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Swedish neutrality and Thatcher's view on it.

The iron lady and blonde interviewer

post 3.Mar.2012, 03:12 PM
Post #121
Joined: 22.Oct.2011

Hej GH,

People who come here to stay for a while, people who have lived a little while in the UK - and know everything there is to know, and then rant on negatively about that country - - Is it any wonder that others wish they would remove themselves. Often their comments deny common courtesy towards the host country. This is bad, that is bad, we can't get this, we can't get that - not like home. Sweden has its faults, sure. But tell me where Utopia exists.
When you don't have the right to vote, you have no say in the running of that country and must therefore accept things as the resident population choose it to be. Unfortunately it is as you say, those who have become naturalised tend to become overly so.
There was once two men from the same foreign country who lived next door to one another and were good friends. One day, one of them decided to take out the new nationality. On the day his papers were finalized, he went and knocked on his neighbour's door and when he answered, called him 'B****y foreigner'. Says it all really.
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post 4.Mar.2012, 05:59 PM
Post #122
Joined: 10.Jul.2006

Britvik, yes you're famous. smile.gif
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post 4.Mar.2012, 09:06 PM
Post #123
Joined: 22.Oct.2011

Ah, recognition at last laugh.gif

I'm going to make a copy of that and put it up on my wall, and give it a pat every morning, just to remind me.

Make a good epitaph, too. biggrin.gif
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jack sprat
post 4.Mar.2012, 10:39 PM
Post #124
Joined: 15.Sep.2006

QUOTE (BritVik @ 3.Mar.2012, 01:21 AM) *
Somehow you would never believe that WW2 has been over since 1945, i.e. 68 years ago. At the rate the heat is rising on this thread we will soon be heading into WW3. This stuf ... (show full quote)

Fact of the matter is that many people find the study of wars to be a fascinating subject.
That has always been the case and always will be, wether you like it or not, or even when citizens of certain countries appear somewhat embarrassed when the subject arises, as is often the case regarding Sweden.

WW2 was possibly the most complex and interesting conflict in World history.
It was a MERE 68 years ago as against other wars of hundreds and thousands of years ago which are still widely discussed.
New facts are constantly emerging,even now, with regard to the involvement of a great many countries other than Sweden.
Discussions will always involve disputes amongst posters as to who did what and who did not etc.
If things get too personel or abusive then the mods have it within their power to close the thread or take whatever action is appropriate.
In the meantime there are numerous other threads and forums to switch onto or maybe even the local knitting circle, for those who prefer to avoid such subjects.
The only one I see getting unduly hot under the collar appears to be your good self,.so I would say if you can't stand the heat, the solution to your little tantrum is pretty well straight forward, rather than attempting to stifle the right of others to free speech.and open discussion.
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post 5.Mar.2012, 01:07 AM
Post #125
Joined: 22.Oct.2011

QUOTE (jack sprat @ 4.Mar.2012, 10:39 PM) *
. . . . .If things get too personel or abusive then the mods have it within their power to close the thread or take whatever action is appropriate. . . . or maybe even the loc ... (show full quote)

Hot under the collar - hardly, my good friend. But you say the Mods have it in their power to close etc. At the rate they work, and the way they think, then WW3 will have been started before they act. Discussion and differences of opinion are one thing. Gutter language is totally different, and the personal attacks made against fellow forumites is to be deplored. It takes much for the Mods to close a thread since, believing them to be Swedish, I am afraid they tend to overlook many obscenities, especially those in the English language. Unfortunately.

Yes, - knitting. They tried to teach us boys to knit when we sat in the shelters during air raids - so not my scene nowadays I fear.

I lived through the Munich Crisis and then WW2, and unfortunately have many memories of events and experiences that I would love not to remember. With this constant desire to 'relive, evaluate, and express opinions on the rights and wrongs' that we have on TV and various other means, there are many who find it easy to be wise in hindsight whilst never having experienced any of the perils of war themselves. For them it is mostly a subject for discussion. OK so be it. Discuss freely, but for heaven's sake don't let it get out of hand. We don't want WW3. there is enough evil in the world even today, without our help. If you think that is a tantrum, think again. Try and moderate the discussion before the mods do it for you. That is my plea.

PS Are you are the one who could eat no fat ...?
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post 5.Mar.2012, 06:56 AM
Post #126
Location: Västra Götaland
Joined: 1.Jul.2007

QUOTE (Nomark @ 16.Feb.2012, 01:49 PM) * Thatcher was a little unfair on the interviewer but I approve of the general theme i.e. its not enough to parade your conscience and ... (show full quote)

That is the iron lady that I remember, great clip!
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post 5.Mar.2012, 11:15 AM
Post #127
Joined: 10.Jul.2006

Britvik, the wise old man.
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post 5.Mar.2012, 11:34 AM
Post #128
Joined: 22.Oct.2011

Of course. What else do you expect? Besides, you also agreed I was famous. I patted the sign already this morning. . .
Also - I live on a hill laugh.gif
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post 5.Mar.2012, 11:39 AM
Post #129
Location: Europe
Joined: 28.Oct.2008

I wonder if we will see millions of kroner worth of credit secretly sent to Al Qaeda in an attempt to stop Lars Vilks being egged. Without the public being informed ... And all references to such loans hidden away.

It would make an interesting book in the future.
It could be called "1941 revisited, is this democracy?"
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jack sprat
post 5.Mar.2012, 08:10 PM
Post #130
Joined: 15.Sep.2006

QUOTE (BritVik @ 5.Mar.2012, 02:07 AM) *
PS Are you are the one who could eat no fat ...?

Ha ha, Unfortunately not, though I often wish I had been and I might have been in a bit better shape than I am now.. laugh.gif
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post 6.Mar.2012, 12:13 AM
Post #131
Joined: 22.Oct.2011

Then it sounds a little like you and me both . . . cool.gif
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post 6.Mar.2012, 03:22 PM
Post #132
Joined: 22.Oct.2011

Just caught sight of this URL, for anyone out there interested. Could be food/fuel for further fight on this forum since so many have been engaged in the subject. . . laugh.gif
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skane refugee
post 6.Mar.2012, 09:34 PM
Post #133
Joined: 14.May.2008

Haven’t posted for a while … best to one and all on the forum!! ☺
Thought I’d add my few kronas worth to a lively and interesting debate:

A) Could Sweden really do anything to restrict Iron Ore supplies to Germany during WW2?

This one is fairly easy to answer since there are solid examples of valuable mining operations under WW2 German occupation:

Case 1: Norway:

Not all Iron Ore is created equal ;o) … Norwegian Iron Ore was the very best available … high purity * (60%) / low phosphorous content ** suitable for high end military grade steel production for precision engineering and superior performance

Norway succeeded in dramatically reducing supplies to Germany under occupation as can be seen from official data below:

Norway Production data of Iron Ore (Tons):
1937 1.1m
1938 1.5m
1939 1.4m
1940 0.7m (occupation starts May/June 1940)
1941 0.6m
1942 0.3m
1943 0.3m
1944 0.3m
Source: Norges Offisielle Statistik, Norges Bergverksdrift 1937-44

Note: the Norwegian port of Narvik was still capable of shipping up to 2 million tons of ore a year, despite allied counter-measures, and does not account for the reduction in Norwegian wartime shipments to Germany

Case 2: Conquered areas to the East of Germany – Krivoj-Rog

In Germany great hopes were attached to deliveries of grades of Iron Ore with a low phosphorous content from the conquered areas in the East, primarily from Krivoj-Rog.
However as a result of destruction by the Russians no real mining was started in these mines during occupation.
This clearly demonstrates that mine destruction could be effective in putting facilities beyond use.

* Note: For steel making, Iron Ore purity is everything!! … even small % increases in purity (iron content) result in dramatic reductions in coal, labour, furnace capacity, and complexity (impurity removal stages) required to produce the finished steel, which would also be of higher quality than steel produced from inferior ores

** Note: Low Phosphorous content Iron Ore was used to make the best military grade steel and was the scarce material in most demand during WW2
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skane refugee
post 6.Mar.2012, 09:37 PM
Post #134
Joined: 14.May.2008

Question B ) Did Swedish Iron Ore really matter much during WW2 given the other supplies available to the axis?

Again this one is fairly easy to answer, since there has been decent research on this topic:

According to Historian Burton H. Klein:
“ … there was scarcely a meeting between Hitler and his economic advisors in which the steel situation was not discussed. Indeed, one gets the impression from the transcripts of these meetings, that, from the beginning of the war until 1943, a steel shortage dwarfed all other economic problems.”

Even in the peak production year of 1943 German occupied Europe steel furnace capacity was only 75% utilized, the key bottlenecks were shortage of Ore, and shortage of Coking Coal (in particular the ability to transport coal to where it was needed, ironically due to lack of steel for transport infrastructure)

Looking at Quality and Quantity of Iron Ore available to wartime Germany:

1 Quality

(% Iron Content):
Norway/Sweden 60%
North Africa 45% to 55%
Spain 50%
Austria 32%
France, Poland 30%
Germany 27% (including Polish Silesia and Alsace/Lorraine)

(Low Phosphorous content):
North Africa

Scandinavian Iron Ore was indisputably the very best available to Germany during WW2, and would have been turned into Steel before any other Ore, not just because of the quality of finished steel, but also because it took far less scarce skilled labour, coal and other inputs to produce

2 Quantity

Total Quantities

Sweden supplied Germany with around 10m tons of Ore / (6m tons of Iron content at 60% purity) each year 1939, 1940, 1941, 1942 and over 11m tons of ore in 1943.
The same delivery rate continued into 1944 until allied disruption of supplies had a major impact later that year

Germany, Austria and occupied territories produced low grade ore (20% to 32% pure) totaling (in m tons of Iron content):
1940 7m tons
1941 13m tons (capture of ore producers West and East of Germany)
1942 13m tons
1943 14m tons
1944 8m tons (liberation of many occupied territories)

In addition imports (excluding Sweden) averaged around 0.4m tons per year 1940 to 1944

Therefore Sweden almost doubled axis Iron Ore supply in 1940, and added almost 50% in 1941 to 1943

It should be noted that low-grade ores from Germany, France, Poland etc were no substitute for high grade Swedish Ore, particularly for high-end military use.
It should also be noted that civilian, transport and key industries (eg power) needed steel before the military could receive production (essential non-miltary use of steel was 40% of German production in the last quarter of 1940 for example)
It should also be noted that scrap Iron could also be used in Steel production but in combination with Ore in the ratio 20/80 (scrap Iron/Ore) … Ore availability again being the limiting factor

Quantity of the most sought after Low Phosphorous Ore:

In terms of ultra-high end military use (Low Phosphorous) Iron Ore:

Only have full German supply data for 1941 * as follows (in million tons Iron content) (1938 pre-war figures in brackets):

High Grade Ore 1941:
Sweden (60% pure) 1.7m ** tons (1938 0.9m)
Norway (60% pure) 0.3m tons (1938 0.7m)
Spain (50% pure) 0.2m tons (1938 0.5m)
N. Africa (45% to 55% pure) 0.1m tons (1938 0.7m)

Low Grade Ore 1941:
Austria (32% pure) 0.8m tons

* Note: Total German imports (excluding Sweden) averaged around 0.4m tons Iron content 1940 to 1944, so Spanish and North African supplies in other years could not have been significantly higher than in 1941 above, also low grade Austrian supplies were a constant 0.8m to 0.9m tons throughout the war

** Note: around a quarter of Swedish Ore exports to Germany were indentifiable as low phosphorous (Norrbotten Ores and certain mines in Central Sweden)

Identified Swedish Low Phosphor supplies to Germany were as follows:
1940 2.6m tons of Ore (1.6m tons Iron)
1941 2.8m tons of Ore (1.7m tons Iron)
1942 2.5m tons of Ore (1.5m tons Iron)
1943 2.5m tons of Ore (1.5m tons Iron)

In summary, Swedish Iron Ore supplies, both in terms of quantity and quality, were of vital importance to German military production during the war, and substitutes were simply not available to Germany.
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skane refugee
post 6.Mar.2012, 09:45 PM
Post #135
Joined: 14.May.2008

Apologies for being late to the thread and for the length of the previous post(s)!! – just wanted to cover the key points and add sufficient data for casual readers to get a feel for the numbers behind the debate

It seems that this argument about Sweden’s impact on WW2 seems to rage endlessly on an alarming number of threads on the local

Would be good to see an end to comments like ‘Sweden had no choice’, and ‘the supplies didn’t matter to Germany anyway’ which are both evidently nonsense

The other common comment that is curious is that ‘Sweden supplied the allies with vital material’:

This is puzzling since ….

In April 1940 Sweden terminated Ore exports to Britain completely and all supplies of this vital commodity were diverted to Germany for the rest of the war

Tiny quantities (relative to German supplies from Sweden) of Ball Bearings and Bearing making machines were smuggled out of Sweden to Britain … helpful for sure … but small beans in the context of the supplies going to Germany

Would be grateful if someone could improve my knowledge with examples of vital supplies from Sweden to the allies

That’s it for now … hope it’s helped in some small way to take this recurring debate to a marginally better-informed level on the local ;o)

Best to one and all! ☺

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