Translation aids the dissemination of desired narratives and can in that respect be an integral part of the institution of war. John Steinbeck’s The moon is down (1942) was written to support Allied interests, translated immediately upon publication into the languages of occupied Europe, including Norwegian, in order to boost morale, and distributed illegally in Nazi-occupied Norway as Natt uten måne, on the orders of the exiled Norwegian authorities. The novel about an occupied country is thus translated back into the culture and the geopolitical situation it by implicature portrays, by an embedded translator who has strengthened the implicatures to ensure identification among Norwegian readers, particularly through the use of linguistic remainders that access concepts of historic national value. The originally balanced and humanistic portrait of characters from both sides of the conflict has been polarised along the conflict lines to conform to wartime national stereotypes. Stylistically, the target text exhibits characteristic language patterns that strengthen the polarised portraits of us and them, emphasise the horror of invasion and occupation, and make more explicit the fiction’s instructions for sabotage against vital installations and infrastructure.