Skip to comments.War hero thwarted Nazi atomic bomb plans, dies at 84 [Norwegian hero knocked out heavy water plant]
Posted on 02/16/2003 6:58:06 AM PST by AppyPappy
Norwegian-born Einar Skinnarland, who 60 years ago this month helped turn the tide of the Second World War by thwarting Nazi plans to build an atomic bomb, has died at the age of 84.
The efforts of Mr. Skinnarland and his colleagues to blow up material needed to produce atomic weapons formed the basis of the film The Heroes of Telemark.
Mr. Skinnarland was an engineer at the Vemork hydroelectric plant that was able to produce small quantities of heavy water needed for plutonium production.
According to war historian Stephen Stratford, British intelligence learned in 1940, shortly after the Nazi occupation of Norway, that the Vemork plant, west of Oslo, had been ordered to increase heavy water production to nearly 1,400 kilograms a year. By January, 1942, that number had increased to more than 4,500 kilograms a year.
During a holiday in March, 1942, Mr. Skinnarland escaped Norway and, after helping to hijack a coastal steamer, made his way to Aberdeen, Scotland. Mr. Skinnarland gave British intelligence detailed information on the Vemork plant and the Nazi guarding system.
Mr. Stratford's British military Web site says Mr. Skinnarland agreed to return to Vemork as a guide for a sabotage mission, and he was subsequently dropped over the Hardanger Vidda mountains on March 28, 1942.
(Excerpt) Read more at nationalpost.com ...
I wish I were in his league,but I'm not and never was.
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