Operation Sturmbock-Stellung

battering ram position

The 'Sturmbock-Stellung' was a German defence position in the extreme north-west of Finland to shield the Lyngenfjord area from the Swedish border in the area to the north-west of Karesando on the high ground to the west of the Lštoseno river, and a flank position in Kautokeino in Norway (July 1944/12 January 1945).

The position comprised trenches, machine gun strongpoints, anti-tank positions and observation posts, and was built in 1942 under the supervision of engineers of the German army and Organisation 'Todt' by some 3,000 Soviet prisoners of war. The position’s primary purpose was the protection of the Arctic ports of German-occupied northern Norway against any offensive from the south-east.

In October 1944, the line was held by 12,000 men of Generalleutnant August Krakau’s 7th Gebirgsdivision in the Lapland campaign, but after the 'Nordlicht' (iii) German withdrawal from northern Finland and northern Norway early in January 1945, the Finnish forces occupied the position on 12 January 1945 without a fight.