Today is Finland's 100th year of Independence. On December 6th, 1917, Finland formally declared independence from Russia, setting the stage for a territorial dispute and eventually war. Pictured above is Simo Häyhä, who was a sniper during Finland's conflict with the USSR. Simo scored 259 kills with a M/28-30 rifle(a Finnish variant of the Mosin Nagant) using only the rifle's iron sights and a further 246 kills with a Suomi KP/-31 submachine gun. Dressed in all white and operating in temperatures as low as -40°F, Simo accomplished all of his kills in fewer than 100 days. The Soviets finally took Simo out of action when he was hit by a PZ explosive rifle bullet. Missing half his jaw and bleeding heavily, Simo lost consciousness, but did not die. He would later be promoted to the rank of Second Lieutenant for his service. His heroic actions and incredible marksmanship place him firmly among the greatest snipers of all time and have rightfully earned him the status of national hero in Finland.
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