Tuesday, December 10, 2013

“A Swede is a Swede & a Jew is a Jew”, says Carl Bildt. Analysing the untruthful reply of the Swedish Foreign Minister to WikiLeaks on the Apartheid issue

Second Part of "A Swede is a Swede and a nigger is a nigger"

The day after WikiLeaks twitters told the International forum about Carl Bildt's historical position on apartheid, [1] the Swedish Foreign Minister rushes to explain in the Swedish media that he or his Moderate party has nothing to apologize [2] about Mandela, and that they were "strongly" against apartheid. But he is being untruthful. Bildt also replied to WikiLeaks on the xenophobic quote about the South African nationals, "I did not say that either", affirms Bildt. [3] But neither here is he saying the all truth; for in fact, the Swedish Foreign Minister not only confirmed the flawed statements of Party leader Adelsohn, bust he also added a semantic confusion of his own creation, saying “a Swede is a Swede and a jew is a jew” (?)

 moderaternaFig 1. Three consecutive  leaders of the Swedish Moderate Party: Carl Bildt, Fredrik Reinfeldt, and Ulf Adelsohn, which have respectively produced xenophobic-wise statements

As we settled in the First Part of this series, the Moderates – now in the government of Sweden - would not do a generic comparison between "the Swedes and the South Africans"; Instead, the generic comparison referring to the South African nationals done by the party leader Ulf Adelsohn (and confirmed by Carl Bildt) was between "The Swedes and the niggers". [3]

And the xenophobic-wise statements of the moderate leaders do not stop with the Swedish Foreign Minister. The current Prime Minister Fredrik Reindfelt declared 15 May 2012, “It is not accurate to describe Sweden as in a situation of mass unemployment. If you look at ethnic Swedes in middle life, we have very low unemployment" [4] . This, ignoring the ca. 25 per cent of the population being "non-ethnic Swede", and that foreign-born immigrants are known of having  an unemployment rate  70 per cent higher than the Swedish-born. [5]

By Marcello Ferrada de Noli

Answering to a WikiLeaks twitter alluding to "Swedish Foreign Minister Carl Bildt’s position on Mandela”, [6] the Swedish Minister replied in the threat that ensued the WL publication [See thread in image 5, down below]: “And I did not say that either. Just for the record.” [See Bildt's tweet marked 1, in Fig 5].

What is Bildt referring to? What “other thing” contained in the post twitted by WikiLeaks he would have not said?

Mr Bildt, may I ask, have you declared to TT, or have you not, on the 4 of September 1985 (when you were asked by the News Agency whether you would back Ulf Adhelson’s xenophobic formulation comparing "Svensk" and "neger") the following:

it is absolutely right as said it by Adelsohn. One can also say that a Swede is a Swede and a jew is a jew”

For in that case you are, instead of comparing nationalities or citizenship, confounding national identity with so-called "ethnic" identities, or religious ones.  Would not be more appropriate to call them Israelis? Further, on the one hand Israel is characterized as a multiethnic state, Jews are only a part of the citizens of Israel, and citizenship and religious identities are officially two separated items. On the other hand Jews can be a community forming part of different nations.

Hypothetically, if some MP activist at the Swedish Parliament would propose a trade embargo against Israel (as the one implemented during the Apartheid years, a boycott which was opposed by all at the Moderate party) would you, Minister Bildt, say that "If we boycott their products, the poor Jews become without work"? No, you couldn't because you would be leaving outside your "concern" ca. 23 per cent of the population of Israel.

Were you not referring, Mr Bildt, to the leader of the Moderate Party's statement "en svensk är en svensk och en neger är en neger"? Where you and Adelsohn not referring to the situation around the apartheid in South Africa? In case you do not remember, Aftonbladet does: [7]

Bildt swe & jude in AB
"TT reported on the 4 of September 1985 that Carl Bildt, a bid irritated, defended Ulf Adelsohn at a highschool: "Well, it is absolutely right as said it by Adelsohn.”  [8]

Mr Bildt: Did you, or did you not signed a proposition for legislation in the Swedish Parliament, together with Ms Margaretha af Ugglas, Moderate MP, asking for the abolition of all decisions regarding a trade boycott against the apartheid regime of South Africa? Mr Bildt, was your signatory-colleague at the Moderate Party, Ms Margaretha af Ugglas, or was she not, a main owner of the Swedish company Sandvik which had enormous investments at South Africa at the time of your legislation proposal?

In case you do not remember, Aftonbladet does, according to the investigative piece of prominent journalist Åsa Linderborg. [9] The journalist and author also recalls that Adolf H Lundin reacted as if he would not understand [or hacerse el sueco, as we say in Spanish], when decent people and honest politicians in Sweden - such as I believe Olof Palme was, and also the social democrats or Left Party followers and Liberals of that time - questioned his gold mining investments in apartheid South Africa. Åsa Linderborg quotes Lundin as saying, "I do not understand the Swedish rage against that beautiful country". [10]

And did the Moderater's Youth organization, of which Mr Carl Bildt has been the chairman, call Nelson Mandela's organization ANC-terrorists? Or did they not?

In conclusion, the WikiLeaks' twitter in response to Bildt  [11] was accurate, both on that WikiLeaks was only stating what Bild position was, and also as summary of my article about Carl Bildt’s and the Moderate's position on the apartheid and Mandela's stance. Further, the fact is also that Bildt CONFIRMED in his own interview with TT on the 4 of September 1985 of being agreed with Adelsohn’s racist formulations.

What exactly did the Moderate leader Ulf Adelsohn said, and later confirmed by Carl Bildt?

The first statement was made by the Moderate Party leader during a visit at a Mining site in Bergslagen:

moderaterna och apharteid

"If we boycott their products, the poor niggers become without work"[12]

Thereafter, and because a natural reaction from within a united Swedish front which in fact comprised nearly all political segments of Sweden, some papers highlighted Adelhson public remarks. Then, the TT (Telegrambyrå) News Agency asked Ulf Adelsohn for an interview, and inquired on whether Adelshon would have regretted his statements.  According to the TT cable (TT 850813), Adelsohn said precisely the following in his repeated xenophobic statement, when one more replaced the term “South African workers” for the epithet:

“- No, I regret nothing. A nigger is a nigger and a Swedish is a Swedish” [13]

And he even added during the TT interview:

- “I, of course, stand with what I said. I always mention things by their right names. And that the niggers [or negroes] become unemployed if we are boycotting their products is a fact”. [14]

The untruth about the Moderates’ “strongly distance from apartheid”
Carl Bildt explains in the referred Wikileaks-twitter thread, suddenly changing from English to Swedish – which absolutely most of the over two million WikiLeaks followers on Twiter would not understand: “Vi tog kraftfullt avstånd från apartheid i alla dessa former. Men var skeptiska till icke-FN sanktioner”. This means “We took strongly distance from apartheid in all these forms. But we were sceptical to non-UN sanctions”. [See Bildt's twitter No 2, in Fig.5 down below].

To “take drastic distance from apartheid” means in the first place that you of course do not support the apartheid regime with weaponry or economic aid, or trading the goods produced or manufactured under the oppression of an apartheid regime. And that is exactly what Bildt’s right-wing Moderate party is doing nowadays regarding South Arabia, [15] and that is what they did when they tried to stop the embargo of any trade with the apartheid regime of South Africa.

There was – and there is still - a worldwide consensus about the decisive impact that the economic boycott had for the ending of the apartheid regime. And that view also prevailed almost unified in Sweden – the exception being Carl Bildt’s right-wing party the Moderates.  As pointed out above, our current Minister of Foreign Affairs Carl Bildt even signed a legislation-proposition at the Swedish Parliament, demanding that all the measurements around the economic boycott against the apartheid regime of South Africa should be abolished! [16] How did the proposition argue at the Swedish Parliament? It stated the following, among other:
"It is not tenable to say that just one form of oppression or repression in a particular country is particularly abhorrent." [17]

The untruth about the Moderates’ being “sceptical to non-UN sanctions”
Definitely, there is not such a standard or default position that right-wing moderates maintain about “UN-sanctions” versus “non-UN sanctions”. Concretely on these human rights contexts, declaring of being “sceptical to non-UN sanctions” means not only that they would be doubtful about the juridical legitimacy in implementing non-UN sanctions; in that case, the absolute logical corollary would be that the moderates are convinced that only UN-sanctions are legitimate, and therefore those should be followed by the Swedish government or parliament. But there are several examples in the moderates’ political behaviour that are not consistent with either case.

For instance, Bildt’s moderates did not protest when the Swedish government, in ostensible disrespect for the legitimacy of expressly issued UN sanctions, collaborated willfully in the shameless illegal extradition of political refugees – delivered by Swedish security police to CIA agents at a the Stockholm airport of Bromma, to be transported by CIA to torture in Egypt. In fact, the United Nations sanctioned Sweden for severe violation on the Absolute UN-ban on Torture. [18]

I have previously in these columns analyzed that behaviour of Swedish right-wing governments or coalitions, which denote serious infringements of human-right issues as prescribed in International organizations (like UN). See for instance In the history of Swedish extradition of political prisoners to foreign powers. [19]
Finally, I wish to make clarity about the pseudo discussion on whether “A nigger is a nigger and a Swede is a Swede" should be instead translated as  “A negro is a negro and a Swede is a Swede”. This is just ordinary maneuvering coming from the Concerned Troll. To start with, both uses, "nigger" or "negro", are to be considered racist in the context. Actually, I would not be surprised if this would be proven being also a criminal behaviour, as regarded by the "on-the-paper" Swedish legislation. Secondly, the xenophobic wish to transport the discussion from the issue "stance of the Swedish government's main party on the apartheid and other ethnic-related political situations", to the racist and pseudo semantic discussion on how we should better insult South African nationals; on whether is "more accurate" to insult them as "niggers" or "negros". I will not play along in Professors blogg with the Concerned Troll's trick. And also because of  Trolls would deserve another kind of response.
Fig 5 [below], Twitters in  WikeLeaks Twitter-account thread, 8 Dec 2013

WL retweet cbildt profeblgg 'nigger' 8 dec 2013 marked Bildt


[4] "Det är inte korrekt att beskriva Sverige som i ett läge med massarbetslöshet. Om man tittar på etniska svenskar mitt i livet så har vi mycket låg arbetslöshet". In SvD: "Reinfeldt critizised for his statement" ["Reinfeldt kritiseras för uttalande"]. SvD, 15 May 2012. http://www.svd.se/nyheter/inrikes/reinfeldt-kritiseras-for-uttalande_7201642.svd
[5] The statistics on high unemployment among immigrants result even wickeder if including unemployment among the second generation immigrants - many who are refused employment in Sweden on the base of their names or appearance.
[7] Åsa Linderborg, “No moderates at Mandela’s funeral. This is why Bildt and Reinfeldt staying at home” [“Inga moderater på Mandelas begravning - Därför ska Bildt & Reinfeldt stanna hemma”]. Aftonbladet, 6 Dec 2013. http://www.aftonbladet.se/kultur/article17975195.ab
[8] Id.
[9] Id.
[10] Id.
[12] TT cable TT 850813. Reproduced in Oivvios, "Moderaterna mot Apartheid?". Oivvios Arkiv, 25 Oct 2011. http://oivviosarkiv.polite.se/2011/10/25/moderaterna-mot-apartheid/
[13] Id. "- Nej, jag ångrar ingenting. En neger är en neger och en svensk är en svensk".
[14] Id. "[“Jag står självfallet för vad jag sagt. Jag nämner alltid saker och ting vid deras rätta namn. Och att negrerna blir arbetslösa om vi bojkottar deras varor är ett faktum.”].
[15] Nina Åkestam, "A few words on Apartheid" ["Några ord om Apartheid"]. Resumé, 23 Feb 2012. http://blogg.resume.se/nina-akestam/2012/02/23/nagra-ord-om-apartheid/
[16] Dick Sundevall, “Resistance against Nelson Mandela” ["Motståndet mot Nelson Mandela"]. Paragraf, 8 Dec 2013. http://www.magasinetparagraf.se/bilden/matstandet-mot-nelson-mandela
[17] Åsa Linderborg, “No moderates at Mandela’s funeral. This is why Bildt and Reinfeldt staying at home”. Op. Cit.
[18] Human Rights Watch,"Sweden Violated Torture Ban with U.S. Help - U.N. Committee Rebukes Sweden for Sending Terror Suspect to Torture". Human Rights Watch NEWS, 20 May 2005. http://www.hrw.org/news/2005/05/19/sweden-violated-torture-ban-us-help

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