The Entire Country of Sweden Just Went Prepper
Russ Chastain 05.30.18
Notable in the news of late was the distribution of a 20-page prepping pamphlet to every home in Sweden, entitled “Om krisen eller kriget kommer” (If Crisis or War Comes).” It provides information on dealing with power outages, what kinds of food to store, keeping warm without electricity, and maintaining communication — while at the same time, warning against fake news, a.k.a. propaganda. An English version of the pamphlet can be found here.
It contains a section called “In the event of a terror attack,” and also says “If Sweden is attacked, resistance is required.”
They go so far as to state they “will never give up. All information to the effect that resistance is to cease will be false.”
All in all, it’s skimpy on details but does send a definite message to its residents: Start prepping, get prepared, and stay that way. And it’s not the first time this message has been sent, according to an article at The Guardian.
Similar leaflets were first distributed in neutral Sweden in 1943, at the height of the second world war. Updates were issued regularly to the general public until 1961, and then to local and national government officials until 1991.
Not everyone has confidence that this will be of help, though. An article at The Conversation insists that “Sweden’s ‘prepare for war’ leaflet is a waste of paper.” The reasons include dilution of the nation’s military and a lack of patriotism indicated by the way the pamphlet’s audience is addressed.
The appeal to ‘the population’ instead of to ‘citizens’ makes the leaflet unoperative. In 1943 and in 1961, Swedish citizens were a coherent group, a historical actor. Today, the habitants of Sweden are not addressed as citizens by the Swedish government.
They live under the spell of identity politics. It is certainly nice to believe that they ‘share a collective responsibility for our country’s security and safety.’ But this cannot be taken for granted. Today’s population of Sweden comprise people who do not identify with the state, much moreso than in the 1940s and 1960s.
The profound challenge for contemporary Sweden is integration, to make the “population” into committed citizens who identify with the country. A leaflet won’t achieve that goal.
I suppose this is true for many European nations these days, especially considering the massive muslim immigration that has been taking place for decades.
At any rate, this could easily be seen as another step in preparing Sweden’s populace for possible war with nearby Russia.