What would have happened to Germans at Narvik interned in Sweden

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C. A. Fleischer
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What would have happened to Germans at Narvik interned in Sweden

Post by C. A. Fleischer » 28 Mar 2018 21:54

At the battle of Narvik April-June 1940, the Allies retook the city and surrounded the 5000 German troops at Bjørnefjell near the Swedish border. The German commander, general Dietl, apparently approved by Hitler, planned to cross the Swedish frontier with his troops to be interned. As events played out, the Allies retreated before this became necessary due to the critical situation in France.

However, IF Dietl had done so, what would realistically have happened to the 5000 German troops? It is inconceivable that Hitler would have accepted them being interned (imprisoned!) until 1945 by little neutral Sweden, surrounded by German and Axis Finnish territory. It is equally inconceivable that Churchill would have accepted these troops being sent back to Germany without Britain considering Sweden a German ally, and possibly at war with Britain. It would nevertheless be a severe breach of neutrality by Sweden.

Any experts on neutrality and Sweden in WW2 that can comment?

John T
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Re: What would have happened to Germans at Narvik interned in Sweden

Post by John T » 28 Mar 2018 23:25

C. A. Fleischer wrote: However, IF Dietl had done so, what would realistically have happened to the 5000 German troops? It is inconceivable that Hitler would have accepted them being interned (imprisoned!) until 1945 by little neutral Sweden, surrounded by German and Axis Finnish territory.
Yes, they would have been sent home.

C. A. Fleischer wrote: It is equally inconceivable that Churchill would have accepted these troops being sent back to Germany without Britain considering Sweden a German ally, and possibly at war with Britain.
What could Britain do about it ?
Would it further Britain's cause to add another country to the list of enemy/enemy-occupied countries?
Why war?


C. A. Fleischer wrote: It would nevertheless be a severe breach of neutrality by Sweden.
No, Neutrality basically means equal treatment, so if both German and Allied soldiers where repatriated,
you can argue that it would been within the bounds of neutrality.

Cheers
/John T

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C. A. Fleischer
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Re: What would have happened to Germans at Narvik interned in Sweden

Post by C. A. Fleischer » 29 Mar 2018 08:44

Sounds realistic. Good point on equal treatment. However, it would have been challenging for Sweden to compare a dozen downed Allied pilots with 5000 German troops, and claim extradiction of them all is equal treatment of the belligerents. Anyway, would have been bitter for the Allies if this were to happen.

John T
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Re: What would have happened to Germans at Narvik interned in Sweden

Post by John T » 01 Apr 2018 09:00

C. A. Fleischer wrote:Sounds realistic. Good point on equal treatment. However, it would have been challenging for Sweden to compare a dozen downed Allied pilots with 5000 German troops, and claim extradiction of them all is equal treatment of the belligerents. Anyway, would have been bitter for the Allies if this were to happen.
Well there where some 5 000 Norwegian troops who had fled to Sweden too.
Although all(?) went home to occupied Norway.


But compared to Swedish agreement to transfer German troops on Swedish rail it would not been that big a thing..

A bit into this thread we discuss Swedish Brittish relations the summer of 1940:
https://forum.axishistory.com/viewtopic ... 7&start=30


Cheers
/John

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