Operation Silver Fox

Operation Silver Fox

Military Conflict
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Operation Silver Fox

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Description:
Operation Silver Fox () was a joint GermanFinnish military operation plan during World War II, though it was mainly operated and engaged by Germans. Its main goal was the capture of the key Soviet port at Murmansk through attacks from Finnish and Norwegian territory.

The operation had to be three staged. Operation Reindeer (Renntier) was the initial attack by German forces from Norway to secure the area around Petsamo. The follow-up operations, Operation Platinum Fox (Platinfuchs) from the north by Army Norway (AOK Norwegen) and Operation Arctic Fox (Polarfuchs) by XXXVI Mountain Corps together with units from the Finnish III Corps, aimed to capture the vital port of Murmansk afterwards. The operation was unsuccessful and Murmansk continued to operate throughout the war.

Planning and preparation

Following the occupation of Norway in July 1940, Germany had planned to occupy the Petsamo nickel mines in an operation code-named Reindeer (Rentier) in case of a new Finnish-Soviet war. Germany had possessed supply and troop transfer rights through Northern Finland since September 1940.

In January 1941, German officer Erich Buschenhagen was ordered to Finland to discuss the possibility of a Finnish-German cooperative effort against the Soviet Union with the Finnish leadership.

In late February, Buschenhagen was authorised to negotiate a combined offensive effort. Taking advantage of the co-belligerent pact, plans were made for German forces from the German...
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