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July 30, 2015 / 14 Av, 5775
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Posts Tagged ‘Sweden’

Sweden Rips Up Saudi Military Deal After Cairo Spat Over Human Rights

Wednesday, March 11th, 2015

Published on Jewish Business News

by Ilan Shavit

Sweden is canceling its military deal with Saudi Arabia one day after an open dispute between the two countries over human rights had led to the public humiliation of the Swedish foreign minister in Cairo.

According to Reuters, Swedish companies last year exported roughly $40 million in defense equipment to Saudi Arabia, and that the overall deal now killed has earned the Swedes in $560 million between 2011 and 2014.

The lucrative deal was cancelled after, on Monday, Saudi Arabia blocked Sweden’s foreign minister Margot Wallström from speaking to the League of Arab States assembled in Cairo.

Wallström was told that she could certainly speak to the Arab League about Sweden’s decision to become the first EU country to officially to recognize the State of Palestine—the reason she had been invited—but she shouldn’t bring up troubling issues such as human rights and democracy in the Middle East, particularly Saudi Arabia.

Swedish politicians have been attacking Riyadh’s preference for sharia law, complete with flogging and beheading, and how that relates to our common notion of human rights.

So Wallström was snubbed one more time by a Middle Eastern country unhappy with its approach to international diplomacy—the first one being Israeli foreign minister Avigdor Lieberman, who forced her to cancel her planned visit to Israel in January.

For their part, the Arab League ministers issued a statement saying “Sharia has guaranteed human rights and preserved people’s lives, possessions, honor and dignity. The ministers consider the comments as irresponsible and unacceptable.”

The deal was initially signed by the Social Democrats in 2005, and then renewed by the right wing government in 2010. But the current left-leaning government has the Green party as a coalition partner, and they refuse to arm a country with so many human rights violations like Saudi Arabia.

A spokesman for Saab told Reuters: “Saudi Arabia is a very important market for us and a good customer. How Sweden handles this can affect us.”

Swedish Prime Minister Stefan Löfven, who is visiting the Ukraine, confirmed the Saudi deal is dead.

The Financial Times pointed out that Sweden’s military industrial complex’s cozy relationship with the Saudi Crown was one of the reasons the Right was defeated last September. Back in 2012, defense minister Sten Tolgfors was forced to resign over his exposed plans to build a weapons factory in the Arabian desert.

An open fight with the Arabs does not bode well for Sweden’s chances to gain a seat on the UN Security Council, which is why, presumably, they recognized Palestine in the first place.

Sweden Imports Jew-hatred

Wednesday, February 11th, 2015

(This abridged article by Ingrid Carlqvist and Lars Hedegaard appeared originally in complete form here on the Gatestone Institute website.)

If anyone had thought that the slaughter of four Jews in a Paris supermarket — for the reason that they were Jews — would have caused the Swedish mainstream press and the government to explain who is behind Europe’s growing anti-Semitism and anti-Jewish violence, he would be sadly mistaken.

With the exception of one television program, the connection between anti-Semitism, Islam and Muslim mass immigration remains a mental no-go area in Sweden.

Swedes now tend to view all immigrants as victims of totalitarianism, and most of the country has never realized that one minority group may expose another minority group to violence and intimidation.

They refuse to acknowledge that not all immigrants think like Swedes and cannot comprehend that people would flee if they were not hated and threatened.

Sweden’s history when it comes to Jews is not a pretty one. It was not until 1870 that Jews were permitted to settle wherever they wanted in the country. Sweden was behind the proposal to stamp a big “J” in the passports of German Jews, to prevent Jewish refugees from Nazi Germany from entering. And now the Swedish authorities close their eyes to the new Jew-hatred that is imported in the wake Muslim immigration.

Unfortunately, one of the worst offenders trying to hide the truth is a Jewish organization, the Swedish Committee against Anti-Semitism [SKMA]. What seems to have upset supporters of the SKMA was a comparison of them to the Organization of German Nationalist Jews, who in the 1930s supported Hitler and claimed that Jews were treated fairly in Nazi Germany.

In 1943, when it became clear that Hitler would lose the war, Sweden hurried to restore some of its reputation. In Nazi-occupied Denmark, about 8,000 Jews had escaped deportation to Nazi concentration camps because they were under the protection of the Danish government, and were never forced to wear the yellow Star of David.

But on August 23, 1943, all cooperation between the Danish government and the occupation authorities broke down. The government resigned and the Germans imposed a state of emergency.

The Danish resistance got wind that the Germans planned to round up all 8,000 Danish Jews in the night between October 1 and 2, 1943, to deport them to German camps. In no time, the resistance, with the aid of a great many civilians, managed to thwart the operation. Fishing boats were mobilized to smuggle more than 7,000 Jews to Sweden.

The Danish Jews and a number of Danish resistance fighters were housed in Swedish boarding houses, youth hostels, hotels and private homes.

After war’s end, most of the Jews in Sweden returned to Denmark, but Sweden’s self-image was forever changed. Finally, Sweden had something to be proud of after its highly dubious behavior at the time when it appeared that Hitler was on a winning streak.

Unfortunately, the Swedes drew an erroneous conclusion from their rescue of the Jews. Many Swedes are now firmly convinced that everyone seeking shelter in Sweden is in the same desperate predicament as the Jews were in 1943. One reason Swedes are more welcoming to asylum seekers than the inhabitants of most other European countries, is that they are distancing themselves from their despicable treatment of Jews before World War II, until 1943.

But this is precisely what has paved the way for a new Jew-hatred in Sweden. Swedes know nothing of the Jew-hatred in the Koran and the hadiths, so they just don’t understand why Muslims attack Jews. The Swedish media seldom write about the attacks, which Swedes will believe have something to do with the conflict between Israel and the Palestinians.

Swedish Official ‘Postpones’ Trip to Israel, Palestinian Authority

Wednesday, January 7th, 2015

A top Swedish official has indefinitely “postponed” her trip to Israel and “Palestine” in response to a curt snub by Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman.

Eriki Boman, a spokesperson for Swedish Foreign Minister Margot Wallstrom, said in a statement Wednesday his boss “has decided to postpone her visit to Israel and Palestine. Instead of next week it will take place later. No date is yet decided.”

Wallstrom was to meet this month with Liberman and also with Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu. But following Sweden’s official recognition of the Palestinian Authority as a sovereign independent country, Liberman announced he would not meet with her. His ministry also recalled Israel’s ambassador from Stockholm for three weeks of “consultations.” The prime minister’s office also notified Wallstrom that Netanyahu would also be unavailable to meet.

“The behavior of countries such as Sweden and Ireland – it is simply the same behavior and abandonment that occurred in Europe in 1938 during the Munich Agreement,” Liberman told a conference for European ambassadors at the Foreign Ministry recently. “The Europeans abandoned their biggest ally, Czechoslovakia.

“Their whole policy towards Israel is abandonment. Even though Israel is the only country that represents Western values in the entire Middle East, they abandon us.”

 

Israel’s FM Liberman Declines Swedish Meeting Request Over PA Recognition

Thursday, December 18th, 2014

Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman turned down a Swedish diplomatic request to meet next month in Jerusalem.

Sweden’s Foreign Minister Margot Wallstrom’s request was rejected in retaliation for her country’s unilateral decision to announce its formal recognition of the “State of Palestine.”

The European Union adopted a resolution on Wednesday supporting in principle the recognition of “Palestine” as well. The motion that passed read, “The [European Parliament] supports in principle recognition of Palestinian statehood and the two-state solution, and believes these should go hand in hand with the development of peace talks, which should be advanced.”

Sweden was the first major European nation to make such a move, considered a diplomatic slap to Israel and an outright rejection of the internationally-recognized Oslo Accords. The Palestinian Authority has spent years carefully lobbying nations around the world for precisely this result, which allows the entity to evade its responsibilities and obligations under the Oslo Accords to reach a final status agreement via negotiations with Israel.

In response to Sweden’s announcement, Israel’s foreign minister immediately recalled Ambassador to Sweden Isaac Bachman for consultations. Liberman has also roundly condemned the Swedish government’s decision and snubbed its prime minister, Sefan Lofven, over the issue.

Recognizing Palestine? Recognize Ladonia!

Sunday, November 2nd, 2014

The Palestinian Authority has been granted non-member state status at the United Nations and just last week was recognized as an independent sovereign country by Sweden’s new prime minister.

So why not the tiny nation of Ladonia? <– Click Here

Ladonia – a square kilometer that surrounds a set of sculptures – declared its independence from Sweden in 1996.

Although Sweden has not recognized the independence of Ladonia, the constitutional monarchy is currently ruled by Queen Carolyn I and President Christopher Matheoss.

Dr. Lars Vilks, the cartoonist of “Mohammed characterizations” fame – is the State Secretary.

Ladonia already has well-defined boundaries, as well as a government and a quite civilized society that includes a monarchy, a president, nobility and common citizens within its one square kilometer land mass.

The nascent micro nation has a national newspaper and its own holidays, and has ambassadors to nations around the world.

Happily, in response to a recent article about Sweden’s recognition of the Palestinian Authority as a sovereign country, the Queen of Ladonia said that Ladonia would welcome ties with Israel.

“Ladonia would welcome the opportunity to open formal diplomatic relations with Israel,” the Queen replied. “Just have the Minister of Foreign Affairs drop us a note at info@ladonia.org.

Ladonia carries as much legal international legitimacy as an independent sovereign nation as the Palestinian Authority.

And at least it has well-defined borders, and its citizens attack no one. Moreover, its nation holds real elections. Nor is it steeped in debt.

For those who have an interest in considering citizenship in Ladonia – no one can actually reside within its borders at the present time – one has to click on the website and proceed to the pull down menu for Government of Ladonia.

Check out the list of ambassadors and embassies while you’re at it.

Can IKEA Put Together a Middle East Peace Package?

Friday, October 31st, 2014

Sweden’s foreign minister has told her Israeli counterpart Avigdor Lieberman’s that she would be happy to send him some IKEA furniture as a model for understanding how to make peace with the Palestinian Authority.

Lieberman, responding to Sweden’s decision to recognize the Palestinian Authority as a country, said that the peace process is “more complicated than self-assembly furniture at IKEA.”

Swedish Foreign Minister Margot Wallstrom shot back, “I will be happy to send him a flat pack of IKEA furniture and he will also see that what you need to put it together is, first of all, a partner. And you also need to cooperate and you need a good manual and I think we have most of those elements,” she said in an interview with CNN.

“If we want to use them also for the conflict in the Middle East and for peace, you need the partners to actually sit down at the same table.”

It really is a simple as putting a round peg in a square hole. If they don’t fit, you simply make the hole square or the peg round, depending on which one is Arab and which one is Jewish.

Israel has been making peace, or trying to make peace, with enemies for 3,500 years, but IKEA was not around, and now Wallstrom has come up with the solution that has been lacking for so many centuries. It’s kind of weird she did not suggest her magic potion for the Ukraine and Russia, Iran and the rest of the world, Obama and Netanyahu and Selena Gomez and Justin Bieber’s, of whom perhaps you, like me, know nothing about without a Google search on “Hollywood fight.”

But, really, let’s give Wallstrom a chance to build peace following the IKEA approach. Maybe she has something going that all of the king’s men and all of the king’s horses never came up with.

Forget Rabbi Kook, whose writings include the phrase that the Land of Israel is not a piece of property.

Forget religion, which always messes up logic.

Forget culture, which ruins conformity.

Forget a future. Just put the pieces together. The worse that can happen is that you throw it out after five years and by another peace package.

But is IKEA so simple, as Wallstrom indicates?

The Digital Trends website has written, “IKEA is a place of heaven for a lot of homeowners, renters and young professionals on a budget. Its furniture pieces are modestly priced and have a minimalist design that suits every kind of lifestyle.

“The problem with IKEA never was its pricing structure or array of furniture lineup, it’s what happens when you bring the box home and realize you have to put these funky-named pieces together yourself.

“Do you fancy a game of real life Tetris?”

The report continues that IKEA is aware that maybe its instructions are not so great, so it now has YouTube tutorials

Digital Trends is not so impressed.

“The MALM bed frame instruction video has been live for about three weeks, and the public’s verdict?

“I watched this and still didn’t understand,” one commenter said.

“IKEA’s YouTube representative responded to the poor commenter… But it’s not exactly the videos that users are truly having a problem with, it’s the basic idea that these instructions are not at all intuitive…. How is someone supposed to figure out how to create a computer desk out of piles of wood with just random figures and barely any words?”

Swedish-American blogger Ken Arneson’s blog offers some helpful insights on why Rabbi Kook was so right and why the simplistic view of the West repeats the idiotic mistake of imposing one’s culture on another.

Israel Recalls Ambassador from Sweden over Recognition of PA

Thursday, October 30th, 2014

Israel has ordered its ambassador to Sweden to return home and has “invited” the Swedish envoy to Israel for a “talk” following Stockholm’s decision Thursday to recognize the Palestinian Authority as a country.

Lieberman stated flat out that Sweden’s new prime minister, Stefan Löfven, “acted before he had time even to study the issue in depth.”

He said Swedish Ambassador, Carl Magnus Nesser, “will be invited for a talk at the foreign ministry in Jerusalem,” but there was no indication when that will happen.

Lieberman lectured Löfven from a distance and said the prime minister “must understand that relations in the Middle East are more complicated than the self-assembly furniture from IKEA and must be dealt with in a responsible and sensitive matter.

“The only way to reach an agreement is honest an negotiation between Israel and the Palestinians and not steps that only reinforce the unreal demands of the Palestinians and move an arrangement further away.”

Löfven took the helm of the country after last month’s general election.

Sweden was the first western European country to recognize the Palestinian Authority, following a similar move by Bulgaria, Cyprus, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Malta, Poland and Romania. Iceland, which is not in the European Union, also has recognized the Palestinian Authority as have more than 110 other countries.

The United States said that Sweden’s recognition was “premature.”

Swedish Foreign Minister Margot Wallström , showing how far Stockholm is detached from reality, insisted that the recognition might “facilitate a peace agreement by making the parties less unequal, supporting the moderate Palestinian forces and contributing to hope at a time when tensions are increasing and no peace talks are taking place.”

Diplomacy is being played out on the stage by pro-Palestinian Authority countries, but they have not noticed that there is no one in the audience. Sweden figures that if enough countries join the cast, Israel will be forced to take a seat and agree to meet all of Mahmoud Abbas’ demands.

Sweden also has not noticed that Abbas is not interested in taking a seat anywhere except behind the intifada.

 

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/israel-recalls-ambassador-from-sweden-over-recognition-of-pa/2014/10/30/

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