Observing Sweden – 13 Dec 2016

Swedish regions told to be more prepared for war

Swedish regions told to be more prepared for war
Swedish soldiers training on the Stockholm archipelago. Photo: Fredrik Sandberg/TT
Sweden’s municipalities have been told to improve their preparedness for war by the country’s Civil Contingencies Agency (MSB). The agency sent official letters out to security heads in municipalities explaining that they must be better equipped to meet the threat of war and other crisis situations.

“This places a high demand on… operational speed, decision making, information sharing, crisis communication, flexibility, robustness and handling secret information,” the letter says, according to Swedish newspaper Svenska Dagbladet (SvD).

Last year the Swedish Government decided to reinvigorate civil defence in the country and bring back the Total Defence Strategy (totalförsvarsplaneringen) from Cold War times, which included civil and economic forms of defense as well as military ones.

Sweden’s municipalities have asked for information on the changed security situation and what it means for them. The official letter was sent out to help them better prepare for war situations in the future.

“There is nothing to indicate that war is likely, but we have the government’s mandate to plan for it,” MSB’s information head Svante Werger told SvD.

Some of the security heads who spoke to the Swedish newspaper were critical however. They think that the requirements placed on municipalities by the Swedish government are unrealistic, and that it is both unclear how they should proceed as well as how everything should be financed.

In September, an inquiry launched by the Swedish government concluded that bringing back compulsory military service could help the country’s increasingly stretched armed forces. The study estimates that 4000 newly trained soldiers will be required in 2018,

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About Bruce Louis Dodson

Bruce Louis Dodson is an American expat now living in Borlänge, Sweden with his wife, cat and dog. He is an artist and world traveler who writes fiction and poetry and practices photography in his less than copious free time. His work has appeared in: Barely South Review - Boundaries Issue, Blue Collar Review, Pulsar Poetry (UK), Foliate Oak, Breadline Press West Coast Anthology . The E-buffet, Qarrtsiluni, Struggle Magazine, Pearl Literary Magazine, Contemporary Literature Review: India, 3rd Wednesday, Sleeping Cat Books - Trip of a Lifetime Anthology, Northern Liberties Review, Authors Abroad - Foreign & and Far Away Anthology, The Path, Page & Spine, The Crucible, Sleeping Cat Books -Trips of a Lifetime, Vine Leaves, Pirene's Fountain,Tic Toc Anthology - Kind of a Hurricane Press, Cordite Poetry Review, Buffalo Almanac and mgv2.
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