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The 20. Gebirgs-Armee was formed 22 June 1942 by the redesignation of Armee Lappland.

The Armee Norwegen was dissolved on 18 December 1944; its component elements were absorbed by the 20. Gebirgs-Armee, which, having made a difficult withdrawal from Finland, assumed responsibility for garrisoning Norway. From 18 December 1944-8 May 1945, the commander of the 20. Gebirgs-Armee also served as the Wehrmachtbefehlshaber Norwegen.

The 20. Gebirgs-Armee surrendered to the British on 8 May 1945.

Commanders

Generaloberst Eduard Dietl (22 June 1942 - 23 June 1944) (1)
Generaloberst Dr. jur. Lothar Rendulic (25 June 1944 - 8 Jan 1945)
General der Gebirgstruppe Franz Böhme (8 Jan 1945 - 8 May 1945)

Chiefs of Staff

Generalleutnant Ferdinand Jodl (22 June 1942-1 Mar 1944)
Generalleutnant Hermann Hölter (1 Mar 1944-8 May 1945)

Operations Officers (Ia)

Oberst Hugo Sittmann (22 June 1942-10 Apr 1943)
Oberst Hans Steets (10 Apr 1943-10 May 1944)
Oberst Friedrich Übelhack (10 May 1944-20 Dec 1944)
Oberst Raimund Hörst (20 Dec 1944-1 Feb 1945)
Oberst Friedrich Übelhack (1 Feb 1945-8 May 1945)

Area of operations

Finland (June 1942 - Dec 1944)
Norway (Dec 1944 - May 1945)

Holders of other notable badges & decorations

Holders of the Golden Party Badge (2)
- Generaloberst Eduard Dietl (30 Jan 1943)
- Generaloberst Dr. Lothar Rendulic (19 Sep 1944)

Order of battle (24 June 1942)

At the disposal of the 20. Gebirgs-Armee
- XVIII. Gebirgs-Armeekorps (replacing Finnish III Corps on Kiestinki front)
Finnish III Corps
- Finnish 3rd Division
- SS-Division “Nord”
- Finnish Division J
- 1/3 163. Infanterie-Division
- verstärktes Gebirgsjäger-Regiment 139
- 7. Gebirgs-Division (part) (replacing temporary Finnish Division J which was soon suspended)
XXXVI. Gebirgs-Armeekorps
- 169. Infanterie-Division
- 2/3 163. Infanterie-Division
- Panzer-Abteilung 211
Gebirgskorps Norwegen
- 6. Gebirgs-Division + 1/3 214. Infanterie-Division
- 2. Gebirgs-Division
- 1/3 214. Infanterie-Division
- 69. Infanterie-Division (part)

Order of battle (22 Dec 1942)

At the disposal of the 20. Gebirgs-Armee
- verstärktes Gebirgsjäger-Regiment 139
XVIII. Gebirgs-Armeekorps
- SS-Gebirgs-Division “Nord”
- 7. Gebirgs-Division
XXXVI. Gebirgs-Armeekorps
- 169. Infanterie-Division
- 163. Infanterie-Division
- Panzer-Abteilung 211
XIX. Gebirgs-Armeekorps
- 2. Gebirgs-Division + 2/3 214. Infanterie-Division
- 6. Gebirgs-Division
- Kommando 210. Infanterie-Division

Order of battle (9 Apr 1943)

XVIII. Gebirgs-Armeekorps
- SS-Gebirgs-Division “Nord”
- 7. Gebirgs-Division
- Polizei-Gebirgsjäger-Regiment 18
XXXVI. Gebirgs-Armeekorps
- 169. Infanterie-Division
- 163. Infaterie-Division
- Panzer-Abteilung 211
XIX. Gebirgs-Armeekorps
- 2. Gebirgs-Division + 2/3 214. Infanterie-Division
- Grenadier-Regiment 388
- verstärktes Gebirgsjäger-Regiment 139
- 6. Gebirgs-Division
- 210. Infanterie-Division
- Luftwaffen-Feld-Regiment 503
- Grenadier-Regiment 193

Order of battle (21 Aug 1943)

XVIII. Gebirgs-Armeekorps
- SS-Gebirgs-Division “Nord”
- 7. Gebirgs-Division
XXXVI. Gebirgs-Armeekorps
- 169. Infanterie-Division
- 163. Infanterie-Division
- Panzer-Abteilung 211
XIX. Gebirgs-Armeekorps
- 2. Gebirgs-Division + Grenadier-Regiment 388
- 6. Gebirgs-Division
- verstärktes Gebirgsjäger-Regiment 139
- 210. Infanterie-Division
- Luftwaffen-Feld-Regiment 503
- Grenadier-Regiment 193

Order of battle (15 June 1944)

At the disposal of the 20. Gebirgs-Armee
- 2. Gebirgs-Division
- Kampfgruppe West (temporary rear area HQ for leading troops west from Lake Oulujärvi mainly on Oulu - Kemi - Tornio area, secured the flank of German troops in Finland)
XVIII. Gebirgs-Armeekorps
- 7. Gebirgs-Division (most)
- Divisionsgruppe Kräutler + 7. Gebirgs-Division (part)
- 6. SS-Gebirgs-Division “Nord”
XXXVI. Gebirgs-Armeekorps
- 169. Infanterie-Division
- 163. Infanterie-Division
- Panzer-Abteilung 211
XIX. Gebirgs-Armeekorps
- Kampfgruppe Ost (rear area HQ for securing Kolosjoki nickel ore mines)
- 6. Gebirgs-Division
- Divisionsgruppe Rossi
- 210. Infanterie-Division

Order of battle (13 Oct 1944)

XVIII. Gebirgs-Armeekorps
- Kampfgruppe West (rear area HQ)
- Divisionsgruppe K (Division z.b.V. 140)
- 7. Gebirgs-Division
- 6. SS-Gebirgs-Division “Nord”
- MG-Ski-Brigade “Finnland”
- Panzer-Abteilung 211 (- 1. Kompanie)
XXXVI. Gebirgs-Armeekorps
- 169. Infanterie-Division
- 163. Infanterie-Division
- 1./Panzer-Abteilung 211
XIX. Gebirgs-Armeekorps
- 6. Gebirgs-Division + Grenadier-Brigade 388
- 2. Gebirgs-Division
- 210. Infanterie-Division
- Divisionsgruppe van der Hoop (former Div.Gr. Rossi) (Grenadier-Brigade 193 + Grenadier-Brigade 503)
- Radfahr-Aufklärungs-Brigade "Norwegen"

Order of battle (31 Dec 1944)

At the disposal of the 20. Gebirgs-Armee
- XVIII. Gebirgs-Armeekorps
Armeeabteilung Narvik
XXXIII. Armeekorps
- 14. Feld-Division (L)
- 702. Infanterie-Division
- 295. Infanterie-Division
LXX. Armeekorps
- 280. Infanterie-Division
- 274. Infanterie-Division

Order of battle (19 Feb 1945)

At the disposal of the 20. Gebirgs-Armee
- Divisionsstab z.b.V. 613
- XXXVI. Gebirgs-Armeekorps
- MG-Ski-Brigade “Finnland”
- Panzer-Brigade “Norwegen”
Armeeabteilung Narvik
LXXI. Armeekorps
- 230. Infanterie-Division
- 210. Infanterie-Division + Festungs-Brigade Lofoten
- 199. Infanterie-Division + Grenadier-Brigade 503
- 7. Gebirgs-Division
XXXIII. Armeekorps
- 14. Feld-Division (L)
- 702. Infanterie-Division
- 295. Infanterie-Division
- 169. Infanterie-Division (in transit)
LXX. Armeekorps
- 280. Infanterie-Division
- 274. Infanterie-Division

Order of battle (1 Mar 1945)

At the disposal of the 20. Gebirgs-Armee
- Divisionsstab z.b.V. 613
- XXXVI. Gebirgs-Armeekorps
- MG-Ski-Brigade “Finnland”
- Panzer-Brigade “Norwegen”
Armeeabteilung Narvik
XXXIII. Armeekorps
- 14. Feld-Division (L)
- 702. Infanterie-Division
- 295. Infanterie-Division
- 199. Infanterie-Division
LXX. Armeekorps
- 280. Infanterie-Division
- 274. Infanterie-Division
- 169. Infanterie-Division (in transit)

Order of battle (12 Apr 1945)

At the disposal of the 20. Gebirgs-Armee
- 7. Gebirgs-Division
Armeeabteilung Narvik
XXXIII. Armeekorps
- 14. Feld-Division (L)
- 702. Infanterie-Division
- 295. Infanterie-Division
LXX. Armeekorps
- 280. Infanterie-Division
- 274. Infanterie-Division
- Divisionsstab z.b.V. 613
XXXVI. Gebirgs-Armeekorps
- MG-Ski-Brigade “Finnland”
- Panzer-Brigade “Norwegen”

Other militaria

The Lapland Shield (Lapplandschild) was instituted to recognize the efforts of 20. Gebirgs-Armee, it was created in February 1945 and officially approved 1 May 1945.
lappland-img
Photo © Rusfront

Notable members

Franz Böhme (Generalmajor in the Austrian Bundesheer before the Anschluss)

Soldiers in the Rovaniemi area 1942
gebirg-armee-rovaniemi-1
(Courtesy of Denis Barthel, licensed under Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 3.0 Germany)

Soldiers in the Rovaniemi area 1942

gebirg-armee-rovaniemi-2
(Courtesy of Denis Barthel, licensed under Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 3.0 Germany)

Generaloberst Eduard Dietl and the Finnish General Oiva Willamo at Rovaniemi 29 September 1943
dietl-willamo
(Courtesy of SA-kuva)


Minister of Armaments and War Production and head of Organisation Todt Albert Speer visits Generaloberst Eduard Dietl in February 1944
armee-gebirgs-20-dielt-speer
(Courtesy of Bundesarchiv/Wikimedia, licensed under Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 3.0 Germany)

Generalleutnant Karl Weisenberg and General der Infanterie Dr. Lothar Rendulic in December 1944
weisenberg-rendulic
(Courtesy of Bundesarchiv/Wikimedia, licensed under Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 3.0 Germany)

Footnotes

1. Eduard Dietl died 23 June 1944 in an aircraft crash.

Sources used

Research by Shawn Bohannon
Clyde R. Davis - The Wehrmacht and the Golden Party Badge (in Military Advisor, Vol 22, No 2)
Georg Tessin - Verbände und Truppen der deutschen Wehrmacht 1933-1945
Gordon Williamson - German Mountain & Ski Troops 1939-45
Earl F. Ziemke - The German Northern Theater of Operations, 1940-1945

Reference material on this unit

Hermann Hölter - Armee in der Arktis: Die Operationen der 20. Gebirgsarmee nach der Kapitulation Finnlands im Herbst 1944

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