April 9

This Day in History

General Interest

Apr 9, 1940:

Germany invades Norway

During World War II, Nazi Germany invades neutral Norway, surprising the Norwegian and British defenders of the country and capturing several strategic points along the Norwegian coast. During the invasion's preliminary phase, Norwegian Fascists under Vidkun Quisling acted as a so-called fifth column for the German invaders, seizing Norway's nerve centers, spreading false rumors, and occupying military bases and other locations. In June, Norway fell to the Nazis.

Quisling was made head of a puppet government but was vigorously opposed by the Norwegian resistance, the most effective resistance movement in all of Nazi-occupied Europe. After the German surrender in May 1945, he was arrested, convicted of high treason, and shot. From his name comes the word quisling, meaning "traitor" in several languages.

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