In Denmark occupation-clauses grounded the army in the garrisons. The 7th REG. in Fredericia, DK, organized 1.420 black moleskin drill trousers, insignia and cocardes which secretly crossed the Sound together with tons of socks and sweathers and reached BTN Apr 19. All rugged modern field wear they had by Oulu-citizens funds, remembering the mens bravery in the streets during an air attack, fx. five gross of "khaki test-coloured" finnish army white anoraks. Officers had the danish khaki cap M.1923. Most men kept their fi. fur or woolen caps, some a cocarded khaki fedora accepted by the CO.

The picture below of april 1945, somewhere in Sweden, shows a group of danish resistance fighters doing a Ground Battle Update Course, to be ready for battles in the open with the german occupation forces in Denmark. The men are wearing the outfit used by the "DANFORCE" by 1944-45. Danish Army Brigade in Sweden, a unit formed after agreement with Sweden, legally an army unit in exile, allowed a number of 4.800, danish officers, resistance-fighter and other young men and women fugitives. A unit of Allied Forces Europe and - in due case - part of 21. ARMY (Brit. gen., B.L. Montgomery). Brigade HQ plus five battalions, a small air-group and naval squadron in Karlskona of units escaped on Aug. 29 1943. - The autenticity of the picture makes a good impression of WWII scandinavian light-infantry.

A web-search of ours found the BELOW PICTURE used WITHOUT permission by a site of .de TLD. The main problem to users being a negligent text-writer's messing about with concepts as Danish Finland Volunteers of 1939-1940 active in Finland - returning to Denmark after the Winter War, i.e. eight weeks after the German occupation of Denmark. - And the by Nov. 1943 estab. Danish Brigade "DANFORCE" (volunteers from Danish Resistance) - Members shown below. This (exiled) Danforce was part of Allied Forces. In May 45 Brigade-units secured urban areas (in Copenhagen and Elsinore) untill german surrender was effective.


FIGHTING this fight had probably ensured that British PM Winston Churchill, who a few days after the Liberation 1945 of "western" Denmark - but not Bornholm - in a letter to the new US president Harry Thumann put into words his strong image of the Cold War Europe, quote: "From Stettin in the Baltic to Trieste in the Adriatic an iron curtain has descended" unquote:

1) had pointed out the sharp eastern bend to that Curtain right south of BORNHOLM - and 2) WOULD NOT May 7 or 8 have accepted the delay produced by Allied CO Europe Gen. Dwight D. Eisenhower when the British General "Dick" Dewing asked London for permission to fly to Bornholm to accept the german surrender after the russian bombings of Rønne and Nexø. GEN D. D. Eisenhower whatever his cause, see below, allowed for the russians - who didn´t answer telegrams for two days - to go there before Dewing and his men in Copenhagen.

Dewing via FO´s Owen Sargent got Churchill´s GO, states Bent Jensen [Now head of Danish Center of Cold War Studies], in his book, Den lange Befrielse, 1996 pag. 72. [Eng. summary: A New Type Of Occupation 1945-1946]. - The source mentioned below might not have been trackable by the mid-nineties. But BJ in pag. 317 does show that the american view on the matter island bases by 1946-1948 certainly was not an improvisation.

This is what US State Deparment recommended in a Potsdam Briefing Paper, Spring 1945*:
Litterature online: *Elliott W Converse: Circling the earth, orig 1984. Dissertion 1984, Princeton, USA

State Department anticipated that The Sovjet Occupation on Bornholm would lead to them requesting Base-Rights - precisely as with the finnish island of Hangö - in the negotiations of March 1940. If that should happend at Potsdam, State Department adviced that US negotiators NOT OPPOSE such Sovjet demands. State wouldn't endanger the US Case for Greenland Base-Rights. That is: Don´t quarrel with Mr. Stalin over this baltic island. - Of course The US did hope, Denmark kept it, but it was the Danes' case, not a US one, unlike Narsarsuaq AB or Sondre Stroemfjord AB in Greenland on the western hemisphere.

The Game we let loose is what the professionals TODAY would call "Amphibian Warfare" - Rule No. one: You must control the sea to come and go. - In the early part of WWII we didn´t have the elaborated conceptions and experience. - But this is Our SEA-C bid: - Two warships shooting over the shoulders, and a small army task force, one tenth of Battalion strenght: Two Fast Reconnaissance-units (with Task Force CO), a Motorized Heavy Mortar unit, and a few Naval Ships-Demolition-Engineers, in danish: en "Sømine-mester": Marine mining master sergeant, and five torpedo-electricians-mates. - Enemy navy in area reduced to patrol boats. The norwegian campaign cost ships. German forces on Bornholm by May '40 est. 1.200 inf.

Neither side in this Game has enough troops for full area control. Bornholm measures 35 kilometres, from Rønne in the west to Gudhjem in the east. Succes depends on reconnaissaince, right-time deployment and local overweight. For a comparition: In France, during the retreat to Dunkirk May 21 I/Royal Irish Fusiliers was assigned 10 kilometers of The La Basses Canal Perimeter. source: Guy F. Gough: Thirty Days To Dunkirk. 1990


When I asked Mr. Tom Nielsen, harbourmaster in Tejn, in January [i.e.2010] he actually agreed that a small destroyer anno 1940 might sneak in most vigilant of course, place theforeship across the entrance of the inner basin - in 1940 the only harbour basin - quickly debark the troops and then back out using both propellers to steady the move; easy on the revolutions not to get propellers "dig down" the heck, and draught not exceeding 4 meters. That´s a vessel at roughly 700 tons deplacement like these french ships, or two by Apr '40 uncompleted at Copenhagen Navy Yard, Nymfen and Najaden, at 710 tons, 200 tons less than the se. "Ehrenskiölds" (Svenske eskorter scroll to image). - Years ago his former college who also performed as a pilot told me, that even bigger ships go in if the skippers got the nerves:

- In bad weather all you see from the sea will be the waves hammering the stones, you can´t hesitate, he said: - Make some revolutions, ready to turn port and go reverse the moment you see the angle to the entrance open up! By 1940 the outer pier and western basin were not built - the above maps show the old navigation marks, churches and windmills.

Northern Europe 1940 April 8 - May 10 ....or where the Hell is Bornholm?


FACTS (HISTORY) - By March 1940 the Sovjet "Vojt" Josef Stalin had had enough of the die-hard finnish army, as Jowlett & Snodgrass state. (Source: Osprey booklet: Finland at war, 1939-1945. 2006).


By April 9 the danes in Louisa had three weeks to shape the battalion for a new war on wheels, gasoline and firepower; the new CO and EO were both cavalry officers. BTN OO Capt. William (Røde) Troost served in the Foreign Legion under Lieutenant-Colonel Prins Aage af Rosenborg. Capt. T.(Ted) Jorgensen turned up after a year with The Royal Can. Mounted Police. Sergeant K.F. Dieckruyter of the T0-4 recce-unit: On his assignment in Helsinki: Intelligence - No one doubted the Copenhagen government would come out in extreme outrage, as with the danish minister Henrik Kauffmann in America. And declare "us" privateers.

Infantry operating in southern scandinavian landscapes, even in the spring cannot be caught in motti like road-dependant russian units in snowcovered Mid-Finland. By May garden-owners finished digging. This force prepare the battle ground: Minefields, meadow-swampings, woodcuts to redirect troops afoot, fire angels and evac. air strips or havens. Right flank driving fast inland from Allinge & left flank consolidating west of Gudhjem: BTN FIELD MAPS

Plan of attack: Left Flank: B- and P-coys (sappers & riflemen's training unit), mortar platoon and Support, prepare for The Final Debunking from positions between Almindingen (south), Rø (north) and Østerlars Church (east) - as enemy shift focus after two or three days - against The Early Diversion Attack by Right (Allinge-Tejn) Flank: A- and C-Coys with recce unit TO-4, TO-3, artillery (two brit. 25 pdr. guns) and engineers naval installation demolition team.

OPERATION WET WHEEL - rough draft, the first hours, fiction. It did NOT happen.

[samples Day 1]

Extract 0020 of Battalion War Diary of May 1940
Fr. Torpilleur T-124 May 3 GMT 01:35 east of Allinge [A-coy on deck] - reacts to fire from house north of harbour. Fire 7 rounds from fore gun mount - A-coy landed unopposed: 2. platoon took 21 prisoners most of whom wounded by splinters. Made expected contact to lokal resistence. Platoons 1. & 3. both mounted (bikes) reconnoitre Hammer-Lake-walley then south at west coast. TO-4 escorted signals to Telephone-House, briefing with resistance representative [image above] at road-Y behind Cafe Hut-Li-Hut. ORDERS: Motorized advance, best speed. Recce coastal area through Jons Kapel. If no enemy contact, halt at Runic Stone east of Hasle, awaiting téte of C-coy, and visual contact to 1. FAHB [motorized field artillery] two 25 pdr. guns advancing from Klem´sker.

A) May 3 GMT 2:20 A coy 4. platoon advanced inland along the stream to the Tileworks where two Volvo 38 TLV were taken. Cought up with 2.plt 47 off. & men carried, (bikes left as expendable). Motorized advance, best speed. A-coy HQ section [2 off. 1 nco radiooprator & 3 riflemen, messengers] found as planned two local taxies, a Buick 1931 soft top and a Fiat Convertìbile, once Cardinal Camillo´s, and caught up with the TLVs, GMT 3:52 1 kilometer (1 km = 0.6213 mile) south of Hammer Haven.

Extract 0038 of Battalion War Diary of May 1940
A) May 3 GMT 4:20: TO-4 pos. hill 069 near deserted stable, 600 meters east of Jons Kapel park area ops and engage enemy with 2 Lathi, 2 MG and 10 rifles: A coy platoon 1 pos. 500 meters south og hill 069 engage with 3 MG, 3 Lathi. Enemy infantery unit, reinforced coy-strenght mounted advance in four busses. Two busses hit, enemy though several casulties quickly deployed at both sides of road. All buses shot up GMT 4:55. A-coy plt 1 took 5 casulties. Called Bn ambulance, which reached pos. at GMT 5:25. TO-4 and 1 plt rounded up 17 ememy inf. 11 wounded by bus explosions. All sent back on ambulance support lorry. Force proceeded south. Artillery Observer Quad (1 off. 3 riflemen) met by SGT TO-4 at GMT 6:30.

Extract 0046 of Battalion War Diary of May 1940
M) May 3 GMT 5.11: Mortar platoon in pos. north of hill 142 and 10 km stone. 3 Tampella 120 mm mortars operational. 5:34: First enemy engagement, 26 shots on radioed direction from Forward Field Artillery Observer No.3 pos. 2.2 km west of Mortar plt. According to FFAO, 200 m road unusable, 2 enemy motorcycle units hit. No visible movements. - Notice to Transport off in charge: Mortar platoon aquired one Triangel with 1.5 m sided semitrailer taking all 18 crew, weapons and 256 rd of ammunition.

Extract 0091 of Battalion War Diary of May 1940
S) May 3 GMT 10:30: PLT (First Lieutenant) Signals/Telephone-unit II announce command of still existing telephone-lines in triangel Hammeren/Hasle/Gudhjem North. Battalion signal units able to make field connection to net as needed. Two colloquial-stations manned. All civilian traffic terminated.

... until objects secured May 7 2000. Rearguard of 61 off., men and women evac. by the lumber schooner ALMA IV on May 8 0300. See illust. below: Rearguard with BTL CO Capt. William (Røde) Troost, Capt. Ted Jørgensen, Members of Resistance and other Rearguarders watching the schooner coming in out of the fog.

IV. THE ART of getting out the men
link: most secret

DESPITE SET-BACKS mainly by the Luftwaffe: But by Day Four, it became obvious that the Bornholm Campaign was a succes. Strategically the Battle of Norway drained the Kriegsmarine. Too little left to stop The Battalion evacuate into exile in Sweden.

Volunteers Intelligence abroad saw elements of world press - The Bosten Herald and the Casablanca-based, La Vigie Marocaine*, recognizing the Campaign as proof the Wehrmacht was mortal.

*Red, we figure, by The Foreign Legion´s 13. Demi-Brigade when earmarked for Finland it ran "Sahara-Narvik-Brest", as Svend R Christensen wrote. Cpn 1942.

The drawing down-page are our presentation of a Fictive Reference-Group. The Volunteers' TO-platoons (some 70 off. & men, "TO" the Finnish Army 1940 code for Light Reconnaisance Unit) awaiting ewacuation.

Cognitions of war

ONE COGNITION, this "IF" campaign of Bornholm PREFIGURES is the necessity of Air Superiority - and CHEAPER this early in the war than Crete 1941 - where The British Mediterranean Fleet nearly succumbed to Luftwaffe medium bombers. The Game predicates Day 3 german JU-88 [quite robust] medium bombers hit The Volunteer´s two 25 pounder field guns. They thus lost the edge this "batterie-demi" provided. But the fighting got tougher: More men shot to kill: German soldiers frustrated by the cleft between experience and propaganda that danes were friendly; while the danish soldiers developed a drive to end with honour what they came for... get "the grand idea" in 2 maps Campaign.html

One TITLE of a dissertation on individual motives of Danish Finland Volunteers, 1998, by Henrik Højlund Olsen was: "They stole our honour and the right to fight back". They the PM & the FS.

The number of troops in this study are ONE to FOURTY of Gen. Dwight D. Eisenhower´s thump-rule "on the edge of too little", against the german army, autumn 1944.
Crusade in Europe, 1948 pag. 352 or... Some 1.000 troops pr kilometer /webmasters estim. (See above: Amphibian, LC Guy Gough´s II/RIF SW of Dunkirk 5.1940)

The Game disentangles
the french T-114 and T-124 to join the Allied Skagerrak Patrol, DCT 8, of the 40 knots destroyers Le Triomphant, Le Malin & L'Indomptable. Their operations of April 23 1940 is history. - Australian Army crew positioning a 25-pdr. - Four typical scandinavian three-mast fore'n'aft schooners serve, sniffing their way through the morning haze, as infantry evac-vessel. - In the text, Alternative re-entry... we use a french mot, Batterie-demi, meaning Two guns, to give a french connection of the game's "IF" Battalion, inspired by Svend R. Christensen, author of Sahara-Narvik-Brest, who with the French Foreign Legion took part in The Battle of Narvik and The Fight for France.

Disengagement - as the one above - with nearly no bloodshed would be an uncommon event to The History of World War Two. The reality being fx. The Evacuation of Boulogne ten to fourteen days later by 4.368 Welsh and Irish Guard and some civilians after a fierce fight against advancing german armour. RN destroyers engaging enemy tanks at point blank.

Vigilance re-destilled - May 5 1945 the germans surrendered in Holland, Northwestern Germany and Denmark. Bornholm got but an extra 11 months of occupation! The Red Army left April 5 '46. The British adviced da. policymakers showed readyness to take military responsibility. Then the russians pulled out. To Copenhagen the new bipolarity was still veiled.

BORNHOLM 1658. This way of fighting for yourself has one special Bornholm-derivative (Solely webmasters expression): "Fighting For Your Right To Stay A Member Of The Kingdom Of Denmark!" - With proud humour the islanders tell their 1658 story of Captain Jens Pedersen Kofoed, Vikar Poul Anker and Sheriff Peder Olsen Bornholm, - the three of them caught the Swedish colonel, Johan Printzensköld, in Rønne and shot him. Others lured the swedish soldiers into surrender, and later, islander envoys gave back the island to The King of Denmark.

Thank you for playing along

St. Siebken


* One of them later left his white panted finnish army skies for my farther-in-law to use for the sport of it. - The Finland Volunteers, mr. Folmer Rasmussen, my bookdealer in the eightees once said: as a rule
were older than us... By "us" he ment the Danish Resistance... Anyway want of adventure, and foreign experience were traditional motives for danish officers. Wages were symbolic, you had to be economic
independent. One example being Prince Aage of Rosenborg who served as an officer of the French Foreign Legion. - Max Jacobsen quotation [top]: W. Trotter: Den finske Vinterkrig. 2004, page 338.

** Strengh (americans with finnish roots) differs between writers. But some did see action in the last days of the war.

'3 Strenght of force March 13, commanding officer now LC J.H. Skjoldager, 944 = 35 officers 96 ncos and 813 men. 412 left before orders deployed the battalion as frontier guard at the Hangø Peninsula
opposite to the island base now on russian hands. Strength of force March 18: 532 all ranks. Later some of those who left returned. (Source: I orkanens øje, Jan Ahtola Nielsen, 2006)

"") and '4: Decision-makers at Amalienborg Castle, during the german attack, studying the ultimatum recieved in the early hours of April 9: Danish Prime, Th. Stauning, Foreign Minister, P. Munch and Adm.
Hjalmar Rechnitzer (shortly after forced to resign by four other senior naval officers, because of his appeaser-attitude) - wanted to give in, against opinion of Gen. William W. Prior, Army C-in-C, and short
questions of King Christian X. - Since November 1939 Cabinet obstructed support to Finland. When by 1941 6.000 (Hist. Bo Lidegaard 2003) - incl 225-235 former Finland-volunteers (Henrik Højllund
Olsen, RUC unpublished 1998) - joined the Nazi-forces against Russia they did it with the later redrawn blessing of government. Danish Finland-Volunteers Society broke up June 25 1941 on the question
of participation in Finlands second war against Russia, the so-called Continuation War.

# Finland purched modern war-materiel from Britain, Sweden, USA, Italy and others: Chevolet truck 1933 wiki - Fi.1940 (wellknown) Bus-truck wiki. The Morris Quad C8s - six seats and "heck"-winch
are in the game honouring the tales by my first math-teacher on his personal experience with the C8s in [postwar dan.service]

Distance Turku, Fin. to Bornholm approx. 440 nautical miles, 20 hours at 22 knots, Our torpilleurs reach target 3 hours before first light: Astron. twilight: Medio April: around 5:00 AM in latitude N 55 30'.
The Torpilleurs speed, 22 knots, is average. During daylight 26 knots was held, while in dark hours only 17, not to develop high bow-waves, visible in distances up to twenty nautical miles.

New York Times Aug. 30 2003 notes: .At the 60 anniversary of the end of WWII collaborationist government April 9. 1940 to Aug. 29. 1943 danish prime Anders Fogh Rasmussen marked War Era
collabotration with Nazi occupation force as "morally unjustificable" - thus being the first danish prime ever to do so publicly. Source

NOTION: counterfactual:

Nov. 30 2009 - March 2010 - June 2011 - Dec. 2014 - Sep. 6 2016: Illust 1. 'Brigaden in Sweden': Note on picture pinched by negligent text-writer.
This ed.
ALTERNATIVE re-entry: Apr. 12 2017

Nov. 30 1939 - March 13 1940 - The Winter War between Finland and Sovjet-Russia.

All rights Steen Siebken