(By Henrik Palmgren and Elizabeth Leafloor – 2012)
Stockholm is bristling with weaponry today. Fighter jets can be seen and heard racing through the skies over a wondering populace. Is Sweden at war?
Not officially, but since WWII and despite a political position of neutrality, Sweden has been playing an increased role in international warfare. This can be clearly seen today, because this week FDS Nordic is taking place in Stockholm.
The Future Defence & Security Exhibition is “the most important trade fair in the Nordic and Baltic countries covering the topics of defense and security. Among the professional visitors are decision-makers from governments and the military, as well as representatives from emergency services.”
At these arms fairs, which drum up sales in the undeniably lucrative weapons and defense industry, many areas are promoted: ammunition, command systems, control systems, electronic warfare systems, telecommunications, surveillance, and tactical equipment – the list is lengthy.
The FDS site suggests the weapons (or “products”), “meet the requirements from the government and military units, produced for the homeland defence and peacekeeping around the world.”
But like many countries that emphasize their roles in simple and noble ‘peacekeeping’, there’s usually more going on than meets the eye. Corruption in the arms trade is ubiquitous, and Sweden is no exception.
“Point, Click, Kill: The Warfare of Tomorrow”
The topics discussed by guest speakers are what you might expect from such an event: “Nano-ID Security Systems”, “Tactical Training”, and “Legal aspects of doing business in Sweden”.
However, to the average person, the workshops might seem somewhat unnerving. The “Point, Click, Kill” seminar is a talk about cyber espionage and cyber economic warfare, but it also communicates the modern ease with which war and extrajudicial killings are carried out – from a distance and impersonally with remote drone technology. Click, kill, done.
Drones, with their remote surveillance and attack capabilities, are also a big player in ‘neutral’ Sweden.
How does one maintain ‘noninterference’ while still engaging in warfare?
“War, Soldiers and Swedish Confusion”
“Krig, soldater och svensk förvirring” is an appropriately named seminar during FDS Nordic. It translates to English: “War, Soldiers, and Swedish Confusion”.
The seminar is given by Johanne Hildebrandt, “a former journalist, but also a writer and columnist. She is known for her journalistic work about the war and conflict in which she, among other things, has worked as an “embedded” reporter with U.S. soldiers in Iraq and Swedish soldiers in Afghanistan” (Source)
In fact, one of her books was so well received by the establishment, that she was elected into the Royal Swedish Academy of War Sciences in 2012.
Swedes are right to be ‘confused’ about their involvement in international warfare. The rest of the world, also, remains largely ignorant about the reality of Sweden’s legendary political policy of ‘neutrality’. It’s an idea that is repeated, but not supportable.
Read more at RedIceCreations.com