War of the White Death

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The White Death - IMDb

Following his mandatory service he opted to continue his military service and joined the Finnish Civil Guard. It was during his time in the Civil Guard Hayha discovered his gift for shooting. Through training he became capable of hitting a target feet away 16 times in a minute.

Loadout - Simo Hayha White Death - Mosin-Nagant M91 - Battlefield 1

In the Soviet Union invaded Finland as the two countries were fighting over border placement and control. As an active member of the Finnish Civil Guard Hayha was called upon to serve. Despite the advanced technology and training of the Soviet Army the Finnish military heavily exploited their home field advantage. The Red Army was largely unprepared for the horrendous winters often dealt with in Finland, and its troops were only able to travel along main roads, making them easy targets for the well concealed Finnish army.

His life in the beginning

They failed. The Finns would hunker down in the shelter until nightfall brought an end to artillery fire, and then sneak out to make repairs during the bitter cold darkness.

See a Problem?

Once the Soviets passed, the Finns would rally, close the line again to prevent any aid from arriving, and attack the leading element from the sides and rear. As the Soviets lost units to this unconventional tactic, they were forced to alter their attacks to hold territory, and therefore slow the advance while increasing their investments in manpower and equipment.

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Come mid-January, the Soviets were still fighting for Kollam. In an effort to break the deadlock, the advance was halted for the Soviets to resupply.

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One component of this attack was the Battle of Killer Hill where 32 Finns faced an onslaught of four thousand Soviets. Each side gained and lost ground over several days. Eventually, the Soviets opted to refocus their efforts on another target—presumably due to having lost four hundred men in the engagement.

War History

Of the original 32 defenders of Killer Hill, only four survived to see the battle victoriously ended. Even as France and Great Britain sent offers of aid to the Finns, the frustrated and desperate Soviets rallied for one final push. The Soviets, however, were now acquainted with the Finnish Motti tactic and knew better than to pursue the attackers into the woods, become isolated, and be systematically killed.

Little circles of Soviet forces cropped up through the countryside, too well armed for the Finns to dislodge or destroy, but also without supplies and unable to advance. A single explosive round hit him in the upper-left side of his jaw.

Simo Häyhä

Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment. Here is his story. Once the Soviet Union was formed and Finland had gained its independence, the town in which he lived found itself to be only a very short distance from the Russian border. His childhood was filled with plenty of hard work on the farm, which coupled with the Finnish wilderness made him a very tough — yet patient — man.

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  8. While one year may not be a long time, he obviously made the best of it: by the time he was honorably discharged, he had been promoted to the rank of "Upseerioppilas Officerselev" corporal. During his time with the Civil Guard, he received a great deal of training, which included target shooting.

    In , the Soviet Union attempted to invade Finland. Commanded by Major General Uiluo Tuompo, the Finns faced both the 9th and 14th Soviet Armies, and at one point were fighting against as many as 12 divisions - about , soldiers.