Our Swedish commenters and emailers are generally much more optimistic about Sweden in the wake of the Modoggie Affair than are the Danes, other Europeans, or Americans. Being closer to the pulse of the Swedish political crisis, they have a better feeling for the chances of resuscitating their country. The consensus seems to be that their politicians are a lost cause, but that ordinary Swedes are beginning to rouse themselves.
After a discussion about Fredrik Reinfeldt’s meeting with Muslim ambassadors, I asked Conservative Swede if he thought the Danes’ pessimism about Sweden was based on a lack of understanding of his country, on the traditional enmity between Denmark and Sweden, or on something else. This was his reply, which I am posting with his permission:
It’s not that your Danish commenters don’t understand Sweden in general. And I don’t think that our old history matters so much — currents events are enough for anyone to take a very negative view of Sweden from a Danish perspective.
It’s true that [Prime Minister] Reinfeldt’s meeting with the Muslim ambassodors can in itself be seen as a surrender. And in the dynamics launched by Vilks, so do many Swedes today.
Some of your Danish commenters made a prediction about what would happen during the meeting, a sacrifice of the principle of free speech. But, as I said before, this never happened.
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A critic might change his mind after the meeting and say that it was a surrender anyway, because the meeting in itself represents a surrender. But that is clearly not a prediction, unless the only substance of the claim was that the meeting would take place as announced (nobody questioned that).
Free speech is clearly not defended as uncompromisingly by Sweden as by Denmark, but it’s not beeing sacrificed, as so many people said beforehand at Gates of Vienna. All thanks to the setup by Lars Vilks.
It is important to see this, and what is really happening, and not just react emotionally to it. And the most important aspect when talking about Sweden is how so many people today are reacting against the cowardice of Reinfeldt.
It’s similar to what happened after I confronted Zerosumgame, when someone suggested that it was a clash of pride, and that Zero should respect my Swedish pride. This is a complete misunderstanding.
I truly hate Sweden. My only issue is about truth. I might hate Sweden even more than some of your Danish commenters do. So this is not the issue.
But I live here and can see what is happening. And I do not base my writing on emotion but on some analysis, appreciating the complexity of the situation.