World War II Coast Guard Victories

Many people do not know that the first military action that took place in World War II was not at Pearl Harbor. The United States Coast Guard was involved in the first wartime capture of a German vessel in September of 1941. The fishing vessel “MV Buskoe,” was acting suspiciously, and after lurking around Greenland the USS Northland, a Coast Guard Cutter on Greenland patrol boarded the fishing vessel. After the fishermen were routinely questioned, they searched the vessel. The Coast Guard crew found 27 Norwegians on board, which was suspicious because by this because Germany had already invaded Norway in April of 1941, so by being Norwegian the crew was under suspicion as possible infiltrators.

After talking closely to the crewmembers, nothing was discovered until the vessel itself was searched. The Coast Guard found proof that the fishing vessel was serving German outpost radio stations including various German Radio equipment on board the Busko.

After seizing the crew and further questioning it was discovered that the fishing vessel had dropped off a German crew several hundred miles away. The crew was arrested and held, and the Coast Guard Cutter USS Northland immediately set sail by its Commander Von Paulsen, to try and find the dropped off insurgents, and the enemy radio base. They were able to discover the location after steaming for about 24 hours straight. They surrounded the radio station, and captured three Norwegian commandos, radio gear, codes, and confidential German instructions. The men were taken into custody and arrested as illegal immigrants because war had not been declared formally. Further investigation found that Norwegian German agents replaced all of the Norwegian crewmembers of the Busko.

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The Coast Guard placed a special crew on the MV Busko, and took the captured vessel and returned to their base with the fishing vessel. But it was the first military capture that occurred during World War II, not at Pearl Harbor, but by a U.S. Coast Guard Crew operating in defense of the shores of the United States, in Greenland. A Coast Guard Crew, working independently, captured a hostile party of men proven to be German Agents, three months before war was declared, and it is an example of the sort of quiet bravery that marks the United States Coast Guard.




4 Responses to “World War II Coast Guard Victories”

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military dot image mimi    Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

i really did not know that, i always thought that the attack took place in pearl harbor

military dot image JEFF    Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

was the uss Downs part of the coast guard even though under the department of navy during world war II
what battles or support group was the uss Downs part of.
the reason why I ask my late uncle was the chief petty officer(crew chief) on board that ship.sort of a patton of the coast guard.

military dot image Carolyn Nicol    Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

Fascinating. I knew this but never brought it up because people on facebook do not talk about WWII.

military dot image cmomm    Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

Why don’t people onFacebook talk about WW2?—-perhaps they do not understand that our victory almost 67 years ago has given them the chance to have a ;Facebook’ to put their drivel on—WW2 vet

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