Today, Vadsø is a calm town on the seashore of the Varanger fjord in Northern Norway. In summertime, it is bathed by the warm Midnight Sun, and in winter, the magical Northern Lights illuminate the heavens with their mysterious green glow… Beautiful, isn’t it?
Unfortunately, things have not always been this calm…
Year 1944. The Second World War. The nazis were using the scorched earth tactic in the whole of Finnmark, during the Operation Nordlicht (Northern Lights). A scorched-earth tactic is a military strategy that aims to destroy anything useful to the enemy, including food stocks, water supplies or even people themselves, while advancing through or withdrawing from a location.
During those terrible times, the stories of the people living in Finnmark were many. Everyone was living their own story.
In this article, we’ll read one of these stories, as it was told by Grandpa Eilif Jankila – the grandfather of one of our friends from Varangertunet. He often spoke about his experience of 23 August 1944 – the day when the Great Bombing of Vadsø took place.
Let’s take a trip back in time and read his story directly on the Varangertunet’s website. Enjoy!