Sweden, the Swastika and Stalin: The Swedish Experience in the Second World War

Sweden, the Swastika and Stalin: The Swedish Experience in the Second World War

Sweden, the Swastika and Stalin: The Swedish Experience in the Second World War

Sweden, the Swastika and Stalin: The Swedish Experience in the Second World War

Synopsis

An important addition to the Societies at War series, this book covers the challenges, threats, and changes Sweden faced during the conflict.

Interest in Sweden's wartime experiences has increased due to its post-war profile as a neutral that both allowed German troops to transit through its territory and also carried on trading with the Nazi regime during the holocaust years. Many misconceptions and false impressions have arisen and persisted as a result of deliberate misinformation and concealment by all sides during that time. Readers of this book will gain a fresh, broad view of the period, personalities and problems from a Swedish orientation.

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Excerpt

This history of Sweden during the Second World War is intended mainly for English-speaking readers in search of a key to the extensive Swedish-language historiography of the period. There are really two histories of wartime Sweden. One covers the outwardfacing struggle to keep Sweden from being drawn into the war while maintaining the welfare and freedom of its citizens. The other covers the immense official and communal effort on the Home Front to mobilise the country’s defences, resources and security.

The book is divided into two Parts to address both histories and provide the reader with insights into the key events and changes that shaped Swedish policies and experience. Many of the issues that arose during this period have a remarkable resonance with global issues of the twenty-first century which readers may find familiar. These include the overbearing use of military and economic power by large states to enforce their will on smaller countries; the treatment of refugees of other races fleeing from tyranny; the extent to which civil liberties should be limited in a democratic state to protect its citizens from external threat; the impotence of humanitarian criticism when directed at determined abusers of human rights; the extent to which relations should be maintained with regimes whose policies are abhorrent in order not to close off options; and the ability of a democratic society to express contradictory wishes and still expect its politicians to reconcile those wishes with implementable policies.

A large number of excellent Swedish-language secondary sources have informed the content of this book and these have been supple-

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