08 DECEMBER 1939, KOUKKUNIEMI PENINSULA, TAIPALE
Finnish 10th Division which was responsible for the defense of Taipale entrenched alongside the shores of the Suvanto and Taipale rivers to Lake Ladoga. Although the trench line followed the river shores in most places; Finns left the Koukkuniemi Peninsula, which was located at the elbow between the Suvanto and Taipale rivers, outside the main defense line. Consequently Russian 49th Rifle Division had easy time occupying the tip of the land and the Koukkuniemi Village. At first sight this gave Russians a foothold from which future offensive operations could be launched. However it was a trap Finnish command deliberately set. Every inch of the Peninsula was carefully zeroed by the Finnish machine guns and artillery, turning the land a killing field for the Russian soldiers.
On December 08, Russian troops launched the first strong offensive at the bridgehead of Koukkuniemi. Command staff planned to send all troops of 49th Division plus armor to start the offensive. Russian artillery began a powerful barrage from the southern shore of the Taipale River. Finnish artillery had strict orders not to open counter battery fire in order to save ammunition. When the heavy artillery barrage ended, Finnish troops saw a remarkable view; Russian companies advancing slowly in lines against entrenched machinegun positions; which led disasterous consequences in the First World War.