Marinejegerkommandoen (MJK) is the maritime/naval special warfare unit of the Norwegian Special Operations Command and was established in 1953.[2]

Marinejegerkommandoen (MJK)
Logo Marinejegerkommandoen.svg
ActiveFrogmen: 1953–1968 MJK: 1968–current
CountryNorway Norway
BranchNorwegian Special Operations Command
TypeNaval Special Operation Forces
RoleSpecial Reconnaissance (SR)
Hostage Rescue (HR)
Direct Action (DA)
Military Assistance (MA)
Combat Search And Rescue (CSAR)
Collateral Activities (CA)
Garrison/HQHaakonsvern Naval Base and Ramsund Naval Base
Motto(s)"Prepare for tomorrow's threats, today"
ColorsGreen beret flash on blue navy beret
EngagementsOperation Enduring Freedom
(Task Force K-Bar)
Operation Anaconda
Operation Jacana
International Security Assistance Force
Operation Pickaxe-Handle
Operation Atalanta
Operation Ocean Shield
Resolute Support Mission
American University of Afghanistan attack
Hostage situation at Hetal Hotel, Kabul May 2015 [1]
DecorationsNavy and Marine P.U.C. United States Navy Presidential Unit Citation
Commander Petter Hellesen
(Commander MJK)

Commodore Nils Johan Holte
(Commander Norwegian SOF)

The MJK is under the command of the Norwegian Special Operations Command (NORSOCOM)[3] together with the Forsvarets Spesialkommando (FSK), with the MJK being the older of the two units. The unit is headquartered on the Ramsund naval base in northern Norway, with other MJK operators stationed on the Haakonsvern naval base in southwestern Norway.

MJK is employed in the full spectrum of "frogman" operations,[clarification needed] including swampland warfare, arctic warfare, special reconnaissance, recovery or protection of ships and oil installations, various counter-terrorism missions, hostage rescue and direct action.[citation needed]

To become a fully qualified MJK operator takes a minimum of two years and is further augmented by specialized courses during the following contract period, such as combat medic training, sniper training and forward air control (FAC) training.[citation needed]

As with any modern special operations forces, the training to become an MJK operator is long and arduous, both physically and mentally taxing. For example, during the selection phase (one of the final phases of MJK operator training), each of the candidates (which at this point of training consists of about 5-8 men out of an original 100-200) must carry a 60 kg (130 lb) rucksack while being hunted by an "enemy force" consisting of Home Guard soldiers, military and law enforcement K-9 units and police officers. At some point during the test, the candidates are captured and must endure 36 hours of tactical questioning.[citation needed]


In the autumn of 1940, two Norwegian military units were set up in the United Kingdom. Their mission was to carry out special operations against Nazi forces in occupied Norway. The two units were Shetlandsgjengen (Shetland Bus), who used fishing vessels to transport people and materials to and from Norway, and Kompani Linge (Norwegian Independent Company 1), initially under the command of Lieutenant Martin Linge. Both units were under the command of the British Special Operations Executive.[citation needed]

In 1953 the Royal Norwegian Navy formed a frogman-unit. This unit was under the command of Ove Lund, and is the origin of the modern Marinejegerkommandoen and Minedykkerkommandoen. The mission of the frogmen was to conduct re-con and sabotage against enemy targets above and below water. The frogmen were also tasked with disarming all water-borne explosive devices.[citation needed]

The missions gradually become more comprehensive and different frogman specialities emerged. This led to members of the unit being divided into a clearance diver team and two combat swimmer teams, in 1968. Of the combat swimmer groups, one was based at Ramsund Naval Station in northern Norway, and one was based at Karljohansvern Naval Station in southern Norway.[citation needed]

The two combat swimmer teams were eventually fused into one and based in Ramsund. They later changed names to the current Marinejegerkommandoen. Today the unit has its main base in Bergen, with training facilities in Ramsund.[citation needed]


Marinejegerkommandoen plays an integral part in modern warfare operations. The unit carries out missions that require thorough planning, quick reaction, high precision, covert implementation, daring, courage and the ability to work independently. As with all SOF missions, they target objectives of high or critical strategic value.[citation needed]

Domestic securityEdit

Marinejegerkommandoen is on national counter-terrorism standby to assist the Norwegian Police if required (alongside Forsvarets Spesialkommando), and is also on continuous standby for international operations.[citation needed]

International operationsEdit

Four Marinejegerkommandoen divers in the water

Marinejegerkommandoen has participated in a number of international operations. The unit conducted operations in Afghanistan in 2002 (Task Force K-Bar), in 2003 and in 2005–2006, as part of Operation Enduring Freedom. The unit was also involved in the training of the Afghan National Police Crisis Response Unit around Kabul in 2008–2009, relieving Forsvarets Spesialkommando for a short period.[4]

The unit provided operators for Military Observer Teams (MOT's), as part of the Norwegian Armed Forces contribution in Faryab Province in northern Afghanistan. It was during an MOT patrol on 27 June 2010 that Lieutenant Commander Trond Andrè Bolle was killed, along with three members of the Norwegian Coastal Ranger Command, when the Iveco LMV they were travelling in was struck by an IED.[5] Lt Cmdr Bolle was later awarded the Norwegian War Cross with Sword for his actions commanding the Norwegian Special Operations Force Task Group II in support of Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan's Helmand province from October 2005 to February 2006.[6]

MJK’s contribution in Afghanistan has largely been kept secret, but from what little information is available, its missions have included DA (direct action), Forward Air Control (FAC) and SR (Special Surveillance and Reconnaissance), and cooperating with other coalition forces in the fight against the Taliban and Al-Qaeda.[citation needed]

Following Afghanistan, MJK has deployed twice aboard Royal Norwegian Navy frigate HNoMS Fridtjof Nansen (F310) off the coast of Somalia, conducting anti-piracy operations as part of Operation Atalanta (2009)[7] and Operation Ocean Shield (2013).[8]

In January 2013, medical specialists from MJK, amongst other units, were sent on a Norwegian Air Force Super Hercules to Sicily in connection with the In Amenas hostage crisis in Algeria.[9]


Marinejegerkommandoen's participation in Operation Enduring Freedom earned the unit the Navy Presidential Unit Citation on 8 February 2005. The Presidential Unit Citation is the highest unit award given by the United States to allied units and was awarded to all members of Task Force K-Bar.[citation needed]

William H. McRaven, a United States Navy Admiral who previously served as the commander of Joint Special Operations Command (JSOC), said in an interview with a Norwegian newspaper in 2007 that he regarded the Special Operations Forces of Norway to be among the top special operations forces in the world.[10]

Commanding officersEdit

Weaponry in use by MarinejegerkommandoenEdit

See alsoEdit


  1. ^
  2. ^ "". Retrieved 25 December 2014.
  3. ^ deBlanc-Knowles, Tess (6 October 2015). "Creation of a Norwegian SOCOM: Challenges and Opportunities". Global SOF Foundation. Retrieved 17 September 2016.
  4. ^ From the book: "Our Secret Soldiers"
  5. ^ TV 2 AS. "Fire norske soldater drept i Afghanistan". TV 2. Retrieved 25 December 2014.
  6. ^ Tom Bakkeli. "Trond Bolle får Krigskorset med sverd". VG. Retrieved 25 December 2014.
  7. ^ Forsvarets museer. "Operasjon Atalanta; "Piratjakt i Adenbukten"". Retrieved 25 December 2014.
  8. ^ "Hedrer piratjegerne". Bergens Tidende. Retrieved 25 December 2014.
  9. ^ "Forsvaret har sendt norske spesialstyrker mot Algerie". Aftenposten. Retrieved 25 December 2014.
  10. ^ Tom Bakkeli. "VG møtte bin Ladens banemann". VG. Retrieved 25 December 2014.
  11. ^ a b Ny sjef for hemmelige soldater [New Chief for secret soldiers]

External linksEdit