Dad’s Army, Norwegian edition
There are lots of reasons why someone should not mess around with Norway. One is the Norwegian Home Guard (Norwegian: Heimevernet – “HV”) which today consists of some 45,000 part time soldiers.
Here is one of their rapid-reaction forces at work:
SOF has an interesting article from a few months back about these guys from a 1980s encounter in which the author bumped into hardlegs still armed with German WWII weaponry but ready to use it.
This jibes with my own personal Norwegian buddy, a fellow by the name of Kim that I have known for years. Back in the early 1990s he did his national service in Brigade South (also known then as 4th Brigade) and has shown me fading Kodaks of a skinnier/hairier version of him using everything from 1940s vintage M1 Carbines and Walther P-38s to HK G3s and MP5s. He said they learned to use it all and stacked it deep, just in case.
At the time, the Land Home Guard had 470 platoon-sized units stippled across Norway equipped with small arms and man-portable anti-tank weapons such as the Carl Gustav 84mm and L-18 57mm recoilless rifle– a nice addition to any choke point.
At the end of the Cold War, with a population of 4.2 million, Norway could put up the following numbers:
Army: 19,000 (plus 146,000 reserves)
Navy: 5,300 (plus about 26,000 reserves)
Air Force: 9,100 (plus about 28,000 reserves)
Home Guard: 85,000 reserves.
In short, over 300,000 ready when the balloon went up. Those aren’t rookie numbers.
Today it seems the HV is half the size it was in the tail-end of the Cold War, but you can bet there are probably well-maintained WWII stocks still housed in a warehouse somewhere, ready if needed.