The Norwegian Army-in-Exile

  • Christopher Mann


This chapter examines the experience of the army of the Norwegian Government-in-Exile and their relationship with the British political and military authorities in the Second World War. It was a process that expanded and equipped the small number of defeated Norwegians that escaped to Britain in June 1940 into a force that could participate usefully in Norway’s liberation in May 1945. Given the dire condition of what remained of Norway’s military resources in the summer of 1940 this was a turn around of considerable proportions. Nonetheless the Army came low down on the list of the Norwegian Government’s priorities, which preferred to concentrate on the navy and air force. Also the fact that Norway lay far from the route taken across the continent by the armies of the Western Allies, meant that the Army had few opportunities to make any significant contribution to the Allied victory. Therefore, the experience of the Second World War for the bulk of the Norwegian Army in exile was characterized accurately by one Norwegian soldier as ‘sitting on my arse in Scotland and going on manoeuvres’.1


Liaison Officer Military History German Occupation Military Authority Public Record Office 
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© Palgrave Macmillan, a division of Macmillan Publishers Limited 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • Christopher Mann

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