• Sweden edition
Swedish army to jobless immigrants: we want you

Swedish army to jobless immigrants: we want you

Published: 30 May 2012 18:06 GMT+02:00
Updated: 30 May 2012 18:06 GMT+02:00

The military is offering ten weeks living like a conscript on a military base with free food and lodging, as well as the possibility to complete a high school degree as part of an effort to boost enlistment and diversity within the ranks of the Swedish Armed Forces (Försvarsmakten).

"I sort of want to get away from the daily grind. And I'm also somewhat interested in the military," Tatiana Caicedo, 21, who has parents from Colombia and England, told the TT news agency.

The goal is to attract 500 participants in a new labour policy programme which is being carried out in cooperation with Sweden's National Public Employment Agency (Arbetsförmedlingen).

Plans call for half of the new "recruits" to be men, and half women.

"The partnership is unique," the employment agency's Soledad Grafeuille told TT.

The idea is to target unemployed youth with immigrant backgrounds and have them spend ten weeks in the autumn and winter living at military bases across the country.

They would spend half their time becoming familiarized with the Swedish military and half their time working to complete their high school degrees.

After ten weeks, the participants would have the option of applying to basic military training in order to obtain a job within the Armed Forces.

Grafeuille emphasized that the programme is totally voluntary and can be abandoned at any point without the risk of penalties.

TT/The Local/dl

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Your comments about this article

18:35 May 30, 2012 by skatty
What about "French Foreign Legion", you'll get French citizenship after some years as well!
19:34 May 30, 2012 by byke
"Plans call for half of the new "recruits" to be men, and half women."

Swedish Feminists in other words.
20:33 May 30, 2012 by Uncle
An excellent idea!

This will teach them discipline and the sense of moral behavior (something that is missed in some of these people cultures).

Plus a database of fingerprints would not be much of a burden...
20:33 May 30, 2012 by blue2012
What is half woman?

After the immigrants from Islamic countries enlist in the Swedish armed forces, they will make sure Sweden won't have a military force.
21:32 May 30, 2012 by StockholmSam
Military was the best choice I made in my life. Turned me around and gave me a career. This is a great idea but only those immigrants who want to build something here will stick with it.
21:58 May 30, 2012 by dizzymoe33
Dangle citizenship in front of their noses and see how quickly they come running!!
22:34 May 30, 2012 by Rap43
Good idea.
23:05 May 30, 2012 by Carbarrister
The concept is fine provided it is not like boy/girl scout camp. If it is for real I would be interested in the statistics as to how many could cut it.
00:37 May 31, 2012 by esvahnt
somebody dont want anymore the swedes to rule their own country since this is a total giving up of dignity

we are going to be absorved by the brown wave
06:53 May 31, 2012 by Freelife
The article is a bit misleading, I think..


Swedish citizenship is a requirement for joining the Swedish Armed Forces. At present this applies to both military and civilian service. A check of public records is carried out prior to any appointment.

So is a person with Swedish citizenship still an immigrant?
07:56 May 31, 2012 by Cephalectomy
Thanks freelife, exactly, a family member wanted to join but he got refused ofc since he is not swedish-yet.

very well said, a person with swedish citizenship is an immigrant apparently here
08:22 May 31, 2012 by skogsbo
it seems only fair that if you want to be employed full time in a nation's military that you are a member of that nation, that is what breeds, develops loyalty etc.

However, they could create a regiment that is entirely immigrant based, the French have the legion, the British the gurkas, both have fearsome reputations, so they are hardly second rate either. Upon reaching a minimum rank or 5 years service (with good conduct) you get Swedish nationality and the option of moving to any part of the Swedish military.

This style of regiment is perfect, because they can then fit in Swedish lessons, schooling etc into the daily routine, it would be impossible to merge immigrants into a normal regiment, without creating a 2 tier system, which would be unfair on both sides.

Only those immigrants who are motivated would stay, but it will also be the same immigrants who would have probably learnt swedish quickly, got employment or started their own business, so whilst the idea is good, they are fish from the same pond, it probably won't reduce the wasters and layabouts out there. Plus are there not plenty of young Swedish wasters who need a kick up the a$$ too?!
08:38 May 31, 2012 by HYBRED
It is a good idea, but should be for 2yrs, not just 10 weeks.
08:41 May 31, 2012 by isenhand
After ten weeks, the participants would have the option of applying to basic military training in order to obtain a job within the Armed Forces. - but you need Svenska A to join the military. I wonder how many will have that?
08:41 May 31, 2012 by muscle
hahaha, this is funny :) Immigrants coming from afghanistan, will be redeployed in afghanistan :D
08:54 May 31, 2012 by bourgeoisieboheme
Giving poor and uneducated immigrants weapons training... I can't see how this would go wrong. I wonder what they will do with those skills after the 10 weeks of training.
09:11 May 31, 2012 by skogsbo
bourgeois, I tend to agree with you, having worked with the US military many times! ;) But then again you don't need a rocket scientist to pull the trigger, you just need clever ones telling them all where to point it, that's how the military works.
09:38 May 31, 2012 by rise

"Immigrants coming from afghanistan, will be redeployed in afghanistan :D "

My thought exactly! ;D But it wouldn't be the first time through Sweden's long history the military is using foreign mercenaries. It's happened before, more often than not.

But only 10 weeks of training? That can't be true... Why not 10 months instead - which were exactly the time demanded of me when I did my military service in the middle of the 1990's.
09:58 May 31, 2012 by Rishonim
Indeed this is a misleading article. Seems to me that TL are trying everything possible to stir up emotions amongst it's readers. In order to join the Swedish Army they need to either have citizenship or permanent residency. Also they would need to speak fluent Swedish.
10:43 May 31, 2012 by colombianska_tjej
Agree with #10 and #19. The headline is misleading, this is directed not to immigrants, but to immigrants sons (and daughters, so no feminist will kill me) who have grown up in Sweden (and therefore, should speak perfect swedish).

Which, and again agree with #10, means that even if you are born in Sweden, if your parents are immigrants you will be consider an immigrant as well.
10:53 May 31, 2012 by samwise
Is there any data supporting the idea that diversity results better preparedness? The military's main task is still fighting, is it not? I don't care the sex or the skin color or the degrees of the cops, as long as they get the job done.
11:24 May 31, 2012 by bourgeoisieboheme
#21, bang on there. The military is supposed to fight, leave the gender quality and multiculturalism where it belongs. When they interview soldiers after combat the men always say they fight to protect their fellow soldier, not ideals or nationalism. So it might be that multiculturalism could destroy the unit cohesion of a combat unit by forcing together people who have nothing in common. This needs to be looked into before implemented. After all, one reason the roman empire fell was due to its use of foreigners in its military. Those who do not study history shall relive it...
11:44 May 31, 2012 by rise
About gender... although a woman's mind quite often can be stronger than a man's, a woman simply lacks the physics that makes it possible to be stationed anywhere and everywhere. At "my" old regiment Lapplands jägarregemente (now closed) no woman has ever managed to go through with the whole training. Oh some have tried but no one successfully, none that I'm aware of anyway.

14:43 May 31, 2012 by skogsbo
The military is no place for equal sexes, it becomes all hormones, jealousy, failed relationships, its just messy, and teams of people don't gel together for very long before our human nature and what happens when sexes mix especially when under stress. Woman A struggles, so man W helps here, man K gets jealous, then so does woman T because she likes man W! Seen it first hand.
14:51 May 31, 2012 by sergisr
The Spanish army did it a time ago and now we have a ridiculous army of dwarfs with a poorly developed brain due to a diet based on corn, who only lack bows and arrows.
19:53 May 31, 2012 by Tarc the Mexan
#23 & #24: Your personal anecdotes notwithstanding, the Soviet army employed hundreds of thousands of female soldiers,both in active combat and as support troops, during world war 2 and it worked well enough for them.
23:51 May 31, 2012 by rise

Of course there are places a woman can be stationed at. There are women doing military service in Sweden as well. I merely stated not "anywhere and everywhere". At some regular infantry regiment she'd surely fit in quite well as common gun fodder. Lapplands jägarregemente was not a common infantry regiment.
01:27 June 1, 2012 by Tarc the Mexan
#27: you're right, nothing on the Russian front during WW2 can compare to the amount of hardship the conscripts in Lapplands jägarregemente had to face.

Some female Soviet soldiers were placed in Guards regiments, those weren't common regiments but elite ones. For fun, google Lyudmila Mykhailivna Pavlichenko, with over 300 confirmed kills she probably could have taken out the entire Lapplands jägarregemente by herself.
09:13 June 1, 2012 by rise

You can make what you will of the fact that no female has successfully gone through with the training at Lapplands jägarregemente. Like it, hate it, embrace it, scorn it. It's your choice. And I can see you've chosen the latter, to scorn it. How happy you must be.
10:16 June 1, 2012 by samwise
Well according to wikipedia ussr military deaths. During wwii 8,800,000

to 10,700,000, Germany on the other hand is 4,450,000, note the Germans fight multi fronts, and the Russians play defense for the most part. There are many reasons for high casualties, but it doesn't look like the ussr communist army is a shining model. They run out of guys.

Its a noble act for men to protect women, I think.
10:58 June 1, 2012 by rise

About the Russian army... Counting backwards a thousand years or so the mighty bear in the east actually still has to prove it can swallow up tiny little Sweden. Countless are the wars through the history between Russia and Sweden. At times it's been close, very close, but still the bear has yet to prove it!
13:05 June 1, 2012 by towns
@ rise (#30)

Actually, in the last several hundred years, Sweden has lost close to or over 50% of its territory to Russia (In the Baltics, Ingria, the Karelian Isthmus and of course, Finland)
14:14 June 1, 2012 by rise

True, Sweden has gained as well as lost very much territory but never been swallowed entirely. However regardless of gainings and losses Sweden has managed to be a sovereign nation through the centuries. The sovereignty no one has ever managed to take away. Sure Sweden freely GAVE it away while joining the EU, but still, it wasn't TAKEN! :P
19:29 June 1, 2012 by Tarc the Mexan
#29: I've done nothing but state simple facts, if that offends you so much you better get off the Internet or man up and take it like a Jägarsoldat.

Maybe no women ever completed their training at Jägarregementet successfully because they got gang raped halfway through training. After reading 'The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo' that doesn't sound too far-fetched.
20:21 June 1, 2012 by Indigenous Swede
#34 the guy who wrote "the girl with the dragon tatto" was a swede-hating hardcore communist. Gang rapes in Sweden are the exclusive domain of black-haired, brown eyed chaos darkies from the south.

Just like in America, liberal-marxists in swedish media try to conjure a make-believe reality with dumb, criminal native swedes and smart, law abiding immigrant darkies. Its like some kind of weird religious cargo cult. The reality is 180 degrees around.

The swedish army is no longer an army that fights to defend Sweden, its a mercenary ("professional" in neo-speak) army that fights on behalf of USA, UK and Israel yet its paid for by swedes.

In the coming civil war it will be used to kill native swedes as outlying parts of Sweden tries to secede from the economic and social disaster that Sweden is well on its way to become.

Its officer corps is picked for political reliablity and its grunts are white trash and asocial never-do-wells that cant find a better job. The more messed up it becomes, the better for us. This latest PC-scheme will result in a handful of darkies and butch dykes getting hired for a couple of years before quitting. These schemes have already been tried with the police with the usual disastrous results. Reality is startlingly different from liberal-marxistic dogma. Race and gender is real.
20:26 June 1, 2012 by Tarc the Mexan
#35: I'm confident that, when the time comes, the Jägarregemente will excel in the task of firing at unarmed civilian Swedes.
21:11 June 1, 2012 by rise

"I've done nothing but state simple facts,"

No you have not. But have it your way. And good luck with your attempts to insult.
22:54 June 1, 2012 by Tarc the Mexan
#37: if you believe that any facts I've posted are untrue, please point them out to me so I can prove you wrong again.
23:20 June 1, 2012 by rise

You have not proven me wrong the first time. I can tell you haven't experienced any kind of military life yourself which is why you don't know what you're talking about. Everybody can read info at Wiki as you clearly are doing. So you can stop trying to bully any more. You've lost my interest anyway.
23:53 June 1, 2012 by Tarc the Mexan
#39: "a woman simply lacks the physics that makes it possible to be stationed anywhere and everywhere" was the very first statement of yours that I debunked, try again.
00:28 June 2, 2012 by Indigenous Swede
#40 Stating such inane things makes me wonder if you have touched a woman in real life. Perhaps you have only read about women on wikipedia like so many other things.

I have touched women in real life and I assure you that they are physically inferior to men. They are smaller, lack musculature, have more body fat and squeal a lot. Soldiers they are not, neither mentally nor physically.
00:40 June 2, 2012 by Tarc the Mexan
#41: women make perfectly capable soldiers, as I've already proved. Go back to your kindergarten and don't bother us adults.
01:32 June 2, 2012 by Uncle
Tarc the Mexan

"women make perfectly capable soldiers, as I've already proved. Go back to your kindergarten and don't bother us adults."

Actually (if I may interfere), I was looking for your proof and could not find it. Women make an OK soldier on submarines and as pilots. "OK" because the courses for them are simplified physically in the US, Israel and some other countries.

They are also used as border patrol and check point guarding in India and some south american countries and also go through simpler bootcamps. If Tarc would be in the infantry (like some of us), he would know that this is the "crappiest" kind of infantry.

In the name of equality, some countries took women into the programs, but then were forced to change these programs, since the simple fact that the female skeleton is softer and the joints are more vulnerable, created this need. There is no connection with the strength or stamina here.

Now, one could ask, why a pilot shall have a male skeleton or be able to carry more weight? This is how females got into these courses through the court. However this created a situation that the airforce takes softer soldiers by DEFINITION of their bootcamp training, who take the place from stronger candidates. What for? "Equality".

I am sure that the pilots shall not be too smart, so the above is equal to creation special pilot courses for people with IQ deficiencies. Why? Equality.

As for the real infantry and/or special forces, women are welcome to any of them in Sweden and Norway. I believe that Israel and US did certain experiments as well. I think that Rhodesia and South Africa played with the idea as well.

NO FEMALE can pass such a bootcamp on equal terms without skeletal fracture of 100%. Easily proven by mechanostat model (elastic bone deformation model), whereas not equal terms for bootcamps, means certain death for future soldiers.

As for the rape in the Swedish training, I would relax, if I were you. Again, if one would actually be in the force, one would know that in normal countries, a soldier has no second free during the training. A soldier is in a constant state of exhaustion. A soldier does not decide ANYTHING during the training. A soldier is a property of the army and is constantly under watch. Also, females train separately, unless it is some basic training for desk polishers.
03:00 June 2, 2012 by Indigenous Swede
#43 Rape, both heterosexual and homosexual, is actually a problem in the US armed forces. If you look at the kind of people who become American soldiers, its not particulary surprising. They tend to be pretty... swarthy. Tarc just has local myopia and thinks the rest of the world is like the USA.
03:04 June 2, 2012 by Tarc the Mexan
#43: it's right here - http://www.thelocal.se/41148#comment741906
10:13 June 2, 2012 by rise
"...the investigation carried out by the Swedish Armed Forces show that some soldiers are lugging about up to 80 kilograms of equipment."

"The average WWII soldier carried 25 kilogrammes of equipment, according to SR."


I have been one of those carrying such a heavy load, unlike Tarc the Mexan I actually know what I'm talking about and won't budge from my earlier statement "...a woman simply lacks the physics that makes it possible to be stationed anywhere and everywhere."
10:31 June 2, 2012 by Dave N
So the Swedish Army wants a Fort Hood massacre of its very own, does it? Recruiting Muslims into a 'Crusader' army is madness.
11:41 June 2, 2012 by PoJo
This is one of the most disgusting piece of news I have ever read. So, now they target the immigrant population into entering the army because they have less choices? So, is the army becoming an attractive choice now? Sweden, which is so proud of not being involved in wars, is sending soldiers everywhere mother US is. And the worst part is that the majority of the swedish population just accepts everything that is served to them without any doubt whatsoever. I repeat, this is just disgusting.
20:16 June 2, 2012 by Tarc the Mexan
#46: Sweden has female soldiers deployed in Afghanistan, are you saying that they carry less than their fellow male troopers? Look into it and then get back to me with verifiable proof.
21:01 June 2, 2012 by Uncle

"Sweden has female soldiers deployed in Afghanistan, are you saying that they carry less than their fellow male troopers?"

Man, it is embarrassing. You are clearly arguing with military veterans without anything behind your arguments.

Swedish forces in Afghanistan consist of SIG and their support units (with females in the support jobs). SIMPLY find out how many females are deployed within SIG - Särskilda Inhämtningsgruppen as combat operatives. You will find out the real number.

Yes - females in Afghanistan carry less than their "fellow" male troopers. Simply because there is "fellow" and "fellow".
21:43 June 2, 2012 by Tarc the Mexan
#50: Really now? The Swedish soldiers in the ISAF force consists entirely of SIG people?

Funny that you mention SIG by the way since the unit doesn't exist any more, seems like you should have known that since you boast your own knowledge so much.

"Yes - females in Afghanistan carry less than their "fellow" male troopers."

Get back to me with verifiable proof on that.
10:17 June 3, 2012 by rise
@ Uncle

Thank you for the support.

@ Tarc the Mexan

Give over. You're only embarrassing yourself. Let me remind you a second time I've never claimed there are no women at all in the Swedish Armed Forces but merely not "anywhere and everywhere".

@ PoJo

I don't very much like the idea of what the Swedish Armed Forces have become either. The forces have been turned from being defensive forces (during he Cold War) to offensive ones.

I myself don't fit in the new way of thinking but am already programmed (spoiled) in the old way. During my military service the Cold War had ended only but a few years back. The whole idea behind my old regiment was to be a thorn in the side of an invader (more honestly: in the side of a Russian, always there's been that Ivan), to train units that could operate on their own in a Sweden already invaded.

There was never any belief Sweden could fully withstand an invasion from Soviet. It was calculated Sweden would be able to stand for one week of time and then units like mine and units from other "jägarregementen" as well would take over. But during that first week Soviet would have had to give everything they got! Meaning a tremendously amount of money as well as human lives would be wasted. With other words never should it be worth the attempt.

But all of that is old now and my old regiment closed. Of course there are still others but not nearly in the numbers like during the Cold War.

It's interesting noting the turning of the Swedish Armed Forces began shortly after Sweden joining the European Union...
14:36 June 3, 2012 by samwise
For the veterans and active military members here, thank you for protecting me.
17:38 June 3, 2012 by Tarc the Mexan
#52: seems like you suffer from memory loss. I've never contested the existence of women in the Swedish army since everyone knows there are, I've questioned your statement that women are unfit to serve "anywhere and everywhere" as you put it. I've proven that women have served and can serve in adverse situations while you've done nothing to back up or verify your statements.
22:22 June 3, 2012 by rise

I give up! Your arguing is just too embarrassing. Pathetic.
01:43 June 4, 2012 by Tarc the Mexan
#55: says the man who is unable to provide even the tiniest shred of info or proof to back up his statements.

Dismal effort, mr. rise.
00:25 June 5, 2012 by mcarroll1
Sweden cannot get the recruits it needs from its own people so needs to try this approach to attract immigrants. Why not, they will make every bit as good a soldier as the Swede. They will fight every bit as hard as anyone else, for soldiers on active service fight not for idealism, patriotism but for survival, their buddies( both male and female) who will help keep them alive too. Only USA movies from Hollywood aspire to the patriotic BS that you get so often and which many civilians with no experience of the army think inspires all soldiers. Soldiers are proud of themselves and their units if unit esprit de corps is practiced and encouraged in the army and unit. There are always good and bad units and good and bad soldiers. Race, colour or creed means nothing in this respect. I have seen useless Swedish soldiers including males so dont go thinking if he is Swedish and male everything is okay. Women in the army in general do a better job than their male counterparts with of course notable exceptions that some males like to quote while ignoring the useless male articles in the regiment. Women often make up in stamina what they may lack in sheer physical strength over their male counterpart. This is a generalisation for both males and females of course. Sweden is now a mulitcultural society and the army is simply acknowledging this fact. There are many immigrants currently serving proudly and efficently in every branch of the Swedish army. If there is one branch or unit where this is not true then that unit has a case to answer - a racist case.
08:19 June 5, 2012 by rise

"Sweden cannot get the recruits it needs from its own people...]"

So true. I knew this would happen from the very day the government decided to skip the duty in doing your national service but instead made it voluntary. There simply isn't enough people living in Sweden to make a thing like that possible.

At the time of the decision Sweden had a defense minister who haven't even done the national service himself! So, I never expected too much of him anyway. I expect more from the new defense minister Catharina Elmsäter-Svärd cause at least she's having a history as an officer within the Swedish Armed Forces, as a captain in the Amphibious Corps.
16:51 June 5, 2012 by ameribrit
If I can enter the fray about women serving in combat roles. As a veteranof the British army, firstly as an infantryman (GRUNT) and then later in the Cavalry ( Tanks). Both during the cold war and the not so cold. To say that NO female is physically able to cope with the demands of front line ground combat is just plain wrong. There is always going to be an overlap of where the weakest males and the strongest females intercept. I have absolutely no problem with the idea of serving alongside women, with the single condition that she has gone through the exact same selection and training that I have. I feel the need to modify this condition to include the fact that I am entirely against the lowering of ANY requirement for selection or to the required training to accommodate ANYONE!

As to the original story here, daft idea!

And on the "being a Swede" debate. I had heard, before I moved to Sweden, that one of the big differences between being an immigrant in the US and Sweden is that in the US you tend to be considered, by people in general, to be an American after 3 years, whereas in Sweden it is more like 3 generations. Unfortunately I have seen nothing in my 3+ years here to indicate any different, sadly.
22:40 June 9, 2012 by ericksoneric
Sign me up!
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