SOU 1994:11

Had there been a war- : preparations for the reception of military assistance 1949-1969 : report of the Commission on Neutrality Policy


a.sszstance.1949—_ 19.69. '. .

Translation of SÖU 1994:11

Statens offentliga utredningar 1 994: 1 1 Statsrådsberedningen


Preparations for the reception of military assistance 1949—1969

Report of the Commission on Neutrality Policy, Stockholm 1994 (SOU 1994:11)

Translation: Ingrid Tersman and Hans Zettermark, National Defence Research Establishment

SOU och Ds kan köpas från Fritzes kundtjänst. För remissutsändningar av SOU och Ds svarar Fritzes, Offentliga Publikationer, på uppdrag av Regeringskansliets förvaltningskontor

Beställningsadress: Fritzes kundtjänst 106 47 Stockholm Fax: 08-20 50 21 Telefon: 08-690 90 90

ISBN 91-38-13612—0 Graphic Systems AB, Göteborg 1994 ISSN 0375-250X

To the Prime Minister

In a resolution of 8 July 1992, the Government authorized the Prime Minister to appoint a commission consisting of, at the most, six members tasked to examine information on preparations to receive military assistance; to appoint one of the members as chairman, and to decide on experts, secretary, and other assistance/support to the commission.

From 20 July 1992, with support of this authorization, County Gov- ernor Gösta Gunnarsson (chairman), former Assistant Under—Secretary Wilhelm Carlgren, former Ambassador Leif Leifland, former Ambassa— dor Yngve Möller, Professor Olof Ruin, and Professor Göran Rystad were appointed as Commission members.

Appointed as experts were Ambassador Krister Wahlbäck, from 24 September 1992; Assistant Under-Secretary Nils Gyldén, from 12 October 1992; and Head of Division, Court of Appeal, Rolf Holmquist. The latter was tasked to assist in reviewing the report with respect to secrecy.

From ] August 1992, Judge Fredrik von Arnold was appointed Secre- tary of the Commission. As Assistant Secretaries to the Commission were Bo Petersson, Ph.D., (15 August 1992 to 5 November 1993), Brigadier (ret.) Rolf Gustafsson (1 January to 30 April 1993), and Lieutenant-Colonel Björn von Porat (1 January to 30 April 1993 and 3 December 1993 to 14 January 1994).

Louise Hugemark was appointed to assist the Commission in certain archival research, 1 April to 31 August 1993. Assistant professor Kent Zetterberg and Senior Archivist Lars Ericson have also been of assistance to the Commission with archival research.

Ingrid Tersman and Hans Zettermark, of the National Defence Research Establishment, translated the Commission report into English. Kerstin and Roger Tanner, Ordväxlingen AB, have reviewed the translation.

Pia Cederholm (from 15 October 1992) and Ulla Ekholm (1 February to 30 April 1993) served as assistants to the Commission.

The Commission has adopted the name of the Commission on Neutrality Policy [Neutralitetspolitikkommissionen] (SB 1992:01).

The Commission now presents its unanimous report (SOU 1994:11) "Had there been a war... Preparations for the reception of military assistance 1949-1969".

This concludes the Commission's assignment.

Stockholm, February 1994

Gösta Gunnarsson

Wilhelm Carlgren Leif Leifland Yngve Möller

Olof Ruin Göran Rystad

/Fredrik von Arnold

Table of contents

Summary ........................

_lb—tb—p—A LAND——

4.1 4.2 4.3 4.4 4.5

Introduction ................... The Commission's remit ........... The Commission's sources .......... On future research ...............

Neutrality and policy of neutrality ..... Starting points in international law ..... Government declarations ...........

Relevant defence decisions .......... Security background .............. Scandinavian defence negotiations 1948-49 The 1958 Defence Decision and its preliminaries .................. The 1968 Defence Decision and its preliminaries ..................

U.S. policy vis-å-vis Sweden .......... Background ................... NSC 28/1, 1948 ................. NSC 121, 1952 ................. NSC 6006/ 1, 1960 ............... Summary and conclusions ..........

Peacetime contacts with the Western Powers International contacts ............. Peacetime procurement of equipment and

supplies, and technical cooperation . . . . Air safety collaboration ............ Intelligence ...................

Preparations for the reception of assistance Contacts on operational issues ........













37 37 38

49 49 50

59 59 61



99 99 100 101 103 109

113 113

119 126 129

137 137

6.2 6.3

6.4 6.5 6.6 6.7 6.8


War planning and studies


Measures taken within the Military

High Command . . . .

Measures relating to ground operations ......... Measures relating to naval operations .......... Measures relating to air operations ............ Preparations for wartime procurement of equipment and supplies ....... Preparations for resistance in the event of

occupation ........

Concluding assessment of military preparations for cooperation with the Western Powers ........

How much did the Government know? ..........

Background .......

Partia] Scandinavian defence cooperation ........ Contacts with the Western great powers . ; .......

Concluding assessment

....-........ ......

173 180 192 195 209 228 234 238 245 245 248 253



Chapter 1 Introduction

The Commission 's remit

The Commission has understood its remit to mean that all forms of prep- aration for support and for military cooperation with the Western Powers during 1949-69 should be explored to the extent possible. However, a more detailed study of cooperation in the field of intelligence has not been deemed part of the task.

The extent and the direction of the Commission”s investigation have been affected by the urgency of the study. As documents gradually become declassified, the possibility cannot be excluded of new informa- tion, especially from foreign archives, modifying the picture provided by the Commission to a certain extent, especially concerning the 1960s.

The Commission has exercised the greatest possible openness in giving its account. As a rule, however, it is not possible to make the extensive source material used publicly accessible.

The Commission 's sources

The Commission has conducted research in a large number of Swedish and foreign archives, both public and private. A key source has been the top—secret archives of the Swedish Defence Staff as well as those of the service staffs and of certain regional military authorities.

Research has been carried out in archives in Denmark, Norway, Russia, Great Britain, Germany, and the United States. In addition, certain NATO archives have been examined. Much foreign source material, however, is still classified.

In the case of archives of organizations and private individuals, primarily a number of diaries kept by key actors have been of interest.

The Commission has obtained information from more than 200 people. The majority are Swedes who, during the period studied, held positions judged to be of interest in this context, e.g., politicians, diplomats, ministry staff, officers, and others in service with the National Defence. In toto, the interviews have materially contributed to making the picture more complete and nuanced than that offered by the

written sources. The Commission has conducted a research seminar entitled "Sweden, the Nordic region, and NATO during the Cold War."

On future research

Research on Swedish security policy during the post-World War II era seems regrettably inadequate, especially when compared with Finland and Norway. It is of the greatest importance for future debate and decision-making to draw upon solid knowledge of and a broad outlook on Swedish security policy as hitherto pursued. We hope that this report will help to improve the conditions for such research.

Chapter 2 Neutrality and policy of neutrality

Starting points in international law

Neutrality, as defined by international law, can be claimed only in times of war. Its core is non—participation in war between other states. In the case of Sweden, the declared intention to maintain neutrality in the event of war has solely been a unilateral statement of intent. A deliberate policy has been to avoid formal security policy ties. Restrictions adhered to — to enhance the credibility of the Swedish neutrality policy - were self-imposed.

Government declarations

During the Cold War, Sweden's security policy was most often characterized as "non-participation in alliances in peacetime, aiming at neutrality in war," often referred to as the "Swedish policy of neutral- ity." This section discusses Government foreign policy declarations in Parliament, and certain other official statements concerning Swedish security policy. The account shows that Government declarations concerning the substance of the policy of neutrality underwent certain changes over time. Thus, in 1949, the Government made a statement to the effect that an alliance treaty was the sole [form of cooperation] to lie beyond the boundaries of the neutrality policy in peacetime.

In the following year, the Government rejected the idea of Sweden pursuing a policy of neutrality biased in any particular direction. It was emphasized that it was not possible to predict what policy would be

pursued in the future during unknown external conditions. The Govern— ment also raised the issue whether peacetime technical military cooper- ation with Denmark and Norway was consistent with Swedish security policy and made a statement giving the impression that such cooperation was judged impossible. Expressly excluded was, however, only the kind of cooperation which in its political substance came close to the defence union, e.g., combined staff talks and combined defence planning. We have noted that time and again during the 1950s, a discussion concerning the setting and preconditions for the policy of neutrality resurged.

In 1956, Parliament rejected a motion that the Swedish policy of neutrality be given a legal foundation.

Responding to a question in Parliament concerning the so-called Hjalmarson affair, Prime Minister Erlander explained that the policy of neutrality did not allow liberty of action in the sense that Sweden, following the outbreak of a major war, without being attacked, could choose to side with one of the warring parties. Preparations and discussions regarding military cooperation with members of a great— power military alliance were therefore precluded if Sweden wished to maintain the credibility of its foreign and defence policies.

During most of the 1960s, there was fundamental agreement across party lines on the substance of the policy of neutrality. In 1968, however, triggered by the Vietnam war, a debate ensued on what profile a neutral state should have in the foreign policy field. Here, Erlander quoted inter alia parts of his own response to the 1959 parliamentary question, but did not repeat the statement that preparations and dis- cussions concerning military cooperation with members of a great-power military alliance were precluded.

Chapter 3 Relevant defence decisions

To provide & security policy background, the chapter opens with a short description of more important developments during the first half of the Cold War. Then the Commission provides an extensive account of the 1949 Scandinavian Defence Committee report, and of the two key defence decisions of that time, those of 1958 and 1968, and their preliminaries.

7716. Scandinavian Defence Committee

In October 1948, the governments of Denmark, Norway, and Sweden appointed a joint committee to explore the prospects of military

cooperation between the three states, either in the form of a defence union or in the form of partial defence cooperation. The Committee submitted its report in early 1949. The expert studies included in the report state inter alla that the [Scandinavian] states could not repel a Soviet attack for any length of time without Western assistance. Defence preparations in peacetime and strategy in war, therefore, had to be shaped in such a way so as to create conditions for receiving military assistance as well as support in the form of vital supplies. The fundamen— tal idea, therefore, was to gain time, i.e., to endure long enough to make Western supportive actions possible.

The Committee determined that the defence of Scandinavia included missions that should be carried out jointly by the armed forces of the individual countries, and requiring considerable technical and organiz- ational preparations, and combined exercises, to be carried out already in peacetime. Cooperation could be prepared either within the framework of a defence union or without such a binding treaty. In the latter case, however, preparations could not be carried as far as within a defence union. The Committee was unanimous as to the need for assistance from the Western Powers. The Danish and Norwegian members stressed that a precondition for rapid and effective assistance was that preparations had been made in peacetime. The Swedish members did not wish to explicitly underwrite this statement. On the other hand, they were prepared to state that armed assistance from abroad would already be required at an initial stage of a defensive war, and that it would take several months for such assistance to arrive, if no preparations had been made in peacetime.

As a consequence of the differences of opinion, primarily between the Norwegian and Swedish governments, concerning a Scandinavian defence union's connections to the Western Powers, the negotiations on such a union broke down in the end of January 1949. While the Norwegians wanted some form of association with the West, the fundamental view of the Swedish Government was that a defence union should remain independent of the great powers, and aim at neutrality in war. A statement, made by Erlander in the parliamentary debate following the breakdown of the defence union negotiations, made clear that the Swedish Government had not, in principle, dismissed the idea of receiving assistance (from the Western Powers) in wartime.

The 1958 Defence Decision and its preliminaries

The 195 8 parliamentary Defence Decision was the most consequential of the post-war era thus far. It was to shape the structure of the Swedish National Defence, its equipment, and its operational strength well into

the 1970s. It was preceded by the 1955 Defence Committee, within the Ministry of Defence and under the direction of the Minister of Defence, and tasked to assist in reviewing the recommendations of the Supreme Commander on the future of the armed forces (ÖB 54). The Committee included representatives of each of the four largest political parties.

The ÖB 54 report had stated that Swedish resources did not suffice to repel an attack by a great power for any length of time, without external economic and military assistance. Hence, Swedish strategy must focus on creating conditions for Sweden to be supported, in war, by states in whose interests it would be to assist us. According to the Supreme Commander, Sweden could not expect any rapid assistance, except for Western strategic bombing.

The initial phase of the Defence Committee's work was devoted to security policy and strategic issues. These issues were extensively discussed in a briefing memorandum prepared within the secretariat of the Committee. For reasons expanded upon in the final report, this memorandum can be taken to express the Defence Minister's view on issues discussed therein.

The memorandum discussed inter alia assistance from the Western Powers. Such assistance could be either direct or indirect. Direct assistance entailed, for example, air strikes using atomic weapons against a sealift concentration during a seaborne invasion, interdiction of lines of communication during ground operations, supply of ordnance and fuel, and protection of convoys. Indirect assistance entailed the Western Powers, by means of their operations, reducing the prospects of the Soviet Union projecting power against Sweden, e.g. by interdiction strikes against air bases, naval bases, embarkation ports from which attacks could be launched also against Sweden, as well as associated land lines of communication. Thus, indirect assistance, like direct assistance, to a great extent involved air operations. A key component of indirect assistance was stated to be operations tying down those enemy forces which could otherwise have been employed against us. No sharp distinction was made between the two forms of assistance.

The probability of Sweden receiving direct assistance from the West in the fierce opening phase of a major war was deemed low. The prospects for such assistance was judged greater in a potential later stage of the war. Indirect assistance was judged the most significant. The memorandum further discussed how to promote direct assistance and thus also create conditions for receiving some forms of indirect assistance. The significance of personal contacts, good communications equipment, peacetime Swedish preparations for general coordination of air operations, and a limited employment of strike and bomber units, and certain coordination of air surveillance, was pointed to. It was also

determined that some preparations for direct assistance had been made already, and that others could be. Certain preparations, however, were of such a character that they could not be made in advance, considering the policy of non—participation in alliances.

The issue of external assistance was not addressed at all in the final, public version of the Defence Committee report, and was only briefly alluded to in the 1958 Defence Bill.

The 1968 Defence Decision and its preliminaries

The next major defence decision, building on the work of the 1965 Defence Committee, was taken by Parliament in 1968. Neither the committee report nor the Defence Bill includes any explicit references to external assistance. The Committee did, however, discuss the issue of Swedish nuclear weapons, and indirectly also touched upon the issue of intervention by other states in the case of an attack on Sweden. While the Committee recommended that Sweden should not procure nuclear weapons, it stated that anyone contemplating an attack on Sweden, with or without the use of nuclear weapons, would have to reckon with the use of nuclear weapons against such an operation, although Sweden did not possess such weapons. In all major aspects, Sweden was thus placed under the nuclear umbrella in much the same way as neighbouring countries could be taken to be.

The Committee also addressed the issue of how Sweden would act in an acute crisis situation. The Committee emphasized that it was not possible to fully predetermine what policy a government might have to pursue under still unknown future conditions. The aim of our security policy and our defence planning must be to create freedom of action for future contingencies. This statement displayed a continuance of the Governmenfs view of the early 1950s.

The fact that external assistance was discussed to a lesser extent in 1968 than in 1958 and 1949 can probably be attributed to several factors. For one thing, the threat of war gradually diminished as relations between the superpowers improved, added to which, Sweden's National Defence was gradually and considerably strengthened.

Chapter 4 U.S. policy vis—a—vis Sweden

This chapter discusses the U.S. policy documents adopted by the President of the United States following deliberations in the National Security Council (NSC). The first document, from 1948, was prepared

under the influence of the emerging discussions on a Scandinavian defence union. Scandinavia was judged to be of strategic interest to both the United States and the Soviet Union. The three Scandinavian countries did not have any prospects of withstanding a Soviet attack for any length of time, but given limited deliveries of equipment and external assist- ance, a certain deterrent could be created. The United States should inter alia demonstrate its dissatisfaction with Sweden's apparent failure to distinguish between the West and the Soviet Union, and sway Sweden into eventual aligmnent with the West. Swedish requests for military assistance were to be granted only after the requirements of states having declared their intention to cooperate with the United States and its allies had been met.

In early 1952, a new policy document was drafted. Now the United States had, for the time being, accepted the Swedish policy of non- alignment. It was in the interest of the United States for Sweden to be in the best possible position to resist Soviet pressure or aggression. The overall U.S. attitude towards Sweden should reflect the conviction that, also barring formal Swedish NATO membership, the defence of Europe would benefit from closer Swedish association and cooperation with its NATO neighbours and with the United States. Sweden should be allowed to purchase military equipment and be provided with strategic technol- ogy. The Swedish National Defence could be strengthened by the exchange of military information and increased participation by Swedish officers in formal military training in the United States. Denmark, Norway, and Sweden should be encouraged to cooperate in planning and strategy. The United States was not to create the impression, however, that Sweden could reap all the benefits of NATO membership without assuming corresponding obligations.

In 1960, following discussions in the NSC, with several interventions in substance by President Eisenhower, a revised U.S. policy was adopted vis-a-vis Scandinavia. Generally, Sweden was viewed very favourably. The Swedish National Defence was held in relatively high regard. It was deemed to be of great significance that Sweden maintained an up-to-date defence and acquired early-warning, air command—and-control systems, and advanced weaponry compatible with and complementary to those planned for procurement by NATO allies. On the other hand, Sweden should be discouraged from acquiring its own nuclear weapons. Were Sweden to be attacked in the context of a major war, the United States should encourage and assist Sweden in its resistance of a Soviet attack. Were Sweden to be the victim of isolated Soviet aggression, the United States should be prepared to come to the assistance of Sweden as part of a U.N . or NATO action. The United States were to encourage other NATO states (i.e. Denmark and Norway) to maintain discreet liaison

with the Swedish National Defence, paving the way for possible future active military cooperation.

No further policy document concerning Scandinavia appears to have been adopted during the 19605.

Chapter 5 Peacetime contacts with the Western Powers

International contacts

The Swedish policy of neutrality has not been deemed to constitute an impediment to frequent international military contacts. In order to avoid national isolation in thinking and expertise, such contacts have been encouraged. Also, these contacts have been seen as fostering interna- tional respect for, and appreciation of the role of, the Swedish National Defence.

Defence attachés at the larger Swedish embassies played a significant role in day-to-day contacts. It is of interest here that the defence attachés in Washington at the end of the 19505 noticed a pronounced shift in the attitude of the U.S. military establishment towards them. Thereafter, the U.S. attitude opened up considerably, and the Swedes viewed themselves to be in a much-favoured position concerning information.

During this period, Swedish officers and technical experts increasingly travelled abroad, especially to the Nordic countries, Western Europe, and North America. Usually, such travelling required Government per- mission. The Commission has studied, in particular, the exchange of visits at flag-officer level. Most of these appear to have been courtesy calls also comprising scheduled study visits.

Lower echelon personnel travelled for the purpose of study, and also attended military colleges abroad. Foreign officers, primarily from the Nordic countries, attended Swedish military colleges. Certain duty exchanges occurred between Sweden and certain NATO countries. Through these connections, Swedish officers, many of whom later reached top positions, obtained in-depth knowledge of the military organization, tactics, and technology of the Western Powers; they also formed lasting ties of friendship with Western officers.

Imports of military equipment and technical cooperation

Towards the end of the 19405, the Swedish National Defence was quantitatively large, but its equipment mostly outmoded. There was a great need for imports of technically advanced equipment, and this could only be satisfied by the Western Powers. Over time, a Swedish "profile"

evolved in the area of military technology. In many aspects, Swedish solutions were distinctly different from those chosen by the great powers, and this would have forced an enemy to commit resources against unique, Swedish, technology. There remained, however, a need for imports of Western military equipment and technology.

Initially, the United States and the United Kingdom were opposed to the export of high technology equipment to Sweden. One reason was the wish to demonstrate dissatisfaction with the Swedish policy of neutrality. Gradually, as hopes of thus influencing Sweden to join NATO were written off, Sweden was given more opportunity to import military equipment from these states. Also, from 1951 on, Sweden's non-official and limited cooperation with the Western Powers on their ban on exports of strategic goods to the Eastern Bloc contributed to this end. In 1952, an agreement was reached on terms for Swedish purchases of military equipment, etc. from the United States. Only towards the end of the decade, however, did larger—scale exports of high—technology military equipment transpire, as Sweden was permitted to purchase U.S. missiles. The 1952 agreement was expanded in 1961, forming the basis for a set of agreements on the exchange of technology between the two states. From this sprang an extensive and close cooperation on military technology, which was not discontinued even when Swedish—U.S. relations were in cold storage in the end of the 1960s, as a consequence of the official Swedish attitude to the Vietnam war.

For its national sustenance, Sweden was dependent on imports of inter alia oil and other petroleum products. To facilitate such imports in the event of blockade or war, Sweden had a POL-port with associated storage facilities constructed in the Fjord of Trondheim [in Norway]. The complex, completed in 1962, turned out to be a bad investment, however, due to changes in the military-strategic situation, and was later sold.

Collaboration on air safety

During the first half of the 1950s, the Danish, Norwegian, and Swedish air forces initiated collaboration on air safety issues in border areas (SVENORDA). This collaboration aimed at facilitating navigation in order, among other things, to guide aircraft in emergencies, either to their home base, or to emergency landing sites in a neighbouring country. In 1960, the collaboration was formalized, and the formerly secret collaboration was now made public. Participating in these activities were a number of air defence control centres in each country, and certain air bases were designated for emergency landing. Communi- cations by wire, radio, and radio relay were established between the

ground facilities. Uniform signal procedures in English were developed. Landing procedures were practised to some extent at air bases across borders.

This collaboration made it possible for Swedish Air Force personnel to gain knowledge of terrain, facilities, airfields, and communications procedures in Denmark and Norway. Likewise, officers of these states obtained information on Swedish airbases. Swedish military air traffic controllers too gained experience of NATO air traffic control pro— cedures.

International collaboration also took place on maritime search and rescue. These activities were exclusively civilian.


'Ihe Commission has judged its mandate to include a non-exhaustive review of the cooperation between Swedish Military Intelligence and its Western counterparts. No more detailed study, however, has been carried out. Swedish Military Intelligence has earlier been studied inter alla by the 1974 Intelligence Committee. The Committee concluded that Sweden stood more to gain than to lose by cooperating with other states in the field of intelligence. Through such cooperation, Sweden could gain access to information requiring special resources not at our disposal.

At this time, general intelligence was managed by Section 2 of the Defence Staff. A special unit, the so-called T-Office, tasked with the non-official collection of intelligence, was subordinate to the head of section. In 1961, a new organization, IB, was formed, by the merger of T-Office and another unit, B-Bureau, dealing with security intelligence. Another important intelligence collection agency was the National Defence Radio Institute (FRA) for signals intelligence, focusing on the eastern shores of the Baltic Sea.

Already in the latter part of the 1940s, the Defence Staff initiated intelligence collaboration with Norway and, to some extent, Denmark. This collaboration continued throughout the period, albeit with some interruptions. Collaboration was also initiated early on with the United Kingdom and the U.S. Army and Air Force in Europe. Over time, regularly recurring contacts evolved. Meetings were bilateral, and information was exchanged on the Warsaw Pact order-of—battle, and joint analyses of the material were made.

No formal agreements, however, on peacetime intelligence exchange seem to have been reached between the Defence Staff and its foreign partners; nor do any pre—arrangements as to whether the actual collabor- ation were to continue following an outbreak of war. Even so, the Defence Staff had been pondering how to collaborate with foreign

intelligence agencies in war, were the Government to permit such collaboration.

The secret intelligence service, i.e. T-Office and B—Bureau as well as their successor, IB, also had close contacts with foreign equivalents, e.g. in several NATO states. In the 1960s, IB and intelligence organizations of some NATO states made mutual preparations for the exchange of liaison officers in contingencies.

At the end of the 1940s, FRA collaborated closely with Denmark and Norway on signals intelligence. Collaboration with certain states also took place in the following decades. Reportedly, there were no prepara- tions exclusively for collaboration in war, nor were any commitments concerning wartime collaboration made to other states.

Chapter 6 Preparations for the reception of assistance

Contacts on operational issues

Shortly after the 1949 breakdown of the negotiations on a Scandinavian defence union, the Chief of the Defence Staff, Nils Swedlund, submitted to the Prime Minister, Tage Erlander, a memorandum on the planning of certain military cooperation with Denmark and Norway. In September that same year, the Cabinet agreed to the implementation of some of the measures proposed. These comprised planning of communications and for coordination of air surveillance, interceptor control, air force search and rescue, and military weather service. Swedlund's proposals concerning planning of certain army and naval cooperation, however, were mostly shelved.

Already in the spring of 1949, i.e. prior to the Cabinet decision, the Swedish National Defence had been in contact with Denmark primarily on the defence of Öresund, and with Norway on air force cooperation. Furthermore, combined air defence exercises had been conducted by the Norwegian and Swedish air forces, with the consent of both govern- ments.

On Swedlund's initiative, discussions were opened in the spring of 1949 between the Swedish and the Norwegian military high commands on collaboration in areas agreed to by the Swedish Cabinet. These discussions continued for a few years. The Danish National Defence was also approached. From 1952 onwards, the interest of the Swedish Military High Command in inter-Scandinavian contacts seems to have subsided. The Scandinavian collaboration was closely followed by the British and the Americans. Their hope that Sweden thus could be linked closer to NATO might be one explanation.

No documents such as studies or plans on the makeup of the Scandina- vian collaboration have been found. For this and other reasons, the results achieved cannot be accurately established. Norwegian interest in this collaboration appears to have been quite weak, and achievements not all that far-reaching. Contacts with the Danish seem mainly to have addressed the defence of Öresund.

One reason for the Swedish Military High Command gradually assigning less priority to Scandinavian collaboration is presumably that, following the establishment of AFNORTH (NATO”s Northern Com— mand), their Danish and Norwegian colleagues no longer held full national operational responsibility. Another, and perhaps more signifi- cant, reason was presumably that direct contacts evolved between Sweden and the United States.

Already at the end of the 19405, the Swedish Military High Command had concluded that Sweden could not resist Soviet aggression for any length of time without some form of assistance from the Western Powers. This conviction persisted throughout the 19505 and 19605.

In the spring of 1949, the Swedish Embassy in Washington and the Swedish Military High Command set out to foster U.S. understanding of Sweden's security policy and to instill a favourable perception of the capabilities of the Swedish National Defence. These activities did not, however, result in any immediate shift in the disapproving U.S. attitude towards the Swedish security policy's focus on neutrality in war. For another couple of years, U.S. policy towards Sweden was characterized by efforts to make Sweden accede to the Atlantic Pact. Over time, the United States assumed a more accommodating attitude towards Sweden (Cf Chapter 4).

As a consequence of the 1951 visit to Sweden by the British Secretary of the Air Ministry, Henderson, Defence Minister Vougt, with the consent of Erlander, dispatched a memorandum on the Swedish armed forces and war planning to the British Government. At the time, the substance of the memorandum must have been deemed top secret. The communication of the memorandum made the British Minister of Defence invite Vougt to visit the United Kingdom to inter alia discuss a certain degree of coordination of Swedens defence with that of the Western Powers. Vougt, however, declined the invitation. When visiting Sweden in the autumn of the same year, the British Foreign Secretary sought to raise the issue with Erlander, who adopted a reserved attitude.

Later that same year, the then deputy Foreign Minister, Dag Hammarskjöld, told the British ambassador to Sweden that informal coordination of Swedish defence planning with that of the United Kingdom was inconceivable. All the same, Hammarskjöld maintained that it would be of use were Sweden to be privy to parts of the Western

planning for the contingency of a Soviet invasion of Scandinavia. Sweden could then act " autonomously" when drawing up and revising its own plans, while taking Western plans into consideration.

Prompted by Vougt”s memorandum, the British Chiefs of Staff submitted in writing their opinions on a likely course of a war in Scandinavia, and the organization of the Swedish armed forces, as well as proposals for measures strengthening its capabilities. In the spring of 1953, following almost two years of discussions and repeated revisions, the report was communicated to the Swedish Military High Command where it was enthusiastically received. The British ambassador to Sweden was, however, not successful when he shortly thereafter sought to raise, with the Swedish Under-Secretary of State, the issue of exchanging military information between the United Kingdom and Sweden.

Before this, the British had received several indications to the effect that the Swedish Military High Command was interested in establishing cooperation with NATO. As a consequence, in the autumn of 1952, contacts of this kind were established with AFNORTH in Norway. In this context, a small party of Norwegian army officers, one of whom was from the NATO staff, were to visit Sweden to discuss certain aspects of combined Norwegian-Swedish planning. Furthermore, in 1953, the Commander—in—Chief of the Northern Command was invited to make an unofficial visit to Sweden. It has not been established whether these visits took place.

Swedlund, appointed Supreme Commander in 1951, acted, but to no avail, in 1951—53 to persuade the United States to appoint a highly qualified military representative to serve in Sweden, which he saw as the only way of preparing for wartime cooperation. In May 1953, a small party of Swedish officers visited the United States, and later that same year, a U.S. delegation visited Sweden in return. At these meetings, Swedish representatives presented the problems Sweden would encounter in the event of a Soviet attack. The meetings did not result in any exchange of actual plans, only in general conclusions. Reportedly, no further visits were made to follow up these talks.

In the early half of the 19505, also other contacts on wartime cooperation occurred between Swedish and U.S. military officers. Colonel Bernt Balchen, USAF, in his efforts to link up the Norwegian and Swedish defences, had meetings, for example, with top—ranking Swedish Air Force officers. It is not certain, however, that Balchen*s endeavours were officially authorized.

In private conversations with their Swedish colleagues, NATO officers said there was no NATO planning for direct armed support of Sweden in the event of war. In view of Sweden*s neutral posture, the issue was deemed too sensitive; also, there was a serious shortage of NATO

forces. According to a British officer, it would be difficult to establish military cooperation, were Sweden to find itself on the Western side after having been drawn into a major war, since no preparations had been made for this. In the opinion of a U.S. officer, Sweden, in building up its Air Force, did not have to acquire heavy bombers, since their missions could very well be carried out by USAF and RAF with atomic bombs from remote bases.

At a briefing of some Cabinet members and the non—socialist party leaders in the spring of 1953, the Military High Command emphasized that the assistance Sweden might obtain from the Western Powers in a major war primarily consisted of strategic bombing. Furthermore, an alleviating fact was that only parts of Warsaw Pact forces could be employed against Sweden.

As far as has been established, contacts between the Swedish National Defence and the Western Powers on operational issues were highly sporadic for the remainder of the 19505, as well as the following decade. In the autumn of 1955, the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff decided, however, to maintain secret contacts with Sweden, and to again task an officer to handle contacts with the representative of the Swedish Supreme Com- mander. Their proposal was that the Commander USAEUR, should handle this task, the ultimate aim of which was to make Sweden ready to contribute to the defence of Scandinavia to the greatest extent possible, and to buttress Sweden's capabilities and resolve to resist Soviet pressures. Readers should be reminded that the Commission has only had very limited access to U.S. documents from the latter part of the 19505 and the 19605, as much material is still classified.

The shortest routes for USAF and RAF bombers to and from key targets in the Soviet Union traversed Swedish airspace. A pertinent question for the Western Powers, therefore, was whether they would have to calculate with Swedish interception of NATO overflights, if Sweden declared itself neutral. Partly in the light of experiences from World War II, the assessment was evidently made that Sweden would not engage Western bombers en route to the Soviet Union. Until the early 19605, in fact, Sweden's air defences were incapable of effective action against high altitude overflights.

The Commission has found no evidence substantiating information to the effect that Sweden granted permission for overflights of Swedish airspace, or for emergency landings at Swedish airbases, by the U.S. high—altitude reconnaissance aircraft, U—2.

The issue of Swedish acquisition of nuclear weapons was linked to the Swedish—U.S. contacts in as far as high-level U.S. officers, on a few occasions in the latter part of the 19505, made statements to the effect that the United States, in a contingency, might supply Sweden with U.S.

nuclear weapons. The position of State Department, however, was well— nigh the contrary. The impact of the restrictive position on the prolifer- ation of nuclear weapons emerged clearly in the policy towards Sweden adopted by the President in 1960.

War planning and studies

Throughout the 19505 and 19605, Swedish military planning focused almost exclusively on defence against an attack from the Soviet Union (the Warsaw Pact). Neither war plans nor operation orders reveal any indications of advance preparations for cooperation with the Western Powers. Nor did the extensive studies, which inter alla formed a basis for centrally issued plans and orders, include any allusions to advance preparations having been made for cooperation with or reception of assistance from the West. On the other hand, these studies recurrently addressed Sweden's prospects of obtaining non-prepared military assistance from the Western Powers, in the event of a Soviet attack.

The risk of an isolated Soviet attack on Sweden was judged to be remote. So-called indirect assistance was deemed to be the principal form of potential Western assistance, should the Soviet Union attack Sweden in the course of a great power conflict. Expectations that Sweden would receive rapid early assistance seem to have been low partly because preparations for its reception could not be made in peacetime. One precondition for such assistance was that Sweden could defend itself unaided long enough to make Western intervention worthwhile. A further precondition was that the Western Powers should interpret a Soviet attack on Sweden as a material threat to their own interests. In time, the issue of Western assistance was played down in the studies.

During the first half of the 19505, at least, the Military High Com- mand was not alien to the idea of military intervention by Sweden, should the Soviet Union seek to occupy Denmark and Norway; even in a situation where the aggressor, for the time being, was honouring Swedish neutrality. In this way Sweden could forestall encirclement.

Exercises and war games involving cooperation with the Western Powers seem to have been rare occurrences.

Measures taken within the Military High Command

From the early 19505, the Defence Staff had a certain readiness for cooperation with the Western Powers were Sweden to be drawn into war. Highly qualified individuals were designated to augment the oflices of the military attachés at certain Swedish missions abroad as well as to receive foreign officers at the Swedish wartime National Defence

Headquarters (Högkvarteret). At all times, a total of some thirty officers appear to have been assigned to such wartime duty. The dispatch of officers to other states required prior authorization by the political leadership. The states to which liaison officers might be dispatched were primarily the United States, the United Kingdom, Norway, and to some extent, Denmark.

One prime task in an emergency contingency was to secure deliveries of essential war supplies to Sweden. This included working for the fulfilment of the existing contracts for the sale of equipment, as well as furthering the procurement of additional equipment. Arranging transpor— tation of the equipment to Sweden was an additional task. These things might already have to be accomplished prior to the outbreak of war, and could then, to a certain extent, be managed by special trade delegations.

An attack on Sweden, it was presumed, would lead to the country being drawn into the war on the side of the Western Powers. The liaison officers sent abroad should therefore be ready for wide-ranging collaboration with foreign military authorities, even including straight- forward operational cooperation. No detailed planning to this end appears, however, to have been carried out. A start was made in the first half of the 1960s, but planning was discontinued following consultations between the Minister of Defence and the Supreme Commander.

There is no information indicating that the Swedish planning was carried out in concert with representatives of the prospective host countries, nor that the planning was known there at all. Generally, this planning was surrounded by the utmost secrecy, and many of those designated for this wartime duty were not at all made privy.

The principal means of communication between upper-echelon staffs, air defence centres, etc. in Sweden in the 19505, were primarily wire, utilizing the Swedish Telecom system, and short—wave radio. These were also the principal means of communicating with other states in crisis and war. Eventually, a nationwide, military radio relay network was created, primarily to meet the requirements of the Air Force. A few radio-relay connections were directly linked to Denmark and Norway, making it technically feasible for the National Defence Headquarters, at its wartime dispersal location, to gain access to NATO's European network. Reportedly, this was not practised.

In the beginning of the 1960s, a secure telex link was established between the Defence Staff and USAFE in Wiesbaden, West Germany. The purpose of this link was reportedly to transmit alert messages between continental Europe and Sweden in contingencies.

No further evidence has emerged to indicate that the Defence Staff or the wartime National Defence Headquarters had any permanent communications links with other states.

Towards the end of the 19605, a large number of ultra—high frequency radio stations were procured for long—range communications.

Measures relating to ground operations

During the entire period, the Warsaw Pact enjoyed a massive superiority in ground forces compared with NATO. In the initial stage of a war, the European NATO states would have had to rely largely on their national ground forces. Successively, as army units arrived from across the Atlantic, these would presumably be employed along the central front. This being so, the Swedish assessment was that the prospects of rapid Western assistance by ground forces were virtually nil. No planning seems to have been carried out for receiving such units from NATO states.

However, in the early 19505, some preparatory planning appears to have been carried out for Swedish ground forces operations in north— ernmost Norway, and possibly also in Trondelag.

Measures relating to naval operations

Contacts had long been cultivated between the Swedish and Western navies. Essentially, they seem to have concerned the exchange of experience derived from technological developments, procurement, and training. In this context, there seems to have been considerable mutual candour. At times, senior Swedish naval officers discussed general strategic and operational issues with representatives of Western states. Reportedly, however, no talks took place on direct operational cooper- ation with Western naval forces.

In the 19505 and 19605, the Swedish Navy had two main wartime missions, viz. to join with air and ground forces in repelling an across- the-Baltic invasion of Sweden, and to protect imports from the West.

During most of the 19505, the Navy Command deemed that no Western naval operations of significance to the Swedish defence in the Baltic Sea could be reckoned with. Gradually, however, with the West German build-up of naval forces in the Baltic Sea, and particularly following the establishment of BALTAP in 1962, expectations of some cooperation with NATO in the Southern Baltic seem to have risen.

Wartime imports, all-important to Sweden, would be dependent predominantly upon sea transportation across the Atlantic and the North Sea. Early on, talks were held between Swedish and foreign naval officers on allowing ships en route to Sweden in war — irrespective of whether Sweden had become involved or remained neutral to join Western convoys. However, no conclusive decisions seem to have been


The Commission has made a special study of two regions where cooperation with the Western Powers could be assumed to be of special pertinence, viz. the Swedish West Coast and Öresund.

All through this period, the prime task of the West Coast naval commanding officer was to protect import shipping and sea lanes along the West Coast. As late as the early 1960s, one of his principal tasks was stated to be cooperation with allied naval forces and preparations for the basing of them, following specific directives. This task was also a prerequisite for the protection of imports. Until the early 19605, cooperation with NATO naval forces in the Kattegat and the Skagerrak was much enlarged on in regional war planning and strategy studies. The Chief of the Navy issued directives to the effect that two operating bases on the West Coast were to be given sufficient logistical capacity for basing of an allied naval force, as well as for receiving merchantmen. Furthermore, in 1956 the Chief of the Navy issued orders for planning the reception and basing of allied (primarily Danish and Norwegian) naval forces on the West Coast. No combined planning with the Western Powers on cooperation appears, however, to have been carried out. Nor do any concrete actions appear to have been taken in preparation for cooperation.

As long as the bulk of the naval forces of the Soviet Union were based in the Baltic Sea, it was & vital interest, according to the Western Powers as well as the Swedish Navy High Command, to close the Baltic Approaches in a tense political situation with an imminent threat of war. Western and Swedish transports across the Atlantic would otherwise be threatened by, e. g. Soviet submarines. A complicating factor here was the status of Öresund according to international law.

In 1949, the Danish and Swedish navies commenced combined planning to facilitate effective closure of Öresund. In the same year, the Government appointed a committee to study the feasibility of closing the Swedish side of Öresund to passage in a crisis, while remaining neutral. The Committee proposed inter alla a certain amendment in the Swedish neutrality regulations and combined planning with the Danish Navy in peacetime. No amendment of the statutes was made, however. It has not been feasible to determine the character and extent of potential collabor- ation in the 19505 between the Danish and Swedish navies in the defence of Öresund. There 15 information indicating that plans for the closure of Öresund were in some way coordinated. There may also have been a certain amount of intelligence cooperation. No operational cooperation seems to have taken place between naval authorities across Öresund in the 19605.

In conclusion, the Commission finds that very elaborate and wide-

ranging preparations would have been imperative in order for the Swedish Navy to carry out combined operations with NATO naval forces. There is no evidence of such preparations having been made. Yet, until the early 19605, Swedish planning recurrently involved ideas on how such cooperation was to be effected, should Sweden be forced into war on the side of the Western Powers following a Soviet attack. This planning apparently ceased roughly at the time when the operational command of the naval forces was transferred to the Defence Staff.

Measures relating to air operations

It soon became clear to Swedish observers that Western strategic interests in Sweden were above all concerned with the possibilities of flying across Swedish airspace, and with the risks of the adversary doing the same. Likewise, it was evident that air assets would be the main form of assistance that the Western Powers could conceivably divert to Sweden. Swedish discussions on measures to facilitate the reception of foreign assistance were consequently to focus on air warfare. No plans for cooperation with foreign air forces have been found, however; and, reportedly, none existed.

Sophisticated command and control of air forces from the ground requires a system, the main components of which are air—combat control centres, radar stations, and communications. With the introduction of the so—called STRIL 60 system in the 19605, Sweden advanced to the international forefront in this field. A key element of the communications system was the permanent radio relay network that the Air Force had been building since the 19505.

With reference to the inter-Scandinavian air safety cooperation, SVENORDA, some radio relay links were established to control centres in Denmark and Norway. It was technically feasible to connect these links to NATO's European network. The links permitted voice and unsophisticated data transmissions. The capacity was sufficient to transmit "crude" data for air-combat control, e.g., general data on the character of an enemy strike mission or data on planned friendly/allied air missions. It was not feasible, however, to transmit radar images via these links, and so the prerequisites for a comprehensive integration of air defences were lacking.

To avoid accidental firing on friendly aircraft, IFF systems (Identifica— tion, Friend or Foe) were developed. 'Ihese systems used radio signals permitting air combat control centres to automatically identify friendly aircraft. The Swedish designation was "I(gen)K(ännings)-system." IFF systems were surrounded by the utmost secrecy. Initially, Sweden was restricted to purchasing obsolescent IFF systems from the Western

Powers. Towards the end of the 19405, studies were initiated aiming at the procurement of an indigenous IFF system, autonomous from its great—power equivalents.

At the end of the 19505, work had advanced far enough for the Swedish prototype's performance to be evaluated, and compared with that of a U.S./British systern, designated Mark X. Considering that the Western system was not fully accessible to the Swedish Air Force, the Swedish system was deemed to offer the greatest benefits. One prerequi- site for the procurement of the Swedish system, however, was for Mark X interrogators to be installed at certain radar stations on the ground, due to the great importance attached to being able to identify possible allied aircraft which, in wartime, could be expected to utilize Swedish airspace.

In 1961, the procurement was being planned of a number of Mark X units intended for Swedish radar stations. Trials with this equipment were to be conducted, and certain personnel were trained in operating it. Later in the same year, aims were lowered, probably because the United States and the United Kingdom were on the point of introducing a new version, Mark XII. In view of the trials and training conducted on Mark X, it should have been fairly Straightforward, however, to install the more modern equipment, should it be supplied to Sweden, e.g. in a crisis. Through its activities in the IFF Sphere, Sweden acquired freedom of action in terms of technology so that, should an over—arching policy decision be made, a capability for the identification of possible Western allied aircraft could rapidly be established.

Loran C is a long-distance radio navigation system of U.S. origin. Initially, it served primarily military purposes, i.e., precision navigation of U.S. strategic submarines, and probably also of U.S. military aviation. During the Vietnam war, this system is said to have been the principal navigational aid for U.S. bombers.

In early 1960, the United States requested Sweden to permit calibra— tion of the system, with one aircraft carrying gauging equipment to be parked at Bromma airport (Stockholm) and Torslanda airport (Gothenburg), respectively. Loran C was described in general terms as a navigational aid for ships and aircraft, with no reference made to military applications. At the same time, similar requests were made to a number of other West European states. The Swedish Government granted the request, and calibrations were made later that year. These calibrations may have contributed to U.S. Air Force capabilities for precision navigation in the Baltic region. Documents submitted to the Cabinet prior to the decision showed that Loran C could be used for navigation by submarines equipped with the nuclear ballistic missile system Polaris. The calibrations made in Sweden could, however, hardly

be seen in this context, since the Polaris submarines were unlikely to operate in the Baltic Sea. Nothing has been divulged indicating that the issue of U.S. Air Force utilization of Loran C was discussed in contacts between the defence authorities and the Government at that time.

Swedish combat aircraft were comparably light—weight and their requirements for runway load capacity and length at Swedish airbases were moderate. At the same time, the focus of Western interest was on heavy offensive bombers with heavy payloads and ranges which, from the mid-19505, made possible return flights from the United States to the Soviet Union without refuelling stops. Also, fighter escort of bombers, in use at least until the mid—19505, was generally provided by aircraft larger and heavier than Swedens By Swedish standards, then, Western bombers, as well as fighters, made great demands on base capacity. Evidently, therefore, cooperation with Western air forces involving the use of Swedish bases - to the extent this was contemplated — raised the issue of whether their capacity was adequate.

The significance of air bases for cooperation with the Western Powers was realized early on. Reportedly, Erlander explained in 1948 that he would task the Defence Staff with a continued study of the feasibility of basing U.S. air assets in Sweden. According to the then Under-Secretary at the Ministry of Defence, one additional motive for the expansion of Swedish airbases in the 19505 was to create a capability for receiving possible allied aircraft. In 1960, the intelligence section of the Air Staff requested, from the Swedish air attaché in London, data on landing gear ground pressure, etc. of certain British aircraft, some of which were bombers intended to carry nuclear weapons.

In this context, it is notable that the Swedish base structure, composed of a multitude of small and scattered bases, in effect complicated cooperation with foreign air forces. Furthermore, the interests of commercial aviation affected the capacity afforded to many airfields.

The Commission has studied the main runway capacity of the Swedish airbase system in the 19505 and 19605, in terms of runway length, width, and load capacity, and compared this with the requirements of the Swedish Air Force and those of commercial aviation. In the process, it has been possible to establish that the majority of Swedish airbases can be viewed as having been constructed according to national require— ments. A few runways, primarily located close to the Swedish East Coast, were, however, during the period in question, of a length and width that to a certain extent exceeded strictly national requirements. The expansion of these bases can be seen as a means to create freedom of action, in a technical sense, to facilitate takeoffs and landings of heavy Western military aircraft.

The Swedish Air Force converted to high-pressure refuelling and

switched types of aviation fuel in about 1960, and this was in effect an adjustment to NATO standards. These measures appear, however, to have been motivated primarily by national requirements. This does not rule out the possibility of a desire to improve technical preconditions for cooperation with the Western Powers also having contributed to the decision.

Nothing has been found indicating that on—base maintenance and repair facilities of the Swedish Air Force were of such capacity as to permit foreign air forces to conduct larger—scale operations from Swedish airbases.

Preparations for wartime procurement of equipment and supplies

In the course of a longer war, the endurance of the Swedish National Defence would be dependent on imports of military equipment and other essential war supplies, primarily fuel. The United States and the United Kingdom were the principal suppliers anticipated.

Whether Sweden would receive any deliveries in war was uncertain. In 1949 at least, the Western Powers were reluctant to provide any accommodating answers to Swedish requests in this matter. In 1954, the Swedish Defence Staff made a request to the NATO Standing Group, apparently with the objective of securing deliveries of supplies to Sweden in the event of a threatening contingency.

The Defence Staff was charged with the planning of imports to meet the requirements of the armed forces. During the first half of the 19505, lists of wartime import requirements were compiled. The purpose of these lists was that, in the event of an outbreak of war, they were to be presented to relevant authorities of the prospective export countries. Designated trade delegations were to travel to the United States and the United Kingdom to assist the Swedish missions in managing these issues. The lists were kept updated for a few years, but seem to have lost their currency thereafter. In 1969, however, the Defence Staff resumed this planning, with the consent of the Government.

The Swedish shipping industry maintained a certain preparedness to coordinate Swedish transport resources with those of the Western Powers in war. Such coordination it was hoped - could contribute to a favour- able Western position on permitting Swedish merchantmen with cargo destined for Sweden to join their convoys across the Atlantic and the North Sea. Swedish commercial aviation maintained similar prepared- ness.

Preparations for resistance in the event of occupation

The planning directives included assumptions to the effect that the regular defence could collapse, and that all or part of Sweden might come under enemy control. In such a contingency, the population was expected to actively or passively resist the intruder, thereby helping to force him out of the country, and ultimately, to restore a legal govern- ment.

In peacetime, steps could be taken to recruit reliable people who, in the event of occupation, could form the core of a resistance movement. Communications equipment and weapons could be acquired and certain training conducted. A network of this kind is often called a stay—behind organization.

A resistance movement is, more often than not, dependent on external assistance. A stay—behind organization could thus have reasons to cultivate contacts with possible foreign providers of assistance in peacetime. More or less far—reaching joint planning could also be carried out.

There have been reports in books and newspapers of Swedish stay- behind organizations. This kind of activity is of interest to the Com- mission only to the extent that it has involved preparations for receiving military assistance from a foreign power. A CIA officer, stationed at the U.S. Embassy in Stockholm in the early 19505, has asserted that he was tasked to establish stay—behind networks inter alia in Sweden. Reports on how extensive his Swedish network was have differed. This activity was gradually discontinued and seems to have ceased completely at about 1960.

Concurrently with this activity there existed at least since the early 19505, the core of a Swedish resistance movement, with connections to trade unions, industry, and the National Defence. This activity, run entirely by Swedes, was placed under Government supervision in 1958. Contacts did occur between representatives of this organization and foreign officials. Their prime purpose appears to have been to enable a Swedish resistance movement to obtain material assistance from the Western Powers. Apart from the acquisition of certain radio equipment, few if any concrete measures seem to have been implemented.

Concluding assessment of military preparations for cooperation with the Western Powers

The military measures taken for cooperation with the West can mainly be categorized as related either to organization and personnel, or to equipment.

The most significant measure of the first kind was the actual prepared— ness for establishing military cooperation with Western Powers signifi- cant to Sweden. Reception of direct assistance from, and cooperation with, Western armed forces would have required extensive advance preparations. The designated liaison groups were not sufficient for this purpose.

Measures involving equipment can, for all practical purposes, be referred to the sphere of air operations and communications for operational command and control. Measures taken relating to air operations involving primarily systems for communications, identifi— cation, and navigation, as well as airbases may be deemed limited, but nevertheless significant.

Measures in the field of communications in the form of swift and secure links with Denmark and Norway, and with the U.S. Air Force in West Germany - also entailed consequences for the preconditions for operational command and control. They provided the technical possi— bilities for consultation and coordination in general, mainly in a strategic sense. They were, however, completely inadequate for far—reaching direct cooperation with the armed forces of the Western Powers.

The memorandum by the secretariat of the 1955 Defence Committee, referred to in chapter 3, discussed inter alia what could be done to further Western wartime assistance to Sweden. The focus was set on direct assistance of a kind effectively bordering on indirect assistance, i.e., limited employment of strike and bomber air units. In this context, primarily the following types of measures were mentioned: personal contacts which were to have the potential for expansion, should war threaten;

- secure and sufficient means of communication; - a general coordination of air operations; - some coordination of air surveillance;

— exchange of air defence intelligence and general intelligence. There are no indications of this fundamental view on external assistance having changed later on. No comprehensive assessment on this issue has been found dated later than 1956.

The Commission concludes that the measures referred to in the mem— orandum correspond closely to what was actually accomplished.

In the sphere of personal contacts, peacetime high—level military contacts were maintained with key Western states. Also, there were plans for dispatching delegations of highly qualified operations officers to these states in the event of a crisis.

The significance of the radio—relay links established has already been commented upon. Furthermore, the communications facilities should have made possible the overall coordination of air operations, in the

sense that it was technically feasible to manage flights of Western bombers traversing Swedish airspace on their approach to the Soviet Union, without the aircraft being inadvertently fired upon by Swedish air defences.

The construction of extended runways close to the Swedish East Coast, as well as IFF measures taken, should, in the mind of the Commission, be viewed in the context of bombers returning from the East. The most plausible explanation for the extended runways is thus that these were to facilitate emergency landings by bombers damaged in the course of their mission. The IFF system would also have been very important in this context for identifying and directing the returning aircraft, and forestalling accidental fire if they were intercepted by the Swedish air defences.

As regards certain coordination of air surveillance and exchange of air defence intelligence, the technical prerequisites were at hand, in the form of a Swedish signals intelligence service primarily directed eastwards, as well as opportunities of trading general information with various Western Powers.

Also, the permission to calibrate Loran C might have contributed to an increased effectiveness in Western bombing of Soviet targets. As far as has been established, however, no such considerations influenced the Governmenfs decision.

In conclusion, the Commission has found that the measures taken, aimed primarily at creating freedom of action - in a threatening, vaguely defined, contingency permitting the rapid reception of mainly indirect assistance, primarily from the United States, were a decision made to this effect at the political level. Nothing has been found, however, to indicate that any plans for combined operations were made in conjunc- tion with other states, nor that any formal security guarantee was offered to Sweden by any of the Western great powers.

In all likelihood, only a very small group within the military leader- ship had a complete picture of measures actually taken, and of their overarching motives.

Chapter 7 How much did the Government know?

Tage Erlander was Prime Minister of Sweden throughout the period studied by the Commission. He was personally interested in and had a thorough understanding of security policy issues, and took an active part in the making of foreign and defence policies.

Östen Undén served as Minister of Foreign Affairs in 1945-62. He

was the leading ideologist and interpreter of the official Swedish policy of neutrality. He was succeeded by Torsten Nilsson, who held office until 1971.

Allan Vougt served as Minister of Defence in 1945-51, Torsten Nilsson in 1951—57, and Sven Andersson in 1957—73. Contrary to Vougt, Nilsson and Andersson belonged to the inner cabinet, and must be assumed to have had the authority and power to act independently within the confines of what they perceived to be general government policy. Both of them had good relations with the Military High Command and kept themselves well—informed on military affairs.

Within the Cabinet, more in-depth discussions on security policy issues were most probably kept within a smaller group. Deliberations on what should be done, were Sweden to be attacked by the Soviet Union the policy of neutrality thus having failed — appear to have taken place within an even more limited circle. Other Cabinet members” knowledge of security-policy and military issues can be assumed to have been of a fairly general nature.

Constitutionally, the Cabinet is one body, collectively responsible for decisions made. Officials representing subordinate government authorities must never have reason to doubt that each Cabinet member charged with an issue represents the authority of the entire Cabinet; and likewise, that information submitted by a subordinate authority to a Cabinet member will be forwarded to all ministers concerned.

Partial Scandinavian defence cooperation

It has not been possible to establish fully the content of Scandinavian defence cooperation (Cf chapter 6). Nor does available documentation permit any definitive assessment of the extent to which the Cabinet was informed of these activities in detail. It is clear, however, that the Military High Command did not act completely on its own initiative; and nothing indicates that the Military High Command would have exceeded its authority.

It appears that the Cabinet, in its view on Scandinavian contacts, was influenced by two partly conflicting interests. On the one hand, there was concern that the contacts might compromise Swedish security policy, without yielding any material benefits to Sweden. On the other hand, the Cabinet apparently believed that these contacts could help in establishing links with the Western Powers, something deemed valuable.

The expansion of Sweden,s contacts with the United States in the early half of the 19505 coincided with the waning of Cabinet interest in Scandinavian defence cooperation. It is the Commission's opinion that there are good reasons to infer from this coincidence that the main

concern of the Cabinet was to secure assistance from the Western great powers in the event of a Soviet attack on Sweden.

Contacts with the Western great powers

It soon became clear, at least to Erlander, that the Swedish National Defence was dependent on military assistance from the Western great powers to resist a Soviet attack. Following the 1949 breakdown of the negotiations on a Scandinavian defence union, Erlander is said to have approved of the Americans being informed of the weaknesses and capabilities of the Swedish National Defence.

Erlander also played a part when the British, in 1951, were handed a memorandum from the Swedish Minister of Defence, Vougt, on the Swedish armed forces and defence planning, the contents of which must be considered to have been top secret. The ensuing British preliminaries for enhanced military cooperation between the United Kingdom and Sweden, however, met with a reserved response from Erlander and other Cabinet members. The memorandum obviously transgressed the constraints on Swedish freedom of action drawn up in the Government Declaration to Parliament the previous year. The memorandum is not only most remarkable but, as far as we know, also without parallel in the post—war era.

Erlander does not seem to have objected to a military-political analysis made by the Military High Command in 1953, the gist of which was that the most significant military assistance Sweden could receive from the Western Powers would be air strikes from Western bases against enemy attacks. At the same time, it was concluded that cooperation involving simultaneous use of an airbase by Swedish and foreign aircraft would be difficult to improvise. Nevertheless, it was deemed possible to rapidly place certain Swedish airbases at the full disposal of the Western Powers, an idea which Erlander had floated as early as 1948.

As noted above (Cf chapter 3), the memorandum drawn up within the 1955 Defence Committee must be viewed as reflecting the view of the Minister of Defence, Nilsson, and consequently that of the Cabinet, on Sweden's possibilities of receiving assistance from the Western Powers, and how such assistance could be furthered. As established earlier by the Commission (Cf chapter 6), the measures listed in the memorandum closely corresponded to what was actually accomplished.

It is evident that the Minister of Defence, Andersson, was informed of the preparations to dispatch high-level military personnel to the NATO states, most significant to Sweden in a crisis. He was also privy to the communication links established with Denmark, Norway, and the U.S.

Air Force in West Germany as well as their significance for general coordination of air operations. He was also aware of the extension of certain airbase runways beyond the minimum requirements for Swedish aircraft.

On the other hand, nothing has been found indicating that the Cabinet, or any of its members, was informed of the thought of a certain harmonization of IFF systems with those the Western Powers, or of the significance of Loran C for aircraft navigation.

The aforementioned measures were, as has been established earlier, key elements of Swedish preparations for receiving assistance from the Western Powers.

The extent to which knowledge of the existing cooperation with the Western Powers was shared within the Cabinet is unknown. It is probable that the majority of the Cabinet members had no comprehensive awareness of the ongoing preparations for receiving external assistance. It is practically inconceivable that key Cabinet members would have been unaware of the expectations that the defence of Sweden would be supported by the Western Powers, primarily through U.S. Air Force bombing missions.

Chapter 8 Concluding assessment

From the late 19405, and long thereafter, a considerable risk of a major war in Europe was felt in Sweden. The policy of neutrality, in combina- tion with the maintenance of a potent Swedish National Defence, aimed at permitting Sweden to avoid being automatically drawn into a great- power conflict. Notwithstanding, the risk that the policy of neutrality would fail had to be calculated with, and that the country - most probably in the course of a major war — would be attacked by the Soviet Union. The prevailing opinion was that Sweden, on its own, would not be able to withstand an attack for any length of time. The aim was for the country to be capable of defending itself until help arrived, i.e. until the Western Powers were able to provide assistance. The general assumption was that lending such assistance was in the interests of the Western Powers themselves.

The types of Western assistance primarily to be hoped for, were air bombing missions against airbases and embarkation ports across the Baltic Sea, as well as the provision of supplies. Such assistance required only limited peacetime preparations, to be made unilaterally. The most significant measures taken were the planning for the dispatch of liaison groups to foreign headquarters, the establishment of secure communica-

tion links with Denmark and Norway which could be further connected within the NATO system, and the expansion of extended runways for heavy great-power aviation close to the Swedish East Coast. The IFF measures also fit into this picture.

As far as has been established, no guarantees of assistance were given by the Western Powers. The United States appears, however, to have been fully intent on assisting Sweden. Whether this intent was perceived in Sweden has not been possible to establish.

In the opinion of this Commission, it would have been irreconcilable with the responsibilities resting with Sweden's political and military leadership had no measures been taken to facilitate the reception of assistance from the Western great powers.

Our findings lead us to conclude that Swedish preparations for receiv- ing military assistance from the Western Powers in the event of a Soviet attack were fully compatible with international law. The preparations involved no ties or obligations to act in a certain manner in war, and did not diminish the prospects of remaining outside a major war, if not directly attacked. Thus, Sweden”s freedom of action was not restricted.

It is difficult to assess what effect the Swedish preparations might have had on the Soviet view of Sweden. In all likelihood, Moscow suspected that Sweden was collaborating with the Western Powers on operational issues. It is therefore uncertain whether possible Soviet awareness of preparations made would have affected the Soviet impression of Sweden to any substantial degree. Had the Soviets been certain that operational cooperation was occurring, they might, on the one hand, have been less inclined to respect Sweden”s territorial integrity; on the other hand, the notion of the Western Powers rapidly taking counteraction in the event of an attack on Sweden, might have served as a deterrent, and thus helped preserve the peace.

There were two particular occasions during the period in question when the Government publicly discussed the issue of preparations for military cooperation with other states. The first was the 1950 Gov- ernment Foreign Policy Declaration. In it, the Government rejected preparations bordering on a defence union, e.g. combined staff talks and combined defence plans. This, however, did not preclude unilateral Swedish measures to facilitate wartime cooperation with other states. The extensive exchange of information with the Western Powers and the measures actually taken in the 19505 must with the obvious exception of Vougt's memorandum of 1951 be deemed to come within these limits.

In 1959, replying to a question in Parliament, the Prime Minister categorically ruled out preparations for and consultations on military cooperation with members of a great—power alliance. It must have been

evident to the Cabinet, however, that unilateral preparations had been made for cooperation involving the reception of primarily indirect assistance from the United States or the United Kingdom; and that consultations and other contacts on military cooperation and/or the reception of wartime assistance had occurred with Denmark, Norway, the United Kingdom, and the United States. The statement thus deliberately conveyed a erroneous picture of what had actually taken place.

There were occasional instances of discrepancies between declared policy and actions actually taken, the most remarkable being Vougt's memorandum, handed to the British in 1951. As a rule, the Governmenfs officially stated positions provided leeway for national, unilateral preparations to receive assistance from, and cooperate with, the Western Powers in the event of a Soviet attack on Sweden. As far as has been disclosed, Swedish war preparations did not transgress these limits. It must be concluded that by and large, these preparations had Cabinet approval.

1. Introduction

1.1. The Commission,s remit

The Commission's remit (Appendix l) is to establish as far as possible the preparations possibly made for receiving military assistance in the decades following the formation of the two East-West blocs in the late 19405, until the actual beginning of détente with the start of the SALT negotiations in November 1969. The Commission is also, as far as possible, to explore the preparations that might have been made, as well as to describe and evaluate the assessments made by the political and military leadership during these decades.

The Commission has understood its mandate to mean that all forms of preparations for receiving support in the form of war operations as well as provision of equipment and supplies, and for military cooperation with the Western Powers, including Denmark and Norway, are to be explored to the extent possible. In our opinion, however, a more detailed examination of intelligence cooperation falls beyond the mandate.

The Commission has acted on the desire stated in the remit for its work to be conducted with all possible dispatch and, if possible, presented before the end of 1993. This has affected the extent and direction of the Commission's research efforts. For example, the foreign policy background has only been subjected to a general overview, no systematic examination of the extensive diplomatic reporting being possible within the time at the Commissionls disposal.

In the light of the vigorous debate on Western cooperation which preceded the appointment of the Commission, we have chosen to give an exhaustive account [in this report] of the facts emerging on contacts between Sweden and the Western Powers in these matters which we have been directed to study. We wish, however, to emphasize that there are gaps in the sources available to us. Therefore, we do not exclude the possibility of new information modifying and amplifying the picture conveyed in this report, especially for the latter part of the period exam- ined.

The Commission has also been instructed to recommend what parts of its sources can be made public as soon as its mission has been com—


In reporting its findings, the Commission has exercised the greatest possible candour. The report includes a great amount of previously classified information, some of it top secret. ln several cases, such information has been found in Swedish documents which also include data that should remain classified for national security reasons. It has not been possible for us to make recommendations on the classification of entire documents in individual cases.

Concerning foreign sources the following situation applies. Informa- tion from Norwegian archives has been handed over to the Commission on condition of continued secrecy. As to British information, it is to be noted that the British Government has copyright. Such sources are quoted and referred to in this report with permission from the relevant British authority, the Controller of Her Majesty's Stationery Office. Persons wishing to quote from or copy a British text should contact the British Public Record Office. No such restrictions apply to other interna— tional, mainly U.S., sources.

Many of the interviewees have also provided information still to be regarded as defence secrets, e.g. data of a pronounced technical charac- ter. Notes from talks with Norwegian citizens have been taken on condition of secrecy.

In these circumstances it is not generally possible to make the extensive sources used publicly accessible. The Commission therefore finds that issues of public access to its sources are best managed according to the standard security procedures of the archives concerned.

The Commission's report has been translated into English, except for appendices and footnotes.

The Commission would like to express its gratitude to various Swedish and foreign authorities, institutions, and other sources which graciously facilitated its work.

1.2. The Commission's sources

As emphasized in the Commission”s remit, information of significance to the Commission's work may be found in vast amounts of archive material in Sweden and abroad. It has been left to the Commission to determine how extensive a survey can be made within the confines of its task, and what parts will have to be left to future research (Cf section 1.3).

The Commission has conducted research in a great number of Swedish archives of importance for its task, public as well as private; and also in foreign archives deemed especially important. The Commission has also

used diaries, memoirs, and other printed sources. Archives and other printed sources examined by the Commission are listed in Appendix 2.

The Commission has also interviewed a great number of persons. A list of persons who have supplied information to the Commission is found in Appendix 3. Furthermore, a research symposium has been conducted, and foreign researchers have appeared before the Commission on a couple of occasions.

1.2.1. Archive sources

Swedish authority archives

By special resolution, the Government has decreed, pursuant to Chap. 14, Section 8 of the Secrecy Act, that information from the Ministries of Foreign Affairs, Defence, and Transport, as well as from authorities attached to these ministries, can be supplied to the Commission in derogation of normal secrecy. Exemptions have also applied to "top secret" documents, i.e. those deemed of the utmost importance for national security.

Swedish Cabinet and Ministry archives

Files deemed to be of special importance to the work of the Commission have been examined in the archives of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

The top secret archives of the Ministry of Defence for 1949-69 have been systematically examined, as well as certain secret documents deemed of special interest.

The Advisory Council on Foreign Affairs

The formal minutes of Council meetings deemed of possible interest have been made available to the Commission, starting with meeting agendas. After studying these minutes, the Commission requested access to excerpts from minutes of Council meetings from 1951 onwards. This request was granted. The latter minutes proved, however, to contain nothing of interest for the Commission's purposes.

Defence Committee reports

Documentation from the Defence Committees during the years 1949-62 has been systematically examined. The same applies to the records of the Scandinavian Defence Committee. The most important documents in connection with the 1968 Defence Decision have also been examined.

Defence authority documents

The top secret archives of the Defence Staff and the service staffs have constituted a key source, examined in full with respect to the period in question. Many documents, however, have been weeded out or otherwise removed from these archives, especially documents from the earlier part of the period. Other documents which could have been of interest in this context have with certainty not been registered or filed. The Navy Staff archive appears to have been less thoroughly weeded out than the rest of the afore—mentioned archives. This may have contributed to the impression that the Navy during certain periods was especially active in preparing for Western cooperation. No consistent distinction between secret and top secret documents seems to have been made in the early part of the period. Some secret files deemed to contain information of interest have been examined.

The top secret files for the period in question at the Defence Materiel Agency and its predecessors the Army, Navy, and Air Materiel Administrations, as well as the National Defence Research Establish- ment, and the National Defence Radio Institute have been examined in full. The yield of these examinations has been very limited, possibly due to thorough weeding out in some places.

Certain regional and local military authority archives have also been examined, in some cases fully with respect to top secret documents. Only the top secret archive of Naval Command West has yielded anything substantial. The First Archivist of the War Archives, Lars Ericson, has made a more extensive examination, on the Commission's behalf, of some secret documents kept there.

The Commission wished to point out that research in the archives of the Defence Staff and also other military authority archives is hampered by the fact that consistently created and up-dated files - in so far as they ever existed — have often been "cannibalized" and that the documents (if not weeded out) have been moved to new chronological files without specific sectioning. The Commission is therefore aware that it has only studied quantitatively very limited parts of defence authority archives. Severe restraint has also been necessary for reasons of time.


The sections of the preliminary investigative minutes from the Wennerström files, classified until the autumn of 1992, have been studied on behalf of the Commission by Lieutenant—General (ret.) Bengt Lehander and Air Commodore (ret.) Gunnar Unell. This information has proved of limited interest in the present connection.

Foreign authority archives


The Commission has been informed that Danish laws of secrecy debar foreigners from access to Danish authority archives. Senior Archivist Otto Schepelern at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, however, personally conducted an extensive search of relevant files in the ministry archives, with particular emphasis on Bornholm, but he found nothing to report to the Commission.

Lieutenant-Colonel Michael Clemmesen, a security policy research officer who is well-acquainted with the military archives, has explained to the Commission that these should not contain any information casting light on issues of concern to the Commission.


By kind permission of the Norwegian Government, the Commission was enable to study minutes of the Defence Council and the Government Security Committee as well as certain files in the Foreign Ministry archives, from which information was retrieved mainly illustrating Norwegian-Swedish defence cooperation in the late 19405 and the early 19505.

The Commission has _been told that the archives of the Ministry of Defence and the Defence Staff have been largely weeded out and destroyed.


Soviet archives are not organized in a satisfactory manner and even their personnel have difficulty in finding their way in them. The archives of the President and the Security Ministry have not been available to the Commission. Certain files in the former Soviet Foreign Ministry archives have been examined. Nothing of immediate interest for the work of the Commission has been found.

The United Kingdom

Extensive searcher have been conducted at the Public Record Office of unclassified documents from the Foreign Office and the Chiefs of Staff up to and including 1962. Starting with indices and textual references the Commission requested access to still classified documents seemingly of interest for its work. These requests first led to our being given detailed summaries of the documents, prepared for the Commission within the Foreign Office and the Ministry of Defence, and later to the majority of the documents in which we had expressed interest being declassified. Furthermore, the Ministry of Defence has examined still classified docu- ments from Chiefs of Staff meetings in the years 1963—69 without finding anything in particular to report to the Commission.

The very extensive British documentation has offered valuable insights not only concerning defence cooperation between the United Kingdom and Sweden but also concerning inter-Scandinavian contacts.


Relevant files in the German Foreign Office, Auswärtiges Amt, have been examined. No military reporting on Sweden was found, although the regulations required any such reports deemed to be of particular interest to be forwarded to the Foreign Office.

The United States

Extensive searches have been conducted especially in the National Archives (including the Presidential Archives) and also in other public archives. Much of value to our work has been found in these archives. Furthermore, an extensive collection of documents was presented to the Commission by Dr. Paul Cole.

A significant part of U.S. documentation is still classified, even though some documents have been declassified fully or in part following requests by the Commission. Above all, documentation from the 19605 is still available only to a minor extent. This being it can be expected that additional information casting light on Swedish-U.S. military relations over time will become available. Such information may quite well come to modify somewhat the picture the Commission has formed of defence contacts between the countries, especially in the latter part of the period.


The Assistant Under—Secretary of State in the Norwegian Defence Ministry, Chris Prebensen, who formerly held an administrative managerial position at NATO headquarters in Brussels, has had the archives of NATO in Brussels, SHAPE, and AFNORTH in Kolsås, Norway examined on the Commission's behalf, but without anything of interest to the Commission emerging.

Archives of organizations and private individuals Swedish archives

Certain political party archives and archives of leading politicians have been studied, as well as the collections of a few high-ranking military officers. The Swedish Shipowners' Association has permitted the Commission to study its secret archives, and the Skandinaviska Enskilda Banken has lent correspondence of Marcus Wallenberg with a number of persons of significance in this context. No information of real significance has been found in these collections.

The Commission has had access to a number of diaries kept by key persons in this context. Prime Minister Tage Erlander's children have very kindly placed their father's diaries at the Commission's disposal. These notes have been of great value to the work of the Commission. Foreign Minister Östen Undén*s diaries have been examined on behalf of the Commission by Ms Louise Hugemark. Defence Minister Sven Andersson's diaries have yielded information of relevance to the Commission”s work.

Kent Zetterberg, Assistant Professor at the Armed Forces Staff and War College (MHS) Department of History has, on behalf of the Commission, studied the day-to—day notes made by Supreme Com- manders Helge Jung and Nils Swedlund, the Chief of the Navy, Stig H:son Ericson, and the Chief of the Defence Staff, Richard Åkerman. The three latter officers have kept on—duty diaries in which moot points are often recorded daily. These notes have apparently served as an aide— mémoire, and as a basis for referring back to certain matters. Jung's notes are more freely written.

Admiral Åke Lindemalm allowed the Commission to read the diaries he kept while Chief of the Navy. These diaries include a considerable amount of interesting information.

The former Supreme Commander, the late General Torsten Rapp, did not wish to make his notes available to the Commission. He explained that they did not contain anything shedding light upon the issues included in the Commission”s remit. General Carl Eric Almgren, Chief of the

Defence Staff during most of the 19605, has explained that his archives for the moment are not organized in a manner fit for study by the Commission.

Reportedly, the late General Bengt Nordenskiöld, Chief of the Air Force 1942—54, burnt his papers and also removed documents from certain authority archives.

Diary notes are usually written down soon after the events described, which facilitates accurate recall. At the same time, they are often highly subjective, and the information must therefore be interpreted with great care in so far as it cannot be double—checked against other sources.

Foreign archives Denmark

Certain collections in the Danish Labour Movement archives have been studied.

1.2.2. Written sources

Comprehensive works on the matter studied by the Commission exist only to a very limited extent and are listed in the bibliography, Appendix 2. Of special interest in this context is "The United States and the Cold War in the High North" by Rolf Tamnes. A number of books discussing Swedish intelligence and security service also exist. The 1974 Intelli- gence Committee report "Military Intelligence Service" [Den militära underrättelsetjänsten] deserves special mention.

Certain information and assessments of interest have been found in the memoirs of politicians, military officers, and civil servants, as well as in some biographies. Certain newspaper and journal articles on special issues have also been used. A systematic literature search of this latter kind has been beyond the means of the Commission.

1 .2.3 Interviews

The Commission has collected information from more than 200 people, mostly Swedish citizens who during the period in question or shortly thereafter, served in capacities deemed of possible interest in this context. Mostly, they were key politicians, diplomats and ministry civil servants, military officers and others serving with the Swedish National Defence. Some Norwegian citizens in high civilian and military positions

during the period have been interviewed.

Several telephone interviews have been conducted, and often the inter— viewee has either stated that he or she had no knowledge of issues studied by the Commission, or has provided unclassified information. Some persons contacted by the Commission explained that, for health or other reasons, they did not wish to assist the Commission. Notes were made of telephone conversations. Whenever telephone conversations were deemed to call for additional questions, the interviewee was invited to meetings where classified issues could be discussed.

Well over a hundred interviews were conducted at meetings. Some thirty interviews took place before the full Commission. These interviews were recorded and the tapes transcribed. In some cases, the interviewee has checked the transcript, and made editorial changes. The remainder of the interviews were conducted by one or more members and/or representatives of the secretariat. For these interviews, records were prepared afterwards, based on notes from the meetings. Some such records were checked and approved by the interviewees. Certain persons have been interviewed on two or more occasions, often first by the secretariat, and then before the full Commission either once or several times.

On occasion, persons contacted have submitted written information. The Commission has the general impression that persons who have been interviewed or in other ways provided information have generally wished to provide complete and correct accounts of what they knew of the issues examined by the Commission. All in all, the interviews have substantially contributed towards completing and nuancing the picture provided by the written sources. The Commission has of course taken into account that the majority of the people providing information are of advanced age and that some are in falling health, added to which the events discussed took place many years ago.

It is also notable that many of the individuals who played a key part in shaping Swedish security policy during the 19505 and 19605 are now deceased. Others are too ill to be interviewed. Some others were unwilling to assist the Commission.

Due to time constraints, the Commission has had only very limited opportunities of interviewing foreign nationals.

In this report, the Commission has found it appropriate, with few exceptions, not to attribute verbal information to individual interviewees. With the odd exception, however, the opening of each section has been provided with a footnote showing who provided information underlying the account which follows. The complete records - as tapes, if any are now in the Commission archives.

In January 1993, the Commission conducted a research seminar

entitled "Sweden, the Nordic region, and NATO during the Cold War." Some twenty Nordic security policy researchers participated. Further- more, the American researcher, Dr. Paul Cole has presented his views on U.S. archival material in a meeting with the Commission. And at another meeting the Danish research officer, Lieutenant-Colonel Michael Clemmesen, presented the Danish view on Swedish security policy during the Cold War. Other contacts also occurred with Swedish and foreign researchers, senior archivists, and others deemed to be able to contribute. Both Assistant Professor Wilhelm Agrell and News Editor Christer Larsson, of the Swedish Broadcasting Corporation, declared that they did not wish to be interviewed by the Commission, for reasons of principle.

1.3. On future research

The number of published works on Swedish post-war security policy, based on thorough use of sources, is most limited. No larger-scale systematic research projects appear to have been started. Consequently, as shown above (Cf section 1.2), the Commission's report is based on its own extensive research with few references to previous studies.

There are surely several reasons for the paucity of research activities in this area. For example, laws of secrecy make access to primary sources in various authority archives difficult. Furthermore, it appears that security and foreign policy has had difficulty in asserting itself against other areas of higher priority in the tough competition for research funding and positions. However all this may be, advanced research on Swedish post-war security policy appears regrettably understrength.

This is especially clear in comparison to the situation in our neigh- bouring countries Finland and Norway. Lately, interesting works on the security policy deliberations and decisions of Presidents Paasikivi and Kekkonen have been published in Finland. Several studies on Norwegian political and military affairs and on Norway's post—war position in great power politics have been published in Norway. To a large degree, these studies were made possible by a defence history institute, established by the state authorities and provided with funding and research positions. This research has created & broad and secure foundation for current Norwegian debate, and the debate has also been enriched by the participation of a large number of researchers with a thorough know- ledge of Norwegian security policy. Their scientific works are to a fairly large extent written in English and have attracted much attention abroad.

Opportunities have thus been created for a perceptive evaluation of Norwegian policy and Norwegian affairs in international research and in the well—informed international media, on the basis of research reports. Furthermore, it can be mentioned that a large—scale project "The History of Norwegian Foreign Policy" , comprising six parts of which the last three will cover the period after 1940 - was started recently. The authors have been promised access to all sources except those covering the past very few years.

In Sweden, then, the post-war field of research is considerably less cultivated than in Finland and Norway, and much remains to be done. Appropriate areas for study are the external environment, i.e. precondi— tions and constraints of Swedish security policy, dictated by our surroundings and the international situation at different points in time; and key decisionmakers” perception of this environment, goals formu- lated and means whereby they trusted to achieve those ends. Against this background, foreign and defence policy measures actually implemented must be analysed. Studies must carefully take into account changes in circumstances with the passing of time.

The Commission - as shown by its own report - is of the opinion that national security and Sweden's relations with foreign powers no longer require the same secrecy as could be demanded before the end of the Cold War. Much archival material from the early post-war era is in fact now publicly available, and although secrecy requirements still figure prominently, especially concerning military documents, more liberal standards in granting access to highly qualified researchers could improve availability without necessarily harming national security and foreign relations.

In the light of its own experiences, the Commission would like to stress the significance of research being based on open debate on complicated technical matters with civilian and military experts in this area. The Commission would also like to point out that to foster knowledge — and hopefully understanding - of Swedish security policy abroad, it is important that more significant Swedish works in this field should be published in any major language.

The Commission hopes that its report will help to improve conditions for research on post-war security policy. For current and future debate and decision-making, it is of the utmost importance to build on positive knowledge and broad perspectives on Swedish security policy hitherto.

2. Neutrality and policy of neutrality

2.1. Starting points in international law

Neutrality, as defined by international law, can exist only in times of war. Its core is and will remain non-participation in war between other states.

The laws of neutrality initially evolved out of common law, but they were formally codified during the 19th and the early 20th century. With the Paris Declaration of 1856, neutrality rules - for naval warfare were drawn up for the first time. Additional rules were codified in the 50- called Washington Agreement of 1871. Most of the codification work was carried out in the Hague Conventions, number V and XIII, in 1907. These conventions covered neutrality during land and naval warfare, respectively. Corresponding neutrality laws regarding air warfare have not been codified.

According to the Hague Conventions, the fundamental duty of a neutral state is to refrain from participating in war between other states. In return, the warring states are obliged to respect the neutrality of that neutral state. A neutral state has the right and obligation to use military force to counter violations of its territory. In such a case, the perpetrator cannot be considered a victim of hostile action.

The declared intention of a state to remain neutral in future wars does not entail any rights or obligations in peacetime.

A state can, however, already in peacetime commit itself to remain neutral in all future wars. This is called permanent neutrality. It is legally binding, either by a treaty in which neutrality is internationally guaranteed, as in the case of Switzerland, or by national legislation, as with Austria. In wartime, a permanently neutral state is obliged to adhere to the laws of neutrality stated in the Hague Conventions. In addition, in peacetime a permanently neutral state is bound by some so-called secondary obligations; the neutral state shall refrain from peacetime actions that could lead to its engagement in a future war, thereby vitiating its neutrality. The most obvious such action would be to join a military alliance.

On the other hand, it should also be legitimate for a permanently neutral state to plan for the contingencies that could arise if the state

were attacked and the policy of neutrality thus had failed. Not even staff talks with other states, or with a military alliance, on defence issues should be considered incompatible with the secondary obligations, provided that they do not involve binding agreements on joint actions in future wars.

In short, then, the permanently neutral state is obliged to follow some form of neutrality policy also in peacetime. The guidelines for such a policy are nevertheless no more precise than those discussed above. Thus, it is for the state itself to decide upon the details of what is, or is not, consistent with its permanent neutrality status.

In the case of Sweden, the declared intention to maintain neutrality in the event of war has been a purely unilateral statement of will. A deliberate policy has been to avoid formal security policy ties. Thus, Sweden is not bound by any secondary obligations in peacetime. And so the restrictions that were adhered to - during the period studied by this Cormnission to enhance the credibility of Sweden*s neutrality policy, were self—imposed.

In conclusion, neutrality in war is to a great extent codified in the Hague Conventions. Neutrality in peacetime, however, does not have a corresponding basis in international law. Its substance is determined by the states themselves. Only for permanently neutral states Sweden is not one of them - do certain guidelines exist which do not, however, offer any explicit guidance.

2.2. Government declarations

During the Cold War, Sweden*5 security policy was most often characterized as "non-participation in alliances in peacetime, aiming at neutrality in war." This was often abbreviated "the Swedish neutrality policy."

Throughout the period forming the subject of this Commission's analysis, official statements described Swedish security policy in some- what differing terms. Major statements of this kind were made, for example, in conjunction with the regularly recurring parliamentary defence decisions. These are discussed in Chapter 3, below. This section discusses the Swedish Government's foreign policy declarations in Parliament and certain other official statements regarding foreign policy. In some of the foreign policy declarations, positions taken on security policy were more elaborate than in others - some of which dealt with the issue very briefly, or not at all. The following description will highlight the years when they were especially substantive: 1949, 1950, 1962, and

1968. Using other sources, 1956 and 1959 will also be discussed.


After the failure to create a Scandinavian defence union in early 1949, the Government briefed the Riksdag (the Swedish Parliament). The Prime Minister, Tage Erlander, and the Foreign Minister, Östen Undén, delivered literally identical statements in the First and Second Chamber of the Riksdag, respectively:

Besides, neutrality is a term referring to conditions in wartime. When discussing neutrality in peacetime, one can only mean that a state, striving to remain outside a conflict in war, does not in peacetime restrict its freedom of action by entering alliance agreements that would render wartime neutrality impossible.

These statements did not exclude a certain degree of military cooperation with other states in peacetime. An alliance treaty was judged as the sole form of cooperation to be beyond the boundaries of the neutrality policy in peacetime.


The wording in the Swedish Government foreign policy declaration of 1950 is somewhat different: The foreign policy that Sweden wishes to pursue also in the future, is aimed at rendering neutrality possible in the event of an all-European conflict breaking out, in spite of everything.

It was also laid down that declarations stating that Sweden would pursue a policy of neutrality biased in any particular direction would appear to be divorced from reality. Had Sweden been a great military power, and also geographically distant from the fronts of war, perhaps the policy of neutrality could be superseded by "the more arbitrary policy of the non— belligerent." The Government continued:

Our experience from both world wars should have taught us how little freedom of choice a neutral country has in adverse circumstances between different policies within the framework of maintaining a policy of neutrality. No responsible Government can in peacetime believe itself capable of more closely defining the policy of neutrality & future Government would have to pursue during external conditions still unknown. Neither can anyone require that we should venture into predictions of the correct policy for different hypothetical situations in a future war. We would not do ourselves, or our country, any service by such conjecturing.

In this context, the Govermnent also raised the issue whether or not

peacetime technical military cooperation with Denmark and Norway was consistent with Swedish security policy:

Sometimes the question has been raised, whether or not a policy of non—alignment aiming at neutrality in the event of an all-European war, can be consistent with technical military cooperation in peacetime between Sweden and our Scandinavian neighbours. On several occasions, the Government has responded that we cannot enter into any such cooperation having the effect of compromising our declared policy of neutrality. Those who advocate technical military coopera- tion may mean totally different things, which public debate shows. But each and every one knows that when technical military cooperation is discussed, one thinks foremost of cooperation such as combined staff talks and combined defence planning and implications thereof, i. e. exactly the kind of cooperation that in its political purport comes close to a defence union and which - if accepted in Sweden vis—a—vis Denmark and Norway - would to a great extent have the effect of compromising Sweden's stated policy of neutrality. Since Denmark and Norway have acceded to the Atlantic Pact, technical military cooperation with them would be tantamount to an indirect engagement in the greater compact created by the Atlantic Pact. The Swedish Government therefore finds such technical cooperation inconsistent with the policy adopted by Parliament and the Government.

The statement gives the impression that the Government considered that the policy of neutrality rendered military technical cooperation with Denmark and Norway impossible. All that wars expressly excluded however, was the kind of cooperation whose political substance came close to the defence union, i.e. joint staff talks and combined defence planning. Here, the Government did not state whether other, less far- reaching forms of cooperation with other countries on defence issues were possible in view of the Swedish policy of neutrality.

The chairman of the Liberal Party, Bertil Ohlin, responded to the above as follows:

Many - among others the Supreme Commander have advocated some technical military cooperation, and rightly so. Military contacts between the Scandinavian countries, without concomitant political obligations of any kind on the part of one country to assist another (in the event of war), are consistent with the Swedish objective of keeping our country out of war as long as possible. Such a policy is not of the kind the Foreign Minister referred to when he discussed cooperation with a political content similar to that of the defence union. The cooperation I espouse is on the contrary clearly delineated and of a different nature from that of the defence union, the most important feature of which is a political obligation to assist the other party in certain situations.

Undén did not respond to this contribution. It should be interjected that, according to his diary, prior to the debate Undén had discussed the

wordings in the Government declaration with Ohlin, among others.

The Government statements of 1950 should be viewed in the context of the discussion regarding partial defence cooperation with Denmark and Norway, where among others — Ohlin and the leader of the Conservative Party, Jarl Hjalmarson, advocated some form of military cooperation between the Scandinavian countries, while Government representatives indicated a certain scepticism and warned that even less far—reaching forms of military cooperation could raise doubts as to the policy being conducted.

During the 19505, certain disagreements on this issue surfaced between, on the one hand, the Government (which at times included the Agrarian Party), and on the other, the Liberal and the Conservative parties.


On account of a bill introduced by the Communist Party to give the Swedish policy of neutrality a legal foundation, in part through an international guarantee, and in part through a declaration of neutrality by the Government, the Committee on Foreign Affairs stated:

There could be no doubt, neither in Sweden nor abroad, that the state authorities intend to adhere to their chosen policy of not, by joining either of the great—power blocs, diminishing our chances of avoiding being drawn into a prospective great-power conflict.

The Parliament followed the Committee's recommendation and did not pass the bill. The Social Democratic Party and the three non—socialist parties concurred on this matter. Later in the same year, the Government elected to use a somewhat different wording:

The Government will safeguard the non-alignment policy in peacetime aiming at neutrality in wartime. There must be no doubt as to our determination to remain outside the military alliances of the great powers, while at the same time, we are committed to fiercely defending our freedom and our independence against any aggressor.


In 1959, a sharp disagreement arose regarding the policy of neutrality. The catalyst was the summer-time Government decision to exclude the leader of the Conservative Party, Jarl Hjalmarson, from the Swedish delegation to the U.N. General Assembly. This step was taken in view of Hjalmarson's public criticism of the Government's decision to invite the Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev to Sweden. Khrushchev*s visit was later cancelled by the Soviets; the official explanation referred to the

campaign against him and the weak response thereto from the Swedish Government.

As these events were debated in Parliament, principal aspects of the Swedish policy of neutrality were also raised. It is notable that there had been earlier public accounts of disagreements regarding the policy of neutrality between the Government and the opposition, especially Jarl Hjalmarson. But the Government had not previously confronted the opposition so fiercely on this issue.

In the Second Chamber, Prime Minister Erlander replied to a parlia- mentarian question. A key paragraph stated:

Swedish foreign policy, as shaped during the years since World War II, is often characterized in some short formulae. Above all, we emphasize the aim of remaining neutral in the event of a third world war and, therefore, non—participation in alliances in peacetime. Sweden has stayed outside the great alliance groupings into which the world is divided. We have done this to avoid - if possible - being drawn into a war due to alignment. But we have also chosen this non- alignment vis-a-vis the great power blocs because we believe that by so doing we have greater possibilities of maintaining good relations with other states in peacetime, irrespective of whether they belong to one or the other alliance system, or whether they remain outside.

According to Erlander, Hjalmarson had failed to observe the latter part of the policy. "Unrestrained attacks by influential'politicians on the policy of other states counteract the policy of neutrality that we officially adhere to," it was stated. Erlander also addressed what the Swedish policy of neutrality would, or would not, permit:

The policy of neutrality means that we aim at the advantage of avoiding immediately being drawn into a future world war. However, it also carries obligations and requirements for firmness and consist- ency. The policy of neutrality presupposes that other countries can have confidence in our will to steadfastly adhere to our chosen foreign policy. It must not be made dependent on temporary factors but should be the expression of a lasting programme. Others should be able to trust our assurances that non-participation in alliances in peacetime means that we will maintain neutrality in the event of war. Thus, the policy of neutrality must neither give rise to distrust on the part of one superpower nor to expectations on the part of another regarding deviations from the chosen policy. It does not allow for freedom of action in the sense that Sweden, following the outbreak of a major war, without being attacked, can choose — even in a precari- ous situation and under external pressure - to side with one of the warring parties. Furthermore, other states must be assured that Swedish territory and Swedish resources will not be used for acts of aggression. We cannot refrain from resisting each aggressor or refrain from Opposing each violation of the countryls neutrality. In todayis world, our defence is an indispensable support for our foreign policy. It shall create respect for our willingness to maintain neutrality in all

directions and for our capability to defend ourselves, if nonetheless attacked. But it is a Swedish defence for Swedish territory. Prepara- tions and discussions regarding military cooperation with members of a great power military alliance are therefore categorically out of the question if we wish to uphold trust in our foreign and defence policy.

The freedom of action indicated in the statements previously referred to by the Prime Minister and the Foreign Minister in 1949 and 1950 and the Committee”s on Foreign Affairs wording from 1956 was now circumscribed. lt had earlier been out of the question that Sweden would enter into a great power military alliance or enter such military cooperation which in its political purport was similar to that of the defence union, i.e. joint staff talks and joint defence plans with members of such an alliance. A new self-assumed code of conduct was now added, i.e. that preparations and discussions concerning military cooperation with individual members of such an alliance were out of the question. In addition, the Government made a declaration regarding (the absence of) freedom of action after the outbreak of a great—power war. It was ruled out that Sweden, before being attacked, could join any belligerent side. This "conjecturing" had been deemed inappropriate in the foreign policy declaration of 1950.

By quoting views expressed by Hjalmarson at different occasions during the 19505, Erlander sought to demonstrate why the Conservative Party leader was unfit to represent Sweden's foreign policy abroad. Erlander referred, for example, to Hjalmarson”s statements concerning the Government”s invitation to Khrushchev; his idea, voiced in 1952, that Sweden should cooperate with Denmark regarding the defence of Bornholm; his statement that the Swedish policy of non—participation in alliances was conditioned by current political and strategic circumstances; and, last but not least, his statements that even a strong Swedish defence would have to build upon the presupposition of Western military assistance.

When Hjalmarson responded in Parliament, he quoted, e.g. the wording of the Committee on Foreign Affairs from 1956. He also outlined his own and the Conservative Party's view on prepared assistance:

It is unrealistic and against our own vital interests not to admit openly that the objective for our defence is ”to check an attack long enough so that we can receive external support before large parts of the country have been conquered or resistance may be given up.” The quotation is official. It is the basis for our defence planning, which, according to another official declaration, is aimed at ”ensuring our defence enough endurance to make external support effective.” External support! What does that mean — in plain Swedish?

Our Communists may have their doubts but does anyone else in this

Chamber? Does anyone have the slightest doubt that the military and political leadership in Moscow wouldn”t read the words the way we do? A small democracy, attacked by a superpower and fighting for its life, hopes for and counts on the great democracies for support and assistance. To say this clearly does not change our non—participation in alliances. On the contrary, by laying the cards on the table we create respect and trust.

A non-aligned country such as ours, has the freedom - and should also make use of it to purchase defence equipment on commercial terms, already in peacetime, Wherever it chooses, and to take all steps necessary for an effective defence. This also entails facilitating, already in peacetime and based on our own objective judgments, outside assistance, once an attack has been launched against us. It is self—evident that non-alignment becomes defunct when we have been attacked by a great power — and when all our strength must be directed towards using all means at our disposal in fighting for every inch of our soil. Our country does then become a theatre of war, and our only hope is that it does not become a non—aligned theatre but, in the words of the Prime Minister, ”a staging area for another, non-hostile great power grouping.”

During the parliamentary foreign policy debate of 1959, the rift seemed deep between the Social Democratic and Conservative interpretations of the policy of neutrality. One could, however, see these different interpretations as limited to only certain aspects of the policy, and this did not necessarily preclude agreement regarding the fundamental policy stance.


In the 1962 parliamentary foreign policy debate, the Government commented on the previous year”s international drama - the Berlin Crisis and the Note Crisis between Finland and the Soviet Union. After having outlined some background facts, Erlander turned to the Swedish policy of neutrality:

There is no reason to once again offer a more detailed account of the meaning of our policy of neutrality. But it should be pointed out that we, in the hardening international climate, less than ever can afford to let any doubt arise regarding the consistency and firmness of the line we have chosen in our external affairs. Through this posture, we believe we contribute to the Stability of the Nordic region and of Europe. At the same time, by maintaining what according to our means is a strong defence, we show that we are steadfastly determined to follow a straight political course in peacetime; and in case of conflict and war, to resist all attempts from the great powers to use Swedish territory for military purposes.

This was nothing new, but rather a confirmation of the policy laid down

earlier. However, the Prime Minister then touched upon the Note Crisis between the Soviet Union and Finland the previous autumn, and cautiously alluded to the fact that Sweden's security policy posture was not independent of changes in its immediate surroundings:

If the Soviet note on 30 October caused concern in Finland and the other Nordic countries, it was because of the apprehension that Moscow would call in question the very basis for this Finnish policy. For our part, we did not, however, believe this to be a likely hypothesis for the Russian intent. We could not believe that Moscow were unaware of the significance for Nordic stability of Finland”s foreign and defence policy status being preserved. What has happened since then between Finland and the Soviet Union has not caused us to change this view.

Later the same year, when Torsten Nilsson took office as Foreign Minister, he pointed to the existing unanimous fundamental views on Swedish security policy:

There is great and gratifying unity in Sweden on Swedish foreign policy. Of course, differences of opinion can arise about how the sails should be set and where the shoals are, but everyone agrees on the course.


In the 1968 foreign policy declaration, Prime Minister Erlander addressed the Swedish policy of neutrality against the backdrop of criticism of the Government - it had been either too active or too passive in its reactions, in particular on the Vietnam War. He stressed that the term neutrality in Swedish foreign policy had never implied passivity or the avoidance by Sweden of taking positions on controversial issues. When expressing opinions on controversial issues, Sweden was not neutral. If Swedish positions had sometimes irritated one or the other of the superpowers, this did not mean that the policy of neutrality itself had changed. The policy of neutrality would be weakened if Sweden on such occasions had budged from its independent position.

This statement addressed the issue of what profile a neutral state should have in the foreign policy context, i.e. a different dimension of the policy of neutrality from that on which the earlier discussion had focused. The statement, however, revealed the fact that those restrictions the Swedish Government felt it had to observe because of the neutrality policy, had a next to self-imposed character. These restrictions could change over time, as was shown by how differently the Government saw the opportunities to forcefully criticize the U.S. warfare in Vietnam compared to its polemics against Hjalmarson in 1959 for his "exorbitant criticism" of the policies of other states. A corresponding inconsistency

can be traced in the position of the Conservative and Liberal parties. Their spokesmen now complained about emotional wordings in foreign policy and warned of biases in the criticism of the great power blocs.

Here it is of interest that Erlander, in the statements referred to above, set out by quoting the Committee statement from 1956 as well as his own response to the parliamentary question in 1959, referred to above. In the case of the latter, he stopped quoting after the sentence saying that the Swedish policy of neutrality did not permit freedom of action in the sense that Sweden could make common cause with one of the warring parties after the outbreak of a European war, without being attacked itself. Thus, he did not repeat the statement that preparations and discussions regarding military cooperation with members of a military alliance were out of the question if Sweden sought to retain credibility for its foreign and security policies.

Even if the 1968 declaration did not touch upon the military aspects of security policy, Erlander's cutting the quotation short is worth noting. It is also possible that the Government considered the response to the parliamentary question of 1959 too far—reaching in its repudiation of peacetime preparations for military cooperation with other states, a consideration that could possibly be explained by the inflamed domestic climate at the time. The 1968 declaration thus appears to mark a retreat to the pre-1959 position.

3. Relevant defence decisions

3.1. Security background

The period studied by this Commission - from the late 19405 until the end of the 19605 coincides with the first half of the Cold War. In Europe, the first decade of this period especially was characterized by manifold uncertainty about the future. Immediately after World War II, there was poverty and even starvation in many countries, industry and infrastructure had been wrecked by the war or were in need of large- scale modernization, and political stability was threatened by internal unrest.

Turning to security policy, relatively soon after the war it became obvious that the alliance had been held together only out of the necessity created by the war against Germany and Japan. The Yalta Agreement of February 1945 between Stalin and the Western allies could be variously interpreted. It became apparent that Stalin, step—by-step, was tightening Soviet control of the East European states occupied by the Soviet Army. At the same time, it was evident that the, at the time, large Communist parties of Western Europe were strongly influenced by Moscow.

Moscow”s determination to maintain internal control within the Eastern bloc was demonstrated in various concrete ways during this period, viz. the Prague coup of 1948; the suppression of the uprisings in Berlin in 1953 and in Hungary in 1956; the construction of the Berlin Wall in 1961; and the invasion of Czechoslovakia in 1968. In addition, the first attempt to cut off Berlin from contacts with the West, during 1948-49, threatened to develop into a military confrontation with the Western Powers.

The Korean War (1950-53) and the Cuba Crisis in 1962 held particu— larly serious implications for East—West relations. Many in the West also in Sweden - perceived the Korean War as but one step in a general Communist expansion, which could soon enough turn into open war, also in Europe. This had a decisive influence on the Western political and military posture for many years to come.

The Soviet attempt to deploy nuclear missiles in Cuba triggered a very strong American reaction. For a few weeks in 1962 the world seemed on the brink of nuclear war. The resolution of the crisis, mainly through

Soviet retreat, paved the way, however, for a lasting, more stable relationship between the East and the West. While the fundamental ideological differences remained, the parties were in agreement on preventing the Cold War from turning into armed conflict.

It has already been suggested that the West over the years took various actions to strengthen its positions economically, politically, and militarily. The first momentous decision was the U.S. Marshall Plan of 1947 for U.S. support of the economic and political reconstruction of Europe. In March 1948, the United Kingdom, France, Belgium, the Netherlands, and Luxembourg signed the Brussels Treaty on a common defence. In April 1949, the Atlantic Treaty was concluded as a security alliance between North America and a number of states in Western Europe, including Denmark and Norway. Two years later, it was endowed with a more permanent organization and a combined military command under the designation NATO. A few years later, the Federal Republic of Germany was integrated into the Western defence commun- ities. From 1949, the Atlantic Treaty/NATO assumed the dominant role of these two alliances, while the Brussels Treaty and its successor, the Western European Union (WEU), for a long time led a quiet life.

During the 19505, Western military strategy tested predominantly on U.S. superiority in nuclear weapons, believed to serve as a counterpoise to Eastern supremacy, particularly in ground forces. Over time, conven- tional capabilities were enhanced, so that in the 19605 there were hopes that Western conventional forces could withstand a conventional attack from the East, at least in the early phases of a war. Accordingly, the strategy of the late 19605 was characterized by the doctrine of flexible response, in contrast to that of massive retaliation in the 19505.

Swedish security policy perspectives were of course affected by international developments, but also coloured by our particular historical experience, and by our geopolitical position in the immediate vicinity of a Soviet Union perceived as threatening. Perceptions of our security policy situation will be addressed in the following examination of the parliamentary defence policy decisions. In this context, it should be noted that Swedish—Soviet relations during this period were strained by a number of acute crises: the shooting-down of a Swedish DC3 and a Catalina in 1952; several spy affairs in the 19505; and finally, the Wennerström spy affair, revealed in 1963.

Finland”5 position was also of key interest to Sweden. In the early phases of the period, Swedish assessments on Finland”s future were quite pessimistic. Finland was under heavy Soviet pressure, both politically and militarily — as illustrated by the Treaty of Friendship, Cooperation, and Mutual Assistance that Finland had to enter into in 1948. The Soviets retained the military base in Porkkala until 1955, and the 50-

called Night Frost cast shadows over the latter part of the 19505. Finally, the Finnish-Soviet "Note Crisis" in 1961, was followed closely in Sweden.

3.2. Scandinavian defence negotiations 1948—49

This section discusses assessments made and positions taken in connec— tion with the defence union negotiations between Denmark, Norway and Sweden in 1948-1949. This extensive account should be viewed in light of the official report, written in association with the negotiations, being surrounded by the utmost secrecy, and until very recently classified. Thus, only the principal findings have been made public. In addition, a special statement will be touched upon, made by the Swedish committee members to the Swedish Defence Minister at the time when the negoti— ations were discontinued. Up to now, probably only a very select group has been privy to this document.

3.2.1. Background

After the end of World War 11 and the resignation of the multi-party Government in the summer of 1945, the new Government - with Östen Undén as Foreign Minister was hoping that the Victorious allies would continue their cooperation, especially within the United Nations. The U.N. Charter gave the great powers in the U.N. Security Council special authority and responsibility to unite in effectively countering any act of aggression. As a member of the United Nations, Sweden was under an obligation to participate in actions agreed upon by the Security Council barring a veto from any of the great powers.

At the time, the Government did not label its foreign policy as "neutrality policy." Such a wording could give the impression that Sweden was anticipating new conflicts between the great powers and did not acknowledge the true meaning of its U.N . membership, i.e., that Sweden had to some, for the time being unknown, extent abstained from the possibility of being neutral. At the same time, the Government emphasized that if, contrary to expectations, a tendency towards division of the great powers into two blocs should arise, Sweden's policy was to avoid being drawn into any such grouping or bloc.

When the antagonism between the great powers grew in early 1948, the Government declared in Parliament on 4 February 1948 that Sweden did not wish to join any of the great power blocs or, through advance

commitments, forego the right and the opportunity to remain outside a new war. ln March 1948, U.S.—British contacts were initiated which, over the next few months, laid the groundwork for the Atlantic Treaty.

In April 1948, the Government began seriously considering the prospects of closer Scandinavian defence cooperation. This was inspired primarily by Norway — which in the first post—war years had assumed roughly the same foreign policy stance as Sweden - now searching more and more noticeably for some new form of linkage to the Western Powers, Norway*s World War II allies. To prevent the foreign policies of the Scandinavian countries from diverging, the Government was prepared to hazard a Nordic defence union.

It was part of the picture that Sweden at this time was the dominant military power of Scandinavia. Norway”s defence was fairly weak, even though it could draw on wartime experience from participating on the allied side, and was favoured by military geography. Denmark”s military position was highly unfavourable.

After deliberations in the Advisory Council on Foreign Affairs, Undén suggested to the governments in 0510 and Copenhagen, in early May 1948, a joint exploration of the prospects for a defence union outside any grouping of non—Scandinavian states. The Norwegians preferred an open— ended inquiry, not precluding various forms of association with the West. Agreement was not reached until the end of August 1948 on how to publicly describe the mandate of the joint committee. The mandate was made public in a communiqué from the Scandinavian foreign- minister meeting on 9 September. The aim of a joint security policy was not specified; instead, it was stated that there existed between the three countries "a certain difference of opinion regarding the security prob— lems". The communiqué also stated that its work would concern the "issue of military cooperation between the three countries," i.e., that other, less far-reaching options than a full defence union would also be explored.

The more specific, secret directives to the Committee were agreed upon at a Scandinavian defence-minister meeting on 15 October 1948. A precondition for the defence-union option was that none of the states previously should have entered into military treaties with other states. For the option of partial defence cooperation, the directives set no corresponding condition. For both options applied that the Committee would "clarify what needs the three countries have regarding supplies and military assistance during the various phases'of a defence Struggle against a potential aggressor."

County Governor Carl Hamilton was appointed chairman of the Swedish delegation. The other Swedish members were Members of Parliament Elon Andersson (Liberal), Sven Andersson (Social Demo-

crat), and major general Nils Swedlund (Chief of the Defence Staff). Sven Andersson was later appointed Member of the Cabinet and was then replaced by Fridolf Tapper (Social Democrat).

The Committee presented its findings - almost 400 pages - on 14 January 1949, after three months” work. The report is written alternately in the three Scandinavian languages and is divided into three main sections, A—C. Section A covers the directives, etc. and section B, which dominates in volume (appr. 300 pages), consists of various reports by both civilian and military experts. Section C (34 pages) consists of the full Committee's assessment, and is reproduced with the Committee directives in Appendix 4.

3.2.2. The expert reports of section B

View of the strategic environment

The section opened by comparing "The economic resources and economic war preparedness of the United States and the Soviet Union. " The description reflects how the early post-war thinking was dominated by the notion of the significance of the long—term economic potential.

The following section on "the military balance" showed the Soviet supremacy in ground forces in Europe: appr. 1,700,000 men distributed among appr. 140 divisions, compared to appr. 800,000 men for the West, a smaller share of which was organized in appr. 15 divisions. (Certain forces on the American continent were to be added.) The comparison showed, however, the West to be stronger in naval and air forces. In the Soviet Union, ground forces were predominant; in the United States, the Navy and Air Force, at least in peacetime. The Soviet Union was judged to rely on invasion as the primary means of military coercion, while the United States relied mainly on strategic bombers and the atomic bomb, whereby fierce blows could initially be dealt to the opponent's military and civilian war machine. Land power was thus pitted against naval and air power. If the strongly superior Soviet Army, deployed in the heart of Europe, were to attack, the Western Powers had, according to the Committee, only the slightest chances of checking the onslaught before it reached the Atlantic coast.

Soviet capabilities for military action against Scandinavia were also discussed. It is notable that the focus was on an attack against Northern and southern Scandinavia, respectively, whereas a coastal invasion across the Baltic Sea proper were deemed less likely.

These assessments are emphasized in a section on Scandinavia”s "Military geography and communications" which concludes:

In relation to the territories dominated by the Soviet Union, Scandinavia is situated within an open pair of pincers which could be shut from the North by combined operations against the militarily weak Northernmost areas, and from the South by combined operations across areas in Denmark and Sweden, largely favourable to the attacker. But, the large area of Scandinavia and its wide extension to the North and South render coordination between two such operations difficult, and offer possibilities for drawn-out defence aimed at gaining time and keeping the lines of communication to the West open. One condition for such defence in depth is that the central areas of Scandinavia can be defended against air strikes and air— and seaborne invasion.

Scandinavia ”s defence prospects

This section focused on a number of key issues concerning the strategic objectives of potential Soviet aggression against Scandinavia, the aggressor”s plan of attack and forces, Scandinavian principles for defence, including the need for cooperation between the three states, the need for further development of the three national defences, and "Required and preferred assistance from the Western Powers. "

The discussion was divided into nine attack scenarios, of which the first eight were all assumed to take place within the context of an all- European war, and the ninth was assumed to take place in a situation when such a war had not yet broken out, and the Soviet Union sought to, by means of a surprise attack on Scandinavia, secure its Northern flank in preparation for the anticipated outbreak of major war.

The assumed strategic objective behind attacking in the Scandinavian direction was that the Soviet Union sought to extend its cordon sanitaire to the Atlantic coast for the dual purpose of preempting Western actions from or via Scandinavia, and to use Scandinavian staging areas for offensive naval- and air interdiction against Western lines of communica— tions. The Committee argued that such an interest probably existed, but that there were doubts as to whether the Soviet Union, considering the general political situation and the correlation of military forces, dared or wished to initiate a new war. Nonetheless, the Committee assumed that the Soviet Union, under certain conditions, would believe it to be advantageous to resort to war.

The Scandinavian Defence Committee then listed some general prerequisites for the defence of Scandinavia, including the need for intra- Scandinavian cooperation.

First, it was stated (and this was an assessment which applied regardless of whether or not a defence union existed) that it would be impossible to resist the attack without Western assistance for any length of time. Defence preparations in peacetime and strategy in war,

therefore, had to be shaped so as to create conditions for receiving military support as well as for assistance with vital supplies. The main strategy, therefore, had to be to gain time, i.e. to hold out long enough to make Western supportive actions possible. A strategic defensive aimed at delaying the enemy had to be implemented. Over time, the course of the war could lead to large areas of Scandinavia having to be surrendered and remaining forces to be concentrated in areas which, due to their ports and airfields, were of particular significance for communications with the West, or otherwise of strategic importance.

How, then, was the future need for cooperation between the three states assessed? In some aspect, primarily regarding the defence of Öresund [the strait between Denmark and Sweden], cooperation was viewed as a fundamentally symmetrical mission for the two littoral states. Apart from this, however, Sweden was perceived as the assisting party to an overwhelming extent, which was only natural considering the military resources of the three states of that time. A number of concrete examples were given in the report:

The defence of Oresund shall be a combined Danish—Swedish mission for forces of all services. Swedish naval forces shall cooperate with Danish naval forces to prevent invasion of Bornholm and passage through the Kattegat. Swedish air forces shall participate offensively in the areas of Bornholm, Zealand, the Great and the Little Belts, and in the Kattegat. Swedish naval and air forces shall participate in the defence of the 0510 area. Swedish naval and air forces shall participate in the defence of the lines of communication to the West through the Skagerrak. Swedish air and ground forces shall cooperate with Norwegian forces in the defence of the Trondheim area.

Swedish bases and the rest of Sweden” 5 territory shall, when needed, be made available to Danish and Norwegian forces.

Norwegian bases shall be available to Swedish forces. In addition to these combined tasks there are also, for all states, those which cover coast guard duties and air surveillance, intelligence, transportation, signals, and rear services."

Against this general backdrop, the Committee then discussed cooperation between individual services. Of special interest is what was said about the air forces, considering that they, more than ground and naval forces, "can be quickly concentrated against air, ground, and sea targets in various parts of the area. " The need for cooperation was clearly stressed. Thus, it was pointed out that "air surveillance and fighter control [shall] be organized effectively within each state and interlinked, so that the requirements of each individual state as well as those of Scandinavia as a whole are met." It was also deemed important that air assets could be transferred between bases in the different states. Above all, the capability to transfer Danish and Norwegian air units to Swedish bases in certain

contingencies was deemed to be most important.

In two following sections "Prospects of accomplishing the missions with existing defence forces" and "Preferred and anticipated improve— ments as well as potential restrictions of missions " - the basing issue was again brought up. Thus in the sub-section on Sweden, it was argued that between six and nine bases could be made available to Danish and Norwegian air force units, "subject to the shaping of combined planning in detail. " ln general, the need to strengthen the air defence was stressed, and, in doing 50, to expand modern air surveillance and fighter control.

This sub—section also touched upon certain weaknesses in overall Swedish operational capabilities, which rendered Sweden dependent on various forms of Western operations (against targets outside Scandinavia) for an effective overall defence. This is discussed below.

Required and preferred assistance from the Western Powers (Headline quoted from the report.)

The preceding section of the report had discussed the need for Western operations as indirect assistance in the defence of Scandinavia. In relation to the defence of Scania (the southernmost province of Sweden), it was stressed inter alia that heavy air pressure from Russian air based in Northern Germany could jeopardize the mobility of Swedish army reserves. Therefore, it was stressed that " actions by the Western Powers against the Soviet air bases play a decisive role." Another short- coming concerned the capability to protect the westward sea—lines of communication.

The Swedish naval forces on the [Swedish] West Coast cannot, except for very short periods, assume the full responsibility for both offensive warfare and protection of merchant shipping. Considerable coopera - tion with Danish and Norwegian naval forces is required. lf such cooperation cannot be counted on, the need for westward lines of communication also arises in Scandinavian waters.

Finally, this section emphasized:

None of the three states can — except to a very limited extent - assume the important air strategic task of attacking Russian bases from which air forces, invasion forces, and guided missiles could be launched. This will become especially serious in areas within close range of Soviet air bases, i.e. in Denmark and Southern Sweden, and in the waters south of Sweden, and in Norrland [Northern Sweden]. It will also be difficult to lay mines off the enemy coast, rendering defence against a seaborne invasion more difficult, especially in Denmark and southern Sweden. In all circumstances, therefore, Western assistance is required for attacks on Russian bases and lines of communication along the Russian coast.

Against this background, the need for Western assistance was then summarized in the section under the headline quoted above. Denmark and Norway were both deemed to have serious equipment deficiencies. Significant shortcomings were also noted for Sweden. Some types of equipment in short supply (e.g. for the Air Force) were, however, on order and in the process of being delivered.

The following section, under the sub-heading "Armed assistance at the outbreak of war and thereafter" comprises less than two pages — just over half the text is quoted in extenso in the following:

Since Russian air forces can operate from bases in Finland and Northern Germany, close to Scandinavian territory, the warfare of the Scandinavian states will be greatly affected by the considerable air power that the Russians can project against civilian targets and forces of all three services

Therefore, it is important from the very first day of war that Western air forces interdict Russian airfields and missile bases. It is also important that the Western air forces attack Russian naval bases, embarkation ports, and lines of communication; and at sea, by means of minelaying in Russian waters and sea areas beyond the reach of Scandinavian forces, obstruct the activities of Russian war ships and transports. Of equal importance is that the lines of communication to the West, Vital for the staying power of the Scandinavian countries, are protected by Western naval and air forces.

Such activities can and should be carried out by the Western Powers as part of their own operations.

In addition, the current situation requires that units of the Western allies are deployed to Scandinavia to take part in the Nordic countries” own defence Struggle. Such Western intervention would presumably aim at lending assistance of the types needed by the Scandinavian armed forces to resist or, at least, delay a Russian invasion. To achieve this objective, the following assistance is preferable from a Scandinavian viewpoint.

For the Air Force, day and night fighters are required to strengthen air defence. To render this assistance effective, it is necessary that the air surveillance and fighter control systems be expanded, and adapted to Western standards. For the strengthening of the anti—invasion defence, strike units are required. A considerable expansion of the air base system is required to make possible the deployment of these various kinds of air units.

Until the Scandinavian naval forces have been built up, the foremost requirement is for the Western Powers to expand their operations in the Skagerrak by minelaying and anti-submarine warfare; should the Danish—Norwegian—Swedish naval forces be strongly engaged in defensive missions in the Kattegat, off the Swedish West Coast and the Norwegian South Coast, Western protection of merchant shipping ”might need to be extended all the way up to the territories of the Scandinavian countries. In Northern Norway, it is desirable that the Western Powers expand their operations, employing both surface combatants (aircraft carriers) and submarines; and, off the Norwegian

West Coast, by anti-submarine warfare. It would be desirable if light naval forces were based in the Kiel area prior to the outbreak of war.

It is not possible to determine how long it would take to deploy operational relief units to Scandinavia. The time is highly dependent to what extent advance preparations have been made. The following calculations can be used as guidance for the assessment.

Ground forces. The required time for transport 3—4 weeks. If assistance is not prepared in advance, considerable time will be needed before embarkation can commence.

Naval forces. from bases in Great Britain within a couple of days.

Air forces. If units are available in the United States for support from bases in Scandinavia, and if advance preparations have not been made, it may take up to 8—9 weeks before they can become oper- ational. If advance preparations have been made and if units are available in Europe, that time may be reduced to just a few days.

The following sub—section discussed the wartime provision of supplies. It is very short and of limited interest in relation to the Commission's scope of inquiry.

As pointed out earlier, the main body of expert assessments of the Committee report assumed a simultaneous Soviet attack on Denmark, Norway, and Sweden in the course of a European war. The report, however, also gives an account of specific circumstances pertaining to an attack which initially, in a situation when the great—power war was yet to come, would be concentrated on Scandinavia. The following assessments are of interest:

Combined missions should be of the same kind as stated in war scenario A. DNS. These [missions], however, must be secondary, as the securing (restitution) of the integrity of each state s military dispositions 15 of prime importance. As to air defence, air reconnais- sance, air— and coastal surveillance, and weather service, combined missions should, however, be executed as soon as possible.

Wartime assistance required and preferred from the Western Powers. In the presumption made, a situation has been outlined wherein the

readiness of the Western Powers is so low, that a quick, large-scale military response hardly can be expected. What assistance could possibly be received, would comprise naval forces and strategic air; in Jutland, however, possibly also ground forces from the Western zone of occupation in Germany. Naval and air forces should primarily be used against Russian invasion ports, and sea and air transportation. To the extent that the Scandinavian countries possibly with the above mentioned assistance - would succeed in organizing their defence and offer resistance, the prospects of also getting assistance by other means would improve.

3.2.3. The deliberations and conclusions of the Scandinavian Defence Committee in section C

The full Committee opened the concluding main section of the report by restating the directives: the primary task was to clarify the military capability to collectively meet certain types of aggression, and the requirements for supplies and military assistance during the various phases of a defensive Struggle against a possible aggressor. Furthermore, the Committee observed that its task was also - in. view of the option of defence cooperation in peacetime without a defence union — to attempt to clarify in what areas such cooperation could be carried out and what forms it should take.

After having largely concurred with the expert assessments, the full Committee gave an account of certain general assessments, valid irrespective of the form of cooperation. It was concluded that the defence of Scandinavia included missions which should be carried out jointly by the armed forces of the different countries. One condition for the satisfactory accomplishment of the cooperative missions - in some cases, e.g., regarding air surveillance, to facilitate timely cooperation in the first place - was that considerable technical and organizational prepara- tions had been made, and combined exercises already carried out in peacetime.

Cooperation could be prepared within the framework of a defence union. Cooperation could also be prepared without such a binding treaty, but in such a case the preparations could not be as far-reaching as within a defence union.

Preparations should primarily aim for smooth cooperation between the military high commands of the three countries, based on a unified strategic view. To accomplish as wide and uniform foundation for military decisions as possible, intelligence agencies of the three countries should cooperate closely.

Preparations for direct tactical cooperation should include the application of various rules of procedure - terminology, communications procedures, codes and ciphers, geographic references for positioning, alert levels, etc.

Since it was assumed that Scandinavia could not resist in the longer term Without external military assistance, and since the expansion of the Scandinavian armed forces had to be based on external supplies, it was necessary, as to equipment, to strive for the greatest possible compatibil- ity with the states from which assistance and equipment would arrive.

For coast guard and air surveillance as well as for weather service, actions should be taken making possible the timely and collective use of these branches at any point in time; the same applied to air force search—

and—rescue. Telecommunications should be expanded to make cooper- ation possible between the military high commands of the respective armed forces. This was also necessary considering the need to coordinate coast guards and air surveillance, and to make possible combined command and control of air operations in certain areas.

Once again, it should be stressed that the assessments referred to above were deemed valid irrespective of whether or not a defence union were to be created.

Defence union

The Committee then stated six significant principles for a defence union. Somewhat abbreviated, they are:

1. Obligation of military cooperation (solidarity in the event of attack).

2. Coordination of the foreign policies of member states.

3. Ensuring unconditional and instantaneous release of defence obliga- tions.

4. Expansion of the armed forces of member states with regard to the requirements of combined defence.

5. Coordination of military high commands.

6. Coordination of some international law statutes, etc.

The combined activities in peace should be characterized by the following:

Coordination between military high commands. Coordinated intelligence activities. Standardization, primarily of equipment. Coordination of armaments production and of storage of war supplies. Coordination of research activities, etc. Combined exercises. Coordinated air surveillance and coast guard, weather service, and air force search-and-rescue.

8. Improvement of inter-Scandinavian telecommunications.

9. Improvement of certain inter-Scandinavian lines of transportation. 10. Preparations for the collective use of air transport capacity. 11. Revision of peacetime rules of admittance for military units.



Peacetime military cooperation without a defence union

In its opening statements, the Committee recommended that, even without a defence union, the aim should be to implement peacetime cooperation in as many areas as possible of those listed in items 1-11 above. Such cooperation could in some aspects attain great significance in the event of the states simultaneously being at war. In addition, peacetime cooperation could constitute a step in preparing for a possible defence union.

At the same time, it was obvious to the Committee that without a defence union, peacetime practical cooperation must of necessity be of limited extent.

The Committee then commented on the eleven items above, relating to a situation without a defence union. Somewhat abbreviated, the conclusions were as follows:

1. Cooperation between the armed forces” military high commands could not be taken as far as in the case of a defence union.

2. Intelligence activities could to a certain extent be coordinated along the same lines as in the case of a defence union.

3. Standardization of equipment etc. could be carried out in many significant respects.

4. Any more significant cooperation on production of military equipment could hardly be accomplished without a defence union. Good prospects for coordinating research still existed. The assessment was made that combined exercises could not be

carried out to the same extent and on the same scale as with a

defence union.

7. Coordination of air surveillance and coast guard, weather service, and air force search-and-rescue could be established largely as in the case of a defence union.

8. The inter-Scandinavian telecommunications could be expanded to the same extent as if there were a defence union.

9. The same applied to inter-Scandinavian lines of transportation. 10. The creation of Scandinavian Airlines System (SAS) made possible a certain collective use of air transport capacity even without a defense union. 11. The rules of admittance for [foreign] troops could be revised even without a defence union.


Scandinavia ”s defence capabilities. Preconditions for a defence union and for partial military cooperation

The Scandinavian Committee was not directed to offer general recom— mendations concerning Scandinavian defence cooperation, but only to

"carry out an investigation for the Governments of the three states regarding the possibilities of and preconditions for" a defence union and partial defence cooperation, respectively. In the Committee's final text, certain differences of opinion emerged between, on the one hand, Denmark and Norway, and on the other, Sweden, in their views on the defence union. These presaged the breakdown of the negotiations a few weeks later.

In its opening statement, the Committee again stated its unanimous assessments regarding the significance for Scandinavia as a whole, of each state being effectively defended, and the significance of assistance from abroad:

The Committee is therefore of the opinion that each and every one of the states, by taking up and conducting a defence Struggle for as long as possible, contributes to the defence of the two others.

To accomplish an unbroken system of defence in areas where the states” peripheral defences meet, and to employ the central defence in the tactically most effective way, cooperation between the Scandina— vian forces ought to be entered into in certain spheres. This is not possible without advance peacetime preparations. But through interaction, such preparations also serve to Streamline military technological development in each state, and facilitate the supply of external assistance.

The necessity of assistance from other states is restated in the final pages: Altogether, it has to be strongly emphasized that a defence union, cooperation otherwise prepared in advance between the three Scandi- navian states, does not eliminate the necessity of external assistance. In peacetime, cooperation is necessary for the build-up and moderniz- ation of the armed forces. Were they to be attacked, external armed assistance would be required already in an initial stage. The time expected to pass before such more comprehensive assistance can be received and put to use, if no peacetime preparations have been made, is difficult to state exactly, but could be several months. This time factor must, in different respects, affect the balancing of Scandinavian defence preparations.

The Danish and Norwegian members stressed the preventive factor that would exist "... to the extent that an aggressor will have to reckon with an active response by the other great powers, since the aggressor will then have to take into account that an attack on Scandinavia will trigger countermeasures involving the combined economic and military strength of the Western Powers. " Not even in the longer term would Scandinavia be able to defend itself over any extended period. "In such a situation, it will be necessary to gain military assistance from the Western Powers. Rapid and effective assistance will only be made possible if peacetime preparations have been made. "

The Swedish members, however, restricted themselves to a general observation to the effect that "...the prospects of receiving external assistance in the event of an attack would probably be better were the three states united in a [defence] union, than had they not entered into any mutual obligations of solidarity."

The Committee was thus in agreement on the need for Western assistance in the event of an attack. The Swedes did not wish to underwrite explicitly that assistance should be prepared in peacetime. But as shown above, Sweden was prepared to acknowledge that, first, armed assistance from other states was required already in the initial phase of a defensive war, and second, that it would take several months for such assistance to arrive had no peacetime preparations been made.

The final pages were also dominated by another discussion, on how the parties should act in different scenarios when not all of Scandinavia, but only one or two of its states, were attacked by the Soviet Union. This discussion has no immediate bearing on the Commission's work but seems to be of considerable general interest in bringing perspective to the breakdown of the defence union negotiations.

Opinions on one of the attack scenarios studied, an attack (initially) limited to Denmark, diverged to such an extent that the Danish and Norwegian Committee members gave one assessment, the Swedish members another. In substance, the difference of opinion was that the Danish and Norwegian Committee members believed that an attack limited to Denmark was but the overture of an operation against all of Scandinavia, and that collective action was thus required from the outset.

The Swedes, on the other hand, argued that Denmark could not be effectively defended and that Swedish and Norwegian intervention would be more or less in vain. Therefore, it could "not militarily be an unequivocal benefit to Norway and Sweden to pledge assistance to Denmark in all circumstances," the Swedish members maintained.

It is worth noting that the Swedish representatives did not show any similar unease at the thought of intervening in the event of an (initially) isolated attack on Norway.

In their positions, the group was divided as follows. The parties agreed to collective action should Norway only, or, for that matter, Sweden only be attacked. If an attack was restricted to Denmark, the Norwegians were prepared to intervene; on the other hand, the Swedes were not, at least not until Denmark”s defences had been built up.

3.2.4. The separate statement

On the same day as the Committee submitted its report, the four Swedish members Hamilton, Elon Andersson, Thapper, and Swedlund submitted a separate and strictly confidential statement — counter—signed by the Swedish Secretary of the Committee, Sverker Åström - to the Swedish Minister of Defence. That statement is reproduced in Appendix 5. The opening paragraphs pointed out that "certain Swedish views on Danish and Norwegian participation in collective defence cooperation [in the Committee report] have become less prominent." This hesitation primarily concerned the Danish National Defence:

Since the future shape of its defence organization is uncertain, Danish assessments of the possibilities to defend Denmark and to cooperate with the other Scandinavian states have acquired the character of general theoretical statements, which are not - and in many cases never will be - reflected in the Danish defence organization. This leads the Swedish Committee members to conclude that large-scale Western support is required to cover the shortcomings.

Against this background, the concluding assessment is of interest:

It is the delegation”s opinion that a build-up of the defences of Denmark and Norway is of fundamental import to the possibilities to defend Scandinavia. Were a defence union to build upon foreign policy preconditions, by their nature precluding peacetime Western support for the build-up of the defences of Denmark and Norway, membership of such a union must be rejected. Were a defence union, however, to build upon preconditions allowing for the provision of sufficiently large supplies of equipment from the Western Powers, it should be created.

The Swedish Supreme Commander, Helge Jung, supported these views in a statement dated 21 January, see Appendix 6. He thus concurred in most of the Committee's conclusions and the separate statement made by its Swedish members. He emphasized the need for rapid military build— up of Denmark and Norway, and made the usefulness of a defence union conditional upon that. Were the rapid military build-up not possible, peacetime defence cooperation between the three states should still be carried out. Jung stressed, in addition, that not even a well-armed defence union could in the longer term withstand aggression from a great power. (Western) great-power assistance was, therefore, decisive, and such assistance could be made more effective and employed more rapidly, had mutual peacetime preparations been made.

3.2.5. What happened next?

Conclusion of negotiations, January 1949

The "continued" process was already initiated a few days before the Scandinavian Committee submitted its report, by a.meeting of the prime, foreign, and defence ministers of the three states in Karlstad on 56 January 1949.

The issue of collective defence of Denmark was resolved in that Sweden declared itself prepared to enter immediately into a binding defence union, without awaiting a build-up of the defences of Denmark and Norway. It is worth noting that the statement quoted above, made about a week later by the Swedish members of the Scandinavian Committee, showed them to be of a different opinion.

Clear differences of opinion remained between Norway and Sweden on the defence union”s relations with the West. The Norwegians did not wish to forgo the possibility of some form of association with the West concerning both peacetime equipment supplies and wartime cooperation, although Norway showed great flexibility as to the forms. The Swedish Government representatives, for their part, held on to their fundamental view that the defence union should remain independent of the great powers and aim at neutrality in war. But they agreed to sound out the leading Western Powers for their opinion on such a Scandinavian union.

The Swedish Government”s report in Parliament on 9 February 1949 conveys the impression that the discussions in Karlstad solely dealt with the issue of creating a binding defence union, i.e. the first part of the mandate to the Scandinavian Committee. The second part, partial defence cooperation, was not commented on.

A few days later, the Norwegian Government briefed the so—called Special Committee [Spesialkomiteen] (closely corresponding in function to the Swedish Advisory Council on Foreign Affairs) on the Karlstad negotiations. The outcome was, more or less, a retreat to the previous, uncompromising, stance on the need for linkages to the West. At the same time, the Swedish position remained unchanged after the Advisory Council had been briefed.

At the following meeting in Copenhagen on 22 January, the delega- tions - consisting of members of Government and Parliament - realized that the differences on fundamental positions remained. As a conse— quence, the concluding meeting of delegations in 0510 on 29 and 30 January became almost a mere formality.

The debate in the Swedish Parliament on the Government”s report on 9 February 1949

011 9 February, the Prime Minister and the Minister for Foreign Affairs reported on the negotiations in the First and Second Chamber of Parliament, respectively. A rather extensive debate followed. In these identical accounts, one starting point was the Government”s conviction that an overwhelming majority of the Swedish people did not wish to join any great-power bloc, either through an explicit alliance treaty or through any tacit agreement on collective military action in case of conflict.

In the opening statements by the Government, there were no explicit comments on the future of partial defence cooperation in a situation where a mutually binding alliance no longer remained an option. In the debate, several speakers stated their hope that the failure of the defence union should not render other forms of Scandinavian or Nordic cooperation more difficult. Two of the contributions, interestingly enough by the Scandinavian Committee's two Swedish parliamentarians, Elon Andersson (Liberal) and Fridolf Thapper (Social Democrat) more directly addressed military cooperation. Speaking in the First Chamber, Andersson stressed that the option of peacetime defence cooperation without a binding defence union - found in the Committee's mandate - should not be totally forgotten. All could not be gained via this option; but much could be won which could prove valuable if the peoples of the Nordic countries had to muster their strength in a collective defence Struggle. Although Thapper, in the Second Chamber, was far more cautious, it appears as if he did not interpret the outcome of the negotiations to be any unequivocal repudiation of more limited cooper— ation.

In its opening declaration, the Government did not express any opinion of its own regarding the need for Western great-power assist— ance. The issue was, however, raised in the debates. In the First Chamber, Elon Andersson (a member of the Scandinavian Defence Committee as mentioned above) said:

The central issue in this discussion is, of course, whether a Nordic defence union in all circumstances is sufficient to guarantee the security of the Nordic countries and in the event of aggression, to protect their integrity. Personally, I do not hesitate to answer this question in the negative.

He then commented on the Prime Minister”s above quoted reference to the Scandinavian Committee:

I am of the impression that this is a very vague account which does not lend justice to the pivotal character of this objection in the assessment made by the Scandinavian Committee, as to the precondi—

tions and prospects for a defence union.

In the Second Chamber, Gunnar Hedlund (Agrarian) and Bertil Ohlin (Liberal) touched upon Western assistance. Hedlund stressed that the prospects of the Scandinavian states holding out until external assistance might possibly arrive ought to be better if all three joined forces. This knowledge should have a certain deterrent effect on anyone intending to attack Scandinavia.

Ohlin focused more directly on the prospects for defence in the event of an attack. It was obvious that any Scandinavian cooperation, to a certain extent, would increase the risks for Sweden; but, on the other hand, it would also increase our chances of not being attacked, and it would create better prospects for an effective defence, and thus for receiving assistance from other states in the event of a great-power attack before all of Scandinavia was occupied. Our security, Ohlin stressed, was inextricably linked to the possibilities of maintaining contact with the West in wartime.

Towards the end of the debates, both ministers again took the floor. This time, Erlander went far albeit in the context of commenting on the need for a strong Swedish defence — in showing readiness to receive assistance and/or to offer strongholds for the West in the event Sweden was attacked. At the same time, he emphasized the interconnection between a strong Swedish National Defence and the prospects of cooperation with the West. He believed that the Swedish people were prepared to strengthen efforts to secure peace in the same way as during World War II, "i.e. by making our defence so strong, that it would take time for an aggressor to subjugate us, sufficiently long for the bases coveted by him to be transformed into bases for the other party in the war." He then continued:

Let us together transform Scandinavia into a Stronghold so strongly defended, that an attack on us means that our territory is transformed into a staging area for another, non—aggressive great-power grouping.

His choice of words demonstrated the obvious, that Sweden would accept assistance if attacked. But in addition, he expressed a willingness to take peacetime actions in order to strengthen the National Defence; a significant partial aim of which being to make the reception of assistance possible. Actually, Erlander”s comments almost explicitly stated a further line of thought: if we were attacked, the other (i.e. Western) great-power grouping would have the use of our territory as a staging area.

3.3. The 195 8 Defence Decision and its preliminaries

3.3.1. Background

The 1958 parliamentary Defence Decision (FB 58) was the hitherto most far-reaching of the post-war era. It was prepared during a period characterized by major international events. The decision itself was strongly influenced by a debate on the future posture and resources of the Swedish National Defence. The four largest political parties were in agreement and decided inter alla to give priority to the Air Force at the expense of, primarily, the Navy; a general technological modernization of the defence; and a real annual increase of the defence budget by 2.5 per cent. The decision was to shape the structure of the Swedish National Defence, its equipment, and its operational strength well into the 19705. 011 one weighty issue, that of a Swedish nuclear capability, the political parties were not, however, able to reach an agreement, and the issue was resolved only by postponing the final decision.

The security policy environment, in the years prior to the Defence Decision, was still characterized by the events of 1948 in Czechoslovakia, the Berlin crisis 1948—49, and the Korean War 1950-53. While the death of Stalin in 1953 had given rise to hopes of a funda- mental shift in Soviet policy, these were quenched when the Hungarian uprising was crushed in 1956.

In the West, the consolidation which had begun in 1947 with the Marshall Plan continued in 1949 when the Atlantic Treaty was formally concluded, and in 1951, when the collective defence organization, NATO, was established. During the first half of the 19505, the United States still - to a certain extent together with the United Kingdom - provided by far the greater part of the Western military might, while the continental NATO states were still militarily weak, as were Norway and Denmark. In light of the quantitatively massive Soviet military capabil- ity, NATO initially (1951-52) formulated plans for a substantial build-up of conventional forces. To a certain extent, these plans were gradually implemented as the Federal Republic of Germany was admitted to NATO and its rearmament was begun. The overall plans for conventional rearmament had already, however, been shelved when the Eisenhower administration took office in 1953. Instead, the West would put its trust in its superiority in nuclear weapons and their delivery systems under the doctrine of massive retaliation.

Another important factor influencing the international security policy environment was developments in military technology. The great powers carried out a large-scale build-up, especially of nuclear weapons, and delivery systems with ever longer ranges were deployed — first aircraft,

then eventually ballistic missiles. Conventional armaments were also rapidly developed.

Partly against this background, the Swedish Supreme Commander already wanted in the autumn of 1953 to introduce a more long-term planning system for the Swedish National Defence as to finances, organizational development, and procurement. The Supreme Commander submitted the full results of studies in these matters on two occasions, in 1954 and 1957. The Government decided that it would not be possible to bring a bill before Parliament already at the 1955 session based on the recommendations from 1954, instead advocating that a parliamentary decision be preceded by in—depth deliberations. The most significant step to this end was the appointment of the 1955 Defence Committee. Its task was to assist the Ministry of Defence - under the direction of the Minister - in reviewing the recommendations of the Supreme Com— mander on the future development of the armed forces. The Committee had three representatives from each of the four largest political parties. In addition to the Minister of Defence Torsten Nilsson, chairman - two of the non-socialist party leaders, Jarl Hjalmarson and Bertil Ohlin, were members.

It should be noted that the Committee was not a parliamentary defence committee of the kind characteristic of the late 19605 and the decades thereafter. The more recent committees have had the mandate to independently assess the international security situation as well as defence planning. The 1955 Defence Committee, however, had in effect almost a top—level consultative role regarding the Government”s review of the recommendations submitted by the Supreme Commander. (Cf section 3.3.7)

Against this background, it is hardly surprising that the final decision, as stated in the 1958 Defence Bill and in the ensuing parliamentary process gave an extensive account of the Supreme Commander”s assess- ments, while the Committee's assessment of the general security situation was not given prominence. The Committee, however, reached quite fundamental conclusions on planning issues.

3.3.2. The Supreme Commander”s 1954 Planning Document

Starting points for security policy The Supreme Commander”s 1954 Flaming Document (ÖB 54) contains security assessments strikingly parallel to those made by the Scandina— vian Defence Committee in 1948—49, while at the same time also focusing on new circumstances. The two most important of these were

the increasing significance of nuclear weapons and strategic air warfare, and the establishment of NATO and its integrated military structure. The following quotations show the general assessment of the interna- tional strategic environment: The army- and air forces of the Eastern bloc are superior in quantity.

The strength of the Western bloc lies in its - above all, the United States” — superior economic and industrial capacity, in its superior naval forces and stronger strategic aviation, and its leading position as to atomic weapons.

The task to set up military forces for a strategic offensive fall upon the United States and the United Kingdom. Consequently, the United States especially has given priority to strategic aviation.

Statements made by the Western Powers indicate the view that a war is likely to commence with a relatively short phase of strategic atomic warfare.

The great powers” wartime interests concerning the Nordic area were, to a large extent, assumed to be linked, first, to the air strategic conditions, and second, to the presumed Soviet requirement of passage through Öresund and the Belts.

By conquering Scandinavia, the East would force the West to vacate the airbases already existing in peacetime, and also otherwise prevent Western basing there. The East would win, for its own use, an important submarine base area on the Norwegian coast and free passage for its naval forces between the Baltic Sea and the Atlantic. Scandinavian territory could also be used by the air forces of the East.

For the West, it is important to prevent the East, for as long as possible, from galning these advantages, and therefore to preserve its positions in Norway and Denmark. Also, it must be deemed advan- tageous to the West to be capable of intervening with naval and air forces from Scandinavian territory against the East's flank and lines of communication on the continent, in the Baltic Sea, and in the Arctic Ocean.

The Supreme Commander then discussed the preconditions for the defence of Norway and Denmark. He concluded that the prospects of successful defence over a longer period of time were heavily dependent upon reinforcements from other states. External support could initially be provided by air and naval forces, while substantial army forces hardly could be counted upon.

The Supreme Commander gave an assessment of Soviet military options in Finland, and then turned to discussing Sweden's situation. In this context, he stressed that the flight routes for strategic air warfare

passed over Sweden, and also that Sweden and Norway constituted an inseparable entity as far as defence was concerned:

Our country”s strategic significance, and thereby the risks of us being drawn into war, stem from it being part of Scandinavia. Sweden lies in the midst of the flight routes likely to be used by the West - from bases in, e.g., Iceland and Greenland - for strategic air warfare against the East. Similarly, the obvious flight routes for the East against, e.g., these bases, and against bases in Norway will cross Swedish territory. Our long common border with Norway means that Norway could not without great difficulties be defended by the West, had Sweden fallen into the hands of the East. Swedish-Norwegian land lines of communications are furthermore so inter-linked, that a larger- scale invasion of Norway from the East cannot be accomplished without access to Swedish roads and railroads. Finally, Sweden controls the coastline of one of the Baltic Approaches.

The view on external assistance

Partly against this background, the Supreme Commander deemed an isolated war against Sweden less likely. The need for external assistance in event of a great—power war was evident irrespective of whether Sweden was drawn in. The reasoning was largely parallel to that of the Scandinavian Defence Committee a few years earlier. A significant nuance was, however, that the Scandinavian Defence Committee had emphasized the need for assistance already in the initial phases of a war. This urgency was absent from ÖB 54, instead the assessment was made that Sweden would be dependent on external assistance in the longer term.

The Supreme Commander then returned to strategic issues. Initially, different means of coercion were described, focusing on air and long- range missile attacks, not least against the capital. Here, the risk of nuclear weapons being used had to be reckoned with. Also, the risk of "classic" invasion was briefly discussed; but with a similar reservation as that of the Scandinavian Defence Committee, that inter alia geography as well as the lack of shipping and appropriately located airbases constituted considerable restrictions for the aggressor.

The Supreme Commander then gave his assessment of how strong Sweden”s National Defence should be, i.e., strong enough to make the stakes in attacking Sweden seem disproportionately high when compared to possible gains. He also articulated certain principles for the conduct of defence (preventing a seaborne aggressor from getting a firm foothold on Swedish soil, and a tenacious defensive against an attack across the land border.)

The Supreme Commander then, again, turned to the need for external assistance:

Our resources are not sufficient to permit prolonged resistance of an attack by a great power without external economic and military assistance. Hence, our strategy must focus on creating preconditions, such that we in war could be supported by states in whose interests it would be to assist us.

Even if the wording is not explicit in ÖB 54, its basic line of thought on Swedish defence and on the need for external assistance can be summed up in the formula: national defence until assistance can arrive.

The classified version of the text also underscored that assistance could not be expected rapidly, except for strategic bombing sorties, or, in the words of the Supreme Commander:

that no direct assistance can be provided to us by the Western Powers until quite long after the outbreak of war. We could benefit, however, from Western strategic bombing, even though the issue of such operations obviously would be determined primarily in consider- ation of what would be deemed appropriate to the Western Powers.

3.3.3. The 1955 Defence Committee — preliminaries

Starting points

When the 1955 Defence Committee submitted its final recommendations in early 1958, interest was focused - as mentioned earlier on the Committee”s view of the structure and finances of the Swedish National Defence. These issues had also been the focal point of the Committee's work in 1957. Until then, just after its formation, the Committee had carried out an internal review of certain starting points for security and strategic policy, a review planned during the two months preceding a Committee meeting on 16 February 1956.

Before going any further, we should remind ourselves of the Committee”s status. Its task — within the Ministry of Defence, and under the direction of the Minister - was to assist in reviewing the Supreme Commander”s recommendations on guidelines for the continued development of the armed forces. The Minister of Defence, Torsten Nilsson, was thus appointed chairman, and the under—secretary, Olle Karleby, secretary general of the Committee.

The agenda of the 16 February meeting had thus been discussed within the secretariat on several occasions during the preceding months; and draft agendas, and draft policy papers on important aspects, had been prepared. One of the Committee members, staff captain Olof Stroh, had already in early January presented a memorandum within the secretariat on "External assistance." When the secretariat, before the meeting, and in its own name, distributed a memorandum, "Draft speech before the

1955 Defence Committee — Sweden”s geographical position and strategic significance in a war between East and West," addressing the issue of external assistance, the members of the secretariat had thus obviously had ample time to consider the wordings. The difference between the two documents in characterizing external assistance is minor and mostly editorial.

The view on external assistance

External assistance was a major item in the briefing memorandum for the meeting on 16 February 1956 (Appendix 7). Already before that, however, a general strategic assessment had been presented, in part also touching upon external assistance. Initially, by way of introduction, the continued and increasing significance of nuclear weapons and air warfare was emphasized. The probability that Sweden could receive direct assistance from the West in the fierce opening stage of a major war was judged low. In a conceivable later stage of the war, the prospects for such assistance could possibly be better. Consequently, Sweden had to proceed on the assumption that it initially had to defend itself without getting direct assistance, and that it would always remain uncertain whether such assistance could be obtained; assistance in the form of "war supplies and air strikes with or without nuclear weapons" seemed the most likely. Indirect assistance was assessed to be of greater import:

The indirect assistance provided by Western military operations reduces the Soviet Union”s opportunities to direct force against us, and is likely to be more significant to us than direct assistance.

A following section of the briefing addressed inter alia the air oper- ational significance of Sweden to the great—power blocs:

If Swedish air defences prompt the East to avoid overflights of Sweden concentration of Western air defences is facilitated. A strong Swedish air defence system is thus advantageous to the West. The possibility to base Western air in Sweden in the initial stages to enhance this threat [against the East] or to exert real pressure does not seem to be at hand without extensive prior preparations.

Generally speaking, the West can gain quite a number of advantages without directly pressuring us. Some problems in connection with overflights can be anticipated; but assumedly, they would not be of such significance as to give the West reasons for taking any actions which might reduce our power or our inclination to join the proper side following the outbreak of war.

Swedish air defences are certainly a disadvantage to the East. A crippling attack on the Swedish air defence system - especially air surveillance cannot be carried out swiftly and successfully without

massive use of force. The key question, however, is whether the power to be projected against the primary objectives beyond Sweden is fragmented more by the strains of overflying or alternatively avoiding - Swedish airspace, or by the efforts required for effective suppression of our air defences.

Of particular interest in these quotations is how clearly the asymmetry emerges between the presumed Western and Eastern views on our air defences. The substantial advantages to the West were believed to have corresponding disadvantages to the East; and, for the West, overflights of Sweden would hardly lead to any significant problems. It was thus assumed in the memorandum that there existed a common interest in Western overflights not leading to a serious conflict between the parties. Attrition of Swedish air defences was thus not allowed to be the consequence; and, under no circumstances were "overflight problems" to result in Sweden ending up on the Eastern side in a war.

In the last section of the briefing, the secretariat once again focused on external assistance. The fundamental ideas, referred to above, were concretized inter alia as examples of direct and indirect assistance:

As examples of direct assistance, the following can be mentioned:

a) Air strikes with atomic weapons against a sealift concentration during a seaborne invasion.

b) Interdiction of lines of communication during ground operations, e.g. , in the rear of Russian forces attacking Norrbotten (Northern- most Sweden).

c) Making available, or supplying us with, ordnance or fuel.

d) Convoy protection of Swedish shipping.

Indirect assistance can be provided in various ways and can be just as important as direct assistance. In effect, indirect assistance is likely to be the most significant to us in war. As examples of indirect assistance, the following can be mentioned:

a) Interdiction of airbases, naval bases, and embarkation ports whence attacks can be & launched on us, as well as their land lines of communication. (Interdiction of, e.g., the Murmansk railway line - supplying the Murmansk—Kandalaksha staging area, and Russian forces operating against Northern Scandinavia - could be of great significance, also to us.)

b) A key component of indirect support is operations tying down enemy forces which otherwise could have been employed against us; or even forcing the enemy to withdraw forces already engaging us in combat.

c) Indirect support, in the broadest sense, encompasses all those actions leading to Western gains, since what matters most to us is that the longer—term outcome of the major war renders possible our continued existence as a free nation.

Despite the above accounted assessment, that indirect assistance was likely to be of greater significance than direct assistance, the remainder

of the briefing memorandum dealt with the latter. An observation, however, is called for in this context. The above examples show that the difference between the various forms of assistance is quite subtle in several cases, a fact also explicitly stated in the text. The requirement for combined planning, however, was judged to be less in the case of indirect assistance. Against this background, it is obvious that moves — discussed below - intended to promote direct assistance, would to an even greater extent create opportunities for receiving indirect assistance.

In what ways then could direct assistance be encouraged? According to the memorandum, all kinds of direct cooperation presup- posed [personal] contacts. These were exemplified by foreign service contacts, including those arranged by defence attachés; other interna- tional contacts; as well as studies, etc., abroad by Swedish military personnel. It was emphasized that in war, or in a state of alert (i.e. when war threatens) it "is both desirable and necessary to expand these contacts, either by building on those already established in peacetime or by dispatching special delegations." The persons entrusted with these contacts should be given adequate authority both in Sweden and abroad and access to "tele—corrununications equipment of sufficient speed, capacity, and secrecy."

It was observed that integrating foreign interceptor units into the Swedish air defence system would require extensive preparations. A more general coordination of air operations as well as a more limited utilization of strike or bomber units for specific missions were deemed feasible, however, should the necessary preparations in Swedish planning be made in peacetime. A certain level of coordination of the air surveillance was highly desirable and was also seen as feasible.

Also, certain naval cooperation on operations in coastal waters was considered feasible, while the opportunities for ground force coordination by and large seemed remote.

Concerning operational intelligence, the value .of air defence intelli- gence was emphasized, and, in addition intelligence on "the enemy situation as to operational resources, equipment, morale, tactics, and indicators of preparations for attack, or changed dispositions in general. .. Especially important is intelligence making it possible for us to increase our readiness prior to an outbreak of war. "

The significance of direct as well as indirect assistance was summed up in the concluding paragraph of the memorandum; also, notice was rather succinctly given that certain actions to prepare for direct cooper- ation had already been taken:

In conclusion, it should be emphasized that no state can be assured of getting direct assistance after the outbreak of war, and that one's own military capability is the best guarantee of obtaining assistance, should

such be possible. As a rule, indirect assistance is the most significant: prior preparations are required to utilize direct assistance. Some such preparations have been made already, and others could be made. Some preparations, however, are such that they cannot be implemented in advance, because they would require combined planning and the mutual disclosure of Western and Swedish planning.

On the whole, a very pragmatic approach was chosen regarding preparations for assistance. Preparations were required, some had already been made, others could be. The last sentence of the quotation, however, held a restriction in principle. Activities involving combined operational planning, or information on existing operational plans, were not to be discussed "in advance." Incidentally, these restrictions were close to what the Government had laid down in the 1950 foreign policy debate, as described in section 2.2.

In section 3.3.7 below, the Commission returns to the subject and offers a comprehensive assessment of the above recapitulated secretariat memorandum and its political status.

3.3.4. The Supreme Commander”s 1957 Planning Document

In March 1957, the Minister of Defence instructed the Supreme Commander to produce certain complementary planning documents on the long-term development of the armed forces. The results were submitted the following October (ÖB 57). In this context, the Supreme Commander presented a modified security-policy/strategy assessment, including inter alia some interesting nuances in the view on external assistance. The most important were the following.

More clearly than before, the most likely scenario for the course of a major war was that it would commence with short nuclear exchanges between the great powers. Western nuclear weapons were assumed to constitute indirect assistance to Sweden, as Soviet bases, ports, etc., and its war potential in general were attacked. One alternative scenario would, however, put especially great strains on Sweden. In this scenario, there were no nuclear attacks; Sweden was brought into the war, and the Soviet Union could detail relatively larger forces against Sweden. "We will then be restricted to our own might only, and the limited external assistance which otherwise can be provided. "

In the ensuing text, the Supreme Commander stressed even more forcefully than in ÖB 54 the significance of prior peacetime preparations of such assistance. Alliance membership was not considered a decisive factor for receiving such assistance. At the same time, it was made even more clear than in the earlier text that preparations were precluded:

It goes for all [attack] scenarios that the prospects of a country such as ours receiving external military assistance in the event of an attack depends, primarily, on whether the great power in question considers such assistance warranted in light of the general war situation. A country's alliance membership can certainly be a political factor strongly influencing a decision to provide assistance; but for the military assistance to be effective, general strategic concerns and opportunities will in the end be decisive. It is an obvious advantage, however, if the assistance has been prepared already in peacetime. Since our policy of non-participation in alliances inter alia means that no such preparations can be made, we must adapt accordingly so that we can make do without this advantage.

The explicit wording of the unclassified document ÖB 57 to the effect that preparations for receiving assistance could not be made, is thus new information. The position is in marked contrast to the fundamental ideas of the classified discussions within the 1955 Defence Committee, referred to in the previous section. The Commission has had no access to any information explaining the motives behind the new wordings.

The following quotation shows that the fundamental idea, of defence until external assistance could arrive, persisted:

In those parts of the country, of considerable importance to an aggressor or to our defence capabilities, the National Defence has to be so strong that the aggressor”s gains are not reasonably proportion— ate to his inputs; or that the attack is so time-consuming that interven— tion by other states on our behalf will have time to be effective.

If we cannot secure such endurance for our National Defence that external assistance will have time to take effect, our chances of resisting will be significantly reduced.

Another fundamental idea of the last quotation was that a strong and tenacious Swedish defence and external assistance were mutually reinforcing. Thus, external assistance was not an alternative to an adequate domestic defence capability. This "point" resurfaces when the Supreme Commander later reports on different budget scenarios. With reference to one such scenario ("Adam", i.e., "Alpha") involving a certain initial budget reduction (later implemented), it was emphasized that the significance of external assistance arriving rapidly would grow. But the assessment was also made that the possibilities and the willing- ness for rapid assistance would diminish.

3.3.5. The 1955 Defence Committee - concluding work

The Defence Committee submitted its report on 18 February 1958 (thus, a report to Sven Andersson in his capacity as Minister of Defence, from Sven Andersson in his capacity as Committee chairman; the change of defence ministers had taken place in 1957). The report was reproduced practically in extenso (formal changes only), as part of the 1958 Defence Bill (govt. bill 19581110). Following the opening half page on the current international security situation, the Committee's short text was dominated completely by budgetary, planning, and organizational issues. The text is of no relevance to the task of this Commission. There are, e.g., no references whatsoever to the briefings before the Committee conducted in the spring of 1956, touched upon in section 3.3.3 above.

3.3.6. The 1958 Defence Bill and Defence Decision

The bill reported quite extensively on the most significant official preparatory document, i.e., ÖB 57. The fundamental ideas discussed in section 3.3.4 above were thus reproduced accurately and in full. The minister did not, however, provide any comprehensive analysis of the international security environment, or of the aim and direction of security and defence policy, of the kind that later became established practice. While the text mainly focused on planning, some assessments can, however, be found throughout. Discussing the minister”s preferred scenario, "Adam", he emphasized that the budget could finance a military defence, only meeting the most immediate and essential requirements, whereby endurance partly would have to be neglected. Gaps would be found in the air defence system. Concerning anti-invasion defence, large geographical areas which might come under threat could initially be guarded only; furthermore, it was assessed that Sweden would be forced to weaken the anti—invasion defence in at least one main direction. Furthermore, it was anticipated that naval protection of merchant shipping was gradually to be given less resources.

Finally, on the peace preserving capability of the National Defence, the minister stressed:

Our National Defence can preserve the peace if it has such strength and readiness that an attack appears uncertain and strenuous. In addition, we will then have prospects of resisting aggression until decisive changes in international conditions may affect also our situation.

The last sentence directly brings to mind the discussion on indirect assistance, touched upon above. The full paragraph shows considerable

similarities in reasoning to the second quotation in section 3.3.4 above, from ÖB 57.

The very wordings above were discussed in detail by the then under- secretary Olle Karleby when interviewed by this Commission. Quotation:

the 1955 Defence Committee briefings by staffs and the National Defence Research Establishment (FOA) on what could practicably be done so that we would be somewhat better prepared in the event of an isolated Soviet attack on us. What kind of assistance from the West could we prepare to better withstand the attack and to get such assistance as soon as possible? So much for the Defence Committee.

What, then, did the minister say? Well, he wasn”t exactly explicit, but since I wrote the statement, I know approximately how the reasoning went, and it is on page 99 in the bill. I can read out the paragraph [Here follows the paragraph concluding with the two sentences quoted above.] The reasoning behind the somewhat vague wording of the last sentence, I would argue, is that if we can endure until the West is able to provide military assistance, our position can improve and we will have chances of survival. But this general wording covers both this reasoning and other changes in the general situation.

3 .3 .7 Concluding assessment

In conclusion, the various documents discussed abovediffer markedly on the issue of preparations for receiving external assistance. The unclassi- fied version of ÖB 54 touched upon the issue of support in general terms, without entering more closely into what preparations were required for this. As mentioned above, the 1955 Defence Committee concluded that preparations were required, that some had already been made, and that yet others could be made. According to the unclassified document ÖB 57, such preparations were viewed as being obviously advantageous; at the same time, non—participation in alliances was assessed to imply that they could not be carried out. The bill preceding the Defence Decision, finally, contained only veiled allusions to external assistance.

A decisive issue for the Commission, in light of the above, is what significance should be given to the positions of the 1955 Defence Decision. First, we would like to point out that a memorandum presented within a committee cannot of course be formally perceived as a government position or even as that of the Defence Minister.

At the same time, it should be taken into account that the Committee had an exceptional composition, since it was led by the Minister of Defence, two non—socialist party leaders were members, and the under—

secretary at the Ministry of Defence was its general secretary. In reality, the Committee thus constituted a forum for a high—level inter—party negotiation. The weight of this forum was finally confirmed when Parliament by a large majority passed the bill submitted by the Govern- ment in 1958, based on a proposal by an unanimous Committee.

We concluded above that the Committee meeting on 16 February 1956 was preceded by several months” planning. In January, a draft briefing memorandum on external support was prepared. This draft was re-edited several times, and presented in the name of the secretariat prior to the meeting. Against this background, it seems certain that the final memorandum did indeed reflect the views of the under—secretary. In view of the significance of the matter this was an issue of key importance to Sweden”s security — the under-secretary must in all likelihood have obtained support in substance for the memorandum from his superior, the Minister of Defence, also chairman of the Committee. Before this Commission, Jarl Hjalmarson recalled that the memorandum presented was a personal statement from Olof Stroh, and "pushed aside"; this, however, does not change the Commission's view.

As to the real import of the secretariat memorandum, a certain signifi— cance should be attached to it as well as the earlier draft by Stroh - being filed in the archives. Had the documents been considered "working papers" only, it seems unlikely that the general secretary, Olle Karleby, would have preserved them for posterity.

Finally, it is worth noting that the then Minister of Defence, Torsten Nilsson, as well as the then under—secretary, Olle Karleby, have largely agreed with the account of the assessments and standpoints presented above in connection with the 1958 Defence Decision.

In conclusion, the secretariat memorandum presented at the meeting on 16 February 1956 can be considered as expressing the view of the Minister of Defence on external assistance, as well as on how such assistance had been prepared, and could be prepared. The position taken in the memorandum offered the Supreme Commander a considerable mandate to realize and further develop various military measures.

3.4. The 1968 Defence Decision and its preliminaries

3.4.1. Background

Section 3.3 above shows that the 1958 Defence Decision determined the development of the Swedish National Defence during most of the 19605, as regards both its fundamental direction and the size of its budget. While new defence decisions were formally passed in 1961 and 1963,

they should be viewed more as extensions, with some technical adjustments, within the framework largely laid down in 1958.

Towards the end of the 19605, the Government again wished, for several reasons, to carry out a more comprehensive review of the National Defence, i.e., a new comprehensive defence decision.

Preparations for the 1968 Defence Decision (FB 68), just like those of 1958, included the Supreme Commander being tasked to undertake certain studies, the findings from which were reported to the Govern- ment in the spring of 1965. Even beforehand, however, the Government had appointed a parliamentary committee to analyse and submit recommendations on the general direction, size, and costs of the armed forces and the civilian defence for the period following the fiscal year 1966/67. The Committee was given a broad mandate in security policy. To this should be added the issue of Swedish nuclear weapons, which now, after almost a decade of "freedom of action", was deemed ready for final settlement.

Not until early 1968, one year later than initially intended, did the Committee submit its report. One month earlier, the non—socialist members had resigned due to differences of opinion as to the size of the budget. Government and Parliament later followed the Committee's recommendations to all intents and purposes.

3.4.2. General remarks on external assistance in FB 68

The absence of any explicit discussion whatsoever on external assistance in the 1965 Defence Committee and the 1968 Defence Bill is most conspicuous. It should be noted, however. that the extensive discussion led by the Committee (and to some extent, separately, by its chairman, Karl Frithiofson) on Swedish nuclear weapons also touched indirectly upon the issue of intervention by other states in the event of Sweden being attacked (with or without nuclear weapons). This will be discussed below.

In the initial preparatory work ÖB 65, the Supreme Commander discussed external assistance, albeit briefly.

3.4.3. The view on external assistance in ÖB 65

On the issue of Sweden”s dependence upon external assistance, the Supreme Commander emphasized in OB 65:

As a non-aligned state, we have to bring about a balanced defence system, since - unlike pact members — we cannot count on external


Our resources cannot become sufficient for us, in all circumstances and for any length of time, to repel a great—power attack without political, economic, and military support from other states. In light of Scandinavia”s - and thus Sweden's - strategic significance to both great-power blocs, it should be in the interest of other great powers to provide such assistance. An important prerequisite for assistance is that our National Defence should have the capacity to resist an attack for such a long period, and that this defence can be conducted in such a way, that various kinds of intervention on our behalf can take effect and seem worthwhile for the intervening party.

Thus remained the fundamental idea found in the Scandinavian defence negotiations in 1948—49 and in connection with FB 58, that some form of external assistance would be required in certain situations. It is evident, however, that in 1965, the requirement was assessed to be less categorical and immediate - the resources were not deemed sufficient for Sweden to persist on its own "in all circumstances and over a long period. " This assessment should be compared to especially the one made in 1949, where an immediate need for assistance was discussed. The likely reasons behind this partial shift in views will be discussed further in section 3.4.7, below.

3.4.4. External assistance in the 1965 Defence Committee

In its report — submitted in 1968 (SOU 1968:10) — the 1965 Defence Committee (FU 65) chose, when covering ÖB 65, not to recount the Supreme Commander”s assessments on the need for external assistance, or to offer any comments of its own on this matter.

The Committee, however, provided an exhaustive assessment of the starting points of Swedish security policy. Under the heading "Aims and direction of Swedish security policy," FU 65 discussed the ultimate objectives for Swedish security policy (FU 65 in italics):

Our own security policy objectives should be - in all circumstances and in forms of our own choosing — to secure national freedom of action so that, within our borders, according to our own values, we can preserve and develop our society - politically, economically, socially, culturally, and in any other aspect — and in connection therewith externally work for international détente and peaceful developments.

These are well-known wordings, later repeated in a number of defence decisions; and they refer to the freedom of action that we, ourselves, shall be able to determine Sweden”s domestic development. The interesting paragraph is, however, the next one, where the words

"freedom of action" are used in a totally different context, on external conditions and contingencies:

It is not possible in advance to fully pinpoint what policy a govern- ment in some future may be obliged to implement under still unknown external conditions. The aim of our security policy and defence planning must be to create freedom of action for future contingencies.

Actually, this text is almost identical in substance — and partly also in wording - to a section of the Government”s account in the foreign policy debate 18 years earlier, on 22 March 1950. The Minister of Foreign Affairs then said, inter alia:

No responsible government can in peacetime believe itself capable of more closely defining the policy of neutrality a future government may have to implement in still unknown external conditions.

No one can demand of us that we should venture into predictions on the correct policy in different hypothetical contingencies in a future war...

The language of the 1965 Defence Committee thus indicated a continu- ation of the views of Erlander and Undén in the early 19505, meaning inter alia less categorically binding statements as to the future course of action in an emergency than had been expressed in Government declarations in the autumn of 1959, discussed in section 2.2. The last mentioned statement implied that Sweden did not enjoy freedom of action; in the sense that our country - following the outbreak of a great- power war - could not choose to join forces with any of the warring parties without being attacked, even in a critical situation when under external pressure.

FU 65, however, also stressed that foreign suspicion of Sweden preparing reception of external assistance had to be counteracted:

For our policy to gain trust, there must, on the one hand, be no obvious deficiencies in our total defence which could raise concern that we have, already in peacetime, secured external assistance to cover any weaknesses in a tense situation. On the other hand, our National Defence should not be shaped in such a way as to technology and equipment, that our resources evidently appear to be of particular use for cooperation with another state.

3.4.5. The issue of Swedish nuclear weapons and its linkages to external assistance

As mentioned above, the issue of Swedish nuclear weapons was finally settled in FB 68. In discussing this matter, the Defence Committee

stressed that the issue had to be evaluated in light of Sweden”s general strategic and security situation. In this, great significance had to be accorded the nuclear states” own view on the role of nuclear weapons.

FU 65 assumed that military aggression against Sweden would be only one stage within the larger context of war.

Considering this, it is reasonable to assume that whoever is contem- plating an attack on our country has to reckon with the main opponent”s reaction and possibilities for counter—action. This is especially the case with the risk of nuclear attack, evident if the aggressor himself employs nuclear weapons.

The Committee further sharpened this argumentation a few lines below:

This natural great—power restraint on the use of nuclear weapons makes it likely that nuclear weapons would not be used against our country until a nuclear war were a fact following a nuclear attack against other targets than Swedish ones. Whoever is contemplating an attack against Sweden, with or without nuclear weapons in that particular operation, has to take into account the risk that nuclear weapons could be employed against that operation even if Sweden does not possess any such weapons.

The conclusion is that Sweden to all intents and purposes is under the nuclear umbrella in much the same way as our neighbouring countries can be said to be, no matter what power bloc or great-power sphere of influence they belong to.

The last quotation conveys three thoughts. The first is that it was hardly likely that nuclear weapons would be employed in an isolated attack on Sweden, and that a conventional defence therefore was meaningful. The second is that someone contemplating an attack. on Sweden, with or without nuclear weapons, had to take into account the risk of great— power intervention with nuclear weapons against the attack on Sweden. The last part of the assessment implies that Sweden”s situation was in no way unique, but shared at least by all Nordic states, or even by all smaller European states within as well as outside the great-power alliances. The second thought thus constituted a specific assessment of Sweden”s situation, the last a more general one.

It is apparent that the United States was providing the nuclear umbrella for Norway, Denmark, and Iceland. From the Commission's knowledge of Swedish security policy analysis and concrete military measures, discussed in chapter 6, there is no reason to believe that the assessments were any different concerning Sweden.

In this particular context, i.e., in connection with the rejection of a Swedish nuclear capability, FU 65 did thus not refrain from concluding that Sweden implicitly was under the (in reality U.S.) nuclear umbrella.

In this context, a quote from a newspaper article by the chairman of the Defence Committee, Karl Fritiofson, deserves recounting. The article

included the text on the nuclear umbrella just quoted; in the conclusion followed by these sentences:

Our non-alignment or aim of neutral ity in war means little, if anything at all, in this context. And our chances to implement such a policy are not diminished by this.

The article then closed with a plea for a maintained "conventional" defence and with some conclusions on the issue of Swedish nuclear weapons.

3.4.6. The 1968 Defence Bill

The Defence Bill itself did not add any new views on external assistance. Like the 1965 Defence Committee in its report, the Government refrained from recounting the ÖB 65 section mentioned above. Also, the bill did not mention freedom of action in future external circumstances as discussed by the Committee. The issue of Swedish nuclear weapons dealt with quite exhaustively by the Committee and discussed in its background reports - was dismissed by the minister in stating that he shared the Defence Committee”s assessment that, at the present time, it was not in the security interests of Sweden to procure nuclear weapons.

It has been observed earlier, that the security policy assessments of 1948—49 and those in connection with FB 58, respectively, were presented in a pragmatic, Realpolitik note which, to a certain extent, contrasted with the more normative style of 1959.

The language of the 1968 Defence Bill conveys the impression of a return to older appearances, in that the classic international—law concentration on wartime obligations of a neutral state was once more in focus. The need to create confidence in the declared policy was indeed also emphasized, but in this case without any particular reference to demands on peacetime policy. The note is thus considerably more low— key compared to that of 1959, which the following quotation shows:

The best-known expression of our security policy is the principle of ”non—participation in alliances in peacetime aiming at neutrality in war.” This principle has occasionally been mentioned as the objective of Swedish security policy, but primarily it points to the means in which the country has chosen to put its trust in two different contin— gencies, i.e. in peacetime and when war has broken out around us. The Swedish posture in these two contingencies constitutes a coherent whole, namely ”the traditional Swedish security policy.”

Sweden's policy of neutrality presupposes that the defence policy is guided inter alia by the obligations we enter into when declaring ourselves neutral in a conflict between other states. Sweden must create confidence in the declared policy of neutrality, in the ability and

the will to uphold neutrality. Presumed or proven inability to repel operations against our territory could otherwise prompt another warring party to seek out to occupy Swedish territory in self—defence.

Confidence in ”armed neutrality” thus builds upon Swedish defensive measures appearing sufficient to uphold strict neutrality. In this confidence also lies a firm belief in domestic political stability in Sweden, such that the foundations of security policy remain firm.

3.4.7. Comparison of 1968 with 1949 and 1958 — concluding assessment

Worth noting concerning the 1968 Defence Decision is - as shown by the preceding text first, a certain return to an earlier, more pragmatic description of the neutrality policy; and, second, a further reduced emphasis on external assistance in security policy assessments - to such extent that the issue was touched upon only very indirectly. The reasons for this will be briefly discussed below.

The return to a more pragmatic presentation of the policy of neutrality - made especially clear by the pointed reference to continuity with the Government”s view of the 1950 foreign policy debate can be viewed in the following perspective. In response to the parliamentary question in 1959 (Cf section 2.2), the Cabinet had restricted the scope for military cooperation with other states. The language in 1959 originated from a time at least partly marked by domestic polemics and inter-party confrontation, whereas the first half of the 19605 was characterized by principal agreement on foreign policy issues. Prior to the 1968 Defence Decision, it appears that the parties were striving to preserve the traditional concord on the core of the security policy, characteristic of Sweden since World War II. It would obviously have signified a defeat for Swedish security policy if the parties had not been able, before the Swedish people and the world, to agree on fundamental security policy assessments. The discussion on these assessments was thus most likely characterized as in connection with later defence decisions - by a sincere desire for unity where elements of thought associated with the party confrontation were pushed aside.

That the non—socialist members left the Committee when the work was almost completed was due to differences of opinion on future defence budgets. Furthermore, at that time (January 1968) the security policy assessments were already completed. The unity on security policy issues was finally confirmed in the parliamentary debate in connection with the defence bill on 22 May 1968.

That external support was discussed to a lesser extent than in 1958 (and, even more noticeably, than in 1949) can probably be attributed to

a considerable number of reasons. These can be attributed to the interna- tional security environment and the "threat scenario", the status of the Swedish National Defence, and domestic policy. The latter have been discussed in Chapter 2 and are not further discussed here.

As to the international security environment, the period following the end of World War 11, and most of the 19505, was characterized by the perception of an imminent threat of war. In the West, the Soviet system was judged to be aggressive in foreign policy, and even militarily expansionist, especially during the Stalin era. No real balance in conventional armed forces existed in Europe, the Soviet Union was by a wide margin predominant, but its forces were "balanced" by U.S. superiority in the air and in nuclear weapons. In reality, crrly one other naval power existed in the Baltic Sea besides Sweden, namely the Soviet Union. Denmark was weakly defended, albeit politically a member of the Atlantic Pact (NATO).

In the period 1955—65, much of this gradually changed. Already in 1951, NATO had established an integrated military command. The U.S. military presence in Europe was expanded. The defences of Norway and Denmark were strengthened with the support of the Western great powers. West Germany was admitted to NATO and was gradually rearmed, so that toward the end of the 19605 the country appeared as militarily the Strongest state within NATO save for the United States. In addition, towards the end of the 19505, NATO started discussing the establishment of a special military command for the Danish isles and the southern Baltic Sea, BALTAP, in which the Federal German Navy would play a significant role. The two—power situation in the Baltic Sea was thus replaced by a three—power situation.

In addition, Soviet naval developments, meant inter alia a considerable shift of emphasis away from the Baltic Sea and towards the Northern Fleet, based on the Kola peninsula.

Furthermore, the overall security relations between the superpowers improved, as described by FU 65. Especially after the Cuba Crisis, the superpowers entered a period of stable relations, where caution, ultimately to avoid a nuclear war, and status quo were viewed to be key components. The perceptions of acute risks of war in Europe were thus considerably moderated.

Also, the developments within the Swedish National Defence initiated after the 1958 Defence Decision ought objectively to have improved Swedish self-confidence. This assessment - if still clouded by certain inter-party differences of opinion - becomes very clear in the 1965 Defence Committee report, and in bill 1968:110. The developments as to equipment and organization were characterized inter alia by forceful expansion of the Air Force strike command and establishment of modern

armoured brigades.

The interplay between a considerable number of factors thus made Sweden able to perceive the combination of the international security environment, "threat picture", and Swedish defence capabilities as more favourable than during the 19505. The need for external assistance should therefore have seemed less manifest than before, as seen above in ÖB 65. To this should be added the situation in concrete " assistance planning. " Sweden had already, in conjunction with Swedlund”s petitions in 1949 and via the discussion in the 1955 Defence Committee and by means of a number of concrete measures, reached a position which could probably be termed quite satisfactory, especially considering its less exposed position. None of the actors could have had any strong interest in further dealing with these issues.

To this should be added certain conditions stemming from the forms of defence committee procedures. The 1955 Defence Committee had consisted of an exclusive top-level group (among others the Minister of Defence and two non-socialist party leaders.) The 1965 Defence Committee, on the other hand, was characterized by wider participation, which most probably diminished any inclination to initiate a discussion on such a sensitive issue as external assistance.

In conclusion, the Commission has established that in connection with the 1968 Defence Committee report, language still occurs which is certainly even more "vague" than before, but is nevertheless hard to interpret as anything but references to the issue of external assistance. The Commission has not found any information indicating any review of the assessments of the assistance issue made in connection with the 1958 Defence Decision. In later documents, the Commission has not come across any comprehensive assessment similar to the one in the 1956 memorandum on the issue of external assistance, be it in the documents of the 1965 Defence Committee or in any other context.

4. U.S. policy vis—a—vis Sweden

4.1. Background

In chapters 2 and 3 the Commission discussed some basic Swedish assessments regarding security policy, with emphasis on the issue of assistance from the Western Powers in the defence of Sweden. Their view is of course of great interest. In this regard, the British and the U.S. perspectives are of immediate interest, while the particular Nor— wegian perspectives were partly discussed in section 3.2 and will be further commented on in chapters 5 and 6. Referring to the United Kingdom has the Commission had access to just one more comprehen— sive assessment regarding security relations with Sweden. It was made in 1952 and is accounted for in section 6.1.2. In the case of the United States, which - according to analyses of the 19505 - was the most likely supplier to Sweden of military support in war, a different source material situation applies.

The policy that the United States planned to carry out, e.g., vis-a-vis a particular country or group of countries, has thus from time to time been set out by the President in a policy document following discussions in the National Security Council (NSC), key departments, intelligence agencies, and the military leadership participating. These policy docu- ments - covering the period until the mid-19605 and now accessible in U.S. archives hold a unique position as they are authoritative express— ions of overall U.S. interests and policy intentions. Once a certain policy was adopted, it was transmitted to the relevant departments and govern- ment agencies (including, presumably, embassies) for implementation.

Documents concerning Scandinavia, including Sweden, and Finland were secret or top secret when written. Today, documents covering the period up to and including 1960 are declassified, except for occasional passages. This chapter relates the three key documents from 1948 to 1960:

NSC 28/1: The position of the United States with respect to Scandina- via, 1948

NSC 121: The position of the United States with respect to Scandina— via and Finland, 1952

NSC 6006/ 1: U.S. policy toward Scandinavia (Denmark, Norway and

Sweden), 1960.

The documents seem to cover a broad spectrum of policy interests, including security policy, foreign policy, and trade policy (meaning East- West trade). An important limitation is that U.S. war planning was not dealt with in other than general terms, nor were intelligence issues. Another limitation is that the documents expressed a manifestation of will, while the practical implementation of specific policies could be delayed or limited for different reasons. In some regards, therefore, information which could complete the picture given in these documents is still not available.

No new policy document concerning Scandinavia seems to have been prepared during the 1960s. This does not preclude NSC 6006/1 governing the U.S. position towards Sweden in all respects during the latter part of the decade.

4.2. NSC 28/1, 1948

The policy of 1948 (established in NSC 28/ 1) was developed during the summer, influenced by the initial discussions regarding a Scandinavian defence union. The international context was set by the Prague Coup, the unfolding Berlin crisis, the newly concluded Brussels Treaty (later to become the Western European Union), and the similarly initial dis- cussions on the creation of a transatlantic security alliance (later the Atlantic Treaty and its organization NATO). In several ways, NSC 28/ 1 reflected these developments.

It was initially stated that the fundamental U.S. objective in Scandinavia was to ensure that Norway, Denmark, and Sweden remained independent and democratic, and their willingness and capability to participate effectively in resisting Soviet aggression.

Scandinavia was considered to be of strategic significance for both the United States and the Soviet Union. It is situated along the shortest flight route between the United States and the Western part of the Soviet Union, and the Scandinavian states could control the Baltic Approaches. If Scandinavia were controlled by the Soviet Union, important air, missile, and submarine bases would be in Soviet hands. In addition, Sweden had large uranium deposits.

The main threat to the Scandinavian states was Soviet diplomatic pressure or, ultimately, a military attack. Norway and Denmark had already, on an informal basis, requested U.S. military-technological assistance in view of the coup in Prague. Sweden, on the other hand, still adhered to a policy of "neutrality" (quotation marks in the U.S.

text). Sweden was seen to be convinced that neutrality could be maintained one way or the other in the event of war. The policy of neutrality did not, however, prevent the Swedish Government from forcefully distancing itself from domestic communism.

The three Scandinavian countries were not capable of withstanding Soviet military aggression for any length of time, but if provided with limited amounts of equipment and external assistance, they could create a certain deterrent against attack.

Against this background, the United States should: a. strengthen the present tendency of Norway and Denmark to align themselves with the West. b. make clear to Sweden its dissatisfaction with Sweden's apparent failure to distinguish in its own mind between the West and the Soviet Union, and influence Sweden towards eventual alignment with the Western Powers, this policy should be carried out in a way which would not be unnecessarily provocative towards the Soviet Union.

As to military assistance (equipment, etc.), the United States should follow the priorities set by the Vandenberg Resolution (a policy decision by the United States Senate). Sweden”s requirements should be con- sidered only after meeting the needs of those countries which had signalled their intention to cooperate with the United States or were signatories to the Brussels Treaty.

With minor adjustments, President Truman approved these policies on 4 September 1948 in NSC 28/1 (Cf Appendix 8).

4.3. NSC 121, 1952

Another policy paper was drafted at the beginning of 1952. The situation had now changed in several significant aspects. Norway and Denmark had joined NATO, and the United States had reappraised its policy towards Sweden and was for the time being accepting the Swedish policy of non—alignment. The Korean War was on.

According to the new policy document, it was in the interest of the United States that Norway, Denmark, and Sweden should be in the best possible position to resist Soviet pressure or aggression.

Sweden seemed absolutely determined to defend its national indepen- dence and integrity. However, the country was associated with the concept of " neutrality. " Although Sweden was traditionally anti-Russian and ideologically anti-Communist, it had not joined NATO. It would be

in the U.S. interest to have Sweden join NATO, primarily because this would facilitate a joint Scandinavian defence organization. But for the foreseeable future, the United States had to accept as a political fact Swedens policy of remaining outside military alliances and calculate accordingly those means and methods best designed to increase Sweden”s contribution to Western defence.

The general attitude towards Sweden, therefore, should reflect the assessment that, even without formal Swedish membership of NATO, Europe's defence would benefit from closer Swedish association and cooperation with its NATO neighbours and with the United States. The significance of sufficient Swedish military capability for the defence of Norway and Denmark was also noted here.

Sweden was already cooperating substantially with the West/the United States. Therefore, the United States should favourably review Swedish requests for assistance. Sweden should be allowed to purchase military equipment etc. on the same basis as other nations whose ability to defend themselves was important to the United States. In addition, the United States should license strategic items for export to Sweden according to the standards governing the licensing of strategic items to the COCOM countries (Cf 5.2). Sweden”s military establishment would be strengthened by increased exchange of military information, and expansion of the programme of inviting Swedish military officers to attend technical schools in the United States. Finally, Norway, Denmark and Sweden would be encouraged to cooperate in coordinating Scandina— vian planning and strategy.

This policy was approved by President Truman on 17 January 1952 as NSC 121 (Cf Appendix 9).

The NSC staff prepared a background paper on which the President did not take a formal position. It is somewhat more detailed than the approved policy paper and thus of interest.

In addition to the conclusions quoted above, the paper clearly expresses the U.S. interest in assisting Sweden in the event of war. Underlying this was an appraisal of the strategic significance of Scandinavia, largely concomitant with that of 1948. "It would be incumbent on the United States" as a member of the United Nations to assist Sweden should it be the victim of aggression, whether in an isolated attack or in an all—European war. Sweden's strategic, economic, and political significance was comparable with that of the NATO members Norway and Denmark. The situation for these two countries would be made considerably more difficult in the event of successful Soviet aggression against Sweden. Therefore, the United States had a clear interest in Sweden's independence, and relevant action should be taken to prevent Sweden from falling into the hands of the Soviet Union.

The United States firmly believed that "Sweden would not willingly submit" and give in to pressure in a neutrality situation. It was con- ceivable that Sweden would come out of a European war relatively unscathed. In the event of what was deemed to be a more probable scenario, namely Sweden being attacked or subjected to pressure, Sweden would resist with all the means at its disposal. From a Western perspective, the stronger Sweden”s defence, the better. Therefore, a militarily capable Sweden was in the direct U.S. interest.

Apparently, there is one, but crucial, reservation regarding peacetime military assistance to Sweden. The United States could not afford to create the impression, in Sweden or among NATO allies, that Sweden could reap all the benefits of a NATO membership without accepting corresponding obligations.

It should be noted that some paragraphs in this background paper are still classified.

4.4. NSC 6006/ 1, 1960

The need for a new policy paper

The decision-making process of the policy adopted in 1960 is under- pinned by a considerable number of documents available in the archives. This makes it possible to follow the decision—making process quite well despite the fact that some passages remain blanked out.

An NSC Planning Board briefing memorandum from December 1959, stated that NSC 121 primarily dealt with Norway, Denmark, Sweden, Finland (blank). Finland was now treated separately and was dealt with in a separate document. "NSC 121 as it now stands deals primarily with..., and provides for friendly military and other relations with that country. The policy is reconciled with continued formal neutrality by Sweden. " The document had now become somewhat outdated. Although the United States did not have any great problems relating to these countries, some issues ought to be addressed. These were primarily found in five areas.

The first issue is still classified. It seems probable, in light of the text that follows ("We probably can”t do much about this.") that the text deals with Sweden and Swedish persistence in adhering to a policy of neutrality. Another problem was the potential Swedish procurement of nuclear weapons.

When a later briefing memo was presented early in March 1960, there was obviously a draft policy paper at hand. It was pointed out that, compared to NSC 121 of 1952, a paragraph has been added dealing

specifically with the U.S. role in the defence of Sweden. ("Paragraph 26, on defending Sweden, 15 new in its specific reference to Sweden.") In this context, it was pointed out that another, general NSC policy paper (5906/ 1) contained a statement which was relevant to the issue: "To strengthen the deterrent to limited aggression and to reduce the danger of limited aggression expanding into general war, the United States should, in appropriate cases, make timely communication of its intentions . "

A comprehensive draft policy paper (NSC 6006)

In mid—March 1960, a final draft policy paper was available for discussion within the NSC a few weeks later. It opened with some general considerations on background information and concluded with policy recormnendations. The political analysis was most positive. First, the Scandinavian countries were prime examples of political democracy. Second, there were strong cultural, emotional and family ties between Scandinavia and the United States. Third, the Scandinavian countries enjoyed considerable prestige in the international community, and their support of U.S. policy was a valuable asset to the United States. Finally, any Soviet threat to Scandinavian security would create severe apprehen- sion among other North European NATO allies.

Norway and Denmark were firmly committed to NATO, it was stressed, and it was extremely unlikely that Sweden would wish NATO to be weakened by their withdrawal. All three countries were firm in rejecting efforts [of the Soviet Bloc] to make the Baltic Sea a more clausum or a nuclear weapons free zone.

Strategically, Scandinavia was important both to NATO and the Soviet Bloc. It constituted the Northern flank of NATO and its position made it possible to control the exits from the Baltic and Barents Seas. But the potential use of Scandinavia as a base for Western retaliatory operations was restricted by Sweden”s neutrality and the unwillingness of Denmark and Norway to permit such use.

The United States held the Swedish armed forces, particularly the Air Force, in relatively high regard. Sweden had S,candinavia”s most effective military force by far, financed with a relatively large defence budget.

Swedish NATO membership was not deemed necessary for the Western defence. It was of greater significance that Sweden maintained an up—to-date defence and procured early warning, air command and control, and advanced weapons systems (not nuclear, though) compatible with and complementary to those planned for procurement by U.S. allies.

Against this backdrop, the document then proceeded to discuss general policy objectives and recommendations.

The main policy objectives for the United States in Scandinavia were that these countries, first, had democratic institutions; second, had stable, prosperous economies oriented toward the non-Communist world; third, were friendly toward the United States and actively. Opposing Communist influence in the Baltic and Scandinavian area, particularly in Finland; and fourth, supported U.S. positions on major international issues. Continuing Danish and Norwegian membership of NATO, of course, was of central importance, as was the continuing availability of military facilities on Danish and Norwegian territory, including Greenland, and denial of these military facilities to the Soviet Bloc. Finally, it was important that Sweden should have the will and capability to withstand Soviet political and military pressure.

The following policy recommendations (outlined in paragraphs 27 -41) are of interest in their entirety to understand the U.S. policy position adopted in 1960.

Paragraph 27 emphasized the U.S. commitments through NATO regarding the security of Denmark and Norway. Paragraph 28 touched directly upon the issue of assistance to Sweden in the event of a European war:

Be prepared to come to the defense of Sweden against Soviet Bloc aggression, if possible in cooperation with appropriate NATO countries.

This wording is categorical and therefore noteworthy. It would become the subject of much discussion and rephrasing prior to the adoption of the policy paper in the autumn of 1960.

Finland was apparently significant to the United States. Consequently, the Scandinavian countries should, according to paragraph 30, be encouraged to cooperate in assisting Finland in order to counteract Soviet pressure and to maintain its Western ties. A similar but somewhat vaguer objective was formulated in paragraph 32 regarding Poland.

Paragraph 35 discussed ongoing military cooperation with Sweden. No grant military assistance was to be provided. However, the United States should be prepared to sell military equipment to Sweden, and to provide associated training. With due regard to NATO requirements, the United States should also be prepared to sell modern weapons systems to Sweden or to authorize licensing arrangements for manufacture in Sweden. Nuclear warheads were not to be provided, and Sweden should be discouraged from procuring its own nuclear weapons.

In addition, the United States should encourage Sweden to procure early warning, air command and control, and advance weapons systems,

as stated in the analysis referred to above.

In one of the final paragraphs (41), it was pointed out that the United States should encourage the Scandinavian countries (here meaning Norway and Sweden) to undertake projects for improving the economic viability of the regions of Northernmost Scandinavia.

Assistance to Sweden - demands for additional information

When the draft policy paper was presented to the NSC on 1 April 1960, the presenter (Mr. Gray) stressed that the paper mainly was meant to codify the current policy [towards Denmark, Norway, and Sweden]. The discussion was lively regarding the above mentioned paragraph 28. (Cf Appendix 10 for an account of the discussion.) Secretary of State Herter was especially critical and questioned how the United States could cooperate in the defence of Sweden without informing Sweden and the NATO members of its intention in advance. If, on the other hand, the United States was to inform on this, the issue of the defence of other states, e.g. Austria, would immediately be raised. President Eisenhower believed that the issue had to be raised within NATO. By doing so, bases necessary for cooperation with Sweden could be established:

Without such bases established through NATO cooperation, we would have no way of assisting Sweden unless we made general war against the USSR from bases in the U.S.

The presenter of the draft pointed out that paragraph 28 was oriented towards planning - aiming at the creation of contingency plans for action in the event of an attack on Sweden. He also stated that "at the present time" there existed no alliance with Sweden, nor any automatic provision or commitment to assist Sweden in the event of an attack.

Herter pointed out that paragraph 28 conferred great benefits on Sweden without any compensation to the United States. The President asked the Council to think of the position of the other Scandinavian countries were Sweden invaded by the Soviet Union. He asked what actions the other Western European countries would take in such a situation and pointed out that Sweden "could not afford any policy but neutrality." The President was convinced that if the USSR attacked Sweden, "war would occur in the centre of Europe." After this exchange, the President decided that Paragraph 28 should be excluded from NSC 6006 for the time being, pending further in—depth analysis.

The Council also discussed paragraph 35, dealing with equipment sales to Sweden. It had earlier been pointed out that Sweden was perhaps the only non-allied country to which the United States was prepared to sell modern weapons systems. The President concluded that the United States

should be prepared to sell modern weapons to Sweden following a case- by—case approval of the Departments of State and Defense.

The document was thus adopted by President Eisenhower, with a temporary exclusion of paragraph 28, as NSC 6006/1 on 6 April 1960.

New policy guidelines regarding assistance to Sweden final adoption

The U.S. State Department reported back to the Council in October 1960 with further analysis as to the issues relating to the temporarily excluded paragraph 28. The issue as to whether the question of assisting in the defence of Sweden in war should be raised in NATO was of particular concern. State Department believed that it would be consistent and logical if some kind of guidance were to be included in the document to cover the contingency of aggression against Sweden. Three contingencies should be covered: (a) Soviet Bloc aggression against Sweden alone, (b) 3 general war in which Sweden remained neutral, and (0) a general war in which Sweden was attacked by the Soviet Bloc.

According to State Department, case (a) was such a remote possibility that meaningful policy guidance was deemed futile. However, if Finland would fall under Communist control, the threat against Sweden would become real. Such a development, however, would undoubtedly call for a fundamental policy review by the United States, NATO, and Sweden itself. The outcome of such a review could not be meaningfully anticipated in the policy document.

If, as in case (b) an all-European war broke out in which Sweden remained neutral, the United States would use every means to prevent or limit Swedish assistance to the Soviet Bloc (The next line is still classified.)

In the event of Sweden being attacked within the framework of an all- European war (c) it was assumed that the United States would encourage and assist Swedish resistance by all means, military means included, consistent with U.S. prior obligations to NATO. (This is followed by almost a full page of still classified text.)

ln State Department”s summary of the analysis, the conclusions are to a certain extent still classified. The available part of the text reads as follows:

In the event of general war with the Soviet bloc (a) seek to prevent Sweden, as long as it remains neutral, from giving any assistance to the Soviet Bloc, and (b) encourage and assist Sweden, within the limitations of U.S. commitments to NATO, to resist Soviet Bloc attack against Sweden. In the case of Communist domination of Finland, consider promoting Sweden's membership in NATO. (Here follows 3 or 4 lines that still are classified.)

The State Department paper was subsequently discussed within the NSC Planning Board in preparation for a meeting with the full NSC chaired by the President. The officer in charge at the Planning Board had no reservations against the policy text presented by the State Department but offered his Chairman (also the Executive Secretary of the NSC) the following commentary:

On page 4 [a part of the still classified text] of this official report by the State Department in response to a Presidential request, the war planning with respect to Sweden is assumed. Doesn” t the State Department kn_ow what the facts are? In my opinion, the last sentence of the first paragraph should have read: ”U.S. and NATO war plans take into account the possibility of Swedish involvement in a general


war. (Underlinings original.)

Also, the Executive Secretary did not fully accept State Department”s suggestions and proposed the following changes (strike-throughs and underlinings from the original; the latter refer to new text):

In the event of general war with the Soviet Bloc (a) seek to prevent Sweden, as long as it remains neutral, from giving any assistance to the Soviet Bloc, and (b) encourage and assist Sweden, Within—the limitations—ef without prejudiceo to U. S commitments to NATO, to resist Soviet Bloc attack against Sweden. In the event of Soviet Bloc aggression against Sweden alone, be prepared to come to the assist- ance of Sweden as part of NATO or UN response to the aggression. In the event of Communist domination of Finland, consider promoting Sweden's membership in NATO. Maintain and encourage ether selected NATO powers individually to maintain discreet liaison with the Swedish military establishment as the basis for possible future active military cooperation.

He recommended that the measures delineated in the underlined full sentence above should be understood to provide guidance for unilateral U.S. planning only, and not for planning within NATO. The last sentence is also worth noting. It apparently suggested only a minor change in the State Department”s draft and acknowledged the already established role of certain NATO states (meaning Norway and Denmark) as links for Sweden's military contacts with the West.

At the concluding meeting within the NSC on this issue the basis was the Flaming Board”s above quoted text. In addition, there was a more far-reaching alternative to the above underlined full sentence from the Joint Chiefs of Staff:

In the event of Soviet Bloc aggression against Sweden alone, be prepared to provide timely assistance for the defence of Sweden consistent with U. S. treaty obligations, preferably as a part of a NATO or UN response, but unilaterally if necessary.

President Eisenhower, however, opted for the text suggested by the

Planning Board, and the policy paper in its revised form was adopted on 10 November 1960 as NSC 6006/1 (Rev.). (The final text will be found in Appendix 11.)

4.5. Summary and conclusions

The documents from 1948, 1952, and 1960 show similarities as well as differences. Thus, the general military—strategic analysis is characterized by a marked continuity. The political judgments, however, undergo crucial changes, and the view on military assistance to Sweden is expressed fully for the first time in the 1960 document.

In the military-strategic sense, Scandinavia was already regarded in 1948 as important for both the United States and the Soviet Union, primarily in an air operations perspective. Soviet”s access to Scandinavia would have grave implications for the West. The 1952 strategic analysis concurred largely with its predecessor. The fundamental analysis held good in 1960, but with some additional dimensions: The NATO perspective and the interest in the waters North of Scandinavia. From the NATO perspective, focused on Central Europe, scandinavia was an important flank area. In addition, Scandinavia commanded the exits from the Baltic as well as the Barents Seas.

In 1960, Scandinavia was discussed as a base for Western retaliatory operations Eastward. This aspect is hardly noticeable in the 1948 and 1952 documents. Nevertheless, this should not be taken to mean a considerable change in the U.S. position, in view of what is known from other sources concerning active U.S. planning in the 19405 and 9505.

The political dimension of the security policy analysis stands out in the 1948 document, which is permenated by U.S. dissatisfaction with Swedish neutrality policy. The intent was thus to demonstrate dissatisfac- tion with Sweden”s apparent inability to distinguish between the Western Powers and the Soviet Union; and the United States intended to supply military equipment to Sweden only after its own allies” needs were satisfied.

Four years later, the Swedish non—aligned position had been accepted as a political fact, although it was still desirable that Sweden join NATO. At the same time, however, it was noted that Sweden was by tradition anti-Russian and anti-Communist. Thus, the view on providing Sweden with military aid (primarily equipment) in peacetime had changed; Swedish requests should be looked upon favourably. In addition, it would be beneficial if Sweden's cooperation with its Scandinavian neighbours and the United States were to be intensified.

In 1960, the United States fully accepted the Swedish security policy ("[Sweden] could not afford any policy but neutrality," according to President Eisenhower), and there are no indications whatsoever that the United States intended to attempt to change this policy. Swedish NATO membership was only mentioned as a possible countermeasure in the event of a Russian takeover of Finland. NATO membership was not necessary, as the central tenet was that Sweden's military system, technologically and organizationally, facilitated cooperation with the West. However, the United States valued a general orientation towards the West in all the Scandinavian countries.

In 1960, the U.S. goodwill toward Sweden also became more obvious in the area of military equipment. After an exhaustive discussion, briefly dealt with above, the President himself decided that the United States should be prepared to sell modern weapons to Sweden on an ad—hoc basis.

The only further reference to bilateral military cooperation in peacetime was the few lines concerning discreet liaison via, in effect, Norway and Denmark. In light of what was said initially in this chapter regarding the absence of references to war planning and intelligence, however, it is not possible for the Commission to examine whether NSC 6006/1 offered a complete picture of Sweden”s military relations with the United States as they were interpreted from the U.S. side during this period.

The U.S. view on wartime assistance to Sweden is of course the key issue in the perspective of the Commission. In 1948, it was only stated that external assistance would improve the conditions for Scandinavian defence. Already in 1952, there was a clear reference to Sweden and to the importance (or almost commitment) to provide assistance if Sweden were attacked. The only reservation dealt with the possible reaction from the NATO allies if the commitments were too far-reaching.

This matter, however, was discussed in far greater detail in the policy paper of 1960. While only eleven lines out of the main text of ten pages are devoted to this matter, it is clear from the full documentation that these eleven lines were a focal point of the analytical work preceding the policy”s adoption. The central message in the final policy was as follows: In the event of war, with Sweden remaining neutral, the United States would seek to prevent Sweden from providing any assistance to the East. If Sweden were attacked in a Europe—wide war, the United States would encourage and assist Sweden. This position, with the sole reservation that the actions should be taken without prejudice for NATO, is obviously the core of the paragraph. Considering the deliberations recounted earlier that a free Sweden was of central interest to the North European NATO members — one can assume that the "prejudices"

primarily referred to political conditions within NATO in peacetime. It can be assumed that these referred to a negative reaction among NATO allies, should Sweden receive some kind of security guarantees without assuming the obligations of NATO membership.

The final picture, then, is that the United States in its internal policy in 1960 expressed itself fairly categorically in favour of assisting Sweden if that country were attacked as a step in a major war. It should be noted that this does not read " . .be prepared to assist Sweden. . . ", but succinctly "...assist Sweden. . . "

The paragraph also contains a policy position for the event of an isolated attack on Sweden, i.e., the contingency that had earlier been judged highly unlikely. It concluded with the afore—mentioned intention of retaining discreet liaison with the Swedish military establishment as a basis for possible future active military cooperation. The complete text of the paragraph reads as follows (one footnote deleted):

28. In the event of general war with the Soviet Bloc (a) seek to prevent Sweden, as long as it remains neutral, from giving any assistance to the Soviet Bloc, and (b) encourage and assist Sweden, without prejudice to U.S. commitments to NATO, to resist Soviet Bloc attack against Sweden. In the event of Soviet Bloc aggression against Sweden alone, be prepared to come to the assistance of Sweden as part of a NATO or UN response to the aggression. In the event of Communist domination of Finland, consider promoting Sweden's membership in NATO. Maintain and encourage selected NATO powers individually to maintain discreet liaison with the Swedish military establishment as the basis for possible future active military cooperation.

5. Peacetime contacts with the Western Powers

5.1. International contacts

The Swedish policy of neutrality has not constituted any impediment to frequent international contacts. For a small country like Sweden, in— ternational contacts have been judged particularly significant. This is also the case with the armed forces. Officers and others in service with the National Defence require, as do professionals in other fields, contacts with foreign colleagues to avoid national isolation in their thinking and expertise. In addition, such contacts have been considered as helping to create respect for and understanding of the Swedish National Defence.

International military contacts have been of various types. In day—to— day contacts, defence attachés played a significant role. Also, an extensive exchange of visits took place at different levels. Officers and technicians in service with the armed forces often travelled abroad for purchasing and educational purposes. A considerable number of Swedish officers received advanced training in other countries, and foreign officers studied at military schools in Sweden. Duty exchange pro- grammes between Swedish and foreign officers were carried out to a non-negligible extent. These kinds of contacts took place primarily with Western Europe and North America.

In this context, it is not possible to provide a complete picture of the very extensive international contacts that Swedish officers and others in the service of the armed forces had from the end of the 19405 through November 1969. The purpose of the following account is only to provide a general understanding of the frequency and character of these contacts. Contacts dealing with intelligence exchange are described in section 5.4.

Defence attachés

At that time, one or sometimes several defence attachés served at the larger Swedish embassies. Their main duties as military advisors to the chief of mission - were to establish good contacts with the armed forces, and, where applicable, the defence industry, of the host country; to assist in the procurement of military equipment; and to prepare and facilitate

visits from Sweden of a military character. Their duties also included overt intelligence activities. Correspondingly, a number of foreign missions in Stockholm used defence attachés. Their contacts with the Swedish armed forces were facilitated by the Defence Orders Office (Försvarets Kommandoexpedition) at the Ministry of Defence.

The largest contingent of Swedish defence attachés was based in Washington. Their chances of effectively carrying out their duties varied considerably over time and reflected the state of Swedish-U.S. relations. Until mid-1952, U.S. servicemen distrusted Sweden, and it was difficult for the attachés to extract information of value. After that, the U.S. attitude gradually became more positive. But willingness to provide the Swedish attachés with classified information was still very limited. Towards the end of the 19505, however, the U.S. posture vis-a-vis Sweden shifted significantly. Thereafter, the U.S. military establishment showed considerable openness towards the Swedish attachés, who perceived themselves to be in a favoured position concerning informa- tion. In the end of the 1960s, as a consequence of the Swedish Govern- ment”s criticism of the U.S. warfare in Vietnam, relations once again cooled down. However, the cooperation on equipment - of such great importance to Sweden - was not discontinued.

Visits to other states

Previously, official travels by defence personnel required special permission by the Swedish Government. The ministries of Defence and Foreign Affairs handled such issues jointly. While the ministers of defence generally were positively inclined towards such applications, the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Undén, clearly took a more restrictive approach, at least during the first half of the 19505 111 particular, Undén objected to high—level visits. This attitude seems to have been shaped largely out of concern for how such visits would be perceived in the Soviet Union. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs was also quite restrictive in its views on visits by foreign military officers to Sweden.

The number of applications for travel permits in the archives of the Ministry of Defence gives a general impression of the extent of the travel activities. During 1949-51, the annual average number of applications was 18. During the following three-year—period, 1952—54, the number of applications increased to, on average, 58, of which just over 30 per cent concerned applications from the Swedish National Defence Research Establishment (FOA), and just over 20 per cent were from the Air Force and the Air Materiel Administration. During the latter part of the 19505 the number of journeys abroad increased rapidly. Thus in the fiscal years of 1966/67, 1967/68, and 1968/69, the numbers of such trips were 326,

473, and 519, respectively. In the Army Staff archives alone, there are approximately 600 travel reports from the period 1949-69.

Primary destinations were the Nordic countries, Western Europe, and North America. The travel reports in the Army Staff archives show that approximately 500 concern travels to NATO countries, while the remainder primarily deal with trips to neutral states such as Finland, Switzerland, and Austria. Only a few reports concern visits to Eastern Europe. Out of the total of 473 trips made by staff from defence authorities in the fiscal year of 1967/68, 110 concerned Great Britain, 92 the United States and Canada, 65 France, 56 West Germany, 29 Norway, 26 Denmark, 18 Finland, and 18 Switzerland. The most frequent travellers, also at this time, were personnel from FOA, the Air Force, and the Air Materiel Administration.

Flag-olj'icer exchanges

Exchanges between the Swedish military leadership and its counterparts of foreign states should be of particular interest. Nails Swedlund, Chief of the Defence Staff, 1947—51, and Supreme Commander, 1951-61, was frequently in contact with Danish and Norwegian military officers and politicians, and often visited these two countries. In the autumn of 1955, he also visited the United States. Axel Ljungdahl, while serving as Chief of the Air Force, 1954-60, visited twelve Western countries including the United States, and hosted a number of foreign air—force chiefs in turn. Stig H:son Ericson, Chief of the Navy, 1953-61, was an ardent proponent of international contacts. While Chief of the Navy, he made several travels for purposes of study to Great Britain and France, and one to the United States.

In the early 19605, rolling long—term planning was prepared for top- level military visits to and from the Nordic countries, Great Britain, and the United States. These plans were adopted by the Government.

In these plans, the reasons for visits to and from Denmark, Finland, and Norway were assigned primarily to good neighbourship, mutual goodwill, and the significance of personal acquaintances as well as to the exchange of primarily organizational and training experience stemming from the similar conditions of the four countries. The opportunities for contacts as well as for the exchange of experiences within the framework of each country”s particular foreign policy should be seized.

The plans explained the exchange of visits with Great Britain and the United States by their key position in procurement, the goodwill and increased understanding of Swedish determination and capabilities for (self—) defence generated by the visits, and the knowledge that could be obtained from visiting these countries.

Actual military top-level visits and return visits in 1962-65, and planned military top—level visits and return visits in 1966—69

Norway Denmark Finland Great Britain United States

To...- 1967 1965 1968 1967 1963 1964 1965 1968 1968 1964 1968 1967 1968 1967 1968 1966 1966 1965 1963 1965 1969 * 1969 1967 CN 1965 1967 1968 1962 1965 1963 1964 1969 1968 1968 1968 1969 CAF 1965 1968 1964 1968 1964 1967 1962 1962 1968 1969 1967 The left column shows who travelled, with SC standing for the Supreme Commander; CDS, the Chief of the Defence Staff; and CA, CN, and CAF the chiefs of the Army, Navy and Air Force, respectively, or their foreign counterparts. The remaining columns show, respectively, in which years visits

took place, to what countries, and when visits were received from these countries.


The Chief of the Defence Staff visited the Soviet Union (1965), the Chief of the Army, Switzerland (1966), the Chief of the Navy, Italy (1965) and France (1966) and the Chief of the Air Force, Italy (1966). The Supreme Commander planned to visit the Soviet Union (1967) and the Chief of the Air Force planned a visit to France (1969.)

The distribution of actual or planned visits to Sweden from other countries, beyond those in the table, was as follows: the French Chief of the Navy (1967), the Italian Chiefs of the Navy and Air Force (1967), the West German Inspector General of the Air Force (1968), the Soviet Commander—in-Chief of the Navy (1967), and the Polish Chief of Defence Staff (1967.)

In most cases, the visits were probably courtesy visits, including visits for the purpose of study. The principal significance of these visits was probably the establishment of personal contacts. The Commission will return to these in other contexts as well as to other high—level contacts,

to the extent they are of interest with respect to the subject that the Commission is studying.

On a regional level, visitor exchanges took place periodically, between Swedish military-district commanders, especially those in Kristianstad and Boden, and their counterparts in Denmark, Finland, and Norway. According to unanimous information provided by people informed of these activities, no issues pertaining to operational cooperation were dealt with. On the other hand, other issues of common interest were discussed, such as organization, equipment, training, and air-safety cooperation. The emphasis seems to have been on social activities and developing personal contacts.

A couple of visits by Swedish military—district commanders to Norwegian military exercises constitute exceptions to the above. Thus, in 1954, the military-district commander in Boden, Nails Björk, was given access to operational planning for north Norway in conjunction with the exercise "Blåtind" in 1954. 011 another occasion, Björk and & Norwegian commander agreed to exchange liaison units in wartime (Cf section 6.4). In 195 8, Rickard Åkerman, the military—district commander in Skövde, was present when the Norwegian Army Command discussed issues of a political and operational nature during the exercise "Dovre. "

Section 6.4 covers certain discussions, directed by the military—district commander in Kristianstad, between Danish and Swedish officers.

Further contacts

During World War II, the Swedish National Defence had limited opportunity of following military developments in other states. After the war, it was desirable to be informed of foreign wartime experiences as well as of the significant technical advances made. During the latter half of the 19405, Swedish officers and technicians began travelling abroad for study purposes. The United States and Great Britain were by far the most popular destinations. The visits seem to have focused primarily on issues pertaining to technology, training, and organization.

A few examples of these early visits deserve mentioning. In 1949, U.S. Air Force flight training in the United States was studied, and a study visit was made to USAF”s facilities in West Germany. In— formation was also obtained in England on the training of fighter ground controllers as well as on the selection process of Royal Air Force air crews. Also in 1949, a high-ranking naval officer visited Great Britain to study tactics and methods for operative command and control of naval forces. In England in 1950, a Swedish Air Force officer studied arma- ments for fighter aircraft and related issues. Other visits in 1950 concerned cooperation between naval and air forces, and RAF activities

in the British Zone in Germany. In 1951, an army officer studied paratroop training in England, France, and Belgium. In all, the Swedish visitors seem to have been well received and shown considerable openness even on classified matters.

Swedish officers also underwent training abroad. This had also happened before World War 11, and was thus nothing new in principle. Swedish officers served with foreign units; they participated in shorter courses in the most diverse subjects intelligence, fighter control, telecommunications equipment; and some officers also attended military colleges in other countries for an entire academic year or more. In addition, Swedish test pilots were trained in Western countries.

After World War II, the first Swedish national to have studied at a military college abroad seems to have been the future Major-General Sigmund Ahnfelt. During the 1949/50 academic year, he studied at the Command and General Staff College at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas. Several non—U.S. officers participated in the course, mainly from other NATO countries and Latin America, but also from Switzerland. Three other Swedish officers graduated from USACGSC up to 1969, among them, the future Supreme Commander, Lennart Ljung.

Already in the early 19505, Swedish officers were also being offered advanced training at other colleges, for example the Air and Command Staff School in the United States; the Staff College, RAF Staff College, and School of Land/Air Warfare in Great Britain; and the Norwegian Naval War College. Opportunities to study at military colleges were later opened up e.g. at the Naval War College and the Marine Corps School in the United States, at the Naval Staff Course in England, and at Ecole Supérieure de Guerre Navale in France.

The explanation as to why the Western Powers in this way provided the Swedish National Defence with opportunities for personnel to participate in advanced training is probably to be found in their interest in Swedish officers keeping up to international standards. Sweden would then be better prepared to resist Soviet aggression and contribute to the defence of the West.

The exchange was not lop—sided. Already in 1949, a U.S. officer seems to have participated in Swedish winter training. Also in 1949, the Royal Air Force offered to dispatch two officers to Sweden to provide information, on e.g. fighter control and certain air safety services. Foreign students also attended courses at Swedish military schools. Between 1949 and 1969, approximately 90 foreign officers studied in the Army War College/the army department of the Armed Forces Staff and War College (MHS) and approximately 50 at the Naval War College/the navy department of MHS. The great majority were from Norway, but also included were students from Danmark, Finland, Great Britain,

Austria, Thailand, and Colombia. There were no students from Warsaw Pact countries. There were no foreign students at the Air Force War College the air force department of MHS or at the National Defence College.

Some exchange duty took place involving officers from Sweden and certain NATO countries. In 1953, three Swedish Air Force officers were assigned to three months' service with the RAF in West Germany while three British officers served in the Swedish Air Force. A similar exchange took place also in subsequent years. In. 1957 , a Swedish Air Force officer was assigned to the RAF in England for three months, and studied British procedures for fighter control, while a British fighter controller at about the same time served with a Swedish wing, and on a few occasions also guided Swedish fighters. On the army side, similarly, there existed a so-called "exchange au pair system". In the mid-1950s, four Swedish junior officers served for four weeks with British units, and four British officers served with Swedish units. The programme was considered valuable, primarily as a general motivator. In the early 19605, a similar exchange programme was started with the United States. Swedish officers then served with U.S. units in West Germany.

To sum up, one finds that during this period Sweden had international contacts which gradually increased in scope. The exchange of visits as well as travel were mostly geared toward the Western Powers. Many officers who attended foreign military schools later reached top positions within the Swedish defence. Through this training they acquired thorough knowledge of the organization, tactics, and technology of the Western Powers. At the same time, valuable contacts were established with prominent officers from, primarily, NATO countries — contacts which in many cases developed into lasting friendships.

5.2. Peacetime procurement of equipment and supplies, and technical cooperation


During World War II, Sweden had expanded its National Defence substantially, and at the end of the war the Swedish armed forces were on a considerable footing. The Swedish defence war industry had been established, and corporations such as SAAB and Bofors were major suppliers to the Swedish armed forces. During the latter part of the 1940s, large—scale purchases of less sophisticated equipment were also made from U.S. surplus stocks.

In terms of quality, however, Sweden was worse off. During the war,

Sweden had largely been cut off from international technological developments. Much of its equipment was therefore obsolete. Only about a year after the war ended, Swedish officers and defence technicians began travelling abroad for study purposes, especially to the United States and Great Britain, to gain access e.g. to technological develop- ments there. It would take several years, however, before the experience gained could be put into practice in Swedish industry. Therefore, there were substantial needs for imports of technically advanced equipment. These needs could only be satisfied by the Western Powers.

Sweden's extensive and sparsely populated territory, the — in certain areas - quite distinctive terrain, and, not least, the fact that the armed forces mainly consisted of conscripts with limited training, often put particular requirements on equipment.

Over time, therefore, a Swedish profile" was - successfully - developed in military technology. In many aspects, solutions to technical problems were different from those chosen by the great powers, and the intention was to force a potential main opponent to commit resources against a uniquely Swedish technology. In addition, Sweden”s security policy stance made desirous a domestic defence industry, capable of meeting most peacetime procurement requirements as well as providing wartime munition production and equipment maintenance.

Though the Swedish National Defence over time could purchase equipment domestically to a greater extent, extensive cooperation with other states was still necessary. The National Defence wanted the latest and most effective equipment, at the lowest possible cost. Sweden had neither the financial nor the staff resources to single-handedly remain at the forefront of developments in all areas of military technology. Among other things, Swedish aircraft projects were dependent on an influx of foreign technology. And Sweden's defence industry could not possibly produce, at competitive prices, all the equipment required.

Though Sweden”s defence industry primarily aimed at meeting Swedish military requirements, international standards were met. Considering the predominant position of the large NATO countries on the world market, this meant in effect that Swedish defence industry followed NATO standards. One reason for this adaptation was the Swedish defence industry”s desire to export equipment and thereby be able to spread out development costs over more large—scale production series. Another reason was that the Swedish National Defence, when purchasing artillery for example, insisted that the calibre be of internatio— nal standard. In this way, domestic munition makers could be exposed to international competition.

Imports of defence equipment from the West as well as the adaptation to Western standards which thus to a certain extent took place within the

Swedish defence industry, could of course make it easier for Sweden, in the event of war, to receive assistance from, and cooperate with, the Atlantic Alliance. In light of the great efforts made to develop a Swedish profile, however, this can hardly be termed a governing interest. It was more in the nature of an added benefit.

The expansion of the Swedish Air Force and the relatively extensive mechanization of the Army led to a pronounced need for lubricants, fuel, and certain other raw materials that could not be obtained on the domestic market. Likewise, imports of rubber tires and other equipment were required. Large stocks of strategically important equipment were accumulated. However, these could not be sufficiently large to secure Sweden's needs in the event of a prolonged blockade or war.

Imports of defence equipment and technical cooperation

During the closing years of the 1940s, Sweden made great efforts to import high—technology equipment - e.g. ground radar stations - from the United States and United Kingdom. For a long time, however, export permits were denied. There were several reasons for this. Primarily, the United States sought to demonstrate its displeasure with the Swedish policy of neutrality. Furthermore, it was deemed more urgent to satisfy the needs of the allied states first. In addition, a certain uneasiness was expressed regarding the risk of Sweden ending up on the "wrong side" of a war between the Western Powers and the Soviet Union, and of the equipment then being used against the armed forces of the supplier states.

Gradually, however, U.S. and British authorities changed their attitude concerning exports of defence equipment to Sweden. The expectation that a restrictive policy in these matters would persuade Sweden to join NATO was written off. Simultaneously, their confidence in Sweden's will to defend itself against Soviet aggression increased, and it was deemed important to strengthen the Swedish armed forces. This change in attitudes seems to have been based, in part, on Norwegian initiative. It was in the interest of Norway that an effective Swedish defence could absorb the first blow in the event of an attack from the East.

In September 1950, Sweden was thus given the opportunity to purchase military aircraft from the United Kingdom. And in May 1951, the United States granted export permits for a number of Bendix radar stations, meant to supplement radar stations Sweden had already earlier received permission to purchase from the United Kingdom.

During 1951 and 1952, intensive diplomatic activity took place to facilitate Swedish imports of modern defence equipment on favourable terms from the United States. The Western Powers wanted Sweden to

join the system of export restrictions directed against the Soviet Union and other communist states, aiming at preventing the Soviet bloc from importing goods which could strengthen their war-making potential. The cooperation was carried out within the framework of a special committee (the Coordinating Committee for East-West Trade, Cocom.)

These wishes resulted, in the spring of 1951, in a number of discussions between Sweden and the United States on Swedish trade with the East. The negotiations were surrounded by the utmost secrecy. Sweden stressed that it would reserve the right to shape its trade policy autonomously.

Sweden's trade policy was characterized by non—discrimination of any country or group of countries. Sweden did, nevertheless, take its own security into consideration when exporting goods and equipment. By tradition, export of defence equipment to the Eastern bloc did not take place, and would not be permitted. Exports to the East of other strategically important goods were insignificant. These exports could be seen as the trade policy price Sweden had to pay for the continued import of vital supplies from the East, and would not be permitted to increase. By tradition, there was no re-exportation to Eastern bloc countries of strategically important goods imported from the United States or other Cocom—countries. The implementation of these principles meant, among other things, that Sweden did not take commercial advantage — at the expense of the Coco—countries of the trade policy tension between East and West, and therefore could not be seen as "sabotaging" Coco efforts regarding East—West trade.

The United States found that Sweden's declared policy did not preclude reaching an agreement. Once Sweden undertook to inform the United States of any possible departures from this policy, the United States accepted the Swedish policy stance. That same year, the U.S. Embassy in Stockholm described the outcome of the negotiations as being such that Sweden had accepted to implement a trade policy equivalent to that of the NATO countries, and it was described as the greatest departure thus far from the policy of neutrality. (Several years later, a U.S. Government report stated that Sweden was cooperating inofficially and to a limited extent to uphold the Coco-system.) As a result, U.S. reasons for treating Sweden less favourably than the Coco countries when granting export permits, due to its East-West trade policy, were cleared away when granting export licences.

In February 1952, the President of the United States declared, in accordance with the Mutual Defense Assistance Act of 1949, that Sweden in principle was entitled to purchase military equipment from the U.S. Government. U.S. legislation dictated, however, as a precondition for deliveries, that the recipient country must provide the United States

with certain reassurances. Sweden judged that if such reassurances were to include references to U.S. legislation, they might compromise Sweden”s policy of non—alignment. Eventually, the United States approved of the Swedish position.

On 30 June and 1 July 1952, through an exchange of diplomatic notes, agreement was reached on the terms on which Sweden would be allowed to purchase military equipment, materials, or services from the U.S. Government. Sweden undertook to adhere to the Charter of the United Nations, conduct peaceful policies and refrain from attacking other states, avoid re—exporting classified U.S. equipment without prior U.S. permission and, in addition, implement necessary security measures to protect purchased equipment, materials, services, and information. At the request of the Swedish Government, this exchange of notes was not made public until a couple of years later (SÖ 1954174).

The agreement did not immediately lead to any extensive import of defence equipment from the United States. The United States did not initially provide Sweden with classified technical information to any appreciable degree. In the next few years, other countries than the United States were the main suppliers to the Swedish armed forces. Sweden thus continued to purchase military aircraft from United Kingdom. Also from the United Kingdom, Sweden imported e.g. aircraft engines, navigation systems and tanks, and from France, artillery.

Towards the end of the 19505, the United States assumed a more favourable attitude to Sweden. The Americans were increasingly open on issues concerning developments in military technology vis-a-vis the Swedish defence attachés in Washington as well as visiting Swedish officers, defence technicians, and industry representatives. In January 1958, a group of Swedish officers from the three services visited the United States. The group was led by the deputy head of the Air Materiel Administration, Torsten Rapp. The possibilities were discussed of Sweden purchasing advanced missiles from the United States. For several years, this issue had repeatedly been broached by the Swedish ambassador to the United States but without any result. Now, the United States was, in principle, positive to this export. No political conditions seem to have been set. The U.S. side, however, requested that a radar station be set up for strategic air surveillance in the Western part of Sweden. Sweden did not approve, however, and the issue was dropped.

In February 1959, after further negotiations, Sweden procured a number of air—to-air missiles. Shortly thereafter, Rapp returned to the United States with another group of officers to continue discussing the procurement of missiles. The United States still took a positive attitude towards the Swedish requests, on condition that Sweden could provide satisfactory security protection for the U.S. high—technology products.

The Swedish military counter—intelligence was tasked to organize industry security, thereby guaranteeing security at the companies receiving U.S. technology.

At this time, both states deemed it desirable to expand the 1952 agreement, as far as security measures were concerned, to include all information, all equipment and materials, and all services of a classified nature, connected with the National Defence and transferred between the states. A ministerial exchange of notes on this subject took place on 30 January 1961. This exchange was published in SÖ 1961: 51.

On 31 August 1962, in connection with this agreement, a Memoran— dum of Understanding Concerning Technical Information was drawn up between the U.S. Department of Defence and the Swedish army-, navy-, and air materiel administrations (amended on 6 November 1963). Within the framework of this memorandum, the parties negotiated classified appendices on technology exchange in a large number of subject areas. This body of treaties was the starting point for close and comprehensive cooperation between Sweden and the United States in military tech- nology. Sweden was no doubt the main beneficiary of this cooperation, but not exclusively so. The United States was interested in making use of the knowledge of Swedish researchers, e.g. at the National Research Defence Establishment and the materiel administrations.

At the end of the 1960s, Swedish Government criticism of the U.S. warfare in Vietnam, and Swedish support of North Vietnam, led to vigorous U.S. political reactions. High-level military contacts were throttled. But technological cooperation and defence equipment trade were uninterrupted.

Agreements on the exchange of information on military technology, etc. were subsequently also concluded with other states, e.g. the United Kingdom (SÖ 1967:15) and Norway (196914).

The Trondheim stockpiles

As mentioned earlier in this chapter, Sweden was dependent on importing certain key war supplies, such as oil and other petroleum products. During the 19505, for reasons of preparedness, Sweden stored fuels equivalent to approximately three months' consumption. In the event of a major war involving Scandinavia, the replenishment of supplies from abroad would be necessary within a relatively short time. The Baltic Approaches were assessed as one of the most important Soviet objectives in Northern Europe. If Denmark were occupied by the Soviet Union, it was highly uncertain whether enough supplies could be transported via the Skagerrak through Öresund (the sound between Denmark and Sweden) or even to the Swedish West Coast. Therefore,

Sweden searched for alternative ports on the Norwegian West coast, especially in Fjord of Trondheim [Trondheimsfjorden], which was open in winter. It was assumed that merchant vessels, protected by Western convoys, could reach the Fjord, from where the goods could be transported overland to Sweden.

The initiative to create an "umbilical cord to the West" probably came from the military. Peacetime readinesss, however, also seems to have played its part. During harsh ice conditions, the Gulf of Bothnia could not be kept open to shipping, and it was complicated to transport oil from the Swedish West Coast to Norrland. After some initial contacts, Sweden and Norway began negotiating in 1954 for the construction of a port with storage facilities for oil at the Fjord of Trondheim. An agreement was reached in 1956.

A Norwegian airfield, Vaernes, was located close to the planned facility. At the end of the 19505, plans were raised for this airfield to be reconstructed and expanded into a military NATO airbase. The Swedish authorities do not seem to have been informed of these plans. The proximity to a military airfield threatened to make the area a "prime bombing target" in war. However, this planning did not lead to any reassessment of the project. Norway had also alluded to the fact that it was interested in letting the airfield make use of the projected Swedish facility. In view of this, Sweden stressed, "the fundamental Swedish interest that the Swedish oil facility [should] serve solely as a Swedish preparedness facility and that any confusion with other interests of readiness will have to be avoided." Norway accepted this position.

The National Board for Economic Defence Preparedness built the oil storage facility, finished in 1962. It consisted of metal tanks cast into the bedrock with a total storage capacity of 50,000 m3; a rock shelter for the storage of dry goods; a port of discharge for tankers, etc. in Murvik; and a distribution facility in Hell. The facilities were linked by an under- ground oil pipeline. The facility was managed by the government—owned " Oljetransit AB" in which the director—general of the National Board was managing director. Road connections between the Trondheim area and the central parts of Jämtland (Swedish province immediately across the border) were improved. Also, the rail connections were reinforced. Initially, the plans called for a pipeline from Trondheim to a receiving facility in Östersund, but it was never built.

The facility turned out to be a bad investment. It was used for storing aviation fuel and other supplies for the needs of the Swedish National Defence. But after only a couple of years, it became clear to the Air Materiel Administration that the cost of storing large quantities of fuel there was too high. There was also a risk that in war, the connections with Sweden would be easily cut off. In addition, it was possible that

NATO in a tight situation would claim the facility for its own use. In addition, Denmark's strategic position improved through the establish- ment of NATO's Baltic Approaches Command (BALTAP), which improved the prospects of keeping up imports to the Swedish West Coast in war. At the same time, the threat against the Norwegian West Coast increased, due to the Soviet build-up of the Murmansk naval base. Attempts were made to interest the Swedish oil companies in utilizing parts of the facility. These were unsuccessful, for several reasons. The oil companies were not allowed to include oil stored at the Norwegian facility in the stocks of oil they were obliged to keep for the purpose of preparedness. The transportation capacity to Sweden was low as the plans for a pipeline never materialized. And Jämtland, with its weak economy, did not constitute a market of any significance to the oil companies. Instead, Norwegian oil companies were offered the use of the facility, and they later leased two—thirds of it. The remainder was used by the Swedish defence establishment. Today, the facility is Norwegian


5.3. Air safety collaboration

Air safety collaboration

During the first half of the 19505, the Danish, Norwegian, and Swedish air forces initiated collaboration on air safety issues in the border areas. This collaboration aimed at facilitating navigation in order to guide aircraft in emergencies, either to their home base or to emergency landing sites in the neighbouring country, in order to provide more accurate geographical references for positioning in or over clouds when flying in border areas, thus preventing border violations. The three countries agreed on procedures, frequencies, etc. for communications between aircraft and ground stations in connection with radio-location and emergency landings.

This collaboration seems to have emanated from a few incidents when military pilots got into difficulties because of bad weather. The weather often changes very suddenly and unexpectedly in the mountain areas of Northern Scandinavia. At the time, there were few airbases in the Northern parts of Norway and Sweden, and aircraft were of short range. It was therefore important, in a sudden storm, that pilots could land at the closest available airfield where weather conditions were more favourable. Similarly, local mist in Denmark or the South of Sweden could preclude landing at an airbase in the home country.

This collaboration was considered highly sensitive and was therefore

initially kept secret. In 1960, the collaboration was formalized and identical regulations were adopted in Denmark, Norway, and Sweden. To avoid the impression that any ulterior motives were behind this activity, it was now made public. The collaboration was called SVE— NORDA.

The guidelines regulated certain cooperation between the air-safety and rescue agencies of the three countries, with the aim of achieving the highest air safety possible. In addition, involuntary overflight of borders should be avoided, if possible. To this end, Danish, Norwegian, and Swedish military aircraft should:

a) be surveilled in flight over international waters with heavy air- traffic, primarily to avoid collisions;

b) when necessary receive navigational assistance and weather reports from the most conveniently located radio stations in the three countries;

c) in emergency situations be allowed to make emergency landings at the most conveniently located airbase for emergency landings, or receive assistance from the most conveniently located air rescue agency within the three countries. Information necessary to keep the collaboration running smoothly, e.g., local weather forecasts, would be exchanged on a routine basis.

The participating air safety agencies were a number of regional air defence centres (or the equivalent) in each country, in Sweden, air defence centres for Scania, the West Coast, and Upper Norrland, and also 4. Air Wing, F 4 (later the air defence centre for Central Norrland). The airfields to be used for emergency landings in Sweden were primarily those of F 17 in Ronneby, F 5 in Ljungbyhed, F 10 in Ängelholm, F 14 in Halmstad, F 9 in Säve, F 7 in Såtenäs, F 4 in Östersund, F 21 in Luleå, and Kiruna Airport.

Communications between the ground controls were maintained initially via telephone and telex, and radio was used to communicate with aircraft in flight. As a consequence of the agreement, cable and radio communi- cations were established between air defence centres in the three countries. The network of permanent radio relay stations was also expanded. In the process, Swedish equipment, different from NATO standards, was used in all countries. It was possible, however, to connect calls from Sweden via this network to NATO's European network. The Commission will return to the significance of these radio-relay connec- tions for the possibilities of cooperation in other contexts (Cf sections 6.2.2 and 6.6.2).

Radio communications between aircraft and ground controls, or between aircraft from different countries, were carried out in English. Detailed regulations existed as to call signs, frequencies, etc. as well as

exhaustive examples. This gave Swedish Air Force personnel training in English terminology.

The regulations made it possible to conduct exercises in search-and- rescue, and emergency landings. For emergency landing exercises, permission was required from each country's Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The number of Danish and Norwegian landings in Sweden was to equal the number of Swedish landings in Denmark and Norway, respectively. These training flights were not to be part of air sorties integrated into ongoing military manoeuvres. Emergency landings were practised to a limited extent. In actual emergency situations, the regula- tions were used only on rare occasions during the 19605. An aircraft landing at an airfield in another country was provided by that airbase - with necessary fuel and other supplies.

In compliance with the regulations, quite frequent personnel contacts took place between Air Force officers of the three countries, usually at the level of air group commander or Wing commander. On such occasions, the officers reviewed the regulations and compared notes from exercises and actual incidents.

This cooperation enabled Swedish pilots and Air Force officers to obtain knowledge of terrain, facilities, airfields and communication routines in the two Scandinavian NATO states. Correspondingly, Danish and Norwegian Air Force officers obtained valuable information on Swedish airbases. Swedish military air traffic controllers also gained experience from NATO routines on air traffic control.

Sea rescue service

Regarding sea rescue, there is long-standing Swedish cooperation with other countries, e.g. Denmark and Norway. In Sweden, the National Maritime Administration is the responsible authority. In Denmark and Norway too, civilian authorities are responsible for these activities. The National Maritime Administration uses Swedish Telecom's coastal radio stations as well as the Navy's radio stations in Karlskrona and Tingstäde as sea rescue stations. The naval forces of each country make resources available when needed for sea rescue. While sea rescue is administered by civilian authorities, its services can of course be used also for military purposes.

5.4. Intelligence


The term intelligence usually refers to activities aimed at monitoring the activities and conditions of foreign states. Military intelligence is intelligence activities organizationally linked to a state*s armed forces.

Swedish Military Intelligence has been the subject of several studies. An extensive study was carried out by the 1974 Intelligence Committee. Its report "Military Intelligence" ["Den militära underrättelsetjänsten"] (SOU 1976:l9) includes an exhaustive account of the organization and activities of Swedish military intelligence.

The activities of Swedish military intelligence are of interest to this Commission primarily so far as their purpose was to prepare for military assistance from the Western Powers. In war, it _is necessary to make quick and accurate decisions, and so the need for current and reliable information on which to base those decisions is particularly pronounced. Intelligence assistance from other states might well, in the event of war, have been decisive for the successful outcome of our operations.

It is also within the scope of inquiry of this Commission to review the general extent and character of potential peacetime collaboration between Swedish Military Intelligence and Western intelligence organizations. There are several reasons for this. Intelligence collaboration in peacetime could constitute a prerequisite for rapidly establishing efficient coopera- tion in war. Such cooperation is dependent on mutual trust, also on a personal basis. It is made easier if both sides know each other's organization and administrative routines. Also, technical installations used in peacetime, e.g., telecommunications, can be of value in war. Such cooperation could also - irrespective of any formal ties create mutual expectations of cooperation in war.

Intelligence missions and organization

In war, the main mission of the intelligence service is to provide support for military operations in the form of information, i.e. when and how the armed forces should be deployed and used. In peacetime, the purpose of intelligence is to provide information on which to base decisions concerning armed forces readiness, war planning, the-structure and long- term development of the armed forces, and actions against border violations. In this context, primarily the two first mentioned peacetime missions are relevant.

Intelligence should thus serve as an "alarm clock," and provide the Government and the Military High Command with the advance notice

needed for our conscript—based defence to be mobilized and readied in time. To accomplish this mission, the intelligence service must, on a continuous basis, monitor and assess developments in our international environment which could indicate that the country may become subject to an attack.

War planning presupposes considerable knowledge of potential adversaries' military conditions such as resources, organization, tactics, and equipment. To this end, it is also necessary to be familiar with the military geography of other countries, e.g., the location of military units and permanent defence facilities. To calculate the speed of troop movements, one needs detailed knowledge concerning, for example, the capacity of various forms of means of transportation.

Intelligence activities include establishing intelligence requirements and directing sources; they also include gathering, analysis, and dissemina- tion of intelligence. Intelligence gathering takes place, to a great extent, by studying various publications, e. g. professional journals. Other means of intelligence gathering are attachés, clandestine agents, signal intelligence, air reconnaissance, naval reconnaissance, and - in war battlefield reconnaissance, as well as information to be obtained by cooperation with intelligence agencies of other countries. Only in exceptional cases does collected intelligence immediately, completely, and correctly explain a certain circumstance or future developments. Generally, it is therefore necessary to analyze the information first.

The Supreme Commander commands the Swedish Military Intelligen- ce, and issues of relevance to intelligence are dealt with within the Defence Staff. During the period which the Commission is studying, general intelligence was handled by Section 2 of the Defence Stajf. That section consisted of an international department comprising an intelligen- ce bureau and an attaché bureau, a domestic department, and a photo department. When the Military High Command was reorganized, effective 1 October 1961, the section was reorganized into three departments: the Intelligence, Attaché, and Domestic departments. From 1965, the Domestic Department was renamed the Security Department.

The head of Section 2 directed and coordinated military intelligence, and reported to the Chief of the Defence Staff. The international (intelligence) department was the key body of Swedish Military In- telligence. Its responsibilities included preparing instructions, orders, and directives for the intelligence service and also for training of the intelligence personnel. This department also had the main responsibility for analyzing and disseminating information in peacetime.

A special unit, whose duty it was to gather intelligence by non-official means, e.g. through agents, was also subordinate to the head of Section 2. Following a reorganization after the end of World War II, this unit

was called T-Oijice. Its main mission was to gather intelligence in Sweden's vicinity, e.g. , by continuosly monitoring shipping in the Baltic Sea, but the office should also assist in the gathering of technical intelligence. To a limited extent, the office also analyzed intelligence.

In 1957, a unit was established within the Defence Staffs domestic department to within Sweden and in certain other countries - gather and analyze security intelligence, i.e. intelligence on activities threatening national security. In 1961, this unit was separated from the domestic department and acquired an independent position. It was named B— bureau.

In 1965, T-office and B-bureau were amalgamated. The new organiza— tion, IB, was subordinate to the Chief of the Defence Staff. In 1968, the bureau was tied directly to the Supreme Commander, and was thus no longer part of the Defence Staff.

Another key body for active intelligence gathering is the National Defence Radio Institute, (FRA). It is an independent Government body within the Ministry of Defence. The institute is tasked to engage in intelligence activities in the telecommunications area. In doing so, it should gather signal intelligence, and analyze collected intelligence, and follow developments within areas which are, or are anticipated to become, significant to the signal intelligence gathering and analysis. FRA is also obliged inter alia to develop the technical equipment and methods necessary for its own intelligence activities. '

Notwithstanding that FRA is an independent Government body, its intelligence activities have been supervised by the Chief of the Defence Staff until 1952, and since then, by the Supreme Commander. According to the instructions laid down in 1960, the Supreme Commander was to set guidelines as to the aim of these activities. A directive from 1952 stated that FRA should keep the Ministers of Foreign Affairs and Defence informed of the concentration of the intelligence activities as well as providing general status reports.

Signal intelligence activities were conducted from Swedish territory, international waters, or international airspace. It was mostly geared towards the Baltic republics of the Soviet Union. Activities were primarily directed towards communications intelligence and technical intelligence. Communications intelligence was geared towards foreign radio communications. Of prime importance was not what was actually said, but that unit deployments, readiness, etc. could be determined. Technical signals intelligence concerned radio transmissions, not primarily of a communications character, e.g., identification and recognition signals from ships, aircraft, radio beacons, etc. These "fingerprints " made it possible inter alia to chart technical performance and to watch the movements of individual units.

Intelligence activities were was also carried out within other staffs and government bodies, e.g., the service staffs and FOA. These activities, however, seem to be of limited interest in this context.

Cooperation With foreign intelligence organizations, liaison

Within the framework of frequent official interaction between representa- tives of Sweden and other states, an exchange of information naturally took place by which Swedish intelligence could profit. Collaboration within international organizations, such as the United Nations, and contacts with representatives of foreign civilian and military government bodies could provide important intelligence. In this context, the military attachés played a significant role. Part of their task was to gather intelligence on military—political conditions and on military and military— technology developments through public Channels. Other significant sources of knowledge were officers and other defence representatives who had made study tours or received training abroad.

In comparison to other countries, Sweden's intelligence organization was small. Certain foreign intelligence organizations had also access to such technical equipment that their means of intelligence gathering and advanced analysis were superior to ours. Also by geographical position, another country could be more favoured from an intelligence point of view. On the other hand, Sweden was in an excellent geographical position to gather certain types of intelligence from the Western Soviet Union.

By collaborating with other states in the field of intelligence, Sweden was privy to information the gathering of which required special resources, etc. that we were lacking. The 1974 Intelligence Committee, based on the information provided on such collaboration, reached the conclusion that participation in such collaboration was mostly very beneficial to Sweden.

Main features of international intelligence exchanges 1949—1969 Defence Stajf contacts

During the latter part of the 19405, Sweden entered into intelligence collaboration with Norway, and to a certain extent with Denmark. The Scandinavian Defence Committee had recommended that even if a defence union was not established, peacetime collaboration should be realized, e.g. in the field of intelligence. In February 1949, a memoran- dum prepared by the Chief of the Defence Staff, Nails Swedlund - concerning the planning of certain military cooperation with Denmark

and Norway - stated that "the collaboration which already exists on intelligence should continue and also include planning of these activities in war, e.g. regarding coordination of air- and sea reconnaissance (Cf section 6.1.1).

In practice, these ideas seem to have resulted in continued collabora- tion primarily with Norway. Initially, this took" the form of ad hoc contacts between intelligence department personnel and individual officials of Norwegian intelligence, whereby information on the armed forces of the Soviet Union was exchanged. Joint intelligence gathering, however, was not discussed with the Norwegians. Intelligence collabora— tion with Denmark was insignificant in the early 1950s. It seems as if the intelligence exchange with Norway and Denmark ceased completely during a few years in the mid-1950s.

During the latter part of World War II, Swedish intelligence had provided the United Kingdom with information. This collaboration continued after the end of the war, initially only on naval issues. Gradually, the contacts with the United Kingdom were expanded to include also cooperation on army and air force issues.

Collaboration occurred early on also with the U.S. air and army forces in Europe. From January 1948 until the spring of 1949, the International Department and U.S. army intelligence in Heidelberg were in frequent contact. Once it became clear to the U.S. Government that Sweden did not intend to accede to the Atlantic Pact, however, directives were issued to the military authorities concerning relations with their Swedish counterparts. These directives led to the collaboration on army issues being put on ice. U.S. Air Force intelligence in Wiesbaden, however, chose not to follow the directives and instead intensified their intelligence exchange with Sweden, as they apparently found it to be of substantial utility. Little by little, contacts with the Americans in Heidelberg were resumed, and gradually an exchange of intelligence began also on naval issues.

Towards the end of the 1950s, an exchange of intelligence occurred between the International Department of the Defence Staff and all military services of Norway, Denmark, the UK, and the United States. The exchange was, at this time, carried out by a couple of officers from each service who visited each other for a few days each year. In— formation was exchanged concerning the Warsaw Pact "order of battle, " potential deployment, railroad capacity, cargo ships, and ports, and also new technology and equipment. Joint analysis of the information was also carried out. Matters concerning the Swedish National Defence or NATO were not discussed. The exchange was bilateral. It was deemed desirable to use as many sources as possible, as they were complementa- ry to each other.

During the 1960s, a certain degree of collaboration with French intelligence was also begun.

No written agreements or other understandings on intelligence exchanges seem to have existed. And, no settlement seems to have been reached concerning whether the collaboration was to continue after a possible outbreak of war. On the other hand, the Defence Staff had analyzed how to collaborate with foreign intelligence services in war, in case the Government were to decide in favour of such collaboration. A memorandum from 1952 thus emphasized the significance of being able to rapidly dispatch liaison officers to establish connections with foreign intelligence in critical circumstances. The so—called Wiesbaden-connec- tion (Cf section 6.3.2) could also be viewed as a means to communicate with foreign cooperation partners in times of crisis and war.

Secret intelligence service contacts

The secret intelligence service, i.e. T-office and B—bureau and their successor, IB, also had close contacts with foreign counterparts, e.g. in several NATO countries. Even though it was assumed that this collabora- tion would continue in war, no specific preparations were made initially. During the 19605, however, the Swedish National Defence was directed towards defending against an attack involving short advance notice and a fierce initial phase. The secret intelligence service was especially greatly affected by this view, since it had particularly stringent require- ments for a high readiness. IB and intelligence organizations of some NATO countries were prepared for the exchange of liaison officers in crisis contingencies. In such a "twilight" situation, Swedish officers would discreetly travel to each foreign sister organization; foreign officers would arrive in Sweden and be taken care of and briefed by IB. Such exchanges do not seem to have been realized in the period that the Commission is tasked to study.

Contacts of the National Defence Radio Institute

The training of a Danish and a Norwegian brigade in Sweden at the end of World War II laid the foundations of close collaboration between Sweden, Denmark, and Norway on signal intelligence. At the end of the 19405, the National Defence Radio Institute (FRA) trained Norwegian and Danish nationals in the gathering, deciphering, technology, and analysis of signal intelligence in exchange for German communications equipment left behind. Norwegians and Danes visited the FRA, and FRA staff served at signal intelligence stations in Denmark and Norway. Also during the next few decades Sweden collaborated with certain

states on signals intelligence. The FRA,s signals intelligence operations were primarily geared towards meeting Swedish intelligence needs. If later they could prove valuable in an exchange of intelligence with other countries, that would be an added benefit.

During the latter part of the 1940s, a certain amount of planning seems to have been carried out concerning the eventuality of Sweden becoming engaged in war with the Soviet Union. A top-level group from the FRA would then travel to England. Swedish operations would then be supervised from England, and the group would prepare to receive signals intelligence units if these as a consequence of enemy advances were forced to leave Sweden. This planning does not seem to have been particularly thorough and it gradually lost relevance. At this time, rumours circulated among FRA personnel that the management in the event of war would be evacuated to the United States, since they were privy to so much sensitive information.

The leading perception during the period that the Commission is studying, was that the FRA had its key missions in peacetime and in times of crisis. Its wartime missions were not of particularly strong interest, as it was assumed that the permanent facilities would be put out of action at an early stage. No preparations exclusively for war had been made, according to sources. Similarly, according to information conveyed to this Commission, there were no agreements or prior commitments vis-a-vis other states concerning cooperation in war.

6. Preparations for the reception of assistance

6.1. Contacts on operational issues

6.1.1. Partial Scandinavian defence cooperation


Shortly after the breakdown of the negotiations on a Scandinavian defence union, the Chief of the Defence Staff, Nils Swedlund, submitted a memorandum to the Prime Minister, Tage Erlander, on planning of certain military cooperation with Denmark and Norway. [The memorandum is attached to the report as Appendix 12.] In the memor- andum, Swedlund wrote that even though the attempt to coordinate defence preparations of the three Scandinavian countries in a defence union had for the time being not succeeded, it was still desirable to initiate some common planning. Such planning should best be carried out by a number of smaller working groups of staff officers from the military command authorities of the three countries, and could be accomplished without necessarily making it public.

According to Swedlund, the immediate task should be to develop the following twelve plans: A plan to establish wire and radio communications between authorities of the three states, signalling procedures, and the use of common codes and ciphers (item 1); plans to coordinate air surveillance, air defence command and control, air force search and rescue, and the military weather service (items 2-5); plans for army cooperation in the area around Treriksröset [the area where the borders of Norway, Sweden, and Finland meet] along Malmbanan ["The Iron Ore Railway," between Kiruna in Sweden and Narvik in Norway], in the Tärna-Mo i Rana area, and in [the Norwegian province of] Trandelag (items 6— —9;) plans for naval cooperation with Denmark in the Southern Baltic Sea, Öresund [the sound between Sweden and Denmark], and the Kattegat- Skagerrak (especially on minelaying), and with Norway" rn the Skagerrak (especially on protection of merchant shipping) (items 10 and 11); and, a plan to coordinate terminology, reporting and identification procedures

in general (item 12). The intelligence work already under way should continue and also comprise planning of activities in war, inter alia coordination of air and naval reconnaissance.

When the Swedish Prime Minister, Erlander, was briefed on 10 February 1949, he was, according to Swedlund, "hesitant to take action right now," but, in principle, he was positively inclined toward preparation of at least the "technical plans. " On 20 May 1949, Swedlund briefed the Cabinet on inter alia his memorandum but was not given any instructions.

In June 1949, the Norwegian Minister of Defence, Jens—Christian Hauge, visited his Swedish counterpart, Allan Vougt. According to what Vougt told Swedlund, Hauge claiming that he was also speaking for Denmark - expressed a wish for combined planning, e.g. of air surveil— lance, and for purchases of military equipment from Sweden. Vougt and the Swedish Minister of Foreign Affairs, Östen Undén, had been non— committal as to the wish for combined planning, but had, in principle, favoured exports of military equipment.

On 6 September 1949, Swedlund again briefed the Cabinet on his memorandum. Apparently, he divided the twelve issue areas into three groups, where group l comprised items 1-5, group 2, items 6-9, and group 3, items 10-12. About a week later, Undén gave Swedlund an account of the position taken by the Cabinet on the proposal. According to Swedlund, Undén had said that the Cabinet's view was generally favourable, and it had decided that the items listed in group 1 of the memorandum could be raised at once, while groups 2 ("Erlander hesitant but not negative in substance") and 3 were deferred with the exception that convoying was accepted. Undén also gave an account of a meeting of foreign ministers in Copenhagen, where he had reported on the Swedish position that military equipment could certainly be procured from Sweden, and that an exchange of technical findings and certain technical preparations could be carried out-—"of course without commit- ments." The Danish and Norwegian Foreign Ministers had declared that they fully appreciated the Swedish position. The Swedish Advisory Council on Foreign Affairs had also examined the issue and had no objection to the military cooperation proposed. Finally, Undén stated that Swedlund could act within these guidelines, and that everything was to be classified on military grounds.

Swedlund understood this to mean that he was instructed by the Cabinet to plan, with the Danish and Norwegian military high com- mands, for a certain amount of cooperation. At & meeting of the Swedish Military High Command in October 1949, he explained that all cooperation with Denmark and Norway was to go through the Defence Staff.

Already earlier the Danish and Norwegian national defences had been contacted to this end, as is shown, for example, by reports from the British Embassy in Stockholm to the Foreign Office.

With the consent of the Cabinet, more far-reaching cooperation occurred early on between the Air Command Ostlandet [Norway] and the 2nd Air Group in Gothenburg. In January 1949, the Swedish embassy in Oslo requested to the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs to give the Swedish Air Force the use of a Norwegian radar station.

Shortly thereafter, the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs replied that the Ministry of Defence, after consulting with the Chief of the Norwegian Air Force, did not object to lending a radar station (Arnes 21) for a shorter period, to be used inter alia in combined exercises between the two countries, air forces. It was understood that the two air forces would communicate directly on the time and terms of the transac- tion. On 15 March 1949, a contract was drawn up between the Norwe- gian and Swedish air forces on the loan of the radar station for a period of three months. The contract was signed on Norway*s behalf by the Chief of the Air Force after authorization by the Ministry of Defence. The loan was conditional on the station being placed on the Swedish West Coast within the framework of combined technical exercises in air surveillance. Aircraft from both states were to participate in these exercises. To extract the best possible result from the exercises, it was desirable for aircraft to be given permission to overfly the other state's territory, to the extent required. In May 1949, the Norwegian Ministry of Defence agreed that, during the exercises, Swedish military aircraft could overfly a closely defined area in Norway. The specific planning of these exercises was delegated to the Chief of the Air Command Östlandet, Major—General Georg Bull, and the Chief of the 2nd Air Group in Gothenburg, Major— General Folke Ramström.

The exercises commenced in May 1949. Norwegian air units attacked the Gothenburg area, and Swedish air units attacked Norway, and in this way they practised defending an urban area. The contract, initially valid for 15 March—15 June, was later extended to 15 July of the same year, after which the radar station was returned to Norway. In September 1949, the Swedish Embassy in Oslo requested "according to an instruc- tion received", that the contract be extended for the period 15 Septem— ber-15 December 1949. When the request was made, however, the issue of extending the contract had already been resolved informally by Norwegian and Swedish military authorities. This cooperation was not kept secret.

No documents, such as studies or plans, on the forms of Scandinavian cooperation have been found. For written sources, the Commission has therefore had to rely largely on short diary entries made primarily by

Swedlund but also by the Supreme Commander, Helge Jung, and by Rickard Åkerman, who in 1951 succeeded Swedlund as Chief of the Defence Staff. Already earlier, Åkerman appears to have had a key role in the combined planning.

Jung's diary entries refer only to the spring of 1950. He notes that the Danish Minister of Defence visited Sweden in January 1950 and raised with Vougt coordination of radar, mining, and coast artillery batteries, among other things. The Defence Staff was to prepare a memorandum on this. Furthermore, Jung mentions a meeting with Prime Minister Erlander, and a meeting in Erlander's office at which Undén, Hammarskjöld, Vougt, and Swedlund were also present. At the first meeting, Erlander is said to have informed him of a meeting of Scandinavian prime ministers in Halmstad and how little had been accomplished there "on the Scandinavian front." Hauge is to have said that, should Sweden want practical military cooperation, Norway was of course prepared. At the second meeting, Jung - with Hammarskjöld and Vougt concurring had said that this Nordic cooperation did not amount to more than was natural between friendly, kindred nations. Swedlund had briefed on the areas "an covered by cooperation, then the Öresund i_ss_u_g, postponed for the time being. After a brief discussion, it was decided that the cooperation should continue as hitherto. The Öresund issue should be temporarily deferred."

Swedlund's and Åkerman's diaries contain information on this issue, and cover an extended period. Their diaries convey the following picture of contacts with Norway and Denmark.

Cooperation with Norway

When visiting Oslo in November 1949, Swedlund informed the Chiefs of the Norwegian Defence Staff, Air Force, and Navy how he envisaged the work as being organized. Liaison officers were to be appointed on both sides. The discussions also ranged for example, over the defence of Treriksröset, radar deliveries from the United States to Sweden (a matter of interest also to the Norwegian Air Force), and the wish of the Norwegian Chief of the Navy to meet his Danish and Swedish counter- parts to discuss issues of minelaying (which Swedlund advised against). Possibly, Swedlund brought an outline of a work plan for signals cooperation.

In May 1950, Swedlund again visited Oslo. On this occasion, the [Norwegian] Chief of the Defence Staff, Berg, approved the "signal and weather plans. " "As to the other plans, Berg was urged forward. " At the meeting, Swedlund stressed that the Swedish Military High Command was entirely supportive of the Government policy, and that it was not

meaningful to speculate on expanded military cooperation. In September 1950, Swedlund wrote Berg on coordination of geographical reference systems.

In March 1951, Swedlund again went to Oslo. In preparation for this visit, a plan for coordination of air surveillance seems to have been prepared by the Swedish Defence Staff. In Oslo, Swedlund also met with the Minister of Defence, Hauge, who proved to be informed of the ongoing Norwegian—Swedish military planning. Swedlund pointed out that "what has now taken place in this regard is pretty much what could also be done in different political circumstances." Also, he stressed the significance for Sweden to be informed of certain fundamental features of Atlantic Pact plans. In a conversation, Swedlund and Berg agreed that local "border commanders" were to be informed of the existence of combined Norwegian—Swedish planning, to prevent undesirable local initiatives. They also discussed inter alia continued cooperation, in the context of which the Swedish Defence Staff should complete its work on air defence command and control. Swedlund also put it to Berg that Sweden needed to be informed of Atlantic Pact staff planning, which Berg acknowledged and said he would pass on. Together with Berg, Swedlund also met the Norwegian Chiefs of the Navy and Air Force. They discussed inter alia the reconnoitering of a sea transport route South of Norway; Swedlund accepted in principle that a Swedish officer would participate. In addition, the expansion of airfields in Southern Norway was discussed.

In September 1951, Swedlund (now Supreme Commander) again met with Berg. NATO”s Northern Command AFNORTH, with headquarters in Kolsås, outside Oslo, was established that same month. Most of the Norwegian forces were put under the command of the British Admiral Brind, as were the Danish forces. Swedlund observed, concerning the cooperation permitted between Norway and Sweden, that it " [was] now uncertain whether our plans could be implemented since Brind, and not Berg, was now in charge of these issues!"

At a meeting in December 1951 with the Norwegian Prime Minister, Torp, Swedlund requested that Torp instruct Berg to ease Atlantic Pact secrecy concerning defence plans for Scandinavia. Torp promised to do so. Swedlund briefed Torp "on plans already made on technical cooperation and the organization thereof" between both states” Defence Staff chiefs, but told him that this approach seemed less useful now that Brind*s staff had taken over. Torp stated that Norwegian authorities in any case would be in charge of measures in Norway, and concluded that the plans should therefore remain in force.

In 1949—51, Åkerman had contacts with Norwegian military officers on several occasions. When in Oslo in December 1949, he visited

command and control facilities and discussed radar. His work seems to have focused on radar specifically and on plans for air surveillance cooperation.

Cooperation with Denmark

Already on 5 September 1949, i. e. the day before Swedlund briefed the Swedish Cabinet, he and the Minister of Foreign Affairs agreed to set up a joint committee on the Öresund 1ssue. This so— —called Öresund Commit— tee is mentioned repeatedly in his diary over the next few months. According to one of the Committee members, they had no contacts with the Danish National Defence. In February 1950, the Committee submitted its findings to the Government. Shortly thereafter, Vougt told Swedlund that the Ministry of Foreign Affairs would be in charge of contacts with Denmark regarding mining of Öresund. (On the Öresund Committee, cf 5. 4. )

In 1950 and 1951, Swedlund met high-level Danish civilian and military officials on various occasions when visiting Copenhagen. The diaries do not reveal whether issues relating to Scandinavian defence cooperation were discussed. After a meeting with the Danish Chief of the Army in September 1951, however, Swedlund noted that they had agreed that "nothing could be done for the time being with regard to closer cooperation. " Åkerman also had some contacts with the Danish National Defence. His diary notes, however, do not reveal what was then discussed. The Commission has not had access to official Danish archives. Reportedly, those archives do not contain any information on Danish-Swedish defence cooperation in the 1950s and 1960s.

Continued contacts

From 1952 on, Swedlund's diary contains only a few remarks on Scandinavian defence cooperation. In the spring of 1952, Berg told the Norwegian Defence Council that some contacts with Sweden were taking place but that these were not as intimate as Norway would have wished. When visiting Oslo in the spring of 1954, Swedlund briefed the newly appointed Norwegian Minister of Defence on the cooperation between Swedish and Norwegian military staffs approved by the Swedish Government, and also emphasized its limited character.

After 1952, the issue of combined planning with Denmark and Norway is not mentioned in any other documents. In the minutes from a meeting of the Swedish Military High Command in December 1956 there is an observation that the cohesion within NATO was not up to expectations and that divisive tendencies within the Alliance in the longer

term could possibly sway public opinion in Norway and Denmark towards a more positive attitude to Scandinavian defence cooperation.

Foreign reporting

British diplomatic reports are a secondary source on this cooperation. British diplomats closely followed the ongoing contacts between the Scandinavian military high commands. The reports sent by the British Embassy in Stockholm to the Foreign Office in London reveal that such contacts were made already before the Swedish Government, in September 1949, authorized certain technical—military cooperation with Denmark and Norway.

In April 1949, the British Embassy reported that the Swedish service chiefs, firstly, wished to keep as closely in touch with the Western Powers as Sweden's neutrality allowed, and, secondly, that they wished to continue the staff talks with the Norwegians that had been temporarily discontinued. A plausible explanation for the latter is that it referred to the expert discussions in connection with the Scandinavian defence union negotiations. Also in April, the British naval attaché reported on a meeting with the Swedish Chief of the Navy, Helge Strömbäck. Strömbäck had said that he intended before long to resume talks with his Danish counterpart on combined planning with Denmark, primarily concerning Öresund (Cf section 6. 5) Strömbäck also said that he was interested in similar talks with the Norwegians. In May 1949, the air attaché reported on a meeting with the Swedish Chief of the Air Force, Bengt Nordenskiöld. Among other things, Nordenskiöld had said that cooperation between the three Scandinavian states had never been better, that staff talks were proceeding continuously, and that certain agreements had been reached concerning the air forces. Thus, it had been agreed with the Norwegians, first, on how to link the radar chains of the two states to the best benefit of both air forces, and, second, on access rights to each other's airspace. Nordenskiöld had offered to lend the Danes a few Vampire aircraft, to assist them in building up their own air force. The three states had recently agreed that a Soviet attack would in all likelihood come from the southwest through Denmark. Nordenskiöld had agreed to deploy the main part of the Swedish Air Force so that it could repel such an attack. The Norwegian Air Force would assume the main responsibility for the Northern defences.

In August 1949, a British Embassy official reported that Swedish staff contacts with Danes and Norwegians were continuing, albeit to a limited extent, without any more detailed instructions from the Cabinet beyond the tacit understanding that these talks could take place only as long as the Government was not involved. Certain progress had been made with

Denmark on naval issues as to the defence of Öresund, and as far as air issues were concerned, with Norway. The situation concerning army issues was less encouraging. Cooperation between the Swedish services was said to be unsatisfactory.

In January 1950, the British naval attaché in Stockholm reported that the Swedish Chief of the Navy was anxious to establish as close contacts as possible with the Danish and Norwegian navies. Negotiations with the Danish on the defence of Öresund had recently ground to a halt. The dis- cussions with Norway were directed towards establishing a combined organization for the reporting of ship movements, to cover the Skagerrak and the Kattegat. In April 1950, the Foreign Office concluded that it was known that Scandinavian defence cooperation was under way, at least in its planning stages. ln June 1951, the British Embassy in Oslo reported on a meeting with the Norwegian Foreign Minister, Lange, who had acknowledged that some contacts had occurred between high-ranking Norwegian and Swedish officers, but that the Norwegians had not pursued them very far. Lange had stated that he believed Sweden would become more accommodating towards the United Kingdom. The better the British Government succeeded in developing such contacts, the more pleased the Norwegian Government would be.

In May 1952, the British ambassador reported that the Swedish Defence Staff had apparently been authorized by the Government to establish some form of planning link with AF NORTH via the Danish and Norwegian defence staffs. Swedish plans were to be forwarded to Brind for opinions and requests. Shortly thereafter, Brind confirmed that such a planning link had been established via the Danish and Norwegian defence staffs, which he fully supported. The Swedish Government was thus not deemed to be interested in corresponding bilateral contacts, but in Brind*s opinion the exchanges of intelligence between Sweden and the United Kingdom both could and should continue.

At the end of September 1952, the British ambassador to Norway reported that Swedlund had recently suggested to Berg that he should dispatch a small group of Norwegian army officers to Sweden to discuss certain aspects of possible combined Norwegian-Swedish planning. Swedlund did not object to the group including officers from Brind's staff. None of the officers was to be above the rank of major. Berg had readily accepted the proposition, and four Norwegian majors, one of them from AFNORTH, were to travel to Sweden at the end of Septem- ber. It was expected that the defence of Tröndelag would feature prominently in the talks. We do not know whether the visit took place.

According to a summary of still classified archive material prepared by the Foreign Office for this Commission, the British ambassador in Stockholm informed his counterparts in Copenhagen and Oslo at a

meeting in the early summer of 1954 that the Swedish Prime and Foreign Ministers had recently agreed to secret discussions with Norway and Denmark on defence. The British took this to mean that Sweden saw in this as much an opportunity to discuss a Scandinavian defence union as a way to develop closer contacts with NATO.

The issue of Scandinavian cooperation also appeared in U.S. diplo- matic reports. In May 1951, the U.S. chargé d'affaires in Stockholm pointed out that one weakness of the Swedish National Defence was the lack of coordinated planning with its neighbour states. And less than a year later, the U.S. air attaché wrote that, as far as he knew, military cooperation between Norway and Sweden if any was only in the most primitive and formulative stage.

According to a report by the U.S. ambassador to Sweden in January 1953, the Swedish Chief of the Air Staff had raised, in the autumn of 1952, the possibility of an exchange of information between Sweden and Norway on air defence planning. Similar initiatives had been taken by some high—level officials at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Towards the end of 1952, the U.S. Air Force (USAF) headquarters had pointed out to State Department that it was desirable for action to be taken to increase Swedish-Norwegian defence cooperation. State Department replied in June 1953 that the impression that certain such cooperation already existed or was being planned appeared confirmed. Therefore, it was likely that Norway would support the idea of integrat- ing the air surveillance systems of the two states. Subject to approval by the U.S. Department of Defense, State Department did not object to the U.S. position on such integration being communicated to Swedish and Norwegian authorities to fulfil this limited objective as soon as possible.

The British and, later, U.S. interest in Scandinavian cooperation is best explained by the hopes of thus tying Sweden more closely to NATO. This can be exemplified by an April 1952 report from ambassa- dor Butterworth. He stressed that it was highly desirable that Sweden coordinated its defence planning with the Western Powers as a basis for cooperation in the event of war. Such cooperation should be carried out secretly and with the tacit agreement of the Swedish Government. There were many reasons why common planning efforts by Sweden and NATO should be handled via Norway. Thus, cooperation between Sweden and a Scandinavian neighbouring state, if revealed, would be much more palatable to the Swedish people than would cooperation with other NATO states or the organization as such. Furthermore, certain military cooperation was already under way between Norway and Sweden, and as the Russians believed that the cooperation was more extensive than it actually was, this offered some scope for manoeuvre. Direct involvement of the United Kingdom and the United States could be counterproductive.

According to Butterworth, progress on coordinating Swedish and Western Power defence planning had slowed down since early 1951, probably because of Swedish assessments that the risk of war had been considerably reduced. For the moment, the best to be hoped for was for the Swedes to be prepared to cautiously expand the cooperation. To achieve this, however, it had to be made clear to the Swedes that they would not in any way be tied to NATO. Therefore, the specifics of the Norwegian-Swedish cooperation should be left to the two states. The Norwegians could be expected to do their best to advance cooperation as it was in their interest, too. When the Swedes then realized that they could expand cooperation with Norway without leaks occurring, they would stop worrying about dealing with Norway in its capacity as a representative of NATO.

In October 1953, Swedlund reported to the Prime, Defence, and Interior Ministers that his closest Norwegian counterpart, Berg, had informed him of the decision taken by "the Atlantic Pact commanders ". They had agreed that all contacts with Sweden should be made via Norway and that the Norwegians had been ordered to provide the Swedes with all information without any restrictions and without demands for reciprocity.


Through interviews, the Commission has sought to supplement the picture of the Scandinavian cooperation efforts. Curt Göransson, who served in the Defence Staff 1948—53 has told the Commission that officers from the defence staffs of the three states continued to meet on a bilateral basis after the negotiations on a Scandinavian defence union had broken down. Such meetings, between heads of departments, for example, in signals and logistics, could take place a couple of times per year. In accordance with Swedish Government instructions, contacts were bilateral only, and operational issues were never discussed. Norwegian officials with a good knowledge of how defence issues were managed during these years have stated that no direct combined staff planning between Norway and Sweden occurred. The Swedish side, however, wished for certain Norwegian airfields to be expanded as alternative landing sites for Swedish air, for air surveillance cooperation, and for the use of Norwegian radar equipment. Already in the early 1950s, it was agreed to cooperate on air force search and rescue (Cf section 5.3). Some cooperation did also take place on air surveillance and on early warning systems. There appears to have been no closer cooperation between the ground and naval forces of the two states. British NATO officers in Norway had no appreciation of the Norwegian

interest in contacts with Sweden, but did not interfere.


In conclusion, the sources show that on Sweden's initiative, some combined planning was conducted with Norway and Denmark, beginning in early 1949 and lasting into the early 1950s. The results achieved cannot be exactly determined. After only a few years, Swedish Military High Command interest in inter—Scandinavian contacts appears to have abated. In April 1957, however, the British ambassador to Sweden reported that Sweden's military relations with Norway and Denmark had improved during the preceding five years. No basis for this assessment was provided, and it is thus difficult to evaluate.

The cooperation with the Norwegians concerned signalling procedures, air surveillance, air defence command and control, air force search and rescue (expansion of airfields in Southern Norway), weather service, protection of merchant shipping, and geographical reference systems. The cooperation was thus closely linked to items 1-5, 11 and 12 in Swedlund's February 1949 memorandum. Norwegian interest in this cooperation appears, at least initially, to have been quite weak, and whatever was accomplished does not seem to have been especially far— reaching. Contacts with the Danes appear mainly to have concerned the defence of Öresund and would thus have been limited to item 10 in Swedlund”s memorandum.

One reason why the Swedish Military High Command seems to have gradually given less priority to Scandinavian cooperation is probably that their Danish and Norwegian colleagues, with the establishment of AFNORTH, no longer had full operational responsibility for their respective countries. Another, and perhaps more significant reason was probably that direct contacts were established with NATO and its predominant military power, the United States.

6.1.2. Contacts with the United Kingdom, the United States and NATO

] 949

The Swedish Military High Command soon realized that Sweden would be dependent on assistance from the Western Powers to defend itself successfully against a Soviet attack. As mentioned above, this view was reflected by the position of the Swedish delegation during the Scandina- vian defence union negotiations.

When it proved impossible to create a Scandinavian defence union, the Swedish Embassy in Washington and the Military High Command sought to instill in the Americans a better appreciation of the Swedish security policy stance, and to convey a favourable impression of the strength of the Swedish National Defence.

On 7 February 1949, the Swedish ambassador" to the United States, Erik Boheman, met with a State Department official, McClintock. According to U.S. minutes, Boheman explained that Sweden would not be able to remain neutral in a future war. He agreed with McClintock, that even if Sweden did not formally accede to the Atlantic Treaty, Sweden could, through secret staff talks, reach a position from which it could "act in its own and our behalf".

A few days later, Boheman met with the U.S. Secretary of State, Dean Acheson. Acheson asked: "It is my understanding that you fear an attack only from one direction, and expect assistance only from one direction. Would a Scandinavian Pact preclude potential secret staff cooperation to enable the implementation of assistance?" Boheman responded that regular staff cooperation seemed out of the question from a Swedish standpoint, first, because it could hardly be kept secret, and second, because it would be contrary to the very idea of non-alignment. But, Boheman added, it could not be too difficult for the Amercians to get a general idea of where and how assistance could and should be implemented. Furthermore, were assistance to the military build-up of Scandinavia to be provided, it could not be that difficult for the Americans to realize what the deficiencies were in this respect.

Shortly thereafter, a high-ranking USAF officer demanded of a subordinate a map showing the positions of airfields in Norway and Sweden, and information on each and every one of these airfields as to what types of aircraft could be operated from them, and resources required to prepare of these airfields for receiving Strategic Air Command aircraft, as well as other types of aircraft.

In March 1949, two first secretaries at the Swedish Embassy in Washington discussed the issue of Sweden and the Atlantic Pact with a Northern European desk officer at State Department. According to the

U.S. minutes, one of the Swedish representatives had said inter alia that the Swedish Government, at the moment, only objected to formal staff talks and formal military links. A Soviet thrust in Finland or Northern Norway would probably lead to some form of mobilization in Sweden and closer alignment with the Western Powers. Furthermore, both Swedish representatives assumed that Sweden, at the very outbreak of war, would be drawn in on the Western side. In the event of Sweden remaining non—belligerent for a certain period, they believed that allied aircraft could use Swedish airspace. ("Allied planes would be waved on through.") One of them said that he was convinced that this was the carefully considered position of the Swedish Govermnent.

About a week later in the Pentagon, the Swedish defence attaché in Washington briefed a group of U.S. officers of all services. He explained Sweden's strategic position and defence plans. These plans reflected common Scandinavian planning, in which U.S. military assistance to Norway and Denmark in accordance with the Atlantic Treaty was emphasized as the decisive factor. According to the source, this appeared a legitimate attempt to convince those present of Sweden's sincere will and capability to, in cooperation with the Western Powers, resist a Soviet attack.

In Stockholm too, there was a certain amount of activity going on. In February 1949, Swedlund hosted a dinner for, among others, the three U.S. defence attachés in Stockholm. The Deputy Chief of the Defence Staff, Thord Bonde, reported on Defence Staff assessments of Sweden's capabilities of defending itself against a Soviet invasion. In this, Sweden was assumed to be dependent on Western long-range bombers being employed from bases outside Sweden against Soviet depots and operational command centres, i.e. indirect assistance. While the U.S. guests believed that the presentation overestimated Sweden”s defence capabilities, they perceived that its main objective was to stress Sweden's neutral position as well as the significance of Sweden to the Western Powers.

In May 1949, similar information was passed on by the Swedish military attaché in London to two high-ranking British officers. He stressed that even though Sweden was convinced that it had non— negligible prospects of withstanding a Soviet attack for some length of time, the Swedish National Defence would soon become dependent on various forms of Western assistance. The assistance required was: strategic bombing of Russian airfields, embarkation ports, and troop concentration areas as well as associated lines of communications, mine- laying outside embarkation ports in the Baltic Sea and possibly off Denmark, and mine—laying at least in the Belts, preferably also in Öresund, and timely provision of considerable quantities of petrol as well

as vehicles, ammunition, and explosives.

Defence Minister Vougt 's memorandum to the British Government and its consequences

In January 1951, the British Air Minister, Henderson, visited Sweden. He asked Erlander and Vougt, with whom he was personally acquainted, if it would not be of value to have assistance prepared, in the event of Sweden being attacked. They replied that Swedish requirements were for counteractions in other and more important theatres of war. Henderson wanted to know how Sweden would act if attacked; the Swedes explained that Sweden would defend itself by all the means at its disposal, known to all (Russians as well as British) "and that it didn”t take much fantasy to imagine how we intend to use the Swedish armed forces—". They added that "were additional information required on the strength, and perhaps also weaknesses, of our National Defence, we are ready to provide it. " Henderson "wanted government-level talks on these matters, which would be of great value for Great Britain and America." The Swedes, however, had turned down this request, albeit perhaps vaguely.

In March 1951, Vougt sent a memorandum on the Swedish armed forces to Henderson. No copy of the document has been found in Swedish archives. The memorandum described the organization, strength, and equipment of the armed forces, and thelpreparations made for defence against a Soviet attack. It set out various Soviet directions of invasion and gave an overview of how the Swedish forces were to be deployed to counter such an attack. A British copy of the memorandum is attached to this report as Appendix 13. In view of inter alia the detailed data on the number of weapons, calibres, etc. and the informa- tion on war planning, the content of the memorandum must be deemed to have been top secret at the time. According to Vougt”s cover letter, the aim was "to give the British Government a better idea of Sweden's defence plans and how they hope to resist an aggression with the forces that are at their disposal". Erlander had read the memorandum before it was sent. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs had not been informed of the delivery of the memorandum, and neither Undén nor the Deputy Foreign Minister Dag Hammarskjöld had read it. Undén had, however, agreed that "Henderson's proposition on talks should be met with a memoran— dum of informative character". We have not been able to establish whether the Military High Command was informed of the memorandum.

Vougt's memorandum led to the British Minister of Defence, Shinwell, inviting him to visit Great Britain in the autumn of 1951. One purpose of such a visit was to create opportunities for a follow-up on the

talks with Henderson and to hand over a commentary on the memoran— dum prepared by the British Chiefs of Staff. In this commentary, it was pointed out inter alia that Sweden's chances of defending itself were dependent on the coordination of its defence planning with that of the Western Powers already in peacetime. Secret, informal, bilateral talks between Sweden and the United Kingdom, Norway, and Denmark, respectively, would be of value to attain a certain measure of coordina- tion between Sweden and the Western Powers. NATO's Supreme Allied Commander Europe (SACEUR), General Eisenhower, was kept personally informed of developments.

Vougt, who had privately declared his interest in an invitation, declined the invitation, pleading lack of time, however. In a conversation with the British naval attaché in Stockholm a few weeks later, however, Vougt is said to have explained: "You must realize that while we are prepared to go on giving you information, and we want to convince you that Sweden will fight if attacked, we cannot go further than that. I am afraid that when Mr. Henderson was here he got a slightly misleading impression of what we are prepared to do. "

The British decided instead to use the Foreign Secretary's, Morrison forthcoming holiday trip to Sweden in an attempt to influence the Swedish Government. Morrison would then meet with Erlander and point out that it was unlikely that Sweden could receive any effective assistance from the Western Powers, if drawn into war, unless defence planning had been coordinated in peacetime. It was hoped that the Swedish Government would permit secret and informal talks between the military authorities concerned. This could take place quietly without jeopardizing official Swedish Government policy. The British did not wish, however, to create a false impression that the Swedes were to receive rapid and effective wartime assistance, if they were prepared to coordinate their plans with the British.

In early September 1951, Morrison and Erlander - already good friends - met in Halmstad [on the Swedish West Coast]. Morrison raised inter alia the issue of defence cooperation according to the guidelines drawn up before the trip. He explained that he could not state in detail what information the Chiefs of Staff wanted in addition to that already provided in the memorandum, and asked whether it would not be better to leave to the military to determine what additional information the respective parties wanted from each other. Erlander promised to consider the matter, but was actually intent on avoiding "technical discussions with the military on our technical defence problems".

Shortly thereafter, the memorandum was brought to the attention of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. According to Hammarskjöld, the tactical-strategic deliberations in the memorandum were dangerous, as

they invited the British to further discussions. Morrison's suggestion, made in Halmstad, for talks was consequently a natural reaction, as Hammarskjöld saw it.

In late September 1951, the Agrarian Party entered into a coalition government with the Social Democrats under Erlander. Vougt resigned as Minister of Defence, but according to British impression - informed his successor, Torsten Nilsson, on what had taken place. Nilsson was then presumed not to have had any objections to Vougt's memorandum.

In the autumn of 1951, the British Labour Cabinet was succeeded by a Conservative Cabinet under Winston Churchill. Sweden*s ambassador in London, Gunnar Hägglöf, reported in November 1951 that in a conversation with the next British Ambassador to Sweden, Roger Stevens, he, had explained that Sweden viewed the discussions between Morrison and Erlander as a purely private conversation; a view shared by the Foreign Office, according to Stevens. In December 1951, Hägglöf paid a visit to the new British Foreign Secretary, Anthony Eden. Hägglöf said inter alia that the British no doubt had a fairly complete picture of the Swedish National Defence, but he wanted to inform Eden that the Swedish Government now believed that Sweden had good prospects of defending itself effectively, if need be. Notwithstanding the policy of neutrality, Sweden would always be prepared to discuss all European issues with the British, and to convey all information at Sweden's disposal.

In a British comment on the conversation, it was observed that unfortunately, there were no grounds for believing that the Swedish Government had become more willing to develop closer relations with the British. Thus, Erlander had proved himself less accommodating in his conversation with Morrison, and during the last six months, the Swedish Government's overall attitude to developing closer relations with the Western Powers seemed to have hardened considerably. Hägglöf had told a Foreign Office representative that he was of the impression that the British had access to all information needed on the Swedish National Defence and its planning, and that he did not doubt that additional information could be provided if need be. The British view was that lack of information was not the problem. The British wished to make clear to the Swedes that present defence arrangements were insufficient.

In December 1951, Sevens and Hammarskjöld discussed the Swedish policy of neutrality. Sevens asked how the Swedish Government viewed the possibilities of quite informally coordinating Swedish defence planning with the British. Hammarskjöld replied that this was totally out of the question. Even the most informal staff talks would become known within NATO and lead to misreadings which could put the Swedish Government in an ambiguous position. On the other hand, it would be

of value to Sweden to gain knowledge of parts of Western planning for a Soviet invasion of Scandinavia. Sweden would then be able to act "autonomously" and take them into account when developing and revising national plans. Hammarskjöld explained that the Swedes would not refuse to accept a British reply to Vougt”s memorandum. Sevens was, however, doubtful as to whether a reply should be conveyed, partly because no one expected one to be.

In March 1952, Foreign Secretary Eden presented to his Cabinet & memorandum on the British view on Swedish security and defence policy. The main points were as follows. It was desirable for Sweden in peacetime to coordinate its defence planning with that of the Western Powers, with a view to effective cooperation in a war against the Soviet Union, in which Sweden in all likelihood would be drawn in. As Swedish NATO membership was not on the agenda, the best way to at least partly meet the British requirements was probably some informal arrangements with Sweden. Two main conditions had to be met, viz. discretion and tacit consent by the Swedish Government. The Swedish Military High Command was more keen on cooperating with the Western Powers than was the Government, and it might conceivably seek to develop planning contacts without the knowledge of its Government. Were this to become known to the Government, it would be detrimental to British—Swedish relations.

The best solution, according to the memorandum, would be frequent contacts through established military channels. Another possible solution would be a direct link between Sweden and NATO. An additional possibility was for the Swedes to establish a link to the Western Powers through the Danes and Norwegians. For various reasons, secrecy among them, the British had so far deemed it most appropriate to start out with British-Swedish discussions. The Norwegians shared this view.

In early 1951, some progress through personal contacts at the ministerial level had been hoped for, but the Swedish Government had then assumed a more dismissive position on closer ties with the Western Powers. In such circumstances, it was not on the agenda to contact the Swedish Government directly. The on—going military contacts should be maintained and developed, but if these appeared to develop towards a common Swedish-British planning they were not to be carried further without political authorization and the consent of the Foreign Office. At the same time, the possibility should not be ruled out of the Swedes establishing connections with NATO, primarily through the Norwegians or the Danes.

The British Government supported the contents of the memorandum, and the U.S. State Department was informed of the British position. The reaction of State was that the Swedish willingness for cooperation

fluctuated with the international political climate. State encouraged the British to develop military contacts with the Swedish as far as possible with the tacit consent of the Swedish Government, and declared that the Americans were themselves intent on doing likewise.

Following almost two years of discussions and repeated revisions of the reply by the British Chiefs of Staff to Vougt”s memorandum, the report was sent to the British Embassy in Stockholm in February 1953 for presentation to Swedish Government and military officials. The document has not been found in Swedish archives. It was to be pres— ented, not as a reply to Vougt's memorandum, but as a paper prepared for purely internal reasons and including British views only. The Swedes were, however, to be told that SACEUR had been informed of these views. A slightly modified version of the report was handed over to Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe (SHAPE) in the summer of 1953.

The report consisted of two sections, the first of which discussed a likely course of war in Scandinavia, while the second included commen— taries on the organization of the Swedish armed forces and proposals for measures to increase defensive capabilities.

In the first section, it was initially observed that the war scenario of prime interest to Sweden was a Soviet attack within the context of a major war. An attack on Scandinavia would aim at creating a defence in depth against air strikes, to gain control over the Baltic Approaches, to acquire naval and air bases for attacking Great Britain and the Atlantic sea lines of communication and to prevent a NATO build-up in the area. The significance of reaching these objectives made it probable that a campaign against Scandinavia could be expected in the initial phases of the war. Assessments then followed of the strategy the Soviet Union would follow in an attack.

The second section of the report opened with a statement that Sweden, despite the efforts made to strengthen its National Defence, most likely could not resist an attack for any length of time, unless (a) Swedish defence planning were effectively coordinated with that of the Western Powers, (b) Sweden was prepared to enter the war as soon as there were indications of an imminent invasion of any part of Scandinavia, and (c) steps were taken to remedy certain major deficiencies in the Swedish defence arrangements. Then followed certain overall views on Swedish planning as well as more detailed remarks on equipment and training, etc.

The report was enthusiastically received by the Swedish Military High Command, and the Chief of the Air Staff, Westring, explained to the British air attaché that the contents were exactly what the Swedish military had for years been trying to make the politicians understand.

Whether the report was also presented to Swedish civilian officials we do not know. On the other hand, in a conversation with the Swedish Under—Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs, Arne Lundberg, in March 1953, Sevens gave an account of the British military view on Sweden”s strategic position closely connected to the first section of the report. Lundberg strongly objected to the reasoning. Sevens also mentioned that it could be of value to exchange such information, that for example mining of the Baltic Sea and its approaches could be prepared in a coherent way, whereupon Lundberg changed the subject.

At this time, Eisenhower had been succeeded as SACEUR by the U.S. General Gruenther. Gruenther's reaction to the report was that he found it desirable for Swedish defence plans as far as possible to be in conson- ance with those of NATO. He observed that one way of accomplishing this was through the contacts of the British Chiefs of Staff with Swedish military authorities. In the longer run, it was desirable to establish some form of "clearing—house", preferably under CINCNORTH, where those NATO states which contemplated contacting Swedish authorities on military planning could assure themselves that the outcome of such contacts would be fully compatible with NATO plans.

Other contacts with the United Kingdom

Already before Vougt had forwarded his memorandum to Henderson, Swedish military representatives had supplied information to the British, and limited cooperation between military authorities of the two states existed. According to British views, these contacts were not known to the Swedish Government. In a June 1950 report, Hägglöf, however, mentioned that in conversation with a civil servant of the Foreign Office he had pointed out the extensive information on Swedish defence forces that had to be available in various British military staffs. He had also referred to what could be found in Danish and Norwegian military staffs following the Scandinavian defence negotiations. The British official had explained that what was primarily lacking was knowledge of Swedish military intentions and plans for action. Also in this context Hägglöf had referred to information from the Scandinavian defence negotiations in Danish and Norwegian staffs.

In June 1951, a British naval visit was paid to Stockholm under the Commander Home Fleet. In connection herewith, he met high—ranking Swedish officers. Swedlund had regretted that he did not have the opportunity to discuss war planning with the British admiral, but said that of course he would do so prior to the outbreak of war. He had explained that at the moment it was impossible for him to meet with Eisenhower or CINCNORTH, Admiral Brind, or to even visit any

NATO country. The Chief of the Navy, Strömbäck, had pointed to the importance of obtaining information on British mining policy in the Baltic Sea. He had also shown locations and plans for rock shelters already constructed and planned for naval ships. The Chief of the Air Force, Nordenskiöld, had been fully prepared for the Swedish Air Force to fight alongside the RAF, and emphasized the significance he attached to his personnel having a good knowledge of English.

In the late autumn of 1951, there were several indications that the Swedish Military High Command was interested in establishing cooperation with NATO, preferably through Norway. Certain prelimi— nary contacts between Nordenskiöld and the U.S. commander of NATO air forces in Northern Europe at Kolsäs were to have been made. Shortly thereafter, within the Foreign Office observations were made that caution should be exercised so as not to infer too much from statements by high- ranking Swedish military officers on military cooperation with the Western Powers. They never succeeded in anchoring their ideas with the Government, and they always fell into line when the Government insisted. At the same time, it was noted that the British thus far had only informally exchanged views with the Swedish, and consequently there was not much to inform NATO about. Eisenhower was also aware of this.

As mentioned in section 6.1.1 above, the contacts established in the summer of 1952 between the Swedish Defence Staff and AFNORTH through the Danish and Norwegian defence staffs led the British to conclude that the Swedish Government was not interested in correspon- ding bilateral links, which did not prevent that the exchange of intelli- gence between Sweden and the United Kingdom could and should continue.

In March 1953, Sevens reported that AF NORTH through the Norwe- gians had suggested that its deputy commander, the British general Mansergh, and the commander of the air forces, the U.S. general Carter, should pay a private visit to Sweden. The intention was for Mansergh and the Chief of the Swedish Defence Staff, Åkerman, to discuss how best to create links between the Swedish Defence Staff and the AFNORTH planning group newly appointed to study Swedish defence requirements. The Swedes had welcomed the proposal and Mansergh was invited to come in mid—March. Åkerman is supposed to have men- tioned this to Hammarskjöld just before the latter took over as Secretary General of the United Nations. Swedlund was to inform the Minister of Defence as soon as the minutiae of the visit had been settled.

Later that same month, Sevens attended a dinner hosted by Åkerman, together with Swedlund and af Klint, head of section 11 of the Defence Staff, i.e. head of intelligence. Swedlund had stressed the importance the

Swedes attached to the defence of Denmark. He had also explained that an effective defence of Scandinavia presupposed a certain exchange of information with the Western Powers. It only remained to find suitable procedures for such an exchange. For the time being, the Norwegians and the Danes were the best channel, but it was evident that he viewed them as a link to NATO rather than as a terminal point. Åkerman was eager to meet with Mansergh at the end of May or in June. af Klint said that the Ministry of Foreign Affairs had given the military practically a free hand to arrange those visits by foreign officers deemed necessary, but at the same time given instructions that all precautions should be taken to prevent such visits causing harmful publicity.

Carter unofficially visited Stockholm in March, to look at some civilian aviation facilities and perhaps meet with one or two Air Force officers. No detailed discussions on defence cooperation were planned for his part. The visit was not approved of by U.S. authorities "Washington" having apparently indicated that contacts of this kind could be hazardous as they might well embarrass the Swedish.

In the summer of 1953, Sevens reported that there was little prospect of Mansergh visiting Sweden in the near future. Åkerman had explained that the situation with respect to the Government had become more sensitive than that of only a few months ago, and that the Swedish Military High Command believed that for the time being it would have to assume a more cautious stance concerning contacts with AFNORTH. An initiated observer explained the shift in Swedish attitudes with the negative U.S. reaction to Carteris visit to Stockholm. Interest in meeting Mansergh, however, remained unaffected. At the same time, General Gruenther had expressed substantial doubts to Mansergh about permitting the Norwegian defence headquarters to establish a link to the Swedish without the consent of the North Atlantic Council.

At the meeting between Mansergh and Gruenther, mentioned above, however, Gruenther seems to have delegated the issue of cooperation with the Swedes to Mansergh and authorized his naval superior, the British vice-admiral Evans—Lombe, to initiate combined naval planning with the Swedes, on condition that it was not carried out in Oslo and that the admiral's subordinate NATO officers did not participate. In the light of this, Evans-Lombe contacted the Commander of the Swedish Fleet, Stig H:son Ericson, in connection with a Swedish naval visit to London in the summer of 1953. Ericson had earlier expressed wishes for such contacts. The admirals first held a general discussion on naval plans for the Baltic Sea, and then proceeded to the issue of how to create preconditions for coordination of naval war planning. Ericson explained that he believed it possible to dispatch a navy captain to London for such discussions early in the autumn but that he had to obtain Strömbäck*s

consent. Ericson had emphasized that if the Swedish politicians were to hear of this contact, they would in all likelihood put an end to the cooperation.

Ata meeting between British military officers and Foreign Office civil servants in September 1953, an air marshal said that it was not possible to initiate any common planning with the Swedish Air Force, unless it was integrated with the RAF. The only Swedish concern was, however, to defend themselves if attacked. They were aware that in such a case they would not receive assistance from any British aircraft. The same applied to ground forces. The Swedes were prepared to inform the British of their planning, provided that nothing was reported to the Americans or to NATO. A Foreign Office representative confirmed this view but also pointed out that the Swedes were no fools but well understood that the information they provided for the British would be forwarded to SACEUR. It was agreed that it was unlikely that the Swedes would prefer using Norwegians and Danes for contacts with NATO. Relations between the Swedish and Danish air forces were particularly bad, and Danish security was deemed the worst in all Europe.

At a meeting with the British Chiefs of Staff in October 1953, it was observed that SACEUR had accepted continued British contacts with Sweden and that he wished to be kept informed of them. For the future he had not wanted to rule out CINCNORTH playing a part in this context. What SACEUR did not know was that Mansergh, now having succeeded Brind as CINCNORTH, was already in control of contacts with the Swedes.

In October 1953 on Åkerman*s initiative, the Swedish ambassador in Oslo, Ahlmann, invited Mansergh to pay a private visit to Sweden for sightseeing, etc. Ahlmann hardly thought that the Swedish Government had been informed. Whether Mansergh actually visited Sweden is not known to us.

In June 1954, the Foreign Office observed that the United Kingdom had valuable contacts with the Swedish National Defence, that the existence of these contacts had not been disclosed to other NATO states, and that the Swedish Government only recently had agreed to them.

A senior British intelligence officer paid a formal visit to Stockholm in 1955. The Swedish military representatives had then - apparently without the Governmentis knowledge - raised planning issues beyond the ongoing military information exchange between the two states approved by the British Government. The idea did not, however, meet with approval in London, and to avoid futile speculations it was decided that visits to Sweden by senior officers were to be very few and far between.

In later years, it appears as if the British Chiefs of Staff did not devote

themselves to any thorough deliberations on the Swedish National Defence. Nor do any more significant military contacts with Sweden seem to have occurred apart from the visit exchanges between senior officers, sales of military equipment, and scientific cooperation.

The British Foreign Office observed in the summer of 1959 that defence planning with the Western Powers was prohibited in Sweden.

Contacts with the United States The early 1950s

The activities of 1949 did not lead to any immediate change in the official U.S. position vis—a-vis Sweden. For another couple of years, U.S. policy in this respect was characterized by efforts to make Sweden accede to the Atlantic Treaty. As leverage, applications for export licences for military equipment to Sweden were refused.

Gradually, the United States assumed a more accommodating position towards Sweden. This was probably due to Sweden, during the spring of 1951, agreeing to partly adapt its trade policy vis-a-vis the Eastern bloc to U.S. wishes (Cf section 5.2). The U.S. policy shift was officially sanctioned when the President in early 1952 approved new guidelines for U.S. policy towards Scandinavia and Finland (Cf section 4.3).

It has been publicly argued that Prime Minister Erlander, when visiting the United States in a private capacity in the spring of 1952, held discussions with the U.S. administration on, among other issues, Swedish imports of U.S. war supplies. Erlander's diary notes clearly show that he was concerned that the visit should not be of a political nature, and that he did not wish to discuss the issue of U.S deliveries of military equipment. Furthermore, no information has been found indicating that any such discussions took place.

Prior to Erlanders visit to the United States, the U.S. ambassador to Sweden sent a letter to the head of European affairs at the State Depart— ment in which, among other things, he referred to notes taken by a colleague from a discussion with Sverker Åström, then head of the political department at the Swedish Ministry for Foreign Affairs. Åström was to have said that, for the time being, one could not say anything as to what position Sweden would take if Denmark and Norway, but not Sweden, were to be attacked. Apparently, Sweden*s position would depend on a number of factors. According to Åström, the Ministry for Foreign Affairs had carefully considered making a statement to this effect. However, it had been decided that such a statement could have negative internal repercussions, and could lead to speculations on Sweden's "new" position. The Western Powers might assume that

Sweden's neutral position was possible to change, which in turn could result in Western offers and feelers towards Sweden. According to Åström, Sweden was satisfied with its current policy and did not wish to incur lots of debate and attention or feelers from the West. Secret strategic connections with the West did certainly exist, and they could be developed further to a certain extent. But only so far, since at some point the secrets would become widely known, or at least threaten to become known. Secret cooperation would have to cease before this point was reached.

The ambassador observed that this discussion quite accurately reflected the current mood, especially considering how two recently disclosed cases of Soviet espionage against Sweden had affected Swedish public opinion.

As mentioned above, in the summer of 1952 an agreement was reached between Sweden and the United States on the terms on which Sweden could purchase military equipment etc. from the United States (Cf section 5.2).

Already in the autumn of 1951 , Swedlund was lobbying through Berg, the Norwegian Chief of the Defence Staff, Marcus Wallenberg, the industrialist, and Collins, the U.S. Chief of Staff of the Army, for the United States to appoint a highly qualified military attaché to Stockholm for businesslike talks. According to Swedlund, this was the only way in which to prepare for wartime cooperation. According to what Swedlund told Erlander, all that had been done by the Swedish military was to convey the message that such an attaché ought to be dispatched. In October 1952, at a meeting at Wallenberg's between Swedlund and the future U.S. Secretary of State, John Foster Dulles, Dulles instead suggested detailing a highly qualified officer from SHAPE, who would visit Sweden for the exchange of information. Swedlund emphasized that such contacts, if made secretly, would not conflict. with Government intentions, and that continuity in such contacts was important. With the U.S. ambassador too, Swedlund raised the issue that the United States ought to keep a highly qualified military representative in Sweden to facilitate discussion of Sweden's defence planning and associated issues, with access to the requisite maps. These efforts seem only to have led to the deputy of the Pentagon operational department, on a visit to Frankfurt in March 1953, being prepared to receive and brief a specially dispatched Swedish officer. Colonel Bonde was most likely appointed for this mission. Whether Bonde travelled, and if so, what was discussed, is not known.

In December 1952, Swedlund met, through Wallenberg, with the U.S. admiral Johnson, who was visiting Sweden to develop contacts and— obtain information. According to Johnson, there was interest among the

U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff in exchanging information and views on strategic conditions in Scandinavia. The Swedes emphasized the import- ance of imports from the West, and of NATO planning not blocking the possibilities for such imports, even if the Swedish West Coast could not be used. The arrangements for a possible visit by Bonde to the United States were also discussed.

In May 1953, Bonde visited the United States together with one naval and one Air Force officer. In August that same year, a U.S. delegation visited Sweden. At the meetings, the Swedish delegation reported on the difficulties Sweden was likely to encounter in the event of an attack by the Soviet Union. The need for logistical support primarily fuel - was discussed. In this context, procedures for protecting necessary transports were discussed with respect to cooperation between naval and air forces, and to between what command authorities liaison officers would be exchanged. The meetings did not result in any exchange of concrete plans, only in general conclusions. The discussions were apparently quite general, and the U.S. counterpart, General Eddleman, was apparently almost surprised that the Swedes did not present more substantial and concrete demands. To our knowledge, these discussions were not followed by any other meetings.

A discussion of Swedish-U.S. contacts during the early 1950s cannot totally ignore efforts of Norwegian-born Colonel Bernt Balchen, USAF, to inter-link the defences of Norway and Sweden. In the autumn of 1951, he visited Oslo and discussed this issue with Norwegian Cabinet members. He also visited Stockholm, and discussed the same isssue with the Chief of the Air Force, Nordenskiöld, and his Chief of Staff, Westring. Supposedly, Nordenskiöld agreed with Balchen in that Northernmost Norway could be effectively defended only with the participation of Swedish ground and air forces. According to Balchen, Nordenskiöld emphasized that the single most important move that could be implemented quickly to strengthen the defence of Scandinavia was to create resources on all Swedish airbases for the reception of large numbers of NATO aircraft that might arrive for the defence of Scandinavia. These resources should include lubricants, aviation fuel, and munitions etc., to support large-scale air operations. According to Nordenskiöld, such preparations could be made in secret. If an acute crisis situation were to arise, seven Swedish airfields could be made accessible to NATO fighters at short notice. Nordenskiöld believed that Sweden did not stand even the slightest chance of remaining neutral in a future conflict, and that Sweden would obviously fight alongside the Western allies. In July 1952 Balchen again met with Nordenskiöld, and in August 1954 he discussed the storage of supplies with the deputy head of the Air Materiel Administration, Major-General Jakobsson.

Balchen”s position, however, remains somewhat unclear. In the spring of 1952, the U.S. air attaché in Stockholm was somewhat doubtful as to Balchen”s optimistic predictions - based on Balchen's discussion with Nordenskiöld - concerning a Norwegian-Swedish defence union. According to the air attaché, such a union could only be established if and when the Swedish Government approved. While Nordenskiöld clearly had his sympathies with the West, he was at the same time a loyal Swede obeying his Government's orders. Balchen developed a number of ambitious plans and scenarios as to how Sweden's defences would be integrated into those of NATO in the event of a war with the Soviet Union. Nothing indicates that these documents were ever officially sanctioned.

Some Swedish reports from discussions with officers from the Western Powers in 1952 and 1953 illustrate how NATO then looked upon the prospects for wartime cooperation with Sweden. No plans existed to assist Sweden with armed forces in the event of war. The issue was too delicate in view of Sweden's neutral position, and NATO was seriously short of manpower. Furthermore, staff contacts between AFNORTH and Sweden were not permitted (Cf above on contacts between Sweden and Norway). A British NATO officer had emphasized that within NATO there was a deep conviction that Sweden, in the event of a major war, could not remain neutral but would join forces with the West. However, "the establishment of military cooperation would encounter great and very serious difficulties, as such cooperation had in no way been prepared." A U.S. NATO officer believed that Sweden, in building up its Air Force, did not have to procure heavy bombers since this kind of warfare could well be conducted by USAF and RAF with atomic bombs, from remote bases. It is notable that these opinions were voiced in private conversations, and cannot be characterized as messages officially sanctioned by the NATO leadership.

That the Swedish Military High Command reasoned along the same lines is shown by a briefing held in May 1953 by the Supreme Com- mander and the Chief of the Defence Staff before ministers Erlander, Undén, Torsten Nilsson, Hedlund, and party chairmen Ohlin and Hjalmarson. In this, Swedlund pointed out that Sweden, if embroiled in a war simultaneously with the rest of the world, could receive assistance through Western strategic bombing, perhaps later also in the form of tactical air strikes, e.g. against Nordkalotten and the Danish isles. Furthermore, it would be a relief that in this case only parts of the Warsaw Pact forces could be directed against Sweden. In other aspects, however, the Swedes would most likely have to fend for themselves. Not even Denmark and Norway could expect assistance in the form of ground forces until after three months, at the earliest. Were Sweden to

be subject to an isolated attack by the Soviet Union, its chances would depend on Swedish readiness and the time required for Western mobilization. The view that the assistance Sweden could expect from the West following a Soviet attack would be restricted to so-called indirect assistance was also reflected in the working papers of the 1955 defence decision.

The years 1955—69

In the spring of 1955, the Swedish ambassador to Norway, Hans Ahlmann, told Swedlund that the U.S. ambassador to Norway had recently explained that the United States well understood Sweden”s situation and that staff talks could not take place. However, the United States wished to be told what Sweden itself believed to be the weak points in its National Defence, so that assistance could be prepared. The British ambassador had expressed similar views. Ahlmann believed that this was following top-level orders or, more likely, on the initiative of AFNORTH. Either way, the U.S. move did not lead to any immediate action.

In March the same year, two Swedish officers visited Washington to discuss issues of military communications, and to visit certain installa— tions and laboratories, apparently as a follow-up to the 1953 discussions. The Swedish request for such discussions, however, was rejected. It was explained that the request partly concerned issues that the United States believed went beyond what could be discussed. It is possible that the Swedish visitors still had the opportunity to discuss most of these matters all the same.

In April 1955, the Chief of the Defence Staff, Åkerman, met with a high—ranking NATO officer who explained that NATO's Standing Group was very unappreciative of Sweden*s foreign policy stance. Whether NATO would employ nuclear weapons against the Soviet Union, in the event of an attack on Sweden, would depend on the overall situation. Preparations for joint actions were necessary, and as a NATO non- member, Sweden remained outside such preparations.

At a meeting of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff in September 1955, General Clyde Eddleman, then deputy Chief of Staff of the Army, briefed on the secret military talks conducted with Swedish representa— tives. It was decided to continue secret military contacts with Sweden, to designate a new contact (succeeding Eddleman?) to the representatives of the Swedish Supreme Commander, and to issue new instructions to this contact.

In the U.S. view, the Swedes ultimately had to establish contact with NATO, as all planning for their area had to be coordinated with NATO

commanders. Until the Swedes were prepared to establish such contacts, however, it was very important that the JCS maintained secret contacts with the Swedish Supreme Commander through the latter*s representa— tive. These contacts should be managed by the Commander USAEUR who was in charge of the valuable intelligence exchange with the Swedish armed forces.

The designated contact, giided by the overall policy according to NSC 121 (Cf section 4.3), was to secretly conduct such military discussions with the representative of the Swedish Supreme Commander as were required to expand on the secret talks held earlier between U.S. and Swedish military officers and to create a more thorough understanding of issues of mutual military interest. The main purpose of such dis- cussions would be to further the military relations and cooperation between Sweden and the United States and to expand the military intelligence exchange. The ultimate objective would be to make Sweden prepared to contribute, as far as possible, to the defence of Scandinavia in the event of a Soviet attack and to strengthen Sweden*s capabilities and determination to resist Soviet pressure. The designated contact was to have the authority to discuss U.S. overall strategy but not to disclose specific details of U.S. or NATO war planning, or to make any military commitments on behalf of the United States. To accommodate Sweden's wishes to avoid outward signs of Sweden having abandoned its tradi— tional policy of neutrality, all contacts with Swedish military represen— tatives were to be kept secret. The designated contact was to keep the J CS informed if requirements arose for further military discussions with the Swedish armed forces and furnish the JCS with suggestions for agendas. If need be, he was to obtain additional guidance from the JCS and inform them if additional personnel were required to complete his task.

It is not known to us whether contacts of the kind envisioned by the JCS - except for exchanges of intelligence on the Warsaw Pact — were established.

In November the same year, Swedlund paid an unofficial visit to the United States for almost four weeks. The visit was apparently organized by U.S. military authorities and Swedlund visited, among other organizations, the Pentagon. The Swedish Government had approved the visit. According to what the Chief of the Defence Staff, Åkerman, later told the U.S. ambassador to Sweden, the visit had been very useful, and Swedlund had been shown more than expected, e.g. a Nike missile launcher.

In the autumn of 1957, the head of the National Defence College, the former Chief of the Air Staff, G. A. Westring, made a study trip to the United States, among other countries. On his return, he reported that

were Sweden to be subjected to an isolated attack by the Soviet Union, the United States and the other Western allies were likely to respond with military intervention. Such intervention, however, required decisions at the top political level of the United States and, if other allies were to be engaged as well, in the NATO Council. It was difficult to estimate how long it would take to reach such a decision. For rapid deployment of tactical air forces in a local conflict, it was deemed important that target information and conunand and control resources should be in position. Modern weapons had increased the requirement for advance planning and coordination prior to an attack operation. The possibilities of quickly supporting Swedish armed forces had therefore diminished.

In 1960, the guidelines for U.S. policy on Sweden were updated. (Cf section 4.4)

It has been shown above that peacetime cooperation between the Swedish and the U.S. armed forces continued and was expanded during the 1960s (Cf chapter 5). From 1960, there is indication of a contact on operational issues. No archival information has been found indicating that overall discussions took place on operational cooperation, or on how the United States could assist Sweden in the event of an attack from the East. The Commission wishes, however, to point out once again that, due to classification, we have had only very limited access to U.S. docu- ments from this decade.

The Commission conducted interviews with a large number of officers holding key positions in the 1960s, without any records of operational contacts existing. At the same time, many of these officers pointed out the importance of Sweden, if attacked by the Soviet Union, receiving some form of assistance from the United States and NATO, and in some cases they assumed that preparations for this were being made at a higher level.

NATO overflights

A particular issue in this context is whether the Western Powers could count on Sweden, if neutral in a great—power war, not taking action against their possible violations of Swedish airspace. The shortest route for U.S. and British bombers to and from key targets in the Soviet Union passed over Sweden; this issue, then, was of significance to the United States and its allies.

In a report by the Joint Strategic Plans Committee from the spring of 1949, it was determined that "current strategic plans envisage overflight over [inter alia Sweden's] territories by combatant aircraft." The U.S. national and military leadership were thus prepared, in a future war, to

neglect a key component of the declared Swedish policy of neutrality.

In the spring of 1949, as mentioned above, a'Swedish diplomat in Washington declared that he was convinced that the Swedish Government position was that Sweden would not prevent the Western allies from using Swedish airspace in such a situation. Shortly before, however, the Swedish Minister of Defence, Vougt, had spoken publicly in a manner suggesting that in his belief Sweden would fire on Western aircraft violating Swedish territory. The statement caught attention in both U.S. and British diplomatic reports. At least the British seem to have been calmed by reassurances from high-level Swedish officials that it would be a mistake to take Vougt too seriously. Thus, the British Chief of Staff of the RAF, Lord Tedder, explained at a Chiefs of Staff meeting a few weeks later that he was convinced that Sweden would not prevent Western allied aircraft from flying over its territory.

High—level Norwegian officials (a former under—secretary of state of the Ministry of Defence, and some retired generals) interviewed by the Commission have stated that Norway counted upon Sweden not firing on NATO bombers overflying Sweden en route to or from the Soviet Union. One reason for this Norwegian assessment was their experience of how Sweden, during the last few years of World War II, acted very half-heartedly against allied overflights. Another reason was that Sweden, until the early 1960s, when the Bloodhound missiles and the fighter aircraft J 35 Draken became operative, lacked effective means to intervene against high-altitude overflights. From time to time, according to the Norwegian view, NATO seems to have assumed that the Swedish National Defence would not intervene at all against violations of its airspace, neither from the East nor the West, as long as targets in Sweden were not attacked. This strategy would prevent the Swedish Air Force from being prematurely depleted. When the Norwegian Chief of the Air Force during the 19605 raised with his Swedish counterpart the issue of whether Sweden would intervene against Western allied overflights, the latter is said to have responded only: "You know that we are there."

In 1952, the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Undén, explained in response to a question from Swedlund "whether we would shoot down Western pilots " that Sweden had to clarify that it could not concern itself with altitudes above a certain level, the so-called neutrality ceiling. The possibilities of the Swedish air defences intercepting high-altitude over- flights were very limited for a long time, as mentioned above. In addition, Swedish radar stations for air surveillance were mostly directed Eastwards. Against this background, it is not surprising that the issue does not seem to have been more comprehensively discussed in Sweden. The issue was, however, touched upon in the briefing memorandum

prepared by the secretariat of the 1955 Defence Committee, discussed in section 3.3 above.

A U.S. researcher, Dr. Paul Cole, has told the Commission that at least during 1955-60, the U.S. high altitude reconnaissance aircraft, U-2, routinely overflew Swedish territory. The overflights were purportedly authorized by the Swedish authorities. The U.S. Assistant Secretary of the Air Force is said to have obtained such authorization from his Swedish counterpart by telephone, and also to have agreed on the practicalities for the overflights. According to Cole, he obtained this information in interviews with former U-2 pilots and "program man— agers".

Dr. Rolf Tamnes, a Norwegian researcher, has exhaustively covered the U—2 overflights in his well—documented dissertation. Tamnes”s description includes the following main points of interest in this context. The U-2 was a joint CIA and USAF project. The aircraft became operational in 1956. Until the downing of the U-2 pilot Gary Powers at Sverdlovsk in the spring of 1960, the U—2 planes were used for highly- qualified air reconnaissance over the Soviet Union. Only a few months later, the first U.S. photo reconnaissance satellite was taken into service. Although for a considerable length of time had the U-2 an unsurpassed capability for high resolution recording, the political situation following the downing precluded continued deep penetrations into Soviet territory.

During 1956-60, 25 deep penetrations into Soviet airspace were made, in addition to an undisclosed number of shallow penetrations. Most deep penetrations seem to have been carried out up until early 1958. Most of the overflights were made over the Southern Soviet Union, with take-off and landing on a base in Eastern Turkey. In 1956-57, seven overflights were made over the European part of the Soviet Union, starting from West Germany, overflights of the Moscow and Leningrad areas,and return flights over the Baltic republics.

The first U—2 flights over the Northern areas took place in October 1957, starting in West Germany, passing over Norway and the Barents Sea, and returning to the point of departure. Norway does not seem to have been informed of these overflights. In the autumn of 1958, during a period of less than two months, a couple of flights a week were made from Norwegian Boda. Initially, training-flights were made, which did not affect Soviet territory. Nor seemingly, did the majority of the following "operational" flights entering from the Barents and Kara seas affect Soviet territory. The final flight proceeded along the Finnish- Soviet border, south towards West Germany, and then on to the base in Eastern Turkey. The main Norwegian contact seems to have been the head of intelligence, Evang. These flights were known to only a handful of Norwegians.

From 1958 on, President Eisenhowefs attitude to the deep-penetration flights became increasingly restrictive. In April 1960, however, he was persuaded to authorize additional overflights. An overflight of the Southern Soviet Union was thus carried out from Turkey. In addition, he authorized an extensive overflight from Turkey to Bode. This was the flight during which Powers was shot down.

The U—2 seems to have been used also for atmospheric sampling of radioactive dust from nuclear testing, in 1957—58 and again, beginning in 1961. Nothing in Tamnes”s account indicates that this information implied penetrations of Soviet or Scandinavian airspace.

The only Swedish connection to be found in Tamnes's description of U-2 operations is that Powers, in the event of an emergency situation, had permission to fly the shortest route from the Northern Soviet Union to Boda and, if necessary, to make an emergency landing in Finland or Sweden.

The Commission has interviewed a couple of people who held key positions in Swedish military intelligence during the years of the U-2 flights over the European parts of the Soviet Union. They have explained that they did not know of any overflights of Swedish airspace. The then chiefs of the Air Force and Air Staff are now either dead or due to poor health could not be interviewed.

The Commission has not found any information, either in interviews or in Swedish or foreign sources, pointing to the existence of Swedish authorization of U—2 overflights of Swedish airspace or emergency landings on Swedish airbases.

Contacts with the United States in the context of nuclear weapons

Another issue connected with to Swedish—U.S. relations was that of Swedish acquisition of nuclear weapons. Swedish military interest in Sweden procuring nuclear weapons was strong in the mid-1950s, especially within the Defence Staff and the Air Force. It was argued that such weapons were a prerequisite for deterring the Soviet Union from attacking Sweden. In 1956, however, the Military High Command judged that it was impossible for Sweden to purchase atomic weapons or uranium for the production of weapon-grade plutonium from other countries. Considerable effort was devoted to Swedish research in this field.

In 1957, U.S. military representatives communicated that it was deemed doubtful whether Sweden had sufficient resources to produce the atomic weapons required. Easier would be for Sweden to, through diplomatic channels, seek to obtain the same privileges as the U.S. allies in regard to nuclear weapons. Such a request would most likely be

favourably received by the U.S. military. Sweden could modify strike aircraft to carry tactical atomic bombs and have certain personnel trained. An alternative would be to request the purchase of a smaller number of U.S. attack aircraft carrying all the necessary equipment for launching tactical atomic bombs. A senior official in the Air Materiel Administration ascertained that the Swedish strike aircraft A 32 Lansen would be able to carry the type of tactical atomic bomb in use with NATO forces in Europe.

In 1959, a similar statement was made by a senior U.S. air officer. According to this source, it should not be impossible for Sweden to procure weapons platforms and reach an agreement with the United States that the weapons themselves would be handed over to Sweden in the event of a serious crisis. Still according to the same officer, the possibility should be excluded of storing U.S. weapons in Sweden "under U.S. custody." Considering Sweden's position, this should be arranged in full discretion under plain-clothes and Swedish-speaking surveillance. The Swedish representative countered that the Swedish Government was unlikely that to agree to this arrangement. The American responded that he believed that the appreciation of the need for atomic weapons would come to grow, which might affect the Swedish Government's position.

While some U.S. military officers thus displayed great interest in providing Sweden with atomic weapons, the position within the State Department was the opposite. In 1958 and 1959, in connection with negotiations on the purchase of Bomarc and other missiles, the U.S. side considered whether Sweden would equip these weapons with nuclear warheads. Sweden had not made any requests for access to U.S. atomic warheads. But if nuclear disarmament negotiations did not conclude in an agreement, it was deemed likely that Sweden would procure nuclear weapons eventually. Such a decision might be hastened if Sweden gained access to missiles which could be used to carry nuclear warheads. Pitched against each other were, on the one hand, the interest that Sweden should have an effective defence, and on the other, the disinclination towards additional states becoming members of the "nuclear club." Against this background, it was recommended that the United States should inform Sweden that it was prepared to supply Bomarc and other missiles with conventional warheads, but at the same time, make clear that it would be unwise for Sweden to hold any illusions of the United States in future supplying Sweden with nuclear warheads for these missiles.

The issue lost urgency in that Sweden decided not to procure Bomarc missiles. In the U.S. policy guidelines for Scandinavia, laid down in 1960, it was emphasized that the United States should not supply Sweden with nuclear weapons and that it should try to discourage Sweden from

acquiring such weapons.

The report from the so—called nuclear warhead study, conducted within the Defence Staff and presented in the autumn of 1962, stated that several advantages could be obtained by purchasing nuclear warheads from other states. For example, Sweden could begin by purchasing foreign weapons platforms, and later, should the opportunity arise, nuclear warheads for these systems. In comparison to a domestic programme, such procurement could take place sooner and faster, the costs would be considerably lower, and the design of the warheads would be more advanced. In the foreseeable future, imports were not deemed possible due to the "declared policy and legislation in potential supplier states. " It was also of significance that these countries primarily sought to fill their own needs. If imports were possible, the seller would most likely place certain constraints on the buyer, which could possibly diminish the credibility of the Swedish non—alignment policy.

By procuring appropriate weapons systems Sweden would hypotheti- cally be capable of receiving foreign nuclear warheads with little preparation should the foreign policy situation allow this. This could not, however, take place rapidly enough to permit Sweden in the course of a war to make use of foreign nuclear warheads without having personnel pre—trained to handle the weapons system. The prospective supplier of warheads would have to provide information for such training, such as data on storage, overhaul, transport, and the priming of warheads, including data on safety devices, and problems of cooling. The credibil- ity of Sweden's non—alignment would be unlikely to survive the making of such preparations.

In the situation at hand, it was thus deemed unrealistic to rely upon the possibility to import weapon systems equipped with nuclear warheads. Therefore, the study concluded that if the Swedish National Defence were to be equipped with nuclear warheads, these would have to be domestically produced.

In the 1960s, Sweden carried out "protection research" on nuclear weapons. Only in the 1968 Defence Decision was the issue of procuring nuclear weapons dismissed from the agenda.


In conclusion, during the 1950s and 1960s, a common view within the Swedish National Defence was that Sweden could not withstand a Warsaw Pact attack for any length of time without some kind of assistance from the Western Powers. This view had already been expressed in connection with the negotiations on a Scandinavian defence union, and was later confirmed during the preparations for the 1958

Defence Decision. It was also clear that the Swedish military realized that preparations were required to render direct assistance in the form of tactical action effective early on. Likewise, it was realized that the requirement for such preparations increased as weapons systems became more complicated.

In the first half of the 19505, high—ranking Swedish officers had, on numerous occasions, contacts with officers from the United Kingdom, the United States and NATO, aiming at a certain coordination of defence preparations for a Soviet attack. It is, however, uncertain whether these contacts led to any common defence planning. As far as has been established, they never went beyond an exchange of information enabling both parties to take into account each other”s considerations and resources in their own planning.

The most remarkable example of information exchange is, however, Defence Minister Vougt”s memorandum on the Swedish armed forces and defence planning, handed over to the British Government in 1951. The presentation of the memorandum was perceived by the British as indicating the existence of a political will in Sweden for certain peacetime coordination of defence planning between Sweden and the Western Powers. The reserved Swedish reactions to British invitations to informal military talks between the states, however, led to these hopes fairly soon having to be shelved. That this did not prevent the British from working for almost two years on preparing a commentary on the memorandum shows what significance they attached to the defence of Sweden.

This chain of events raises a number of questions which the now available sources cannot help to answer. This concerns the Government processing in important aspects, inter alia Vougt's planned visit to Great Britain. Nor have we been able to establish whether the Swedish Military High Command participated in preparing Vougt's memorandum, or if it was at all informed of the memorandum by the Government, or possibly through British military sources. Knowledge of Vougt's memorandum might have affected the view of the Swedish Military High Command on the openness possible in contacts with the British, but this cannot be established with the sources now available.

In section 7.3, we will return to an evaluation of the presentation of Vougt”s memorandum. _

In the latter part of the period examined, the Swedes appear to have adopted a more cautious attitude to operational contacts with the Western Powers and NATO. There is, however, reason to emphasize that the Commission only has had very limited access to U.S. archives from the period after 1952; therefore, the Commission”s picture may be incom- plete.

It was not possible for the United States and its NATO allies to declare that they would assist Sweden irrespective of its security policy or — even less — to prepare such actions together with Sweden. This would torpedo the idea of collective defence and risk—sharing which was a cornerstone of NATO. Even so, the United States as well as the United Kingdom showed tangible interest in information exchanges with Sweden.

Finally, no available information indicates that Sweden considered procuring nuclear weapons from the United States, or that the United States was prepared to make nuclear weapons available to Sweden.

6.2. War planning and studies Plans and studies

General introduction

Swedish military war planning is based on defence decisions passed by Parliament. These decisions lay down the ambitions and the budget for the military defence. ln parallel with and as an integral part of the political process (defence committee, drafting of bills, and parliamentary processing), the Supreme Commander conducts studies on the long—term development of the National Defence, including inter—service priorities, procurement, tactics, etc.

"Heritage" i.e. existing planning and organization — naturally plays a significant part in the war planning process. The fundamental precondi- tions of operational planning can remain unchanged over a long period of time, spanning several defence decisions. When a new defence decision has materialized, the executive operational commander (until the autumn of 1961, the Supreme Commander, the chiefs of the Navy and Air Force, since then the Supreme Commander only) is charged with analysing what changes are called for by the decision. He then translates the parliamentary decision into directives and orders to his subordinate commanders for operational planning. Within this framework, comman— ders at various levels are charged with preparing their own plans, issuing orders, and taking actions, for example, practical exercises.

At least during the period studied by this Commission, there should not, apart from exceptional cases, have been room for any regional or local planning beside from that ordered by the operational commander. During the period when the chiefs of the Navy and Air Force had operational command, their overall planning was through the naval and air force departments of the Defence Staff, anchored with the Supreme Commander, who was charged with coordination. The Commission has been informed that this did not necessarily imply that the Supreme Commander approved the planning in every detail.

At least during the 1960s, war planning was anchored, to a certain extent, at the political level. Once the Supreme Commander had been informed of the results of the defence committee work, he briefed the Minister of Defence on the principal consequences of the proposals for focus of military planning.

Throughout the 1950s and 19605, Swedish military planning almost completely focused on defending against an attack from the Soviet Union (the Warsaw Pact). During the latter part of the 1960s, however, a couple of minor studies were made with other scenarios, viz. an attack from a reunited Germany outside NATO, and NATO's capabilities for

intervention against Sweden, and Swedish defence preparations against such an attack. There are no indications, neither in the war planning nor in the operational orders of cooperation having been prepared with the Western Powers. Nor do the comprehensive studies forming the basis of national plans and orders include allusions to actual preparations for cooperation or the reception of Western assistance. On the contrary, these studies more often than not dealt with the prospects of Sweden receiving non—prepared military assistance from the Western Powers if attacked by the Soviet Union.

Assistance from the Western Powers

In a strategic study by the Defence Staff in 1960, it was observed that Swedish territory in itself hardly was of strategic significance to the Soviet Union. On the contrary, Sweden was important as a staging and basing area for operations against Norway, for the defence of Norway following its capture and for the control of Öresund. The risks of Sweden being drawn into a war were therefore closely interlinked with those of Denmark and, especially, Norway. In view of the significance of Sweden for the defence of Norway and the Baltic Approaches, it was deemed highly unlikely that the Western Powers would remain in- different to an isolated Soviet attack on our country. The risks of such an attack were therefore seen to have diminished.

The study also stated that Sweden's peacetime defence preparations and its wartime strategy had to be such that military and economic support from the Western Powers could be effective, in the event of a war with the Soviet Union, and thus viewed by the Western Powers as possible and advantageous.

The assistance supplied early in a war, might include air strikes against ports of embarkation, communications, airbases and missile bases, etc., convoy protection in the North Sea toward the Skagerrak, minelaying by air, as well as temporary direct support from air and naval forces based in Norway. No guarantee exists of direct assistance in wartime. As assistance from the Western Powers cannot be prepared in peacetime, it cannot arrive rapidly, and will also be less effective. These factors will influence any decision on providing assistance. If the Western Powers are given grounds to believe that supplies cannot be put to use timely and effectively, they will hardly provide assistance. —-— Our defence must therefore have such strength and endurance that the Western Powers will find it advantageous to assist us with reasonable effort despite the disadvantages of prepara- tions not having been made.

As discussed above, several of the ideas of the 1950 strategic study were reiterated in the 1954 proposal by the Supreme Commander on guideli-

nes for the continued development of the armed forces, which constituted background material for the 1955 Defence Committee.

In 1960, the Defence Staff conducted new strategic studies. They emphasized, among other things, the significance of our national willingness and capability for defending ourselves.

If conflicts of interest are sharpened in the Baltic Sea area, we have to reckon with Western forces operating in Denmark and Norway, and Soviet forces operating in Finland. In such a situation, Sweden will be an object of closer attention, which is especially serious if we are militarily weak. We can expect military as well as other kinds of pressure against us. Our possibilities of contributing to the preserva— tion of peace and - if war breaks out of remaining outside a conflict might depend on whether both parties trust our will and capability to defend our territory with prospects of succeeding, and to take actions against violations Wherever our territory is subject to such.

The idea of external assistance had not been dropped, however, as shown inter alia by the following quotation:

To prevent such a situation from arising, a strong National Defence is necessary to support foreign policy efforts in maintaining our policy of neutrality - or if impossible — to mobilize international forces to our assistance. To the extent that a potential aggressor would have to calculate with the risk of Sweden not being conquered quickly enough, the risks of him attacking are diminished. If we nevertheless become involved in war, the defence has to provide enough respite, and be conducted in such a manner, as to render political and military action in our assistance effective.

In connection with a discussion on a Soviet invasion across the [Arctic] border [with Finland], the studies observed that, were an attack to be carried out without preparatory build-up in Finland, very little advance warning would be given for possible coordination of activities with NATO. A preparatory build-up in Finland, however, would offer the possibility of extended coordination of such cooperation. The following quotation shows that not even in the latter contingency did Sweden appear to have counted on any direct assistance from NATO.

NATO intervention presupposes that the attack on Sweden could not be confined to a limited war. The counteraction to a Soviet attack through Northern Finland, possibly to be counted on, is entirely dependent on what actions NATO can or wishes to take against the potential targets in question. ——— There should be no doubt that the targets of NATO air and nuclear strikes primarily are Soviet naval and air forces, their bases and land—lines of communications. Primarily, the targets should be located east of Finland. Here, an interdiction against the Murmansk railway will affect the operations against Sweden, but only in the longer term. Furthermore, NATO action will support the defence of Northern Norway and of NATO bases there.

In connection with a study of an amphibious invasion, it was argued concerning Scania [the Southernmost province of Sweden], that "the ability of NATO to support the anti—invasion defence is favourable due to the proximity of the area to other NATO fronts in Northern Europe. "

A draft from 1962 of the "Supreme Commander's fundamental view with joint instructions for regional commanders' war planning" has been made available to the Commission. Its section on guidelines for the conduct of defence in the event of a large—scale attack included the following quotation of interest in this context.

If we cannot check an aggressor from establishing a firm foothold on Swedish territory, the aggressor shall, on the orders of the Supreme Commander, be delayed and depleted. Areas of significance to continued warfare and where supplies can be delivered as well as where external military assistance can have the prospects of being effective shall, however, be defended as long as possible.

The directives laid down in 1964 by the Supreme Commander for the preparatory work for ÖB 65, i.e. the preparatory background in— formation for the 1965 Defence Committee, also included an allusion to dependence on external assistance. Concerning equipment endurance, the directives state that "this has to permit, over time, remaining military units to maintain their combat value for a period deemed to be decisively longer than that within which an aggressor would want to reach its targets in Sweden. The period should be so long as to create necessary preconditions for external assistance."

During 1963-67, the Chief of the Defence Staff directed a number of so-called joint studies. Their purpose was to lay the groundwork for assessments of long-term developments and thus issues of priority between the services. These studies paid little attention to NATO acting in support of Sweden. In the so—called SamS 3 study, NATO action was played down to include only the provision of supplies. SamS 4 and SamS 5 did not cover external assistance from the West at all.

In conclusion, these studies suggest that, during the period studied by this Commission, the Defence Staff judged the risk of an isolated Soviet attack on Sweden to be remote. Were the Soviet Union to attack Sweden in the context of a superpower conflict, the assessment was made that the Western assistance possible was so—called indirect assistance. On the other hand, the prospects of Sweden receiving direct assistance early on seem to have been limited, partly because peacetime preparations could not be made. Such assistance was partly conditional on Sweden being capable of defending itself long enough to render NATO action effective.

Another precondition was that NATO actually perceived a Soviet attack on Sweden as a real threat against its own interests. Over time, the studies played down the issue of Western assistance. One reason

might have been that the military leadership judged that the prospects of rapidly receiving such assistance were limited. Anöther reason could have been that the issue was judged too sensitive to be discussed other than within a highly select group.

Swedish intervention

Another issue discussed in some studies is whether Sweden, in certain circumstances, should join the Western side in a war without first having been attacked by the Soviet Union.

Strategic studies 1950 thus discussed a Soviet operation against Norway across Finland and Denmark without touching Sweden. It was stated:

If such an operation were successful, Sweden would be encircled. Sweden would find itself in an untenable position, militarily as well as logistically, and without prospects of asserting its independence. The only way to counter such a development is for Sweden to intervene actively with the aim of delaying the Soviet operation, so that Western assistance can be applied and take effect.

The same idea recurred in a 1954 report prepared within the Air Staff as well as in the guidelines proposed by the Supreme Commander that same year for the continued development of the armed forces.

At least during the first half of the 1950s, the Military High Command was not foreign to the idea of Sweden taking military action if the Soviet Union attempted to occupy Denmark and Norway, even if the aggressor, for the time being, was honouring Swedish neutrality. By so doing, Sweden might possibly avoid becoming encircled. This can be viewed in the light of the interest in partial Scandinavian defence cooperation shown by the Military High Connnand during these years (Cf section 6.1.1).

Games and exercises

War games and exercises are important parts of military education and training. To prepare personnel for their wartime tasks, advanced games and exercises are carried out at military academies and higher staffs. To the extent that external military assistance or cooperation with potential allies were deemed to be of high priority, one could expect such issues to be given due attention in advanced games and exercises. Against this background, the Commission has studied this kind of activities.

The National Defence College was established in 1952 to train civilian and military personnel from Government authorities, organizations, and corporations for high-level positions within the overall Swedish defence.

Yearly, it offers command classes where games are used to practise wartime and crisis decision-making.

Until the early s, the "strict policy of neutrality" prevailed "without restraint". Thus, no discussions took place on Sweden receiving external assistance to repel an attack, and student questions on this topic were dismissed by the instructors. In later years, discussions took place on Sweden, following a Soviet attack, requesting assistance from the Western Powers, and on some occasions at least, exercises were carried out on dispatching and receiving liaison groups to and from the allies. More often, however, students were trained to decline proposals for cooperation and offers for Western assistance prior to war breaking out in Sweden.

In other situations too, great caution was exercised in touching upon issues of wartime cooperation with other states. At war games and exercises, it could be conjectured that Sweden, follow-ing a Soviet attack, would seek support from the West, but usually the issue was not carried to the length of thorough discussions. The 1964 joint staff exercise (GSÖ 64) therefore appears as an exception, with personnel from, among other institutions, the Government and ministries and the Defence Staff taking part. The preconditions given for this exercise included that it would become necessary for Sweden to cooperate with certain NATO countries concerning, e.g. exchange of information. It was further assumed that a service chief and his staff had been detached to a Western Power to secure deliveries of crucial military equipment.

As part of the game, the Swedish National Defence Headquarters made several requests for cooperation in various forms with "allied military authorities," which, for their part, requested cooperation in a number of areas. The group, tasked during the exercise to cooperate with allied states and to study the activities of the National Defence Head- quarters as to contacts with the allies, criticized the way in which the Headquarters had resolved the task. The activities had been characterized by insufficient coordination and overview, and information concerning allied activities had been distributed irregularly and incompletely. The group therefore proposed that activities should be implemented in peacetime, for example, designating personnel and training them for cooperation, and listing issues which the Headquarters could possibly want to bring up with a prospective ally. After the exercise concluded, internal discussions within the Defence Staff took place on whether to act according to this proposal. The conclusion was reached to not follow the recommendations, as such actions would raise questions.

In this context, it can be mentioned that at the Naval War College on one or a few occasions in the 1950s, there were games or examination papers on cooperation with the Western Powers in naval matters.

Games and exercises touching upon cooperation with the Western Powers seem to have been rare. The awkwardness with which this task was handled during GSÖ 64 point to it having been something the Headquarters lacked experience of. The experience from this exercise does not seem to have led to any actions to improve preparedness in this regard.

6.3. Measures taken within the Military High Command

6.3.1 Organization of the National Defence Headquarters for liaison In military as in other organizations, liaison has the important purpose of ensuring concerted direction of the operations and efficient use of available resources. Liaison is required both with military and civilian authorities. Preferably, such liaison should be based on personal meetings between commanders. They can thus form their own opinions and exert influence in person. When direct contact is impossible or unnecessary, personnel are appointed to facilitate liaison. Especially if the commanding officer is not in continuous contact with the liaison personnel, it is obviously important for this personnel to be sufficiently qualified and knowledgeable of the current situation to resolve the tasks in the spirit of the commander. This applies not only to liaison within the country but also to liaison with foreign military organizations, to the extent necessary.

During the 1950s and 1960s, the Defence Staff analyzed how wartime cooperation with other states could be organized. These deliberations were probably followed up with more detailed planning or with concrete orders and actions only to a limited extent.

77:e 1950s

In the autumn of 1950, the Chief of the Defence Staff, Nils Swedlund, sent the service chiefs a memorandum on the organization of liaison agencies with prospective allies in the event Sweden became victim of aggression. These liaison agencies were predicted to be of two kinds, i.e., out—going and in-bound.

The out—going were to leave Sweden and liaise with the foreign high commands with which Sweden would cooperate, i.e. , the high command of the Western Powers ("Washington"), the European command ("Lon- don"), and the Norwegian and Danish high commands. It was judged that the main task in "Washington" was the acquisition of equipment and other supplies, but a "smaller, operational representation" was also required. The main task in "London" was assumed to be operational cooperation and protection of sea—lines of communication. The group sent to Norway was to focus on operational and tele—technical cooper— ation. The group dispatched to Denmark was not assigned any specific task.

In all, at least 35 officers were to be appointed to these groups, and, in addition, there were representatives of the service staffs and signals

and administrative personnel. The heads of the groups in "Washington" and "London" were to be of flag—rank, while the other two groups were to be under the command of colonels. All officers should have a good knowledge of languages. It was desirable that the officers should have previously served in the country they were sent to, and hade good relations with it. The defence attachés were to be included in the groups. Certain equipment could need to be brought, primarily for signals and administrative services, and, at least to the neighbouring countries, motor vehicles.

The receiving units were liaison agencies which on Swedish territory were to act as liaison between the headquarters and thereto arriving liaison staffs from the European command, the Norwegian and Danish high commands, and possibly from the high command of the Western Powers. One specific staff from the Western air forces were to be included as well. The task should be to provide for the visiting personnel and to organize necessary contacts. Direct cooperation between relevant departments and chiefs was then to be established. In total, at least 19 officers were needed for these groups.

For reasons of secrecy, it was proposed that the liaison groups be listed in the mobilization plans as "Headquarters officer reserves. " It was emphasized that the officers be designated for wartime assignment as soon as possible. Considering how important it was that highly qualified personnel be appointed to key positions, it seemed unavoidable that personnel already assigned to key operational positions in wartime would be used. Furthermore, it was mentioned that signals and administrative activities for these groups were a subject of continued analysis. Finally, service chiefs were asked to respond to the memorandum within one month and submit information on the officers to be considered for wartime assignments.

Only the Navy Chief's comments on the memorandum have been found. These mainly included information on officers (in all 19) who could be made available for the different liaison agencies. For the next few years at least, the Navy Command regularly submitted suggestions for personnel changes.

The Commission has interviewed officers who served as defence attachés at the embassies in Washington and London in the 1950s. None of these have acknowledged that they knew of any plans concerning the dispatch of the liaison groups.

The planning of 1960

A new memorandum, on liaison with other states in a situation when war was imminent or in wartime, was written within the Defence Staff in the

autumn of 1960. The need to staff the liaison groups was judged to have increased considerably at this time. In addition to the defence attachés, approximately one hundred people should be assigned to such duties. About half of these should be able to report for duty at the shortest possible notice. Others, e.g., personnel from the materiel administrations and civilian defence authorities, should be made available after a certain period had passed.

The intention was to dispatch groups to other countries, primarily the United States, Great Britain, Norway, and Denmark. The mission was to act as liaison with the highest national war command and with certain NATO bodies in the country in question. Liaison should primarily relate to intelligence, communications, convoying, logistics, and procurement. But also purely operational liaison was anticipated to be necessary and, in certain cases, the Swedish officers were to be prepared to serve on the NATO staffs.

A reception group was also organized. Its task was to take care of arriving foreign liaison bodies and make sure that the foreign personnel established required contacts, primarily with the Defence Staff.

In this context, the personnel situation was to be revised. Checks were to be made as to the capacity and availability of the assigned personnel, and vacancies were to be filled. It was proposed that various departments within the Defence Staff and the National Defence College were to be responsible for the continued management of the issue. Curt Göransson, then Chief of the Defence Staff wrote on the document: "The Supreme Commander has seen this. Wants us to pick civilians to be assigned for wartime duty."

Göransson, who served as Chief of the Defence Staff 1957-61, has explained that he cannot recall this particular document. He does remember, however, that there was a preparedness to dispatch personnel to other states, in the event of Sweden being involved in war. This personnel were not trained specially for the task. The Swedish embassies in Washington and London probably had documents with enough information to begin such liaison in war, even if communications with Sweden were cut off.

It has not been possible to determine to what extent the 1960 proposal was followed up with wartime assignments, mobilization plans, etc. At the time of the proposal, reasonably exhaustive personnel lists existed for those groups assigned for rapid dispatch to the United States, Great Britain, Denmark, and Norway, and for the receiving group. In several cases, the heads were retired generals. In other cases, they were defence attachés, retired or serving. The lists included at least two prominent men of the private business sector who had excellent business contacts in other countries. According to the lists, the officers in the other groups

included, however, only regular attachés.

The Commission has as far as possible interviewed the people who were included in these personnel lists. The defence attachés do not seem to have been informed of the plans to reinforce the relevant embassies, defence desks. Most of them understood, however, that in the event of war, they were to remain on station. A former attaché had understood his wartime task to function as part of a team using contacts developed in peacetime to attempt acquiring necessary equipment and supplies to Sweden.

A couple of officers - also mentioned in the personnel lists who had taken early retirement, had in the mid—1950s received wartime assignment orders stating that they would be at the Supreme Commander”s disposal. At least one of the orders included notification of service abroad. When they asked their superiors, they were gradually informed verbally of their wartime duties. One, who had previously worked with ammunition and related issues, and had served as deputy military attaché in London, was to serve in the United States and manage the purchase of equipment and also work as liaison officer. The other, who had established excellent contacts in the Norwegian Defence Staff, was to be posted as liaison officer in Norway.

Planning in 1962 and 1963 In the autumn of 1961, the Defence Staff was reorganized and put in charge of the central operational activities of the armed forces, and external assistance was once again considered. It was observed that one of the key requirements of the wartime organization of the National Defence Headquarters, was that it could establish cooperation with prospective allied states. The newly established operational command conducted a study on requirements of and conditions for external assistance in times of war an Swedish declared neutrality; and what prospective preparations could be implemented already in peacetime. The purpose was to create a foundation for longer—term actions. A 7 January 1963 memorandum described how preparations for cooperation with the Western powers could be organized. Another memorandum, written about a month earlier by the head of Operational Command 2, i.e., the unit responsible for war preparations, constituted background material for this memorandum.

The January 1963 memorandum established that in the event of a war between the great powers where Sweden remained uninvolved, Sweden must adhere to the policy of neutrality it had always claimed. Military "cooperation in the true sense of the word" could not reasonably be judged as compatible with the policy of neutrality. The support that

could be received from other states in such a situation should be seen as a continuation of peacetime trade, even if the essential wartime require— ments would have taken priority. An expanded military representation abroad might be necessary to enable accelerated procurement of equip- ment. Purchasing missions would be dispatched to negotiate such terms of trade. According to the memorandum, measures to avoid border incidents should primarily be of a political character".

A situation where Sweden, together with the Western Powers, would be involved in a war against the Soviet Union put higher demands on preparations for cooperation. It was initially emphasized that cooperation of a military character presupposed agreements on the political level. If military cooperation were to be established, cooperative actions must simultaneously be taken within the political leadership of each state. Military cooperation with other states' headquarters was assumed to concern especially the United States, the United Kingdom, West Germany, Denmark, and Norway as well as some of NATO's command authorities. In addition, liaison personnel could be required to facilitate contacts between regional commanders and their counterparts in the neighbouring Nordic countries.

The tasks described for the groups to be dispatched to other states were mainly the same as were outlined in the memorandum of 1960. The duties of the personnel would primarily include intelligence, communica- tions, operational activities, procurement, and transportation. As to procurement and transportation, for example, close cooperation was anticipated with trade missions and other bodies linked to Swedish missions. It was a natural task to watch and explain the Swedish funda— mental view on problems arising . .

In principle, liaison agencies were to build upon the peacetime defence attaché organization. Preparations for contacts possible in peacetime, were to be handled via the defence attachés. In any case, the defence attachés were those closest at hand for establishing cooperation when actually required. In a deteriorating situation, additional personnel would be needed. This concerned especially high—ranking commanders (generals and admirals) heading the groups, officers designated to serve on the staffs of or as observers in relevant foreign headquarters, technical, industrial and economic experts, and personnel for signals and adminis- trative duties.

If Sweden were drawn into a war on the Western side, it could be anticipated that allied states would dispatch military liaison groups to the Swedish headquarters. To ensure that this personnel rapidly would establish the right contacts, a receiving organization was prepared.

The memorandum also discussed the need for communications equipment with the groups abroad. In a situation where Sweden remained

neutral, these communication were assumed to use mainly the peacetime public networks. If, however, Sweden was drawn into a major war on the Western side, all communications from the groups abroad would presumably go over NATO networks and be transmitted to the Swedish National Defence Headquarters via Norway and to a certain extent via Denmark on Swedish Telecom”s cable and radio-relay network. Military radio traffic between NATO authorities and the Swedish National Defence Headquarters could be used as a back-up. Prerequisites for such communications were not further analyzed.

Another document stated that it was necessary to acquire handbooks, etc. on such things as command organization and forces relevant to cooperation, as well as maps and charts. Most could be acquired in peacetime and be stored in the countries in question, so that as little as possible would need to be brought in.

One year later, on 30 December 1963, the head of Operational Command 2 issued a directive on the responsibility for the continued preparations for wartime cooperation (contacts) with other states; this responsibility was distributed among various commanders within the Defence Staff. Information on the preparations was highly restricted. Thus, only the commander of a liaison group was privy to the duties of that particular group.

In January 1964, the Chief of the Defence Staff distributed a general instruction for the defence attachés in wartime and comparable situations, and also a document on preparations to be made by the defence attachés in countries designated to receive liaison groups. Both the instruction and the document were directed to the relevant attachés but were also sent as a briefing note to inter alia the political section of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

The general instruction listed the duties for the embassies, defence sections, in a situation when orders hade been given for a Swedish mobilization. In this context, the following duties are of special interest. Delivery and transport to Sweden of military equipment ordered earlier should be secured, and orders for certain other equipment should be placed according to instructions previously issued. The reception of some reinforcement personnel from Sweden should be prepared. The directives of the head of mission should be followed when political considerations could be expected to bear. He should also be kept informed of the activities.

The document also stated that the defence attaché in question was to make necessary preparations to receive reinforcement personnel, especially concerning the office space, lodging, communications, transportation, and logistics.

By interviewing those who were involved in these preparations, the

Commission has attempted to find out whether this was concretized.

Carl Eric Almgren was Chief of the Defence Staff 1961—67. It can be assumed that he was the driving force behind the planning and could, in all circumstances, be presumed to have had a clear grasp of it. He has stated as follows.

Liaison groups were to be dispatched on the orders of the Supreme Commander and after authorization by the Government or the Minister of Defence. Their main duty was to attempt to achieve the most advantageous position possible in the country where they were stationed while awaiting additional measures concerning cooperation. Approxi— mately 25—30 people from the officer reserves were to be sent to other states for this purpose. They were to have operational experience, language proficiency or experience of serving abroad, or in other ways have established personal contacts there. The groups included recently retired service chiefs. There were also a few technicians tasked to ensure deliveries of equipment to Sweden. When needed, the groups could also be reinforced with additional technical experts. The personnel never met, and training was not provided. Plans also existed to receive foreign attachés. Very limited work was done for this planning and it was accepted that it was not "one hundred per cent perfect."

According to Almgren, information on these groups was restricted to what was absolutely necessary. Thus, not everyone in the officer reserves had knowledge of their wartime duty. The possibility was counted on of informing them, should such a contingency arise. The countries to which the groups were to be dispatched had not been informed either, as that could create problems. The same applied to foreign military attachés in Stockholm.

On the otiter hand, according to Almgren, Defence Minister Sven Andersson was well—informed. The Supreme Commander, Torsten Rapp, had probably around the turn of the year 1963/64 - discussed with Andersson issuing general instructions for the military attachés in wartime and in situations close to war. The Defence Minister and the Supreme Commander had apparently agreed that the preparations planned by the head of Operational Command 2 were too far—reaching. The above mentioned instruction would therefore suffice.

The officer who had been assigned by the Chief of the Defence Staff to coordinate the planning only remembers that his duty had been to "ponder" wartime cooperation with other states. He was thus not responsible for transposing this thinking into orders and actions. It was obvious to him that the Prime and Defence Ministers supported the idea of analysing these issues.

The officer who, according to the December 1963 memorandum, was to have been responsible for the preparation of a special instruction for

the various military attachés in wartime, for organization of liaison groups, equipment and transportation, briefing of heads of groups, etc. has said the following. He is "98 per cent sure" that no such duties were carried out during his tenure at the Defence Staff. On the other hand, he was responsible, in cooperation with the Chief of the Defence Staff, for the Supreme Commander's personnel reserves. They consisted of 30—35 retired high-ranking officers, assigned to carry out specific tasks in the event of war. Some of them would serve abroad - for example in the United States, Great Britain, Denmark, and Norway. He never informed these officers of their wartime assignments.

The officer who, according to the above mentioned memorandum, would have been responsible for a general instruction to the military attachés and for the collection of the intelligence, to be readily available for the wartime activities of the military attachés or the liaison groups has explained that he was not privy to such planning. He was aware, however, of the existence of the liaison groups, their general make—up and intended geographical distribution. In his opinion, the heads should at least have been aware of their wartime assignment, while at the same time the defence attachés had not been informed. He also knew that preparations had been made to receive groups. One purpose of these groups was to supply communications equipment for foreign liaison groups that could arrive in Sweden. In the general instruction for the defence attachés in war, mentioned earlier, this officer is mentioned as having managed the issue.

The officer who, according to the document, would have been in charge of liaison with the liaison groups or with other states (authorities) has said that he cannot recall being given this task and that he did not have any knowledge of planning for liaison groups.

The Commission has also interviewed officers who served as defence attachés in Washington, London, Copenhagen, and Oslo in 1964-69. With one exception only, they have explained that they were not briefed on the arrival at their embassies of liaison groups. One former attaché to Washington knew that the embassy's defence section would in wartime be reinforced by half a dozen people under the command of a retired service chief. He was himself not involved in any planning for this group and did not therefore have any detailed knowledge of duties, etc.

Stig Synnergren, who succeeded Almgren as Chief of the Defence Staff 1967-70, has explained that there were far-reaching plans in the event of a coup-de-main. In the event of such an attack, personnel would be dispatched at least to the United States and Great Britain to reinforce the Swedish embassies. The personnel were themselves not informed of their wartime assignment; it was to be "cabled" to them. It was not considered that this personnel would serve as liaison officers in foreign

headquarters. In the event of war, it was expected to receive people from other states. No agreement existed with the United States or the United Kingdom that Sweden would dispatch personnel to their states, or that they would send people to Sweden. Synnergren had also himself made certain plans for establishing a Swedish National Defence Headquarters in exile. He only informed the person he had designated as commander of this force of these plans.

A few other officers, most of whom held senior positions in the Defence Staff during the first half of the 1960s, knew of and in some cases themselves were responsible for parts of the planning to dispatch personnel to other states in the event of war. They have stated that one group from the Supreme Commander's officer reserves was designated to serve abroad in an emergency situation or in war. It consisted mainly of retired officers, some former service chiefs and military district com- manders but also former defence attachés and others. It also included a few reserve and conscript officers who, in civilian life, had good international business contacts. The countries to which plans were made to dispatch personnel were primarily the United States and Great Britain but at times Norway was also of interest. The accounts of the duties of this personnel sometimes diverge. One main task was to secure deliveries of strategically important equipment to Sweden. Responsibility for mutual briefings with other states and reinforcement of the defence sections of the missions, especially regarding intelligence, have been mentioned among other duties. One source has said that operational cooperation was excluded, but another source has stated that the purpose was exactly to discuss operational issues. Information as to whether personnel were assigned for duty in a specific country, or constituted a more general resource has also diverged. In some cases, however, it seems to be clear that a certain person was assigned to a specific state.


In conclusion, during the period examined by this Commission, some preparedness existed within the Defence Staff to cooperate with the Western Powers in the event Sweden was drawn into a war. Highly qualified personnel were thus assigned to reinforce the defence sections at specific Swedish missions in other states as well as to receive foreign officers in the Swedish National Defence Headquarters. All in all, at each point in time, some thirty officers appear to have had such wartime assignments. 'lhe dispatch of personnel to other states required decisions by the political leadership. The countries to which liaison personnel could have been sent were primarily the United States and Great Britain. But at least during certain periods it was deemed possible to dispatch

such personnel also to Norway and Denmark, and certain other West European states.

In a crisis situation, one main duty would be to secure deliveries to Sweden of equipment crucial to the conduct of war. This duty included both working towards fulfilling previous agreements for the sale of equipment, and acquiring additional equipment. An additional task in this context was to secure transportation of the equipment to Sweden, i.e., convoying. These duties could already be required before a Swedish outbreak of war and would then, to a certain extent, be managed by special purchasing missions.

An attack on Sweden was assumed to lead to Sweden joining forces with the Western Powers. Against that background, the personnel dispatched would be prepared to cooperate with foreign military agencies on a wide range of issues, also including purely operational cooperation. No detailed planning for this appears to have taken place. The attempts made at such planning during the first half of the 1960s were discon- tinued in early 1964 in consultation between the Minister of Defence and the Supreme Commander.

No information indicates that the Swedish planning was carried out in agreement with representatives for the prospective receiving countries, or that it were known there. The secrecy surrounding this planning was very high. Those within the Defence Staff, just below top level, working with these issues, thus had only limited knowledge of this thinking. And many of those who were given wartime assignments in accordance with these plans were not even informed.

6.3.2. Signals connections with other states

Signals connection are of fundamental importance for liaison that cannot be carried out through direct contacts between commanders, liaison officers, or via mail. Wire, radio, and radio relay are the most important means used within the Swedish National Defence. Of particular signifi- cance in this context are the communication links with other states at the disposal of the Government and of the National Defence Headquarters.

During the 1950s, the primary means of communications between higher staffs, air defence command and control centres, etc. was the wire network of Swedish Telecom, and for backup, shortwave radio. The civilian telephone network was deemed unreliable inter alia because it was completely unprotected against sabotage and other enemy action in wartime. In addition, over time it became quite insufficient for transmit— ting such large amounts of information as were required for efficient command and control of the Air Force. In the early 1950s, primarily to

satisfy the needs of the Air Force, a nation—wide exclusively military radio-relay network was setup. It consisted of broad—band primary links between main nodes and secondary cross—links with lower capacity. This system linked radar stations, peacetime and wartime air bases, air defence command and - control centres, and higher staffs.

No archival information concerning emergency, and war signals connections with other states, at the disposal of the Government in the 19505 and 19605, has been found. Interviews have revealed the following information. In addition to ordinary wire connections for telephone and telex, the Ministry for Foreign Affairs had at its disposal shortwave radios intended primarily for communications with Swedish embassies in situations of readiness and other emergencies. In addition, the Government”s wartime command and control centre was equipped with shortwave equipment for communications with telecom administrations worldwide as well as good wire connection with its own national centre in the Swedish Telecom network. Good wire connections also existed with the National Defence Headquarters.

In peacetime as well as in a possible war, the most important means of communications for long-distance National Defence Headquarters communications were cable and short wave radio. The National Defence Headquarters, wartime command and control centre does not, however, seem to have held telephone numbers, frequencies or call signs to foreign military staffs and authorities. It is not known whether the intention was to add such information in the event of an emergency. In addition, radio relay was later added to the wire— and radio communica- tions. Towards the end of the 1960s, a large number of radio stations were procured for long-range communications on extremely high frequencies.

During the 1950s and 1960s, referring to wartime air safety require- ments, the military radio—relay network was expanded to include links from air defence command and control centres in Sweden to Denmark and Norway (Cf section 6.6.2). The equipment was of Swedish origin and Swedish Telecom appears to have been responsible for installation and maintenance of at least parts of the system also in the neighbouring countries.

The capacity of these communications allowed voice transmission only. The connections physically terminated at the Swedish terminal point, but it was possible, pending special authorization, to connect the communications further into the Swedish network. Likewise, in Denmark and Norway it was possible to connect calls on this network to NATO's European network.

The National Defence Headquarters wartime command and control centre was connected via the radio—relay network to an air defence command and control centre, from which calls could be connected via

the three Swedish air defence command and control centres directly linked to Denmark and Norway. In the early 19605, a quite extensive expansion of the radio—relay network of the Swedish air defence command — and - control centres to Denmark and Norway was con- sidered. Bo Westin, who was then head of section 2 of the Defence Staff, has said that he looked favourably upon such an expansion, because it would improve the prospects of communicating with the USAF in West Germany. For financial reasons, however, the expansion plans seem to have been only partly realized, and in the end of the 1960s the communications capacity was still very limited. According to sources, connecting the Defence Staff to Denmark and Norway was not practised.

In the early 1960s, short wave radio telegraphy tests were carried out between the Defence Staff and Wiesbaden, West Germany, where the USAFE had its headquarters. Regularly, oneway communications tests were carried out from Wiesbaden. They were encrypted according to Swedish standards to prevent the communications personnel from realizing from where the information was transmitted. The connection was to be used for liaison activities (Cf 5.4), and, when expanded, for emergency and wartime communications.

This activity ceased after about a year. A crypto-telex link was established from the Defence Staff headquarters building to the USAF in Wiesbaden. The equipment probably still existed at the end of the 1960s. No information indicates that corresponding equipment was installed in the National Defence Headquarters” wartime command—and—control centre. These activities were kept highly secret.

This connection seems to have been installed following the 1962 Cuba Crisis. According to sources, the purpose of the connection was to use it in emergency situations to transmit alert reports between continental Europe and Sweden. Initially, the Defence Staff operations department appears to have been responsible for the connection, but later it seems to have been used primarily by the intelligence department. The connection was tested weekly; a U.S. signalist was probably usually responsible for the connection in Wiesbaden.

Apart from the above, no information has come 'to light indicating that the Defence Staff or the wartime National Defence Headquarters had any permanently connected communications links with other states.

In addition to the above mentioned signals connections, Swedish military intelligence agencies have had some permanent communication links with other states (Cf 44).

In conclusion, as far as the Commission has been able to establish, permanent communication links with other states existed only to a very limited extent. On the other hand, the possibilities to communicate with other states via Swedish Telecom's network and radio, were good.

6.4. Measures relating to ground operations

During the entire period from the end of the 1940s until 1970, and especially during the first 15 years, the Warsaw Pact was massively superior to NATO in ground forces. First, the Warsaw Pact superiority was considerable in standing forces deployed in Central Europe and the Western Soviet Union; and second, it was assumed that large army units could be moved forward rapidly on land from the Central Soviet Union. To withstand a westward enemy offensive for any length of time, NATO was dependent on air and naval superiority and considerable supplies of personnel and equipment from the United States by sea and air trans- portation routes. Therefore, it would take months rather than weeks before NATO could reach full capacity on European battlefields. 1 In the initial stages of a war, therefore, the European NATO countries . would have to rely on their own ground forces. Gradually, as army units ! were supplied across the Atlantic, these could be expected to be deployed on the Central Front. In view of this, Sweden judged the prospects of rapidly receiving Western assistance from army forces as practically non— existent. Plans to receive NATO army forces have not been found, and most likely, did not exist. One particular issue is whether Sweden had prepared any operational army cooperation with Denmark and Norway. The expert section of the Scandinavian Defence Committee report deliberated on such direct . coordination between Norwegian and Swedish, and Danish and Swedish, f ground forces. . The thinking on cooperation between Norway and Sweden concerned the following. In the event of a Swedish southbound retreat from the Swedish-Finnish border while Norwegian forces held the Narvik area, one or two Swedish reinforced infantry battalions were to secure the lines of communication to Narvik from the East and Northeast. If, however, the Swedish defence along the Finnish border held while the Norwegian forces in the Narvik area had to surrender their positions, a couple of Norwegian field battalions were to retreat along the Ofot railway to Swedish territory. Preparations for basing and supply should be made in both countries. Such preparations should also be implemented in Trandelag, to enable the deployment of the equivalent of two Swedish reinforced infantry regiments to protect the lines of communication from the East. Similar preparations should be made also in the Rana area for a smaller Swedish force.

Discussions on cooperation between Denmark and Sweden were more general. If it proved impossible for Danish forces to defend all of Zealand, they were to concentrate on holding action so as to secure, for as long as possible, the operation of the coast artillery batteries defending Öresund. NorthEastern Zealand could be used as a bridge—head to

l l l i

transfer Swedish forces. Danish forces could also be evacuated from there to Sweden and reinforce the defence of the West coast of Scania.

It might seem obvious to those responsible for ground forces war planning — no matter that the plans for a Scandinavian defence union never materialized to continue planning for cooperation, especially with Norway. The military geographical situation remained unchanged. In his memorandum concerning planning of certain military cooperation with Denmark and Norway, Swedlund had also recommended that plans should be developed for military cooperation in the area around Treriksröset, along Malmbanan (the Iron Ore railway), in the area around Tärna—Mo i Rana, and in Trondelag. Even if these recommenda- tions did not get the Government support, the Commission has found reasons to study whether such planning took place.

Existing documents in Swedish archives do not indicate that any plans existed to employ Swedish army units on Norwegian territory or to receive Norwegian troops in Sweden. It is clear, however, that it was a high-priority mission of the commanders of Swedish military districts bordering on Norway to keep open the lines of communication through Sweden to the Norwegian West Coast. Persons in charge of war planning in these military district have denied that any planning for cooperation between Swedish and Norwegian army units had taken place. One person has, nevertheless, informed the Commission on departures from this strict policy.

Thus in 1952, the head of the international department of the Defence Staff and one other officer at the same department (the Commission's source) visited Northern Norway on orders by the Supreme Commander. The purpose was to establish contacts and also to study the terrain. The background to the latter task was the desirability of planning for a common defence with Norway, in the event of the Soviet Union attacking Norway across Northernmost Sweden. This planning was managed at top level, and the military district commander in Boden was not involved. The source could not recall any further details concerning this planning.

The British report mentioned earlier (Cf section 6.1.1), that Nor— wegian army officers in the autumn of 1952 were to visit Sweden to discuss some aspects of combined Norwegian—Swedish planning, possibly concerning the defence of Trandelag, also indicates that certain common planning could have taken place.

In the summer of 1957, the military district commander in Boden agreed with & commander in Northern Norway on how Swedish forces would act in the event of an attack against both countries, were they forced to retreat onto Norwegian territory. Both generals believed that such a situation required the exchange of liaison groups (chief, deputy,

a few signalists and cipher experts.)

No thinking on army cooperation with Denmark can be traced in the written planning; and, according to information supplied to the Commis— sion, none existed.

Beginning in 1953 and until the first years of the 1960s, annual mee— tings took place between Swedish and Danish officers. The background to these meetings appears to have been the following. While officially visiting Sweden in 1953, the Chief of the Danish Army requested Supreme Commander Swedlund for discussions on tactical and combat principles for army units in anti-invasion coastal defence. The Supreme Commander directed the military district commander in Kristianstad to participate in such discussions, on the firm condition that classified information would not be & subject for discussion.

The meetings took place both in Denmark and in Sweden, alternately. Meetings lasted for half-days and opening speeches were followed by a general discussion, and there was also some socializing. Topics for discussion included primarily army unit grand and minor tactics. The Danes also briefed the Swedes on the development of the Danish military organization. From the Swedish side at least, no secrets were up for discussion. No concrete discussions on operational cooperation took place. During the 1950s, the number of participants from each country was approximately 10—15, but later this diminished considerably. Participants on the Danish side included representatives of the Defence and Army Staffs and the Eastern Province Command on Zealand, while most of the Swedish officers represented the Defence Staff and I. Military District Staff. The secrecy surrounding the meetings was high. No meeting notes were taken.

The Commission's conclusion is that no preparations were made for receiving military assistance to Swedish army forces. In the early 1950s, however, some preparations seem to have been made for the planning of Swedish ground forces operations in Northernmost Norway and possibly also in Trondelag. Planning of this kind would have been well compa— tible with ideas during the 1950s within leading military circles that Sweden, in the event of a Soviet attack on Finland and Norway, would have to join forces with the Western Powers to avoid being encircled (Cf section 6.2). No documentation of such planning has been found, however, and no grounds exist for assumptions concerning its extent and kind, as well as whether it ceased, and if so when.

6.5. Measures relating to naval operation General

Contacts between the Swedish and Western navies had long since been cultivated. The Swedish Navy Command, in particular, had close contacts with their Royal Navy counterparts, also on a personal basis. There were also frequent, in—depth discussions with Scandinavian colleagues. Overtime, collaboration evolved with the Dutch, French and U.S. navies. These contacts seem essentially to have concerned exchanges of experience derived from technological developments, procurement, and training. In this context, the mutual candour seems to have been considerable. At times, senior Swedish officers discussed general strategic and operational issues with representatives of Western states. They could fairly openly discuss Swedish resources, e.g. organization and equipment, which was perceived as building confidence. It has been denied, however, that any talks on direct operational coopera- tion with the Western naval forces took place.

The Navy Staff was of the opinion that it was unlikely that Sweden would be subjected to an isolated attack from the East. In terms of operations it was, therefore, necessary to perceive Scandinavia as indivisible. The mutual exchange of visits made by Danish, Norwegian, and Swedish naval officers in the mid—19505 can be seen as a manifesta- tion of this drinking. On those occasions combat control systems, readiness, and storage procedures were studied; and general information exchanged. In 1958, the Swedish Chief of the Navy and a Norwegian admiral discussed the potential use of Swedish cruisers in the defence of Arctic Scandinavia. In the same year, the Swedish Navy Command was prepared to ”comply with [Danish] requests to explore the prospects for initiating closer collaboration” (uncertain in what respects). And in the 1960s, it happened that representatives of the Danish, Norwegian, and Swedish navies briefed each other on matters, deemed essential that all parties had knowledge of. This could apply, e.g. to the operations of their respective submarines.

In the 1950s and 1960s, the Swedish Navy had two main wartime missions, i.e. to jointly repel with air and ground forces an across—the— Baltic invasion of Sweden; and to protect imports from the West. Some anti—invasion tasks along the Swedish West Coast were also included in the beginning of the 1950s.

During most of the 1950s the Navy Command judged that no reinfor- cements could be counted on in the Baltic Sea. It was presumed that the Baltic Approaches would be closed, in which case larger ships would not be able to enter the Baltic Sea. Only small fast craft, such as motor—

torpedo boats and possibly submarines, would be able to do so. The opinion was that NATO's strength in these types of units was so small that reinforcements of the Baltic Sea could not be anticipated. There might have been expectations of NATO detaching air assets for mine— laying, for example at enemy embarkation ports.

In 1949 and 1950, the British naval attaché in Stockholm received requests for information rendering it possible to shape Swedish war- planning for the Baltic Sea, making it compatible with NATO concepts in this aspect. These requests were met in June 1950, when a British naval officer in talks with Swedish officers discussed what measures were necessary to ensure successful cooperation between the two navies in the event of a war in the Baltic.

Gradually, however, with the West German build—up of naval forces in the Baltic Sea, and after the establishment of BALTAP in 1962, expectations of some cooperation with NATO in the Southern Baltic Sea seem to have been raised. The Swedish Navy Command thus foresaw that - in a war where Sweden joined forces with NATO Western, especially West German, naval ships would seek protected bases along the South Coast of Sweden, particularly in the Blekinge archipelago. A geographical apportionment of areas of operations could also be necessary. There seem to have been no prospects, however, of carrying out combined operations. To this end, a comprehensive coordination of inter alia communications procedures and identification, etc. would be required already in peacetime, which could not be accomplished considering Swedenis non—aligned position.

In 1962 or 1963, the Swedish naval attaché in Washington, in talks with U.S. military representatives, might have expressed himself so as to create the impression that Sweden was interested in ASW cooperation with West German naval forces in the Baltic.

Wartime imports, all-important to Sweden, would be dependent predominantly on sea transportation across the Atlantic and the North Sea. Considering the likelihood that the Baltic Approaches would be closed at an early stage, the limited discharging capacity of Swedish west—coast ports, and the obvious risk of a blockade of the West Coast, or of disruptions of navigation and port—handling there, transit via Norway was deemed necessary to maintain Sweden”s overall defensive strength in most war contingencies. In the fjords of Western Norway, equipment would be transferred from ocean shipping to coastal vessels and then be brought to Sweden via the coastal navigation route. Those imports which could not be readily reloaded, i.e. primarily liquid fuels, would be transported directly to ports in Western Sweden. The capacity for land transportation of supplies from the Norwegian West Coast to Sweden was, even after the construction of the Trondheim route, rather


Talks were held early between Swedish and foreign naval officers about allowing ships en route to Sweden in war to join Western convoys. However, no conclusive decisions seem to have been taken. In the first half of the 1950s, the Swedish Navy Command estimated that NATO had insufficient forces for convoy protection. Western aviation could, however, conceivably assist by laying mines along sea lanes and by bombing harbours. Later on the assessment was that the allied powers would provide convoy protection against submarine and air attacks to the Skagerrak and Norwegian west—coast ports. Swedish shipping carrying imports would thus also enjoy direct or indirect protection. From there, the Swedish Navy would assume responsibility for those transports intended for Sweden. In parts of the Skagerrak as well it was conceivable that allied forces would provide some of the convoy protection.

The Commission has in particular studied two regions where cooperation with the Western Powers can be assumed to have been of special pertinence, namely the Swedish West Coast, and Öresund.

The West Coast

The highest naval authority on the Swedish West Coast was Comman- ding Officer, West-Coast Naval District MDV (from 1954 Naval Command West — MKV). His prime task during the entire 1950s and 1960s was to protect import shipping and sea lanes along the West Coast. As late as in the early 1960s, one of his principal tasks was stated to be cooperation with allied naval forces and preparations for the basing of such, following specific directives. This task was also a prerequisite for the protection of imports. Anti—invasion defence" and closing of the Baltic Approaches was secondary considering the limited resources available.

The 19505

According to the war plans of 1950, cooperation with Norwegian naval forces would in the first place take the form of protection of shipping, primarily along the Southern coast of Norway. If possible, mine-laying outside Swedish territorial waters in the Skagerrak, as well as mine- sweeping and submarine operations, should be coordinated with the Norwegians. Some coordination with Denmark mainly on mine—laying in the Kattegat, was also desirable. In the event of Soviet occupation of Denmark, it was conceivable that Danish naval units would seek refuge in Sweden, e.g. in MDV. These units were presumed to constitute a reinforcement of Swedish naval forces and, possibly, be employed

jointly. British naval forces could also conceivably be employed in the area of operations, e.g. to prevent Soviet naval forces from establishing themselves at the Baltic Approaches. Cooperation could also be establis- hed with the British. Demands for the basing of primarily light units in MDV could not be ruled out. Issues arising from the basing of allied naval forces in MDV were stated as being subject to separate analysis.

In 1952, the Chief of the Navy issued directives on the logistic capacity of two operating bases located within the naval district. It was stated that these bases, according to current war plans, to some extent could also be utilized for the basing of an allied naval force and for the stationing of merchantmen. Logistic support to such a force should normally cover fuel, lubricants, water and food supplies, and limited repairs. Logistic support to merchantmen would, however, not be provided by the base commander. With this in mind, logistic services, including required transportation, within the two bases were to be planned to have a capacity exceeding by 50% what was needed for the naval and other forces subordinate to the Commanding Officer of the naval district.

In the 1953 war planning, it was noted that, for the time being, peacetime directives were lacking concerning the task of cooperating with NATO naval forces, and preparing for their basing. An assessment was made concerning NATO's naval operational missions in the Kattegat and the Skagerrak; in this, rather extensive naval operations inter alia minelaying, minesweeping, ASW and the escorting of convoys, were held probable. As to the protection of merchant shipping, it seemed probable that the naval command-and-control resources of MDV, in war, would be subordinated to the joint allied naval command within "the North—European group" of NATO states. It followed that measures had to be taken to ensure the cooperation required in all areas relevant to that activity (communications, liaison staff, convoy-duty regulations, minesweeping, etc.). Also, combined command and control of other naval operations (e.g., surveillance, minelaying, ASW, and the engagement of enemy naval forces, in these waters would be required. This made careful preparations necessary, such as certain combined training and formalized cooperation among command-and—control authorities.

In these plans, more permanent basing of allied naval forces within MDV was not held likely. However, should circumstances necessitate allied convoying along the Swedish West Coast, temporary or semi— permanent basing there of allied naval vessels - no larger than destroyers were to be expected, primarily within one of the aforementioned operating bases. The logistic services would have to take this into consideration.

In 1956, the Chief of the Navy ordered the Commanding Officer, MDV, to plan for the reception and basing of allied naval forces in war. The planning was to concern all operating elements of the Danish and Norwegian navies (a total of more than 100 units) and, in addition, six destroyers and twelve frigates. The officer then in charge of the Navy Staff operations department — who had countersigned the document has not been able to explain the reasoning behind this order, nor did he have any idea of from what state the latter men-of—war were expected to arrive.

Commanding Officer, MDV, promptly issued an order for special planning in accordance with the document received from the Chief of the Navy. This order stated inter alla the following premises for planning. Denmark and Norway were in such a position that naval forces could not be supported from these countries. Sweden was under enemy pressure, or at war. The foreign naval forces were to be based in existing or, to the extent possible, expanded bases. They were to remain under national command, but Commanding Officer, MDV, were to exercise operational command and control. To a certain degree, they were to be operationally coordinated with MDV forces for routine tasks.

According to a pencilled note on the document, all working papers have been incinerated. The officer then in charge of the MDV operations department - who according to the order was to participate in the planning - has explained that he has no recollection of this planning. The outcome of the planning ordered is thus unclear. The then chief of the operations department of the Navy Staff has estimated the time that would have been required to execute the plans ordered by the Chief of the Navy, e.g. to build basing sites and install rock moorings - at two months on condition that unlimited resources could be requisitioned.

In the war plans of 1959, under the heading of "Cooperation with Allied Units", only one remark could be found: "This chapter will be distributed when called for by contingency following direct orders from Commanding Officer, MKV." lf such a chapter was ever developed it has not been found.

The 1960s

In the beginning of the 1960s, following orders from the Chief of the Navy, Commanding Officer, MKV, conducted a strategic study on behalf of Naval Command West. A first version of the study was available in the beginning of 1961 , and the final version in the spring of 1962. In the study, the Commanding Officer accounted for his funda- mental view of the strategic conditions within his area of operations. The study was supposed to form the basis for war planning within MKV. The

views expressed in the study would have been representative of those held by leading naval officers.

The study depicted a potential chain of events, where the Soviet Union by force of arms sought to coerce Sweden into granting deployment of forces, e.g., moveable submarine bases, within the MKV area. This could bring about NATO intervention and general war. Such a NATO intervention could entail the basing of NATO forces within the MKV area as well as cooperation. Therefore, military commanders in Western Sweden would have to be directed towards cooperation with NATO. At the same time, it was noted that required preparations for such coopera- tion could not be carried out.

If the policy of neutrality were to fail, and Sweden be drawn into a global conflict, Commanding Officer, MKV, envisaged that he would be instantly tasked to cooperate with NATO. Norway*s naval defences were concentrated to Northern areas, Denmark and West Germany assumed the defence of the Baltic Approaches in the Southern Baltic Sea. Sweden”s naval defences within the area of MKV could in conjunction with NATO naval forces bridge the gap between Norway and Denmark, and form a rear defence of the Baltic Approaches, and also secure the sea lanes of the Kattegat and the Skagerrak.

Cooperation with Western states would primarily involve basing, combined operations, mine—planning, defence of shipping, and reconnais- sance. Concerning defence of imports, cooperation, primarily with the Danish and Norwegian naval forces, had to be prepared as far as possible and, in the case of war, be put into effect at once. Under the heading "Defence in case of invasion - means of defence" the following was stated. The light NATO naval forces (Danish and German), assigned to defending the Baltic Approaches will, in the event of enemy advances, possibly look for a basing area on the Swedish West Coast. This will enable their participation in resistance of enemy landing operations and in attacks on supply transports.

In the study, it was concluded that the establishment of BALTAP had considerably reduced the risks of an invasion of the West Coast while, at the same time, Sweden's prospects of maintaining import shipping had increased. It was further stated that the operational area of the Comman- ding Officer coincided with operational areas used by NATO in the Kattegat and the Skagerrak. In the event of war, coordination between adjacent NATO naval officers and the Commanding Officer would be required, and basing of allied naval forces likely. No Swedish "private war" could be conducted in the Kattegat or the Skagerrak.

Shortly before the Commanding Officer, MKV, issued the war contingency order that would apply from 1962, he wrote a letter to the (Deputy) Chief of Defence Staff, asking whether the strength of the

Naval Forces, as specified by the Chief of the Navy in the statement of 1956, was still valid. The reason for the inquiry was stated to be that the plans for basing of foreign naval forces within MKV had to be moderni— zed. At this time, the Defence Staff had just taken over operational command of the Naval Forces from the Chief of the Navy. The officer who had countersigned the statement of 1956 was now serving as Deputy Chief. He has since declared that he does not recollect any such inquiry. No reply to the letter has been found.

The war contingency order that was stipulated to come into effect in 1962 contained, like the war contingency order of 1959, only a brief reference to Western cooperation. In the table of contents, under the heading "Operational tasks — Cooperation" it was thus stated "Foreign (allied) armed forces. To be dispatched when required". ln subsequent war contingency orders, cooperation with foreign powers was not at all mentioned.

In conclusion, it can be established that at least a few years into the 1960s, & high mental preparedness for cooperation with NATO naval forces in the Kattegat and Skagerrak prevailed. There seems, however, to have been no common planning for such cooperation. Nor do any measures appear to have been taken in order to facilitate such coopera— tion, for example by establishing lines of communications to Norway and Denmark for the military command.


As long as the bulk of the naval forces of the Soviet Union were based in the Baltic Sea, it was of vital interest to the Warsaw Pact, immediately preceding and during a war, to have free transit through the Baltic Approaches, i.e. the Belts and Öresund, for access to the open sea. This, for example, would enable Soviet submarines to combat Western Power transports across the Atlantic. For the Western Powers, it was of course equally important to prevent this from taking place. It could therefore be anticipated that, in the event of an aggravated political-military situation, both sides would make demands on Sweden, and Sweden would face the risk of being drawn into a conflict between the superpowers.

The Swedish Navy Command also considered the blocking of the Belts to be of the utmost importance for the Swedish strategy. The reason for this was that the Navy, unlike the Army, judged'that Swedish imports during a war could only be shipped through Gothenburg and Oslo and the smaller ports in between, and thus no longer along the Norwegian West Coast. These imports would be severely threatened if Soviet naval forces could transit into the Kattegat and the Skagerrak.

Under an agreement from 1932, Öresund is divided into a Danish and

a Swedish part. In addition, there is a small area of open sea. According to international law, a sound connecting different areas of the open sea may not be blocked to foreign vessels, but must at all times remain open to transit. Traffic between Öresund and the Belts is regulated by a treaty from 1857, under which transit may in no circumstances be obstructed or delayed. The treaties are considered to apply both in peacetime and wartime. Neither during World War I nor II, however, did Sweden fully respect the provisions of the treaty.

It cannot be explicitly discerned in international conventions that a neutral state must allow warships of belligerent parties to cross its territory, so called harmless passage, but most states acknowledge harmless passage as a right of the warring parties. It is believed, however, that the neutral state is entitled to block parts of its territorial waters by laying mines or other measures. Sweden also has to consider the customary law that evolved during the two world wars, as well as the provisions of the treaty of 1857.

According to the regulation of neutrality in 1938, warships of belligerent states had the right to harmless passage through Öresund in Swedish territorial waters, i..e all Swedish sea territory in Öresund except harbours and their entrances. Submarines however, had to surface. Corresponding provisions were established in the proclamation of 1966, which superseded the 1938 declaration.

Danish and Swedish territorial waters thus connect directly with one another in the main parts of Öresund. In the area between Copenhagen and Malmö, there are, due to the conditions of depth, only two passages navigable by larger ships: Droga'en on the Danish side, and Flintrännan on the Swedish side. The very largest ships, such as battleships and aircraft carriers, cannot pass through Öresund at all, and larger sub— marines can only sail on the surface. The depth and seabed conditions make the area well-suited for mining. These minefields can be effectively defended by coast artillery.

Among the Western Powers, as well as within the Swedish Navy, there was thus a strong interest in being able to block Öresund even before the outbreak of a war and prevent transit. For this to become effective, both sides considered cooperation between the Danish and the Swedish naval forces necessary. The Swedish Chief of the Navy, Helge Strömbäck, was in the spring of 1949 supposed to have taken the initiative for such cooperation. According to a British source, Danish and Swedish naval officers then, in the summer of 1949, drew up a plan to block Öresund. Thereafter, the discussions are supposed to have died down, since the Danes were uncertain as to how far they could continue after Denmark had acceded to the Atlantic Pact. The British, however, seem to have reassured the Danes on this matter. The Swedish Navy

Command was to be told, on behalf of the United Kingdom, that every kind of planning and preparation in the area of defence between Sweden and Denmark, or any other member of NATO would be welcomed.

The Öresund Study

The Öresund issues did not solely concern the Navy. Consequently, in 1949 a civil servant of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs was assigned, in cooperation with a naval officer, to seek a formula of how to prepare, in peacetime, for blocking Flintrännan in a contingency where Sweden would retain its neutrality. The Soviet submarines were considered to be the major problem. The arrangement presupposed an alteration of the rules of neutrality, as well as cooperation with Denmark. The reasoning behind this was a wish to forestall a race between the superpowers for Öresund, and, in this way, diminish the risk of Sweden becoming involved in a war. The work was carried out in close cooperation with high-ranking officials of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Government was reportedly fully informed.

In the spring of 1950, the investigating officials presented the results of their work, known as the Öresund Study. They established that according to current rules, Sweden could not object to Soviet warships passing through Öresund before the outbreak of war. After an outbreak of war, where Denmark but not Sweden had been attacked, it was expected that early on, the Belts and Drogden would come to be controlled by the Soviet Union. The Western Powers could be presumed, however, to have effectively blocked the Danish outlets of the Öresund, through mining and the sinking of block—ships. This would, for a considerable period, make these outlets non-navigable. Under these circumstances, it was anticipated that Sweden would be exposed to pressure from the Western side to block Flintra'nnan, and from the Soviet side to keep the passage open. Such demands could be backed by military force. In such a situation, Sweden, pleading the rules of neutrality, could as a justifiable emergency measure prohibit access to Swedish territorial waters through Öresund. If the Soviet Union were to attack Sweden, either later or at the same time as attacking Denmark, blocking of the Öresund outlets would become of immediate common interest to the Western allies and Sweden.

In the study, it was stressed that mining of Flintra'nnan would not be effective, unless the Northern section of the mining was connected to an equivalent mining on the Danish side. To completely block Öresund during a war was considered to imply coordination of Danish and Swedish measures within several areas, for example: - mutual, but fairly brief, orientation of the initial deployment of the

naval forces,

- planning of surveillance of common areas of operation, as well as forwarding of surveillance-reports, - mining of Öresund before and in connection with an outbreak of war (planning of mining, equipment etc.), cooperation in the defence of Öresund by the coast and field-artillery, establishing special communications lines between the two countries to be used by the military; codes and systems of signalling, IFF systems, - cooperation between the naval chiefs on both sides of Öresund, cooperation in minesweeping and ASW m waters of common interest, and a possible basing of Danish units within the naval area of the South Coast Naval District, fighter control within the area.

In order to investigate and plan such measures, close cooperation between staff of both navies was required. It was evident that Denmark to a large extent would be tied down by directives from its allies, but it was still believed that many of those measures could be coordinated with Sweden within the limits of these directives.

The investigating officials believed it desirable that the Swedish Government should acquaint itself with the different contingencies that could evolve around Öresund m connection with an aggravated situation or a war. It would also facilitate military planning if it were possible to draft certain general guiding principles for the military authorities. It would be of special significance if the local authorities at Öresund developed instructions, in accordance with the general guiding principles, for their own behaviour in certain contingencies. It was also desirable that the Chief of the Navy be allowed to continue the planning of defence measures in the Öresund in line with the principles set forth by the report. It should also be considered to alter the rules of neutrality from 1938, in order to prohibit transit of submarines of the warring parties already at the outbreak of hostilities. Finally, contacts with the proper Danish authorities should be maintained with the purpose of obtaining information regarding Danish defence planning. It was judged necessary and also preferable, to on a reciprocal basis keep the relevant Danish authorities informed of Swedish planning;

The report was presented to the Government in February 1950. At the time no criticism is said to have been voiced of the' conclusions in the report. In a memorandum written within the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in March 1950, it was, with reference to the Öresund Study, discussed whether it was of interest to Sweden that Öresund should be blocked in the event of crisis and war. The writer of this memorandum, who,

judging by the wordings, might have been the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Undén, considered it out of the question that Sweden, before the outbreak of war, would yield under Western pressures and close the passage. The propositions of the report did not lead to any alteration of the regulation of neutrality.

The Minister of Defence, Vougt, had already raised the issue of naval cooperation with the Danes with the Prime Minister a month or so before the report was submitted to the Government . He then presented requests from the Danish Minister of Defence that measures be taken in order to coordinate radar monitoring on both sides, that a Swedish coast artillery battery be transferred to enable cooperation with a battery on the Danish side, that a common code for the coastal defence be established, and that the countries inform one another on the positions of the mines laid in the Southern part of Öresund and the naval area up to Bornholm, so that Danish and Swedish ships would not risk being blown up by mines because of inadequate knowledge of the minefields. Vougt also asked, among other things, whether Sweden while being neutral in a war, could permit Denmark as a belligerent to refuel and carry out minor ship repairs in Swedish harbours. N o suggestions have been found as to what answers Vougt may have received. The Defence Staff, however, was instructed to write a memorandum on the issue.

Further Developments

Whether Vougt”s initiative and the Öresund Study recommendations led to any concrete measures within the Navy is uncertain. In March 1950, at a briefing before the Prime Minister and the Minister of Foreign Affairs, the Supreme Commander and the Chief of the Defence Staff asserted inter alia that the Danish had not been asked to state their intentions and plans with regard to minelaying in Öresund. About a year later, however, the British ambassador in Stockholm could reassure the Foreign Office that in regard to closing off Öresund, no gap was entailed by Swedish neutrality, at least not on the technical side.

In contacts between Swedish and British officers during 1952-53, Swedish concerns were expressed for the weakness of NATO, and especially Danish, defences along the Southern Baltic. The British were anxious that Sweden should make more substantial preparations for military operations in the event of war, preferably together with the Western—power naval forces on submarine operations and mining. In the British view, Sweden*s National Defence was of great significance in denying Soviet ships access to the Baltic Approaches. The British hoped to be able to persuade the Swedes to cooperate with the Western Powers in case of a Soviet attack on Denmark, even before Sweden itself had

been attacked.

In 1952, the Chief of the Navy issued instructiöns in which plans for blocking Öresund were to be prepared for two alternative contingencies. In a state of alert owing to impending general peril of war, or war between Denmark (the Western Powers) and the Soviet Union, Swedish territorial waters only were to be blocked off, so that shipping there could be controlled. lf Sweden was also drawn into the war, blocking measures were to be taken in Swedish territorial waters, on the open sea, and in consultation with Danish (W estern-power) authorities, possibly in Danish territorial waters, to accomplish a complete closure in the area East and South of the island of Saltholm.

The extensive plan for closing off Öresund included plans for minelaying and minefields, authorized by the Military District Comman— der in Kristianstad in the spring of 1967, but there were no allusions to cooperation with foreign powers.

Before the Commission, high- ranking naval officers have denied the existence of common Swedish- Danish mining plans, as well as any occurrence of operational contacts regarding Öresund in the 1960s.

At least during the first few years of the 1950s, some contacts took place between Danish military officials and the Commanding Officer, Öresund Naval District — as of 1952 Malmö Naval Surveillance Area (BoMö) - who was responsible for operations in Öresund. It has not been possible to establish what these contacts concerned. It has been sugges- ted, however, that they might have concerned intelligence. At some stage of the 1950s, there was probably a direct telephone line between the Commanding Officer, BoMö, and his Danish counterpart. In the 1960s, according to reports, the Commanding Officers BoMö, contacts with the Danish National Defence were limited to matters of icebreaking and the Navy Cadet Corps. Swedish plans for mining Öresund were prepared quite independently of corresponding Danish plans, and Sweden had no insight into the latter. Furthermore, it has been contended that coopera— tion on mining operations would not have been of any great value, as Danish and Swedish waters in Öresund are physically separated by the island of Saltholm.

It has thus not been possible to clarify the character and extent of cooperation between the Danish and Swedish navies concerning Öresund in the 1950s. British reports from 1951 indicate that the plans for closing off Öresund were somehow linked together. Also, some form of cooperation in intelligence, presumably surveillance of East bloc ship movements through the Baltic Approaches, might have taken place. In the 1960s, no operational cooperation between the naval authorities on the two sides of Öresund seems to have existed


Very elaborate preparations in many areas would have been required to make the Swedish Navy capable of carrying out joint operations with NATO naval forces. Equipment and logistics would have required coordination, e.g., to facilitate rearming (ammunition and missiles) of NATO ships at Swedish bases. Manuals on tactics, communications, and identification, etc., would have had to be streamlined, e.g. to avoid friendly fire. It would have been necessary to expand communications between command and control centres, and to organize liaison groups. Not least, combined exercises would have been essential.

Preparations of this kind would inevitably have entailed a large number of people becoming privy to the activities. The Commission has interviewed several naval officers who held key positions in the Navy during the 1950s and 1960s. They served on national and regional staffs, and as unit commanders. No concrete information on preparations for operational cooperation with the Western Powers has not come forward in these interviews. Nor did the extensive sources that the Commission accounted for above, indicate that any such preparations were made.

Stig H:son Ericson, Chief of the Navy 1953-61 , wrote in his memoirs, that in the important collaboration with the Western navies concerning equipment and training, a sharp line was drawn at operational issues which, for political reasons, were not to be touched upon; and that the state authorities showed all reasonable comprehension of the require- ments for international contacts, if restricted to areas which could not cast suspicion upon Sweden”s pronouncedly neutral stance. His succes- sor, Åke Lindemalm, Chief of the Navy 1961-1970, has told the Commission of frequent contacts inter alia with NATO officers responsible for the Baltic Approaches; those discussions were not confined to the weather. Concurrently, he has declared that there was no cooperation prepared with Western naval forces, e.g. in the form of combined communications systems and liaison officers.

The above is in contrast to certain information from the early 1950s, concerning cooperation with Denmark on the closing of Öresund, as well as information to the effect that Ericson in 1953 probably discussed with a British admiral how to create conditions for cooperation on naval war planning (Cf section 6.1). This restriction apart, there are no indications of any common planning for combined operations by-the naval forces of Sweden and those of NATO, still less of any concrete action to facilitate such cooperation.

A different issue is the fact that deliberations on how such cooperation were to be executed in the event Sweden was forced into a war on the Western side following a Soviet attack, were often made in national

Swedish planning. It can be established that this planning seems to have been discontinued at about the time that operational responsibility for the naval forces was transferred from the Chief of the Navy to the Defence Staff. The transfer was formally made on 1 October 1961, but in effect appears to have been a rather drawn—out process. It does not seem unlikely that naval planning was thereby adapted to that of the Army and the Air Force.

6.6. Measures relating to aiir operations

6.6.1. General

During some periods of World War 11 Sweden perceived itself exposed to an imminent threat of attack. Furtlnermore, Swedish neutrality was subjected to more or less severe straims. Most substantial of these were the German troop transits in 1940-43, amd the extensive allied overflights of Southern Sweden in 1943-45. The overflights illustrated the overall significance to the great powers that air warfare had acquired. In the following decades, this significance was to increase further.

The advent of nuclear weapons towards the end of World War II thus further highlighted air warfare within the framework of the totality of great-power strategies. (Long-range ballistic missiles did not exist at that time.) This held especially true for the United States, which initially had a monopoly of nuclear weapons, and intime developed a strategy to the effect that a Soviet attack in Europe would be countered by means of massive nuclear retaliation. These circumstances in turn brought a further development of heavy bomber aviation. In the period of 1945-55 , the United States still depended on airbases of European allies (primarily the United Kingdom, but also Norway) for strikes against the main opponent, the Soviet Union; but with the introduction of the B—52 aircraft in 1955, military aviation gained intercontinental range. Thus, the need for refuelling stops in Europe was eliminated.

Against this background, it is evident that Western strategic interest in Sweden largely concerned its airspace, as witnessed by, inter alia, policy documents from the U.S. National Security Council (NSC). This was above all the interest in opportunities of flying across Swedish airspace, and in the risks of the adversary attempting to do the same. The indirect effects on airspace control of a Soviet capture of Swedish territory were also acknowledged, however.

Early on, these general conditions were observed in Swedish military analysis. It was also clear that the assistance the Western Powers might conceivably detach to Sweden, was mainly in the form of air forces (plus, possibly, certain naval forces). Behind this reasoning was the observation that Western strength primarily lay in these systems. Furthermore, aviation especially could rapidly be employed in areas widely separated, particularly if certain preparations had been made in the area in question.

In view of this, Swedish discussions of measures to facilitate the reception of external assistance mainly materialized in the field of air warfare. No plans for cooperation with foreign air forces have been found, however, neither in the Air Staff archives, nor in the Air Group archives. Also, according to information supplied to this Commission by

a number of air officers who held important central and regional posts in the 1950s and 1960s, no such planning seems to have taken place.

6.6.2. Command, Control and Communications (C3)


Ever since World War II, technological developments have led to ever more advanced systems for command and control of air forces from C2 centres on the ground. This has, at least, applied to the environment of military technology in Western and Northern Europe (also North America). From the beginning of the 1950s, Sweden also started to procure the kind of radar facilities which was one of the preconditions for modern combat control. In the 1960s, with the gradual introduction of the advanced STRIL 60 combat—control system, Sweden even acquired a leading position, internationally, within this field. The key components of this system were combat-control centres (often blasted into the bedrock), radar stations and various communications systems. The latter were to secure contact between the various ground facilities (including airbases), as well as between command-and-control centres and aircraft. Here, combat—control centres had the key command—and—control task, tactically, as well as in matters of search—and-rescue.

Transmission of information put great demands on reliability, speed, security, and resilience against enemy action. In the light of this, starting in the 1950s, the Air Force built a separate permanent radio-relay network supplemented by permanent telephone links connecting key hub centres - command-and-control centres, radar stations, and air bases.

Characteristic of technology at that time (i.e., the 19505 and '60s) was that transmission of information from radar stations to combat-control centres required a very large transmission capacity, known as broad—band radio relay. Thus it was not possible to transmit the collected informa- tion of radar images by means of less sophisticated technology, e.g. by narrow-band radio relay or by permanent telephone line. These circum- stances are essential in order to understand the character of possible cooperation with the neighbouring countries.

The radio-relay network, including inter-Scandinavian tele—cooperation

The Commission has gathered information on the build-up of the permanent radio-relay network from various experts who have served with the Air Materiel Agency and the Air Force. The following is what

has been reported and is of interest to the Commission.

It has been confirmed that permanent tele-communications links with Norway and Denmark have been operable since the 1950s. The communications were established with reference to the inter-Scandinavian search-and—rescue cooperation SVENORDA. Initially, communications consisted of permanent telephone lines, but during the 19505 these were gradually replaced by narrow-band radio relay communications.

The first relay connection was established from a communications centre in Southern Sweden to Denmark. Connection could thereby be made from a suitably located command-and-control centre, alternately from an airbase in the South of Sweden, to a corresponding one on Zealand. The capacity of the relay connection, two voice channels, remained unchanged when the relay equipment was modernized at the end of the 19605.

A corresponding connection between Western Sweden and Southern Norway was added somewhat later in the 1950s and had the same capacity: two voice channels. In the 1960s, this capacity was expanded in conjunction with a modernization to four channels.

Towards the end of the 19605, an additional radio—relay connection was established between north-central Sweden (the provinces of Härjedalen and J ärntland) and central Norway. This facilitated communi- cations between Swedish and Norwegian command-and-control centres and airbases in this area, as well as - by further connection North - between the equivalent functions in Northern Sweden and Norway. Here also, total transmission capacity was four voice channels.

When designing the communications, care had been taken so that it would not be possible to gain automatic access from the Danish and Norwegian side, respectively, to the overall Swedish military network. Connections were therefore physically terminated at the respective terminal point on the Swedish side. It was, however, possible - by extraordinary decision - to further connect into the Swedish network. Equivalent - or more innnediate - possibilities to further connect were apparently at hand also on the Danish and Norwegian sides.

The military view on inter—Scandinavian radio-relay communications

The existence of the permanent radio-relay communications to Norway and Denmark, respectively, has been mentioned by a relatively large number of people with connections to the Air Force, Defence Staff, and political decision—making system, interviewed by the Commission. Among these, individual technicians have referred only to reasons of search-and-rescue behind the relay communications, while the main body of people have been of the opinion that these also created scope for other

types of cooperation (with Norway and Denmark; and, by further connection, also with other Western states).

Somewhat differing assessments have been given concerning the number of voice channels required for SAR missions. One official was thus of the opinion that only a single channel was needed, another that two channels were necessary (for weather information and for communi- cations in connection with true rescue missions) and yet another thought that, at most, three or four channels were required.

A couple of the interviewees were specifically asked whether it was feasible to transmit the basic information of radar stations, i.e. the "true radar images", to Norway and Denmark. These people, with a very thorough knowledge of the matter, have both emphasized that this was totally out of the question, as there were no broad—band relay communi- cations with the neighbouring countries.


The Commission has examined the extent to which anything of interest, from our point of view, occurred between Sweden and other states, pertaining to landing— and navigational-aid systems, and also to com— munications between aircraft and ground control. It has been established that in the 1960s Sweden gradually switched from VHF technology to UHF technology for these communications, and firat NATO had earlier made & corresponding switch. Nothing has emerged indicating anything else, however, than that this was a routine measure, primarily motivated by technological developments in general.

Concerning navigational aid, the Commission also wishes to refer to the text in section 6.6.4 below, on Loran C. So-called IFF systems are touched upon in section 6.6.3 below.


The Commission finds that permanent tele-communications connections with Norway and Denmark have been operative since the 19505; these have allowed transmission of voice information and crude data. Further- more, the Commission finds that it was totally impossible to transmit "radar images" by means of these communications. Thus, preconditions for far-reaching integration of air defences — e.g. in the shape of combat control of Western fighter aircraft from C2 centres in Norway/Denmark using Swedish "radar images" - did not exist.

On the issue of transmission capacity, the Commission finds that this, in the case of Denmark and North/Central Norway, respectively, corresponded well to the requirements of SAR duty. In the case of

Southern Norway, a limited excess capacity is noted (two voice channels).

At the same time, the Commission observes that relay stations were very seldom used for SAR duty, and that they, therefore simultaneously have provided capacity for the exchange of other, signalling-wise "less complicated", data (something the majority of interviewees have stated as & supplementary aim of preparations). An example of such uncompli- cated data in the context of combat control, is general data on the character of enemy strike missions, or information on own/allied planned air missions.

6.6.3. Identification Friend or Foe (lFF)


In the sphere of air warfare, World War II brought radical changes. For the first time, air operations and air combat involving hundreds, or even thousands, of aircraft took place. Meanwhile, this period brought a conclusive break-through in air-combat control, with the introduction of radar. Thereby, interceptors as well as anti—aircraft fire could be directed from the ground, in order to neutralize attacking bombers.

The complicated combat environment led to many targets being engaged in error leading to friendly losses; and efforts were made to counter this by introducing various identification aids. The idea was for friendly aircraft when painted by a specific radio signal from the ground, to automatically emit a response signal indicating that this was a "friend", not a "foe". Such systems are therefore termed IFF - Identifica- tion Friend or Foe. In Swedish, the equivalent term is "IK-system", "IK" being short for "IgenKänning".

Naturally, the adversary tried to jam, or even imitate, the IFF system of a certain party. Thus, these systems were surrounded by gradually stricter secrecy, and concurrently the subject of intensive intelligence activities. A further step in this electronic warfarewas to attempt to encode transmissions, to reduce the risks of jamming.

Coding and general secrecy aside, a contemporary military IFF system substantially resembles the systems used in civilian air-traffic control today. Such a systern consists of an attachment unit (known as interroga- tor) to a ground radar station, which in turn is connected to a traffic- control centre (militarily a combat-control centre). Each aircraft carries a so-called transponder, which prior to flight is tuned into an assigned frequency. With these aids, traffic/combat control can receive data on a subject aircraft - position, altitude, and identity - on its radar screens.

In Sweden, studies of IFF systems were initiated already before the

end of World War 11, and development thereafter continued under high secrecy.

IFF equipment in the Swedish National Defence

Immediately following World War II, Sweden lacked the capability to manufacture its own IFF systems, and was therefore reduced to purchasing available surplus equipment from the Western Powers. An early Western-allied system, Mark III, was indeed purchased to some extent, and seems to have been used - at least for trials — within the Air Force, and to some degree, in the Navy. Naturally, these systems entailed a considerable dependency upon the West, i.e. the United States and the United Kingdom. Sweden was also exposed to such potential security leaks (later proved actual) between the great powers, that were to limit — but not entirely eliminate the wartime effectiveness of the IF F systems.

Towards the end of the 1940s, according to information supplied in interviews by several officials of the Swedish Defence, studies were initiated with the aim of eventually acquiring a separate Swedish IFF system, independent of the great-power systems. In 1957, work had proceeded so far, as to allow for evaluating the performance of the Swedish prototype - known as project 535 and compare this to the properties of a Western system, Mark X, a further developed Mark III.

The Connnission has had access to documentation from inter alia the Air Staff and the Air Materiel Agency concerning systems evaluations in general of project 535 and Mark X, as well as the continued manage- ment of inter alia procurement issues.

A comprehensive stajf assessment

In the beginning of 1958, the Air Staff made an extensive systems evaluation of IFF equipment. This shows that neither the Swedish project 535 nor the U.S./British Mark X were deemed to meet all requirements. In view of the observation that "IFF Mk X is not accessible in its entirety to the Swedish AF", project 535 were seen as offering most advantages. (Another document shows that the restrictions on Mark X referred to the United Kingdom, for the time being, not being prepared to provide certain encoding equipment for Mark X.)

The Chief of Air Staff judged, however, that one precondition for introducing project 535 was for "interrogators for IFF Mk X to be installed at some ground radar stations". Behind this were the operational requirements for IFF equipment, described in the document referred to, which comprised ability to discriminate not only between friend and foe,

but also between friend and ally. The underlying assessment read as follows:

There is probably a substantial chance of the airspace of concern to our air defence being flown across by allied aircraft.

The document concluded with views on required testing of project 535 and Mark X. It was recommended that this was to be carried out at a specified radar station in Eastern Sweden.

Continued management

The Commission has been able to follow the continued management of the IFF issue from some ten, now declassified, documents from 1958—61, kept at the Swedish War Archives. These show inter alia that:

in 1959, the British tele-company Marconi submitted a proposal for an IFF system for Sweden; the system seems to. have consisted of Mark X in its basic version, Swedish efforts were made to gain access also to the special encoding equipment, in 1961, the air Wing F11 was assigned certain airborne (transponder) equipment, to be used in trials towards ground stations, whereby it was stated that these (i.e., Mark X) "will, in certain numbers, be incorporated into the air surveillance structure of the Air Force"; in this context it was pointed out that the airborne transponders "will be carried by the international civilian aviation", in early 1961, some ten plus engineers and technicians from the air wings F2 and F13, and from the then central repair shops of the Air Materiel Agency in Arboga, had received training on Mark X, in October that same year, the company "Svenska Radioaktiebolaget" offered five units of Mark X to the Air Materiel Agency, with an option for an additional four, later that same month, the Air Staff decided to reduce procurement to one station, to be used for tests in the following years. The reasons for this change of plans were stated to be (1) that the possibilities of bringing about improved cooperation with a relatively minor number of Mark X units were very small, (2) that the civilian use of Mark X seemed uncertain, (3) that Air Force resources were very strained. In this context, it was pointed out that further Mark X units could be required in connection with procurement of new radar stations.

Additional Swedish information

The Commission has interviewed a number of Swedish officers and technicians within the sphere of military aviation on IFF issues. Although recollections of the period in question were not very detailed, the following interesting views have been expressed.

1. IFF matters can be seen to be of great significance in case of potential air cooperation with other states. In the 1960s, they were on several occasions discussed at high levels Within the Defence Staff.

2. During offensive air missions (either Swedish or possible allied) it was not too difficult, early in sortie and target approach, to keep track of different aircraft identities. Problems would be greater upon return flight, when tactical conditions by necessity decided routes and altitudes. Especially during this phase of an air sortie, IFF was important to avoid accidental fire by friendly fighters or anti-air.

3. Had foreign IFF equipment in some critical contingency been supplied to Sweden, it would - provided some training and general farniliarity with the system - hardly have taken more than a day or two to mount the (not too bulky) equipment in relevant radar stations.

British information

The Commission has also been given access to protocols from the British Chiefs of Staff, dealing with IFF systems. The protocols primarily refer to the 1950s. They raise the IFF issue on numerous occasions, reasonab— ly reflecting its significance. Documentation shows inter alia that Mark X was introduced in the British Defence Forces in the mid—1950s, a few years later than in the United States. Already at that time, its basic version was deemed to be known to the Soviet Union, which gave rise to certain restrictions in prospective wartime use. In parallel with the introduction, work was in progress on a Selective Identification Feature (SIF), which no doubt was intended to curtail Soviet possibilities of countering the IFF system. SIF is probably identical to the encoding unit referred to in the Swedish documentation.

In 1959, it was established that the United States, in collaboration with the United Kingdom and Canada, was developing a new IFF model, designated Mark XII. This was chiefly an evolution of Mark X and was to be introduced in the U.S. Air Force as soon as possible. The Royal Air Force requested the introduction of Mark XII in British air defence in the early 1960s. It was indicated that the system, in the longer term,

could possibly be made available to other European states.


The Swedish systems evaluation of 1958, referred to above, shows that it was deemed significant to be able to identify possible allied aircraft, in view of the high probability of our airspace, in wartime, becoming subjected to ,overflights by such aircraft. This general assessment is consistent with the comprehensive analysis of the issue of assistance, found in the preliminaries of the 1955 Defence Committee.

It is also evident that, in 1961, plans were made for procurement of a number of Mark X units for Swedish radar stations, and that trials of the equipment were to be conducted. Furthermore, certain personnel was trained in operating the equipment.

Later that same year, ambitions were reduced, as witnessed by the above. A prime reason given for this was that the prospects of enhanced cooperation with only a relatively limited number of Mark X units seemed very slight. However, it can hardly have been the case that the mere number of Mark X units was crucial, as the range of the system by all accounts was considerable. In light of the British information, another explanation seems more likely: the United States and the United Kingdom would soon be switching to the new system, Mark XII. Thus, possibilities of using ground-based Mark X equipment for identifying Western bombers flying through Swedish airspace would soon be gone. A more extensive procurement of Mark X would thus only temporarily yield increased prospects for cooperation.

The fact remained, however, that the earlier, not essentially different version, Mark X, had been tested in Sweden, and that personnel had been trained in its use. Against this background, according to technicians who have been in contact with the Commission, it would have been reasonably easy to mount more modern equipment (Mark XII), if any such equipment had been supplied to Sweden in a future contingency. ( It was presupposed that certain European NATO countries were only to receive the equipment in a contingency.)

Against this background, the Commission finds that Sweden, by means of measures taken in the IFF area, acquired a technological liberty of action to — if an overall decision on the issue was made - quickly create a capability to identify aircraft of possible Western allies, were they to fly over Sweden.

6.6.4. Loran C


Loran C (Loran, LOng RAnge Navigation) is an originally U.S. radio system for long-distance navigation. It is not unlike the DECCA-system, better known in Sweden, but it utilizes lower frequencies (about 100 kHz, i.e. the long—wave spectrum), thereby giving Loran C longer range so that with only a few stations it is possible to cover, for example, all of the Norwegian Sea. During the build-up phase the United States was granted permission to calibrate the system in Stockholm (Bromma airport) and in Gothenburg (Torslanda airport). Subsequently, it has become known that, when first launched, the system completely or to an overwhelming extent served military purposes. These were precision navigation for the U.S. strategic submarines as well as, most probably, for the USAF.

From the Commission's point of view, it is primarily important to seek to evaluate whether the calibration in Sweden can be seen as part of preparations for operational cooperation. In addition, it is important to clarify, first, what were the prevailing perceptions in Sweden of the purpose of Loran C at the time calibration was approved, and second, how these understandings were communicated among concerned parties.

Technical-military conditions

Loran C had precursors already during World War 11. In the 1950s, one precursor, Loran A, was in extensive use among NATO states. Loran C proper was developed in the latter part of the 1950s and the system built up in the North-Atlantic region in 1959—1960 under the direction of the U.S. Coast Guard. The main customer was the U.S. Navy. The main objective was to acquire a navigational system for the U.S. strategic submarines, permitting position fixes (with margins of error no greater than a few hundred metres) for the launching of ballistic missiles. (At this time, the Norwegian Sea was a significant operational area for these submarines.)

Because of the low frequencies used, the radio signals penetrate sea water slightly. This means that a submarine can still receive navigational data when (shallowly) submerged.

It is not entirely clear how great the interest of the USAF was during the very period the system was developed. An indication of early USAF interest is the fact that the procurement decision was made by the Joint Chiefs of Staff. In addition, a U.S. source has said that Loran C was the principal system for long-distance navigation also of the USAF in the 1960s and 1970s. Thus, the system is said to have been the most

important navigational aid for U.S. bombings during the Vietnam war.

The build-up in Norway

The build-up of Loran C required certain transmitters to be erected, also along the Norwegian Sea. In contacts with inter alia Norway, the United States offered two main reasons. First, it was said that the system would become important to civilian shipping over time, which in fact proved to be true, but not until the 1970s. At the outset the military interests seem to have been overarching. Second, in official U.S. contacts with Norway it was stated that the system was intended as a precision navigational aid for depth soundings in the Norwegian Sea and else— where, the results of which, in turn, could be put to use in the navigation of submarines.

To what extent Norway was informed of the real purpose, that Loran C would constitute a direct aid for precision navigation in war, primarily for the strategic submarines, is somewhat unclear. In a now declassified Norwegian commission report from 1975, it is established that the issue was discussed in the Security Committee of the Cabinet on July 3, 1958: "Minister of Defence Handal informed of Loran C as a separate U.S. project without links to the Loran chain of NATO. Cabinet members had no detailed information on what the installation should be used for, but presumed that it would be at the disposition of SAC (Strategic Air Command) and the U.S. Navy." To this picture should be added that secrecy was so strict, that Norway in no circumstances was to raise the issue with other NATO states.

In the following years one transmitter in the Lofoten—area and one receiver station on [the island of] Jan Mayen were erected.

U.S. contacts with Sweden

In early 1960, when Loran C was already operating and its existence no longer classified, the United States made a request to Sweden (and at the same time to a number of other West European states) to permit calibration of the system also in our country. In the briefing papers sent to the U.S. embassies from Washington, Loran C was summarily described as a navigation system for ships and aircraft in or over the Atlantic Ocean, the Norwegian Sea, the North Sea, and the Baltic Sea. The systern was stated to be more capable than the already existing Loran A. There was no reference made to military applications.

The calibration was desirable so as to attain maximum precision and was to be accomplished by parking an aircraft with gauging equipment at a geographically exactly defined position at Bromma and Torslanda

airports [close to Stockholm and Gothenburg, respectively] whereafter the Loran C signals could be read.

The issue was managed by the Foreign Ministry, which consulted the Defence Staff among others. The Defence Staff called attention to U.S. press reports that Loran C could be used inter alia for navigation of submarines equipped with the Polaris nuclear missile system. It was pointed out, however, that the calibrations could hardly be linked to Polaris, as it was improbable for Polaris submarines to operate in the Baltic Sea, an assessment later proved correct.

The Swedish Ministry of Transportation, supported by an opinion given by the Swedish Civil Aviation Administration, recommended that the U.S. request should be granted.

It was decided, on the basis of the above and other recommendations and analyses, to grant permission to carry out the calibrations. The issue had first been discussed by the Cabinet in preparatory committee, however, clearly demonstrating that it was not perceived as a routine matter. This is also clear from the diaries of Östen Undén, in which, a few months afterwards, he noted that the United States had made a request for certain " geodetic measurements". Undén wrote: " [I wanted] the Cabinet to share the responsibility for a decision, as the matter seems difficult to grasp. I was inclined towards acceptance without objections. " The calibrations took place later the same year.

The Commission has interviewed one of the officials who participated in formulating the opinion submitted by the Defence Staff. He could not recall any discussion within the staff about the possible utilization of Loran C as a navigational aid in the USAF operations close to Swedish airspace. When asked, he pointed out that such an aspect of the issue would have been kept within the very highest level of the Swedish National Defence.

The former director general of the Swedish National Defence Research Establishment (FOA), Martin Fehrm, has told the Commission that FOA fully realized that Loran C was intended to serve the strategic bombers as well as the strategic submarines.

Sverker Åström, then head of the political department of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, commented on the issue in a newspaper article in 1991:

Sure enough, the Americans made a request to be permitted to fly over Sweden. The Ministry of Transportation and the Defence Staff gave their opinions and had no objections. In this context, the Staff also added that Loran C possibly also could be utilized for the navigation of Polaris submarines, but that it was improbable that such submarines were intended for operations in Baltic Sea. Not surprisingly, the decision was affirmative. It is conceivable that Swedish authorities were too credulous in this case. But it is out of the

question that any member of the Cabinet deliberately should have intended to assist the Americans in a matter of military significance.


The Commission concludes that Loran C was a significant navigation system to be used by U.S. strategic submarines as well as the USAF. The calibration in Sweden must be deemed irrelevant in relation to the submarines, for which the Baltic Sea could be written off as an oper- ational area.

On the other hand, it is the opinion of the Commission that the calibration of Loran C, particularly close to the Swedish East Coast, could have contributed to the USAF capabilities of precision navigation over the Baltic Sea and surrounding land areas. The improved precision attained with Loran C can, in the case of bomber aviation, be deemed significant for nuclear as well as conventional strikes. In addition, this precision was presumably valuable for reconnaissance flights in the Baltic Sea area. All in all, this leads to the conclusion that the calibration was of significance for the effectiveness of, in the first place, so called "indirect assistance", a matter discussed by the Commission in section 3.3 and to be considered in the overall assessment.

The Commission can establish that it was clear to FOA that Loran C could also be utilized by the USAF. However, the Commission has found no evidence of this insight being communicated to the Defence Staff, neither in the context of the U.S. request nor otherwise. Nor has anything emerged to indicate that the issue of USAF use of Loran C was discussed in contacts between the National Defence and the Government at this point in time.

6.6.5. Airbases and associated issues


In the early 1950s, the Swedish Air Force, following a progressive build up begun during the war, emerged as one of the Strongest in Western Europe, surpassed only by the RAF. Already at this time, the Swedish Air Force had a special "Swedish" profile differing considerably from that of the Western great powers. Thus, the emphasis was on air defence, and the aircraft were usually of limited range reflecting Sweden's defence requirements. Hence, Swedish aircraft (e.g., J 29 Tunnan, the "Flying Barrel") were lightweight, putting limited require- ments on the length and load capacity of runways at Swedish airbases.

The medium strike aircraft (A 32 Lansen) introduced later in the 1950s also had fairly moderate base requirements, yet obviously higher than those of the J 29.

At the same time, Western military aviation developed along a path founded on experiences gained during World War II. More and more interest was focused on heavy offensive air. Demands for heavier loads and longer ranges, in particular, continued to grow, reaching a stage where the United States introduced the B-52. In "normal" conditions this made possible non-stop return flights from the United States to the Soviet Union without refuelling stops. Escort fighters in use at least until the mid-1950s, also required relatively long ranges and were consequently larger and heavier than Swedish aircraft. By Swedish standards, all these types of aircraft made great demands on base capacity as to runway length, load capacity, and for bombers also runway width.

Against this background, it is clear that cooperation with Western military aviation involving the use of Swedish airbases to the extent contemplated - raised the issue of whether Swedish bases were adequate. The Commission has reviewed the deliberations on cooperation with the West in runway expansion and what practical steps were taken. In the following, the Commission also describes the deliberations and measures inter alia concerning arrangements for the aircraft refuelling which could have indicated combined use of air bases with the Western Powers.

High-level civilian and military considerations concerning airbases General Carl Eric Almgren (Ret), Chief of the Defence Staff 1961—67, said in a radio interview broadcast in the spring of 1992, just before the Commission was appointed, that attempts were made to extend runways so that NATO-aircraft could also use them. The measures were said to have concerned less than ten airbases in various parts of Sweden and to have been intended for U.S. fighter as well as strike aviation.

Carl Eric Almgren has also appeared before the Commission supplementing the above information as follows. The main purpose of the expansions was to satisfy Swedish Air Force requirements. At the time (from the end of the 1950s onwards) the Air Force was re—equipped with aircraft requiring longer runways with greater load capacity (probably referring primarily to the A 32 strike version). At the same time, he acknowledged that it was realized that the expanded runways could be put to use in the event of a foreign power coming to our aid. However, this was probably not the primary purpose.

The role of Swedish airbases in relation to the Western great powers (mainly the United Sates) was evidently an important issue in top—level government-to—high command discussions during the first post—war years.

Western interest in Swedish airbases was one of the items discussed at a briefing on military strategic matters before the Cabinet on 20 April 1948 by the Supreme Commander, Jung, and the Chief of the Defence Staff, Swedlund. According to notes made, the following discussion took place.

Prime Minister Erlander: Has the Supreme Commander analysed basing of Western aviation in a wider context? Supreme Commander Jung: Since the issue is of such a sensitive nature, and because of several studies under way as well as committee assignments, it has not been possible to analyse this matter. Should you, Mr. Prime Minister, so instruct the Supreme Commander, I would of course be happy to initiate such a study. Prime Minister Erlander: the Defence Staff should continue to analyse the question of U.S. bases in Sweden, particularly in view of the costs incurred by the United States, and whether the benefits would justify the costs. More detailed instructions will be issued to the Supreme Commander.

Between 1953-59, Olle Karleby was the Under-Secretary of State for Defence. He has told the Commission that the expansion of Swedish airbases in the 1950s had a dual purpose. One was to adapt to new aircraft generations in the Swedish Air Force, requiring longer and sturdier runways. The other was to make feasible the reception of possible allied aircraft.

The former leader of the Conservative party, Jarl Hjalmarson, said for his part, that the 1955 Defence Committee received a military report on how certain runways had already been reinforced and extended with potential cooperation with the West in mind. As far as Hjalmarson could recall, the information met with no objections.

Stig Synnergren, Supreme Commander 1970-78, has told the Commis- sion that, building on World War II experiences, there were plans to expand certain airbases in the event of increased preparedness, enabling them to receive larger and heavier aircraft. Thus, preparations concerned runway length as well as load capacity.

The Commission has questioned a further number of high officials, earlier affiliated to either the Air Force or the Defence Staff, on airbase issues. Many of those interviewed have stressed that the gradually evolving Swedish airbase concept, with its basic structure characterized by a multitude of small, dispersed bases, in effect rendered cooperation with foreign air forces more difficult.

It has also been emphasized that civilian aviation interests influenced the capacity of several airfields. This applied for example to Luleå, Östersund, Kramfors, Växjö, Kalmar, Halmstad, Ronneby, and Ängelholm. Civil aviation war assignments were also taken into account.

Opinions have been divided on whether the possibility of foreign

aircraft using Swedish military airfields really was incorporated in the actual plans. One of the officers interviewed had never heard of this aspect at all; another did apparently participate in discussions but does not believe that any practical measures were taken. Yet another has noted that the combination of Swedish military and civilian interests produced a situation where heavier foreign military aircraft could also have been received at the bases, albeit he had not interpreted this to be the purpose. Finally, there exists an opinion that thoughts given to foreign military aviation figured fairly prominently in actual decisions. One of these sources has also designated a specific base or runway. located in Eastern central Sweden as directly dimensioned for U.S. bombers, while another source has referred to a runway in Southern Sweden. This spectrum of opinions does not seem remarkable considering the strict secrecy with which the capabilities of airbases was surrounded. Hence, only a handful of persons can be assumed to have had the full overview of the actual state of affairs.

In one case, the interest in receiving Western aviation at Swedish airbases led to requests being made abroad for relevant information on aircraft performance. Thus, in a letter to the Swedish military attaché in London in 1960, the Air Staffs intelligence department requested data on landing gear tyre diameter and ground pressure for a number of British aircraft, namely Valiant, Victor, Vulcan, Beverley and Hastings. At the same time, information was requested on aircraft navigational and landing aids from a list submitted earlier. "Bearing in mind that this information is needed to explore the possibilities of NATO [transport aircraft] using our bases, a certain measure of accommodation could be expected from those authorities which could help you obtain this information. "

To this could be added that the designation "transport aircraft" was hardly comprehensive. At least two of the aircraft listed, Victor and Vulcan, were bombers primarily intended to carry nuclear weapons, and part of the RAF Bomber Command.

Actual expansion of main Swedish Air Force runways

The Commission has been informed of the capability of the main runways in the Swedish airbase system in the 1950s and 1960s as to length, width, and load capacity. The purpose has been to correlate these figures with Swedish Air Force or Air Materiel Administration require- ments, derived from the intended peacetime and wartime use of the bases, as well as from existing or planned aircraft types. However, no such specifications, either general or airbase specific, have been found in archives studied by the Commission. The Commission has therefore

had to rely on interviews and expert assessments when seeking to establish whether actual runway capabilities correSponded reasonably to Swedish Air Force requirements or to those of Swedish civil aviation.


Initially, runway capacity has been compared to the assumed primary base use in the 1950s and 1960s (fighter, strike, reconnaissance, transport as well as civilian use).

Concerning combat aviation (fighter, strike, reconnaissance) it is evident that strike aircraft, requiring long runways for takeoff with heavy payloads, set the parameters. As an example of takeoff distances, the A 32 Lansen strike aircraft with maximum payload required just under 1,600 metres using afterburner, and just under 2,300 metres without (including a certain safety margin), according to the National Defence Materiel Administration. The distance quoted for takeoff without afterburner should be viewed as a rather generous upper limit of the actual requirement, as normal takeoff procedures with heavy payload should have involved the use of afterburner.

Similarly calculated, the earlier aircraft J 29 Tunnan, which had no afterburner, required 1,900 metres for take-off with maximum payload for strike sorties.

Fighters and reconnaissance aircraft probably required shorter runways.

Against this backdrop, the Commission has concluded that from the mid- or late 1950s runway length up to 2,300 metres could be warranted if intended for use by strike aircraft, while runway lengths of no more than 2,000 metres seem reasonable for fighters and reconnaissance aircraft. Furthermore, the Commisson has taken into consideration the intention for certain runways also to be used by Swedish civilian aviation in peacetime, or as part of the total defence effort in war. In addition, we have taken into account that training, test flights, and night fighters might have placed special requirements on runway lengths and widths.

For reasons of military secrecy, a detailed account of Swedish base system data is precluded. The Commission can, however, establish that the majority of Swedish airbases can be viewed as having been con- structed according to national requirements, considering the above criteria.

At the same time, we note that a lesser number of runways in the 1950s and 19605, primarily located close to the Swedish East Coast, were of a length and width somewhat exeeding what can be derived from the above criteria. The so-called Atlantic runway at the F 16 Air Force Base in Uppsala, which has attracted media attention is, however, not

one of these.

The Commission's concluding assessment is that, during the period studied, certain steps were taken to make take-off and landing by Western military aircraft at Swedish airbases possible to a limited extent. The measures per se were to be seen as providing freedom of action in a technical sense, to be used pending a superior decision. The Commis- sion will return to the possible strategic motives behind the measures taken (Cf section 6.9).

6.6.6. Aviation fuel Background

The Commission has interviewed two former high-ranking officials of the Air Materiel Administration/National Defence Materiel Administra- tion (FMV) on inter alia aviation fuel. The emerging picture is unequivocal.

Thus, in 1960 or a few years earlier, the Swedish Air Force decided to switch aviation fuels and, simultaneously, to introduce high—pressure refuelling for new aircraft. This was first used on the new aircraft 32 Lansen, which thereby achieved substantially shorter refuelling times than were planned for when the aircraft was originally conceived. The changes thus resulted in substantial tactical advantages.

The new fuel was of NATO standard type, which in peacetime had the advantage of being readily available on the international market. Parallel to switching fuels, the Swedish Air Force changed to a type of fueling couplings, also better adapted to NATO standard.

Both sources have said that resultant greater capability for coordination with Western air forces was discussed when making these changes. In addition, one of the sources has told the Commission what he perceived as the unofficial view within the Air Force on measures facilitating potential cooperation with the West in 1960. This view was that such steps should be taken to the extent reasonably justified by Swedish national interests.


The Commission finds that the switch to high pressure refuelling and new aviation fuel within the Swedish Air Force would have been imperative, sooner or later, in view of technological and tactical develop- ments in military aviation. Furthermore, these measures can be deemed warranted, considering the commercial supply of aviation fuel. The

switch of fuel nozzles would have been beneficial in the context of the so—called SVENORDA-flights and other international peacetime exchanges. This does not, in the Commission's opinion, rule out the possibility that an effort to improve the technical preconditions for cooperation with the West may also have encouraged these measures.

An overall examination of navigational aids used by the Swedish Air Force has revealed nothing of note with reference to the Commission's mandate.

6.6.7. Base duty Background

The Commission has furthermore studied whether Air Force base procedures were devised in a way indicating that combined air operations from Swedish airbases were prepared for. The following has emerged.

A memorandum, "Memo on Western air assistance", prepared within the Defence Staff in 1955, focuses on strategic and technical prerequi- sites for cooperation at Swedish airbases. It is evident that such cooperation requires considerable preparations.

It is not the movement per se of a unit to Sweden that constitutes a problem, but on arrival - bringing all cogs in the complex air defence and cooperation machinery to bear is the major one. Friction of all kinds can be anticipated, imperilling the entire assistance effort unless careful and time-consuming preparations have been made.

It is clear from the context that the author implied that such preparations had not been made.

Several sources, furthermore, state that the Air Force base organiz- ation and other support systems, far from being overdimensioned, during the 1950s rather were deprived. Thus, we had many aircraft and pilots but "very thin logistics." The weaknesses in the base organization remained in the 1960s.


Thus nothing has emerged to indicate that the Air Force base organiz- ation was dimensioned to allow foreign air forces to operate on any larger scale from Swedish bases.

6.7. Preparations for wartime acquisition of equip- ment and supplies

The endurance of the Swedish National Defence in a longer war was, despite extensive storage of strategically important goods, dependent on imports of military equipment and other essential war supplies. In the event of an imminent risk or outbreak of war it was thus an important task to acquire abroad the goods required and to arrange their trans- portation to Sweden. "To keep the gateway to the West open for receiving supplies is one of the key elements of our strategy." The United Kingdom and the United States were foreseen as the principal supplier countries; already in peacetime they were the main suppliers of military equipment to Sweden (Cf section 5.2).

The competition for equipment and supplies as well as cargo space in such a contingency would presumably be tough. The United States and the United Kingdom would probably first seek to meet the needs of the

» NATO states. Furthermore, large forces would be brought across the * Atlantic to the Central European theatre. In that context, the Swedish merchant fleet, in the early 19505 one of the ten” largest in the world, ? could consitute a bargaining chip. By placing Swedish ships at the * disposal of the Western Powers, Sweden could hope for more favourable l treatment in other respects. Swedish civil aviation, i.e. primarily the Swedish part of Scandinavian Airlines (SAS), could also play a certain ] part in this. ! Whether Sweden would actually receive any wartime military ] deliveries was unclear. The Supreme Commander, Jung, wrote in March 1949 to the U.S. ambassador in Stockholm and pointed out inter alla the dependence of the Swedish National Defence on imports from the United States of military equipment (radar, radio equipment, and vehicles) in order to be capable of resisting a Soviet attack for any length of time. The answer he received was general and non—commital. In a conversation with the British naval attaché in Stockholm, Defence Minister Vougt intimated that he counted on the United Kingdom providing such . deliveries. The British view, however, was that the Swedes had to be well aware that since Sweden had chosen to remain outside the Western r defence system, it could not count on the same treatment as participating states. Repeatedly, it had been pointed out that the requirements of allied states inevitably took precedence. Within these limits it was in British interests, however, to supply Sweden with the equipment needed. And this position could also be expected to remain valid in wartime, on condition that Sweden continued to maintain an effective defence and would defend itself if attacked. No more specific commitments on the kind and extent of such wartime deliveries could be made, and they had to depend on circumstances. The Swedish military attaché in London had

been told much the same in the spring of 1949.

Available sources do not show whether this rather cautious Western position on the Swedish requirements for war - to be seen at least partly in the light of the U.S.—British campaign for Swedish alignment with the West was modified with the passing of time. One might assume that the U.S. and British inclination to commit themselves to wartime deliveries to Sweden of important supplies increased, as hopes of influencing Sweden to join NATO were written off and NATO resources grew. But the fundamental principle that the requirements of NATO states took precedence probably remained unaltered.

According to British information, the Swedish Defence Staff made a request to the NATO Standing Group in Washington in April 1954. Information was provided on the strength of the Swedish armed forces and on wartime logistical requirements. The request was perceived by the British as an attempt to secure logistical supplies in an emergency without any of the commitments NATO membership entailed. To its surprise, the British Government noted that the request appeared to have been made with the knowledge and consent of the Swedish Government. In connection with acknowledging receipt of the message, the NATO Standing Group is said to have asked the Swedes for an analysis of the tonnage required for their logistical needs.

That the Swedish expected or at least hoped that the Western Powers in the event of a Soviet attack would assist Sweden, e.g. with petrol, oil, coal, military equipment, and certain raw materials, and semi-finished goods for the war industry, is clear from preconditions given in certain military games and exercises.

The Defence Staff was in charge of planning imports to meet the requirements of the armed forces, while the task of managing the very extensive imports for the remainder of the Swedish national economy devolved on the National Committee for Economic Defence Preparedness (Riksnämnden för ekonomisk försvarsberedskap), later the National Board for Economic Defence (Överstyrelsen förekonomiskt försvar). The latter form of import planning is not discussed in this report.

Defence Stajf import planning

Analyses in the early 1950s estimated the import requirements of the Swedish armed forces, beginning in the third month of war, at almost 73,000 tonnes of equipment, primarily ammunition, weapons, and vehicles, and 122,000 tonnes of fuel for cars, aircraft, etc. At the end of the 1960s, the requirements had been adjusted upwards to almost 250,000 tonnes per month of war, of which more than 85 per cent consisted of fuels.

In a 1953 Defence Staff document to the military attachés in London and Washington, it was pointed out that for the endurance of the Swedish armed forces in war, it was important that the possibilities of importing military equipment from the United Kingdom, the United States, and other countries should be secured. The Defence _Staff, in consultation with the service material administrations, had investigated the possibiliti- es of using Western-manufactured military equipment to meet the immediate needs of the Swedish armed forces. Theinvestigations had resulted in lists of types of desired equipment, quantities, point in time (month of war) when the equipment should be accessible, and an assessment of what country could presumably deliver the equipment. The intention was for the lists, in the event of an outbreak of war, to be presented, through Swedish diplomatic missions, to relevant authorities in each country as a basis for negotiation. At the outbreak of war, special purchasing delegations would immediately travel to the United Kingdom and the United States to reinforce the missions in managing these issues. Negotiations in these matters were not to be started with authorities in the respective countries in peacetime. Nor was it permitted to mention that these documents existed. If Sweden were drawn into war, the missions were not to await any further directives from Swedish authorities. All efforts were to be directed towards acquiring the equipment and tonnage for its transportation to Sweden. It was finally stated that the lists of equipment would be continuously revised, and that consultation on this matter had taken place with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the National Committee for Economic Defence Preparedness.

In keeping with the 1953 document, the lists appear to have been kept up to date at least well into the 1950s. One 1957 proposal by the Navy Materiel Administration for revision has thus been found. Thereafter it appears that this up-dating lost relevance for a number of years. This can be linked to convictions in the late 19505 that a possible war would open with a violent nuclear exchange between the great powers. For a considerable time following the outbreak of war, ocean shipping was expected to have been brought to a halt, and planning for the period thereafter was hardly worthwhile.

In 1969, however, the Supreme Commander issued a document on imports of supplies in war or under imminent threat of war. The document was sent to the service chiefs and certain defence authorities as well as the defence attachés in London, Washington, and Ottawa. Initially, it was stated that the Government had authorized the Supreme Commander to plan, in consultation with the National Board for Econo- mic Defence, for rapid imports of supplies for the armed forces in war or under threat of war. In this context, the Government had decreed that instructions on negotiations with foreign authorities were not to be issued

by the Supreme Commander without special authorization by the Minister of Defence. In all else, the text shows striking similarities with the substance of the 1953 document.


In the spring of 1952, the Defence Staff presented air-transport require— ments for high—priority equipment — for periods of national state of alert and war - to the Civil Aviation Board (Luftfartsstyrelsen). Requirements were for 90 per cent of Swedish civil aviation to be designated ex— clusively for military importation. In quantitative terms, however, sea transportation across the Atlantic and the North Sea would totally dominate war imports. Issues concerning the protection of these imports have been discussed in section 6.5.

In World War II, the bulk of the Swedish ocean—going merchant fleet was engaged on the allied side. Already in December 1939, a shipping agreement was reached on placing Swedish tonnage at the disposal of the allies. The parties to this agreement were the British Ministry of Shipping, and the Swedish so—called 1939 Shipping Committee. This committee was appointed by the Swedish Shipowners” Association (Sveriges Redareförening), primarily to channel shipping industry contacts with the government authorities dealing with shipping matters in times of crisis. The principal shipowners of the leading Swedish shipping companies were members of the committee. After the end of the war, Sweden joined the allied shipping pool and more than 200 Swedish ships participated in transportation for the support and recon- struction of the war-torn countries.

In the 1950s and 1960s, the Swedish merchant fleet was relatively large. Only a minor part of it was needed for meeting Swedish import requirements. In the event of blockade and war, the ocean-going tonnage at sea would also be of international significance. In such a situation, it could be presupposed that the merchant fleet, whether Sweden was at war or not, would be subjected to some form of centralized management, at least in waters affected by the conflict. Shipowners judged that there were hardly any alternatives to letting the tonnage, voluntarily or not, join the Western shipping pool.

The 1939 Shipping Committee continued to exist on paper. Partly in the shadow of the Korean War, however, the committee was revived on the Governmenfs initiative. The purpose was to prevent the Swedish merchant fleet from being seized by foreign authorities in a war, and to secure imports of essential equipment and supplies. This would be achieved by Sweden declaring itself prepared to place hulls at the disposal of the Western Powers. Both sides maintained a preparedness

to initiate talks on this matter. No other activities occurred. This should be viewed as a Government option. As a precautionary measure, the Government together with the Shipowners” Association appointed representatives in London and New York for the event of war or similar contingencies to be authorized as their agents. These representatives were furnished with certain up-to—date information on the Swedish merchant fleet.

Following the 1962 Cuba Crisis, the 1939 Shipping Committee was reactivated. Representatives abroad were also appointed, for example, in Australia and on the U.S. West Coast. Discussions were initiated with government authorities on the mandate of the committee. According to one proposal, the committee was - in times of blockade and war — to liaise between the Government and the merchant fleet; and in a crisis, appropriately broker the use of the merchant fleet - which was of such significance to the Swedish Government, e.g. trading its services for imports. Were Sweden to be forced into a war and the merchant fleet placed in a wider international context, the committee was to become an executive body for merchant fleet contributions to common war efforts.

On the initiative of the Shipowners' Association, a proposal for how to organize preparedness was developed in the spring of 1964. The report proposed inter alia that the 1939 Shipping Committee's position within the total defence should be more closely defined by the authoriti- es. Instructions for the representatives abroad should be elaborated. The convoy-duty handbook, prepared by the Navy in accordance with NATO standards, should be augmented and, if possible, be distributed to Swedish merchant vessel captains already in peacetime. In consonance with an earlier proposal (the 1958 report "Merchant Fleet Preparedness " by the Committee on Shipping Preparedness Issues) Swedish merchant vessels should be structurally reinforced to facilitate the wartime mounting of artillery for self-defence, and be equipped with anti- magnetic protection. This should consitute a precondition for Swedish merchant vessels joining NATO convoys.

The proposals mentioned do not appear to have been implemented to any greater extent.

The Civil Aviation Administration, formerly the Civil Aviation Board, is responsible within the total defence for planning for the wartime use of Swedish civilian aircraft.

In late 1949, the Director General of the Civil Aviation Board took the initative in talks with the British air attaché in Stockholm on transferring that part of the Swedish civilian aircraft fleet not to be used by the armed forces, i.e. eight DC-6s, to Great Britain at the outbreak of war. According to the British view, the Swedish Government was not informed of these talks. Both the British Foreign Office and the Air

Ministry viewed such a transfer as very important. The British were also interested in the transportation to Great Britain of Scandinavian Airlines maintenance personnel in a crisis. Further talks between representatives of the Swedish Civil Aviation Board and the British air attaché took place in the spring and late autumn of 1950. On the latter occasion, the Director General was able to inform the air attaché that he was now prepared to discuss the matter with the Foreign Office and the British Ministry of aviation.

Sources do not reveal whether such talks took place between the Civil Aviation Board and the British authorities. A new Director General who took over at the Civil Aviation Board in 1952 had some contacts with the British on safe—conduct air traffic between Sweden and Great Britain, but reached no agreement with them. On the other hand, he eventually negotiated an agreement with the U.S. Civil Aviation Administration on safe-conduct air traffic between Sweden and the United States. The agreement stated what aircraft were allowed to land in the United States in wartime, airports to be used, and maintenance required, etc.

A certain preparedness thus existed within the shipping industry for wartime coordination of Swedish transportation assets with those of the Western Powers. The hopes were that such a coordination could have contributed to a favourable position on the part of the Western Powers on permitting Swedish ships with cargo destined to Sweden to join their convoys across the Atlantic and the North Sea. Similar planning existed also for civilian aviation.

6.8. Preparations for resistance in the event of occupation


If the regular defence collapses and a country in effect comes completely or partly under enemy control, the area is considered to be occupied. In such a situation, the population may actively or passively resist the intruder, helping to force him out of the country, and ultimately, to restore a legal government.

During the World War II German occupation of large areas of Europe, underground forces were organized in several of the conquered countries. These forces engaged among other things in sabotage aimed at the occupying power. There was also passive resistance, e.g. demonstrations and publishing of illegal newspapers. The resistance movements were combatted with great brutality.

In the light of World War H experiences, the Geneva Conventions were adopted in 1949. 011 certain conditions these offer members of a resistance movement the same protection as combatants. Among other things, members must be under the command of a person responsible for his subordinates, and be subject to an internal disciplinary system.

Successful resistance depends to a great extent on the cohesion of groups, professions, industries, non-profit, religious, union organizations and associations, etc. The individual citizen lacking the support of a group or organization has small chances of resisting occupier demands. The chances of success increase if authorities and the general public are somewhat prepared for what can happen.

In an occupied country, it is of course impossible for the Government to exercise any independent authority. The Government can therefore choose to reside outside the occupier's reach and from a protected area lead the fight for the country”s liberation. Also the head of state can in exile actively contribute towards strengthening the morale of the popula— tion. Evacuation of the head of state and the Government may need to be prepared already in peacetime.

In peacetime, steps can be taken to recruit reliable people who, in the event of occupation, can form the core of a resistance movement. Such persons can be supplied with communications equipment and be trained in signalling procedures so that the future resistance groups directly or indirectly will be able to maintain contact with a command authority outside occupied territory. In addition, armaments can be acquired and training be provided in their use. A network of this kind is often called a stay-behind organization.

A resistance movement cannot usually liberate the country on its own, but is dependent on external assistance. It can require materiel and

advisers from abroad to implement its operations. By collecting intelli— gence and forwarding it to an allied power, a resistance movement can help to make military actions effective against the occupier. A resistance movement can assist allied military personnel in emergencies, for example pilots forced to bail out.

Against this background, a stay-behind organization can have reason to cultivate contacts in peacetime with representatives of potential providers of assistance abroad. Through such contacts, both sides can determine what persons to cooperate and create personal relations of trust with. More or less far-reaching joint planning can also be carried out.

Preparations for resistance movements in Sweden

Should Sweden be occupied, resistance is presumed to continue inter alia in the form of guerilla warfare. Calls for resistance were earlier found under the designation "If war comes" in brochures and directions to the general public, e.g. in the phone book. It has been reported that prepara— tions for such resistance had been made in peacetime.

In 1951-53, the CIA staff member William Colby served as a junior diplomat at the U.S. Embassy in Stockholm. In his memoirs, he has reported that his task was to build up stay-behind networks in Denmark, Finland, Norway, and Sweden. According to Colby, the conditions for his work varied to a great extent between the countries. Thus, in one of the countries he could cooperate openly with national intelligence agencies and with their assistance choose future leaders of the resistance for CIA training in guerilla warfare, sabotage techniques, etc. In another country he secretly established contacts with reliable citizens through Americans living there. Colby does not expressly state the situation in each country, but apparently, his ability to operate depended on the country's security political situation. According to reports in Swedish newspapers in the early 1990s, Colbyis operations in Sweden were not particularly extensive. He is, however, said to have recruited and equipped a few resistance leaders. One writer claims that the Swedish Government approved of the CIA, in cooperation with Swedish organizations, conducting & number of activities in Sweden, such as the establishment of para-military units. According to this writer, Colby should have said that the Swedish Government was aware of his work in Sweden in the 1950s, and approved of it.

The newspaper articles also included reports of a Swedish stay-behind organization, basically to the following effect.

The main task of the organization is said to have been to function as the framework of a Swedish resistance movement which would become active in the event of a Soviet attack on Sweden. For this purpose, a

number of resistance leaders is said to have been recruited and trained, for example in sabotage technique and radio communications. In addition, it was stated that special weapons and fuel supplies were to have been laid up and radio transmitters placed out in different locations. The organization is also said to have been tasked with securing that the Royal Family, the Government, the Parliament's war delegation and the National Defence Headquarters, for example, were evacuated abroad. From there, a Swedish Government in exile was to lead the continued resistance.

Alvar Lindencrona, an insurance company executive, was reportedly the leader of the organization. From 1958, he is to have acted at the request of the Prime Minister, Tage Erlander, and the organization was placed under the Ministry of the Interior. Reportedly, Colby”s contacts were transferred that same year to the Swedish Government, and the CIA contributed to the organization”s resources by donating the war— chest that Colby had provided for his resistance leaders. In 1968, responsibility for the organization is said to have been transferred to the Ministry of Defence. The organization was reportedly financed mainly by the Government budget.

Lindencrona is said to have reported to a "council" representing various parts of society, e.g. the Swedish Trade Union Confederation, the Swedish Employers, Confederation, and the National Farmer's Union. Also admitted were certain Members of Parliament, some military officers, a few industrial leaders and other industrial representa- tives. The council's task was to establish the organization and its leaders across party boundaries and social classes.

One of the most delicate tasks of the organization was reportedly to secure foreign support for Swedish resistance. To this end, Lindencrona purportedly maintained contacts with the CIA as well as with the British intelligence agency MI 6, which were informed of the activities of the organization. In the event of Sweden being occupied, contact was to be maintained with CIA headquarters in London and Swedish resistance thus coordinated with such activities elsewhere in Europe. The CIA would supply a Swedish resistance movement with weapons and other equip- ment.

A good deal of the above corresponds to what the Commission itself has been able to establish. The Commission has not, however, had cause to examine this information in detail.

The picture that the Commission has obtained of preparations for a resistance movement in Sweden is mostly based on verbal information.

No written primary sources, if any existed, have been found. Tage Erlander”s diary notes, however, offer certain insights into the activities. To the Commission, such activities are of interest only if they implied

preparations to receive military assistance from other states.

There is reason to emphasize that planning for Swedish resistance in the event of the country being occupied is not defeatist. On the contrary, it is an expression of the will to ultimately uphold the country”s indepen— dence and survival as a free nation. In such planning, preparations for armed resistance against the occupier are prominent. It is in the nature of things that such planning has to be surrounded by the utmost secrecy. Even information concerning conditions quite long ago may still have to be protected.

The information on how extensive Colby”s network was has varied. One source has claimed that he established quite an extensive network of contacts also including contacts with Swedish authorities, especially T-office. Another source has argued that Colby did not have time to accomplish a lot in Sweden and that it may have been considerably more difficult for him to operate here than in certain other countries. However this may be, it appears evident that the activities initiated by U.S.

initiative were eventually wound up. They probably ceased altogether in about 1960.

Parallel to these activities, there existed, at least since the early 1950s, a framework for a Swedish resistance movement linked to the unions, industry, and the National Defence. In 1958, this organization was placed under Government supervision. Erlander's diary notes, however, show that the Prime Minister and one additional minister were already kept informed of the activities prior to 1958. The activities, earlier financed by industry contributions, were from now on financed out of taxation revenue and one or a few ministers regularly attended the meetings held by the executive group once or twice a year. The activities were managed entirely by Swedes.

This did not preclude the existence of contacts between, on the one hand, representatives of the organization and, on the other, U.S. and British Embassy officials in Stockholm and other foreign officials. These contacts, on which the Commission has not been able to receive any detailed information, were probably aimed primarily at making it possible for a resistance movement in a Soviet-occupied Sweden to receive material assistance from the Western Powers. It should also have been important for the organization to plan connections with a Swedish government in exile. Apart from the acquisition of certain radio equip- ment, little if any action appears to have been taken.

6.9. Concluding assessment of military preparations for cooperation with the West

Measures taken

In this chapter, the Commission has presented the findings of its examinations of measures actually taken within the Swedish National Defence for cooperation with the West. In addition, certain aspects of preparations within other parts of Sweden*s total defences have been illustrated.

Military measures can mainly be characterized as relating either to organization/personnel or to equipment.

The organization/personnel measures are primarily those described in section 6.3, on the Defence Headquarters organization for cooperation. Furthermore, a certain backdrop is provided in the section 6.2 account of studies, games, and exercises. An overall picture emerges, showing that there existed a certain personnel preparedness in the 1950s and 1960s, to establish operational military cooperation with those Western Powers important to us, i.e. the United States, the United Kingdom, Norway, and to some extent Denmark. (T 0 this were added correspon— ding preparations for intensified acquisition of equipment. These will not be discussed in the following.) Nothing - the connection with USAFE headquarters in Wiesbaden excepted — has been found to indicate that Swedish Defence Headquarters preparations were carried out beyond exclusively Swedish confines.

Only a few of those detailed for liaison duty abroad were informed of their wartime duties. The studies, games and exercises described indicate that, when external assistance was discussed within the Defence Staff, the opinions were fairly vague and divergent as to what cooperation tasks would have been given priority had planning been implemented. At the same time, it is clear that especially "direct" assistance from the Western Powers, involving relatively close cooperation with Western forces in the defence of Sweden would have required extensive preparations. This is shown above, especially in the account of the 1958 Defence Decision, and will be further discussed below. Against this background, the organizational/personnel preparations to receive direct assistance can be described as rudimentary.

The physical measures can in principle be categorized as preparations within the areas of ground, naval, and air operations, as well as technical preparations within the field of command and control.

Regarding ground operations nothing has been found indicating preparations for reception of external assistance. Nevertheless, it appears that certain preparations for a combined planning between Sweden and Norway were made in the early 1950s, mainly involving Swedish ground

forces in certain contingencies conceivably operating on Norwegian territory. This has been established more clearly in section 6.4 above. No physical measures linked to the reception of assistance for ground operations have been found (Cf section 5.2 on peacetime equipment procurement, however).

As to naval operations, there was apparently a general exchange of ideas within the Navy, and to some extent also with certain foreign representatives, as described in section 6.5 , above. These ideas primarily concerned the escort of shipping in the Skagerrak and the North Sea and appear to have had a very limited impact on the coordinating level of the Defence Staff. No physical measures have been discovered within this area either, with the exception of what might have taken place in the early 19505 concerning a joint planning with Denmark for mine—laying in Öresund.

The physical measures described above can thus almost exclusively be referred to air operations and communications for operational command and control. (The boundary between these two spheres in communica- tions is vaguely defined.) The air operational measures, comprising primarily communications systems, IFF systems, navigation, and airbases, has to be viewed as limited but still significant.

Furthermore, it is notable that the technical measures related to communications also affected the preconditions for operational command and control. It is certainly evident that the swift and secure communica- tions links established with Norway, Denmark, and USAFE in West Germany — indirectly creating preconditions for other communications links with the Western system - were of very limited capacity. But they offered technical facilities for consultation and coordination primarily in an overall, strategical sense, including the exchange of general intelligen— ce assessments. In this sense, the communications links could have been of great importance for general wartime coordination, despite their evident inadequacy for far-reaching direct cooperation between armed forces.

Ilie fundamental view of external assistance in the 1955 Defence Committee

For a comprehensive interpretation of the organizational/personnel and technical measures described above, the Commission wishes to start with chapter 3 above, and the assessments in connection with the 1958 Defence Decision discussed there.

In section 3.3, the Commission has accounted for its conclusion that the secretariat memorandum of the 1955 Defence Committe should be seen to express the Defence Ministry's view on external assistance

during the 19505. The fundamental assumption was that Sweden would not for any length of time (more than some few months) be able to repel a great power attack without external military support. It was established in the memorandum that it was highly unlikely that Sweden could receive direct assistance from the West at least in the opening stages (the first months) of a major war in which our country was also involved. Direct assistance referred to actions in close connection with acts of war on Swedish territory, or directed against enemy transports directly linked to these.

On the other hand, indirect assistance referred to actions directed against the aggressofs staging areas or war potential in general: "Indirect assistance can be given in various ways and can be just as important as direct assistance. In fact, indirect assistance can be expected to mean most to us in a war." Indirect assistance was then illustrated primarily by "interdiction of airbases, naval bases, embarkation ports from which attacks could be launched Åse on us, as well as associated lines of communication". (An additional, important type of indirect assistance was deemed to be any operations tying down the aggressor”s forces.) The context made clear that the attacks on airbases, ports, etc., primarily were to be carried out in the form of "air strikes with or without atomic weapons".

An important implication of the memorandum is thus that, from the mid-1950s on, it is the possible support of the defence of Sweden from the side of the Western great powers (the United States and to a certain extent the United Kingdom) that was discussed. There was no longer, however, any reference made to Scandinavian defence cooperation and its intrinsic prospects of improving the situation for Sweden's defence. Nor do the Commission's sources indicate that any Swedish interest in exclusive Scandinavian cooperation was later awakened.

In the memorandum, it was furthermore discussed what could be done to promote direct assistance of a type in effect bordering on indirect assistance (i.e. limited employment of strike and bomber units). Here, the following types of measures were mentioned: personal contacts, to be expanded when war threatened,

- secure and sufficient means of communications, - overall coordination of air operations, — certain coordination of air surveillance,

- exchange of air defence intelligence and general intelligence.

In its studies, the Commission has not come across anything indicating that the view of principle on external assistance accounted for above was changed later in the period covered by the Commission”s mandate. No comprehensive assessment on this issue from the period after 1956 has

been found. We will return in the next chapter to consider what knowledge the Government and Parliament and their key representatives had of the assessments just described.

Aims and measures - synthesis

It is evident that the measures actually taken did not by a long way create preconditions for receiving any larger-scale external direct assistance. The Commission's sources thus show that any such reception of assistance would have required a demanding operational/tactical integration with the West in a number of important aspects: operational coordination and exercises, and in addition comprehensive technical measures concerning command and control, air surveillance, communica- tions, and base duty, as well as coordination measures in important tactical aspects including exercises. Contemporary international examples of requisite measures for such a purpose is NATO's common air defence organization NADGE (NATO Air Defence Ground Environment System), and also the so-called COBs (Collocated Operational Bases) organized following an agreement between Norway and the United States in 1974. In the field of ground operations, the prepositioning of stocks, etc. in Norway for the U.S. Marine Expeditionary Brigade constitutes a corresponding example. The measures taken (including investments) in these contexts have been very extensive. Against this background it is evident even though similar coordination probably would have been somewhat less complicated in the 1950s and 19608, that the Swedish measures discussed above were marginal in comparison with a potential aim to prepare reception of direct assistance.

In view of this and the 1955 Defence Committee, the Commission judges that the measures taken by the Swedish National Defence to receive external assistance, discussed above, should mainly be seen in the light of so-called indirect assistance or of such direct assistance bordering on the indirect.

Sweden apparently never seriously considered requesting formal guarantees from the United States and possibly the United Kingdom of assistance in the event of an attack. (Besides, it is highly unlikely that the Western great powers would have been prepared to make such commit— ments.) Sweden could, however, take a number of military measures to optimize the prospects of such great power support in war. Such measures were also specified by the 1955 Defence Committee as shown above.

The indirect assistance that could become relevant for Sweden was thus mostly strategic bombing operations (with or without nuclear weapons) against airbases and embarkation ports across the Baltic Sea.

During the period in question, from the mid-1950s onwards, this aviation acquired inter-continental range. Thus, there was no longer any need for routine refuelling stops in Sweden. Since the tactic of fighter escort for bombers was being phased out, there was no need either for using Swedish airbases in this context.

The previous section discussed five categories of measures (concerning personal contacts, communications, coordination of air operations, coordination of air surveillance, and intelligence exchange) which prior to the 1958 Defence Decision had been identified as being of key importance in the context of receiving assistance. These five categories correspond closely to what was actually implemented. The Commission would here like to comment on the various categories, without entering into any comprehensive discussion of intelligence exchange, as this, in our opinion, was not part of the Commission's mandate.

Concerning personal contacts it has thus been shown that high-level peacetime military contacts were maintained with key Western states. A significant effect of this might have been the creation of a general understanding of Sweden's strategic situation and defence capabilities. Furthermore, sometimes personal friendships developed, probably deemed valuable to the Swedish. In addition to this, plans existed to dispatch delegations to relevant countries in a crisis. Most of the delegation tasks consisted of other duties (for example intensified procurement) but highly qualified operational skills were also represented in delegation leadership (retired service chief, etc.). This latter planning has been of limited extent except for a period in the early 1960s when planning temporarily appeared to have been of somewhat greater extent for a few years.

Furthermore, it was shown above that secure means of communica- tions (radio relay links) existed with Norway and Denmark, and that the links could be connected further into the NATO system. The capacity of these links was very limited but must nevertheless be considered to have been sufficient to enable a certain overall strategic or operational coordination.

The means of communications and their organisation within the air defence system should furthermore have created preconditions for a general coordination of air operations in the sense that it was technically possible to manage Western bombers en route to the Soviet Union via Swedish airspace, without the aircraft being inadvertently fired upon by Swedish air defences. As a result of the calibration of Loran C, navigation had become more precise. (It remains, however, unclear whether this was an outflow of a coherent Swedish strategy or an unintentional consequence of deliberations on civilian shipping and aviation.)

The expansion of runways close to the Swedish East Coast appears puzzling at first. Such base locations would have been exposed to attacks from the East in war. In addition, as mentioned above, there was no need for refuelling stops by bombers or for basing escort fighters on Swedish territory. The Commission has concluded that the runway expansion as well as the IFF measures should be viewed primarily in the context of bomber return flights from the East. Thus the most reasonable explanation for the extended runways is that these were to facilitate emergency landing in the event of bombers being damaged in the course of the strike. Sweden would thus again assume its part in the context of overflights and emergency landings from the late World War II discussed at the beginning of section 6.6, above. The IFF system would also have been essential in this context for identifying and directing the returning bombers and in preventing friendly fire in conjunction with actions by the Swedish air defences. It is worth mentioning that "recovery planning", (i.e. plarming for emergency landings), was the key element of Norwegian cooperation with the U.S. Strategic Air Command from the mid-1950s.

Finally, as to certain coordination of air surveillance and exchange of air defence intelligence, the Commission finds that technical prerequisites for this were at hand in the form of Swedish radar surveillance, primarily directed eastwards, and the possibility to exchange general information (but not the complete radar information, however) with various Western parties.

The Commission concludes that the measures taken were essentially aimed at creating a national freedom of action so that, in a threatening not more closely defined situation, mainly indirect assistance could be quickly received primarily from the United States, given a political decision. On the other hand, nothing has emerged to indicate that any plans for operational cooperation were developed jointly with other states, or that any formal security guarantee from any of the Western great powers existed vis-a-vis Sweden.

In all likelihood, only a very small group within the Swedish Military High Command had a complete picture of measures actually taken and of the over—arching aim behind them.

7. How much did the Government know?

7.1. Background

Key ministers and the division of labour between them

Tage Erlander was Prime Minister of Sweden throughout the period studied by this Commission. He was personally interested in and had a thorough understanding of security policy issues. At the same time, it was part of his philosophy of government to let the ministers of defence, as well as other ministers, manage their "own" portfolios as far as possible. However, the reassessment of Swedish security policy, necessi- tated by the changes in the international strategic environment in Europe after the end of World War II required the Prime Minister took an active part in the making of foreign and defence policy. Consequently, he devoted considerable effort to creating a Scandinavian defence union, and was deeply disappointed when this failed. Another reason why Erlander was engaged in defence policy issues was that he did not have complete confidence in Allan Vougt, Minister of Defence 1945-51. These factors probably contributed to why Erlander, during these years, devoted considerable effort to issues associated with the National Defence. Gradually, during the first half of the 1950s, as the international security environment in Europe stabilized, and after the change of ministers of defence, Erlander could concentrate on other issues. His working relationship was thus good and trusting with Vougt's successors, Torsten Nilsson (Minister of Defence 1951—57) and Sven Andersson (Minister of Defence 1957-73).

In his relations with the military leadership, Erlander is said to have quite emphatically asserted the obvious fact that the duty of the military authorities was to comply with the security policy laid down by the Government and Parliament, and he did not accept initiatives on their part which might discredit the official policy. In his diary entries, especially from the early 1950s, he often expressed concern for the Western orientation of the military leadership, which led him to emphasize to high-ranking officers that the course of Sweden's foreign policy was firmly set. This was especially the case with Helge Jung,

Supreme Commander 1944-51, and Bengt Nordenskiöld, Chief of the Air Force 1942-54. His relationship with Jung's successor, Nils Swedlund (Supreme Commander 1951—61), was excellent in the beginning, but deteriorated.

Östen Undén served as Minister of Foreign Affairs between 1945 and 1962. Undén was the leading ideologist and interpreter of the Swedish policy of neutrality. Initially, he conducted the foreign policy in a very independent manner, and had Erlander's full confidence. Gradually, however, Erlander encroached on Undén”s territory in the foreign policy arena. Undén*s interest in military issues was to have been limited as long as they did not directly affect foreign policy, and he was critical of the officer corps. Undén was succeeded by Torsten Nilsson (Minister of Foreign Affairs 1962—71), who had earlier served as inter alia Minister of Defence.

As mentioned above, during Allan Vougt”s tenure as Minister of Defence, Erlander, probably was directly in charge, in consultation with Undén, of security policy issues. Unlike Vougt, Torsten Nilsson and Sven Andersson held key positions in the Cabinet, belonging to the inner circle surrounding the Prime Minister. It can be assumed that they had the authorization and power to act independently within the confines of what they perceived to be general government policy. Both of them were in favour of a strong National Defence, and with the exception of certain periods, their relationship with the military leadership appears to have been one of mutual trust.

As Minister of Defence, Nilsson made certain that he was kept well- informed about military affairs. The military leadership briefed him weekly or bi-weekly. In the spring of 1953, an initiated foreign rapporteur stated, for example, referring to the relationship between Nilsson and Swedlund, that the civilian and military command structures were well-organized and completely attuned. Nilsson”s collaboration with his Under-Secretary, Olle Karleby, was close and trusting. In 1957, Nilsson left the Defence Minister post to become Minister of Social Affairs.

Andersson, too, was keen on receiving first-hand information concerning developments within the National Defence. He had frequent contacts with officers in various positions. About once every year, the Military High Command held a more comprehensive briefing for the Minister of Defence, at which the Prime Minister was sometimes present. According to Carl Eric Almgren, Chief of the Defence Staff 1961-67, these briefings raised issues relating to preparations for external military assistance. Generally, Sven Andersson put great emphasis on high-ranking officers having good international relations. "The most important thing is to have good personal contacts, because that's all that

counts if the balloon goes up in Sweden."

On sensitive issues, Andersson was very reticent towards both high- ranking officers and the civil servants in the Ministry of Defence. For a long time, he seems to have been equally restrained also towards his under—secretaries. Right from the beginning, the working relationship between Andersson and Karleby does not appear to have been very good. Andersson regarded Karleby as far too willing to acccommodate the military. In the summer of 1958, Karleby left the Ministry and was succeeded by Karl Fritiofson. Fritiofson served as Under—Secretary until 1967, when he was succeeded by Sven-Göran Olhede. In 1969, Anders Thunborg was appointed Under-Secretary. It has been said that Thunborg was the first Under-Secretary whom Andersson kept fully informed.

Within the Cabinet, more in—depth discussions on security policy issues were most probably kept within a smaller group. In addition to the Prime, Foreign, and Defence Ministers, the group did also include other influential ministers, such as Per Edvin Sköld, Gunnar Sträng, Gunnar Hedlund, and Olof Palme. Deliberations on what should be done, were Sweden attacked by the Soviet Union - the policy of neutrality thus having failed - were apparently confined to an even smaller group.

Other Cabinet ministers, knowledge of security—policy and military issues can be assumed to have been of a fairly general nature. Certainly, the full Cabinet appears to have been briefed annually on the military situation, budget issues, etc. but these briefings were kept on a rather general level. It appears that on these occasions, the discussion did not touch upon issues relating to possible cooperation with the Western Powers. The most important thing was for a minister to know that he had the support of the Prime Minister in his overall policy. Therefore, it is possible that perceptions differed substantially between the ministers concerning, for example, preparations for external assistance from the Western Powers.

Constitutional aspects

The Cabinet is collectively responsible for the decisions made. To a limited extent, individual ministers are authorized to make decisions on their own. This has, however, hardly any implications for the issues studied by this Commission. Consequently, the Cabinet formally stands behind decisions, actions, and official statements by an individual minister, even if the remaining ministers de facto may not be aware of them.

Officials representing subordinate government authorities must never have reason to doubt that each Cabinet member charged with an issue represents the authority of the entire Cabinet; and likewise, that

information supplied by a subordinate authority to a Cabinet member will be forwarded to all ministers concerned. The Military High Command could thus assume that the Minister of Defence was representing the Cabinet's view on issues concerning the National Defence. If the Minister of Defence had been briefed, the High Command's duty to inform the Cabinet can generally be viewed as having been fulfilled.

7.2. Partial Scandinavian defence cooperation

The initiative

The period from the end of the 1940s and the years immediately following was characterized by intensive discussions between the political and military leadership on Scandinavian defence cooperation in various forms.

In September 1949, as related above, the Government authorized the Military High Command, through the Chief of the Defence Staff, Nils Swedlund, to take certain contacts with the Danish 'and Norwegian armed forces. Already in February that same year, Swedlund had submitted a memorandum on this subject to Prime Minister Erlander. In his diary, Erlander called Swedlund's list a proposal for "military[telephone] operator cooperation" with Norway and Denmark, and commented "presumably it concerned innocuous things, but I asked him anyway to defer any initiatives-—-." The day following Swedlund's briefing, however, Erlander raised the issue in the Cabinet, and it was agreed that no negotiations were to be conducted with Denmark and Norway until more detailed directives had been given. Erlander commented on Swedlund's briefing on the issue to the Cabinet on 20 May 1949: "Swedlund described his thinking on the so-called limited military cooperation with Norway. I now hope that Vougt can muster the remnants of his courage so that he can make clear to the generals that we do n_ot intend any military cooperation with Norway now."

After Swedlund again briefed the Cabinet on the issue on 6 September 1949, however, Undén informed him that the Cabinet had agreed to parts of his proposal. According to Undén's notes, the Cabinet had no objection to contacts on purely technical preparations, i.e. " exch.[anges] of messages. Codes for radio communications - mutual reporting. interceptor control. air surveillance — Weather service, etc. It is presumed that an exchange of information, etc. is planned in the event of Sweden also being dragged into a war." Issues on army and naval cooperation should, however, in most aspects, be deferred.

Concerning key issues, Swedlund's and Undén's notes thus largely

convey, as was stated above, a concordant picture of the Cabinet's position. As regards the items for which Swedlund was given the authorization to proceed, e.g. plans for the establishment of communica- tions between the countries, and plans for coordination of air surveil- lance, air defence command and control, search and rescue missions for the air force, and the military weather service, the unanimity was also complete in a formal sense. It is possible, however, to doubt somewhat whether the Cabinet and Swedlund actually meant the same things. For the Cabinet, or at least for Undén, it appears as the question was purely one of creating technical preconditions for wartime cooperation. Swedlund”s memorandum, which in this respect had received Cabinet approval, gives the impression of aiming at more far—reaching prepara- tions for such cooperation. Undén, however, believed that they apparently were in complete agreement.

On our part, one can imagine exchanging experiences on weapons technical issues with Norway and Denmark, some Standardization regarding equipment, signalling, etc. It is clear that this cannot be exclaimed in the streets. The Military High Command shares the Cabinet”s view that cooperation of this kind can and should exist.

At a meeting with the Advisory Council on Foreign Affairs on 9 September 1949, Erlander explained that Sweden ought to do whatever it could for the arming of the Scandinavian states. On the otiter hand, Sweden could not "enter into binding cooperation carrying considerable risks but few actual rewards." For many years, Denmark and Norway were not to have any National Defence in the true sense.

At the Nordic foreign minister meeting in Copenhagen on 13 September 1949, Undén raised with the Danish and Norwegian ministers of foreign affairs the prospects of Sweden cooperating militarily with Denmark and Norway after their accession to the Atlantic Treaty. He emphasized that the Swedish policy of neutrality could not be compro- mised by measures implying that Sweden in effect appeared allied to Denmark and Norway. This general attitude did not preclude a certain degree of technical cooperation between the Swedish National Defence on the one hand, and the Danish and Norwegian National Defences on the other. Undén had apparently, while referring to Swedlund's memorandum, explained that the Swedish Military High Command "sought to provide information on such possible cases of cooperation, and this list was neither long nor especially significant." The Swedish Government was to take a position on the kind and extent of such military cooperation on a case-by-case basis.

As mentioned above, it carmot be precluded that the Cabinet and the Military High Command had somewhat different interpretations of what Undén had told Swedlund on the Cabinet's decision after the briefing on

6 September. It is clear, however, that the Cabinet agreed that certain technical preparations were to be made for the exchange of messages, air force command and control, and air surveillance. The Cabinet had apparently also agreed to the combined exercises. carried out that year between the Norwegian and Swedish air forces, e.g. over the Gothenburg area. Furthermore, a committee was appointed with representatives of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the National Defence to study possible cooperation with Denmark for the defence of Öresund. What position the Cabinet took on the proposal of the so-called Öresund Committee is not known to the Commission (Cf section 6.5).

The 1950 Foreign Policy Declaration

In the Cabinet's Foreign Policy Declaration of March 1950, the idea of peacetime military cooperation between Sweden, Denmark, and Norway which could compromise the policy of neutrality was generally rejected. Expressly excluded, however, were only combined staff talks and combined defence planning with the Scandinavian neighbour states. That left (unstated) room for a technical cooperation in a more narrow sense, i.e. of the kind for which Swedlund had received permission.

Undén*s diary entries show that the declaration is to be understood in this way. The same day that the declaration was presented, there was a party leader conference, at which Undén wrote down:

The participants had received my address in advance. Both Ohlin and Andrén [representatives of the Liberals and the Conservatives, respect— ively] believed that the Cabinet had ”closed the door” to technical cooperation with Denmark and Norway in the area of defence. We [e.g., Erlander and Undén] showed that we had developed one form of cooperation, declared incompatible with Sweden's policy. We bypassed other possible cases, which had to be assessed on a case-by- case basis. When especially Andrén complained that we had not shown greater appreciation of the views of the Western Powers, I asked if the gentlemen had not realized that General Jung's speech had undermined the confidence that the Soviet Union had in the sincerity of Sweden”s foreign policy. This would be the most striking in the current situation. We have to express ourselves so clearly that we, as far as possible, will repair the damage caused by Jung.

While distancing itself from a particular form of Scandinavian cooper- ation which would not come into being, e.g., combined staff talks and defence planning, the Cabinet hoped to be convincing of the credibility of the Swedish policy of neutrality. According to the Cabinet*s view, that credibility had been undermined by an address by the Supreme Com- mander to students in Lund at the end of 1949, where he had dwelled upon the Swedish requirements for assistance from the Western Powers

in the event of a Soviet attack.

About a week later, Jung and Swedlund submitted a report on Scandinavian cooperation to Erlander and Undén that Erlander found completely satisfactory.

According to the generals, nothing has been implemented except what can be regarded as completely natural to us. No staff talks, no common plans. The have not even asked the Danes about their intentions and plans or mining of Oresund. The contacts made have apparently been strictly on the mark; not undertake anything that can be used to compromise our foreign policy.

Further contacts

As the previous section shows, after the negotiations for a Scandinavian defence union broke down, Erlander assumed a reserved position on Scandinavian military cooperation as such. In the spring of 1950, he emphasized to the Supreme Commander that the neutrality policy would not be allowed to be "compromised by a military cooperation of so little substance as this technical—military [cooperation]." When Swedlund in early 1953 wanted Sweden to make clear to Norway that the suggested command structure within NATO would render impossible the little cooperation existing with the Norwegians, since this meant British command across the board, Erlander was very hesistant to intervene. He did not assign the "cooperation any greater significance, if the military follows the Cabinet's narrow instructions." On the other hand, Undén did not object to raising the issue with the Norwegian ambassador in Stockholm.

For that reason, in the spring of 1956, Jarl Hjalmarson, the Conser— vative Party leader, threatened to reveal the existing cooperation with the West (the Trondheim route, training of Norwegian officers at the Swedish Army Staff and War College, procurement of weapons, expert visits, etc.), Erlander asked Torsten Nilsson to inform the Supreme Commander of the situation. "We [e.g., Erlander and Nilsson] agreed that no form of military cooperation should exist that we are not prepared to account for publicly. Were such [cooperation] under way now, it shall be terminated. "

In conjunction with the Hjalmarson affair of 1959, Hjalmarson explained that he saw himself forced to prove that the Swedish National Defence was working with NATO and had its support, by revealing the procurement of missiles, the Trondheim facility, and the "secret agreements reached during Vougt's tenure as Minister of Defence concerning certain joint signalling facilities with Norway and Denmark. " For this reason, Erlander explained to Sven Andersson that the damage that Hjalmarson could thus cause would have to be repaired "by breaking

the connections with Norway and Denmark, which cannot be playing any greater role for our defence anyway. "

These quotations from the 1956 and 1959 diary entries are not completely concordant. It is clear that Erlander was concerned that the technical-military cooperation with Denmark and Norway might compromise Swedish security policy, without providing Sweden with any significant advantages. On the other hand, he believed that it was valuable to know of (parts of) Danish and Norwegian war planning.

To the extent contacts with the military high commands in the Scandinavian neighbouring states could establish connections with the Western great powers, primarily the United States, the issue appears, according to Erlander's position, to have been viewed in a somewhat different light. This will be further discussed in the next section. Suffice, is here to mention that when Swedlund in October 1953 informed [Erlander] that the NATO commanders had decided that all contacts with Sweden were to go via Norway, Erlander perceived this as something positive - "That was probably good."


As stated above (Cf section 6.1), it has not been possible to establish, in detail, what the Scandinavian defence cooperation incorporated. In addition, the available information does not provide any certain assurance of the extent to which the Cabinet was informed of the details of these activities. It is clear, however, that the Military High Command did not act totally on its own. There are no indications that the Military High Command exceeded its authority.

It appears as if the Cabinet was influenced by two, partly conflicting, interests in its view on the Scandinavian contacts. On the one hand, there was concern that the contacts could compromise Swedish security policy, without offering Sweden any significant advantages. On the other hand, it appears as if it was realized that these contacts could help to establish links with the Western great powers, which were deemed valuable. Undoubtedly, there is a connection in time between the expansion of Sweden*s military contacts with the United States, and the Government's diminishing interest in Scandinavian defence cooperation. There are reasons to view this as a sign that it was key for the Government's to secure assistance from the Western great powers in the event of a Soviet attack on Sweden.

7.3. Contacts with the Western great powers

The first years

Already early on, it was clear, at least to Erlander, that the Swedish National Defence was dependent on military support from the Western great powers to endure in the event of a Soviet attack.. Thus in the spring of 1948, Erlander explained to the Supreme Commander that the Defence Staff should continue studying the issue of U.S. bases (for Western air) in Sweden, especially in consideration of the costs to the United States, and whether the advantages were sufficiently great to motivate the costs.

In the Government declaration of 9 February 1949, Erlander and Undén had explained that "when discussing neutrality in peacetime, one can only mean that a state, which, in wartime, wishes to strive to remain outside the conflict, does not in peacetime tie its hands by entering into alliance treaties, rendering neutrality impossible in wartime. " According to the Prime and Foreign Affairs Ministers, Sweden's security policy thus meant only the absence of an alliance treaty. On the same occasion, Erlander went one step further when he said: "Let us together transform Scandinavia into a fortress so strongly defended, that an attack against us will mean that our territory is transformed into a base area for another, non-aggressive great-power grouping. " A Soviet attack on Sweden would thus lead to our territory being put at the disposal of the Western Powers as a basing area.

After the breakdown of the negotiations to create a Scandinavian defence union (and in conjunction with the presentation of the memoran- dum on partial Scandinavian defence cooperation), Swedlund raised with Erlander the issue of Sweden's relations with the United States. He emphasized Sweden*s dependence on the West for equipment and supplies. And he stressed the necessity of informing the Americans of weaknesses and capabilities of Sweden”s defence. According to Swedlund, Erlander "definitely very much agreed." Swedlund briefed [him] on the intention to inform the U.S. defence attachés in Stockholm, and to brief Americans in the United States through the Swedish military attaché in Washington. According to Swedlund, Erlander believed that this was appropriate.

Naturally, it was known to and accepted by the Cabinet that extensive contacts already existed around the turn of the decade 1949-50 with the United Kingdom on e.g. training of military personnel and procurement. But Erlander at least knew that relations were not confined to this. After deliberations with the Military High Command in early 1951, Erlander thus established that "Swedlund knew almost alarmingly much about the

planning of the Atlantic Pact states." In October that same year, Swedlund informed Erlander that he had informed the United States that it ought to dispatch a qualified military attaché to Stockholm. It is not known whether Erlander also realized that Swedlund with this initiative aimed at preparing for wartime cooperation with the United States.

As discussed in section 6.1.2, the Minister of Defence, Vougt, delivered a memorandum to the British Government in March 1951 on the organization of the Swedish armed forces, equipment, and planning for a Soviet attack. The content of the memorandum must be considered to have been top secret. Erlander had read the memorandum before it was sent, but his "vigilance was off guard somewhat since [he] knew that Undén would review it. " However, that was not to be the case.

It was an exceptional move in Swedish politics when the Cabinet submitted detailed information on Swedish defence resources and defence planning to the British Government, aiming at securing military assistance in the event of a Soviet attack. Vougt”s memorandum, delivered to Henderson without objections from Erlander, did obviously transgress the limits of Swedish freedom of action, laid down in the Government's declaration to Parliament the previous year. It should also be noted that Vougt, for his part, initially was prepared to continue the contacts at Cabinet—level when visiting London.

Against the background of the earlier exchange of information between Swedish and British military officers, it is uncertain how much of the memorandum was news to the British. This notwithstanding, Vougfs action was naturally perceived by the British as a sign that (parts of) the Swedish Cabinet were now prepared to expand the military cooperation between Sweden and the United Kingdom. British interest in using this new Swedish position, however, received a markedly reserved reply from both Vougt and Erlander. Apparently, they had not realized the consequences of sending the memorandum, and when they did, they sought to control the damage by declining British overtures for dis- cussions on military cooperation. Vougt's memorandum is not only most remarkable but, as far as we know, it is without parallel in the post—war era. The British also seem to have understood Vougt's departure from the Cabinet in the autumn of 1951 as a further indication that his Cabinet colleagues were unprepared to continue his policy.

According to British information from 1952, the Swedish Government should have authorized the Defence Staff to establish some form of planning liaison with AFNORTH. And in 1954, the Foreign Office observed that the Swedish Government had recently agreed that the Swedish National Defence was to maintain contacts with the United Kingdom, which by the British considered valuable. According to British information, in the early 1950s, Swedish officers appear to have shown

greater interest in other contexts in cooperating with the United Kingdom than the Government could be expected to accept. This was allegedly the case especially concerning cooperation between the naval forces. The British, however, seem to have doubted the will and ability of the Swedish officers to carry this interest through into concrete results, contrary to Government intentions. We have not been able to find any signs of concrete measures of which the Government was uninformed.

After Denmark and Norway in 1953 agreed to preparations to base U.S. air forces in both countries, party leader talks were held in May at which Erlander, Undén, Torsten Nilsson, Hedlund, Ohlin, and Hjalmarson were present. Swedlund and the Chief of the Defence Staff, Åkerman, then presented their view on the new military-political situation. Swedlund emphasized (according to Erlander) that the Military High Command had reached the following conclusions: 1. The most important military support was strikes from foreign bases against enemy attacks. 2. It was "difficult to improvise cooperation implying that the same airport served as a base for both our own and foreign aircraft. On the other hand, it should not take much time to vacate certain airports which could be completely left to the disposal of those providing assist- ance. " 3. " Supply of equipment from the West should be guaranteed here and now." Erlander does not seem to have had any objections to this analysis.

Here, the 1948 issue on making airfields available to the Western Powers resurfaced. It is not known to what extent the Cabinet had an opinion on which airfields - considering the length and load capacity of their runways - could receive foreign air. A few years later, one of the longest runways of any base in Sweden during the 1950s and ”605 was completed on the East Coast. The Commission made the assessment above that this and a few other runways were expanded partly to allow Western heavy aircraft to land, especially in connection with emergencies (Cf section 6.9).

In May 1953 also, a Swedish military delegation visited the United States to discuss problems Sweden would face in the event of an attack from the Soviet Union. The Government must have agreed to this visit. In October 1953, Erlander noted with satisfaction that the NATO commanders had decided that all contacts with Sweden were to go via Norway.

Considerations in connection with the 1958 Defence Decision

The analysis made at the party leader talks in 1953 resurfaced in the proceedings of the 1955 Defence Committee as a 1956 secretariat memorandum (Cf section 3.3.3). According to this memorandum, in the event of a Soviet attack, Sweden should seek to hold out until the Western Powers could render assistance. The most important form of assistance that could be expected was interdiction of Soviet bases, embarkation ports, and communications, and the relief that operations on other fronts implied. But also direct support i.e. in the form of strikes with atomic weapons against a sealift concentration, could be brought to the fore. To promote such direct support in particular (but also indirect support), it was necessary in wartime to have, for example, liaison groups, communications equipment, and some measures planned in peacetime to coordinate air operations.

The memorandum emphasized that no state could be sure of direct assistance after the outbreak of war. A state”s own strength was the best guarantee of receiving support, if it could be provided. The indirect support was the most significant. Preparations were required to utilize direct assistance. Some such preparations were said to have been implemented already, and others could be implemented. Some prepara- tions, however, were of such a nature that they could not be made in advance, since they required common planning, insight into the planning of the Western Powers, and disclosure of Swedish planning.

Therefore, indirect support was primarily hoped for. For direct support, preparations were required, which considering Sweden”s position of non-participation in alliances could only partly be carried out in peacetime. Some preparations had also been made.

Olle Karleby, who served as Secretary-General of the Defence Committee, has said the following in the course of an interview with the Commission. It would have been irresponsible to refrain from preparing such measures as could be prepared within practical limits for the eventuality of Sweden becoming victim of aggression from the East. Non-participation in alliances did, however, rule out peacetime prepara- tions for operational cooperation. But to the extent it was possible to coordinate technical systems facilitating cooperation at a later stage, it would be plain stupid not to take such an opportunity. Karleby men— tioned coordination of the VHF link systern and an expansion of Air Force runways, in excess of the "minimum requirements" for our own aircraft, as examples of this type of preparations.

As described above, Karleby and Torsten Nilsson, the Committee chairman, has commented on a preliminary description of the work of the 1955 Defence Committee, where it was stated that the 1956

secretariat memorandum in all essentials reflected the opinions of the leadership of the Ministry. They have not objected to this description. Against this backdrop, it is clear to the Commission that the Minister of Defence and his closest colleagues were intent that Sweden, with the greatest possible consideration for the policy of neutrality, should make preparations so as to be able in a threatening, not more closely defined situation - to receive military support quickly from the Western Powers, and that to a certain extent such preparations were actually made in the mid-1950s.

Military actions

At least the Minister of Defence knew of and agreed to the actions in the following years - the expansion of the VHF communications links to Denmark and Norway, the connection with Wiesbaden, and the intensified planning for the liaison groups.

Accordingly, Sven Andersson, who had succeeded Torsten Nilsson as Minister of Defence in 1957 , arranged a briefing for the Cabinet before the SVENORDA cooperation was made public. The head of the tele communications section of the Defence Staff, i.e. the officer who was responsible for the signal links, was called in to conduct the briefing. Referring to the planned expansion of the VHF communications with Denmark and Norway in the early 1960s, Bo Westin, who then served as head of section in the Defence Staff, said that he " could probably say that [Andersson] was in complete agreement with us on this," e.g., on what possibilities for communicating with NATO the air safety cooper- ation offered. Westin has also said that he was careful to make sure that the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Sven Anderson were informed on "whatever might border on what we were allowed to do within the limits of our directives."

Those who were responsible for installing the telex link with Wiesbaden have said that they were of the impression that the action was sanctioned by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Anders Thunborg has explained that, after assuming the duties as Under-Secretary of the Ministry of Defence, he was told that information could be exchanged with " NATO" in Wiesbaden via telex.

Carl Eric Almgren has said that the Minister of Defence was informed of the planning for liaison groups (and that he, together with the Supreme Commander, Rapp, had stopped it becoming more extensive than it already was). Almgren has also explained that the Government had been informed throughout as to what preparations had been made, and authorized these step-by—step.

In December 1963, Almgren, Mangard, and Westin submittedl in

account to Erlander on Sweden”s connections with the West. Erlander commented: "It is probably correct that it all looks worse than it is; but the meeting was probably useful in stressing how important it is in the Cabinet”s opinion that the National Defence observes absolute neutrality, also when collecting information."

On the other hand, nothing has emerged indicating that the Cabinet or any of its members was informed of the idea of a certain coordination of IFF systems with the Western Powers or of the significance of Loran C as a navigational tool for air forces.

When Anders Thunborg assumed the position as Under-Secretary of the Ministry of Defence in 1969, Sven Andersson and the Chief of the Defence Staff, Stig Synnergren, made clear to him that Sweden in the event of war might cooperate with NATO. The Cabinet had therefore sanctioned the National Defence already in peacetime having contacts with the West and also making certain preparations for cooperation in wartime.


It is obvious that the Cabinet was anxious that the contacts with the Western Powers should not acquire such manifestations that the officially declared policy of neutrality would be compromised domestically or internationally. At the same time, the country's security requirements could not be neglected. The Cabinet not infrequently had to weigh carefully the pros and cons in this regard. It was important to the Government that Swedish officers did not go too far when striving to cooperate with foreign counterparts. Generally, Swedish officers appear to have accepted this, once the Government had made its position clear.

Nothing has appeared to indicate that the Military High Command withheld anything of import from the political leadership, i.e. the Minister of Defence, concerning the preparations made for receiving external military assistance. Thus, the Minister of Defence was informed of the preparations to be able to dispatch high-level military personnel in a crisis situation to those NATO states most significant to Sweden. He was further briefed on the communications links established with Den- mark, Norway, and USAFE in West Germany, and their significance for a comprehensive coordination of air operations. He also knew of the expansion, in excess of the minimum requirements for Swedish aircraft, of runways of certain airbases.

Already in the autumn of 1949, the Cabinet had also sanctioned the common planning for coordinating air surveillance which later was estab— lished between Norway and Sweden.

The measures mentioned in this context were, as stated in section 6.9,

of key importance for Sweden to promote support from the Western Powers.

To what extent the knowledge of the existing cooperation with the Western Powers was disseminated within the Cabinet is uncertain. It is possible and even likely that most ministers did not have any comprehen— sive insight into the preparations for receiving external assistance under way in the 19505 and 1960s. The Minister of Defence could have kept this knowledge to himself. It is, however, practically out of the question that key members of the Cabinet during this period were not to have known about the expectations that the Swedish National Defence would come to be assisted by the Western Powers, in particularly by U.S. bombing missions.

8. Concluding assessment

Security policy objectives

Decisive for the context in which Swedish post-war security and foreign policy should be viewed is the fact that, from the end of the 19405 and long thereafter, the risk of a major war in Europe was judged to be considerable, on a few occasions immediate. This was especially the case in the earlier phase of the period that the Commissionhas been studying.

The security policy objective was then, as earlier, to uphold Sweden's freedom and independence. The peacetime means of achieving this was - in addition to maintaining a strong National Defence — to safeguard an independent position outside the great power blocs and thereby to ensure that Sweden was not automatically drawn into a possible great-power war. The formula used to define this policy was non—participation in alliances in peacetime, aiming at neutrality in war. Gradually, this policy came to be described in short as the policy of neutrality.

Threat concepts

The Soviet Union was perceived as the only imaginable attacker. The risk of an isolated Soviet attack on Sweden was deemed small. In the event of a major war, Sweden had to be prepared for the possibility of its neutrality policy failing and the country being attacked. The Swedish political and military leadership, however, appear to have judged it realistic that Sweden could avoid being drawn into a third world war. Within NATO, different opinions seem to have existed on Sweden”s prospects of remaining neutral in a major war. The predominant opinion seems to have been that there was a low probability for Sweden to avoid a Soviet attack in such a situation (See Eden”s 1952'memorandum and NSC 6006/1 of 1960; section 6.1.2 and 4.4, respectively). The Under- Secretary at the Norwegian Ministry of Defence in the early 1950s has also confirmed that the Norwegians as well as the British and the Americans doubted that Sweden could remain outside a major war. On the other hand, high-ranking Norwegian officers have reported to the Commission that the Norwegian National Defence and AFNORTH believed that the Soviet Union, in a war with the Western Powers, in its own interest mainly would respect Swedish neutrality. Soviet overflights

of Swedish airspace were, however, to be reckoned with.

Defence until assistance arrives

The prevailing Swedish assessment was that Sweden could not resist a Soviet attack unaided for any length of time. Weeks or months were discussed. In a more prolonged war, Sweden wou'ld thus be totally dependent on Western assistance. Therefore, it became a widely accepted view, and until the mid—1950s the view expressed by the Government authorities on official situations, that the aim had to be for Sweden to be able to defend itself until assistance arrived, i.e. until the Western Powers could provide support. Later the use of this wording was discon— tinued, but instead it was discussed more generally that Sweden ran the risk of being drawn into a war only in conjunction with a major European conflict where the attacker would not be able to focus all his resources on Sweden. It was argued that the attacker would, when considering an attack on Sweden, actually have to reckon with NATO actions.

Sweden realized that the key precondition for the Western Powers to provide Sweden with assistance was that they deemed such actions to be in their own interest. The starting point was that this would generally be the case, i.e. that it was realistic to count on assistance. That this was an accurate assessment is evident from inter alia the U.S. National Security Council policy decisions of 1952 and 1960. For the defence of the Northern part of the European NATO area it was deemed of vital importance that Sweden did not come under Soviet control.

Indirect and direct assistance

The assistance Sweden could hope for from the Western Powers was principally of two different types, viz indirect and direct assistance.

Indirect assistance referred to Western attacks on targets in the Soviet Union from which attacks could be launched also on Sweden, as well as Western operations in other directions tying up the Soviet-bloc armed forces. Direct assistance referred to attacks on Soviet-bloc operations on Swedish territory or immediately beyond Sweden”s borders, in close cooperation with the Swedish National Defence. Also, the provision of supplies to the Swedish National Defence was perceived as a part of the indirect assistance. The distinction between indirect and direct assistance was in practice assessed to be rather vague.

These two types of assistance were touched upon already in the 1949 Scandinavian Defence Committee report. In the following years, in talks between the Cabinet and the Military High Command, the possibility of

making certain airbases available to Western air and the idea of naval cooperation for convoying of ships in the Skagerrak and the North Sea were mentioned. Intime, however, it became clear that the reception of such assistance would require extensive preparations. Even if such preparations were made, it would be some time before the assistance could take effect. Against this background it is not surprising that no such preparations were made.

Only a few years later, in the 1955 Defence Committee, interest actually focused entirely on indirect assistance and on direct assistance bordering on indirect assistance. Such assistance, primarily in the form of bombing missions by the Western great-power air forces, required limited preparations and could also be provided rapidly and arrest an attack on Sweden. If airbases and embarkation ports on the other side of the Baltic Sea were attacked, with or without nuclear weapons, it was well-nigh inconceivable that a Soviet attack on Sweden could be success— fully completed. The indirect assistance - if it could be secured in war or appeared credible in peacetime — would thus apparently have decisive consequences both for Sweden's defence capabilities and for its overall security policy position.

Preparations to receive assistance

During the 19505 and early 1960s, Sweden took a number of measures, mostly based on the analysis of external assistance in the 1955 Defence Committee. The most important of these were the plans to dispatch liaison groups of high operational competence to foreign headquarters, the establishment of secure communications links with Norway and Denmark which could be further connected within the NATO system, and the expansion of airbase runways for the heavy great-power aviation close to the Swedish East Coast. The IFF measures (Cf section 6.6) also fit into this picture. In the Commission's opinion, these measures were of limited extent but nevertheless served their purpose and were essential, in a threatening but not more closely defined situation to facilitate the reception of assistance primarily in the form of bombing missions on a strategic/operational level, in accordance with the analysis by the 1955 Defence Committee. At the same time, it is evident that the measures would have been incomplete and insufficient if the aim had been to prepare for tactical/operational cooperation.

As a step in these preparations, extensive general contact-creating activities also occurred between Sweden”s National Defence and those of the Western Powers, as well as mutual exchanges of information on military technical advances, not least of intelligence concerning the Warsaw Pact .

Concluding assessment

The above shows that a considerable risk of a major war in Europe from the end of the 1940s and long thereafter. According to Swedish assessments, there was a risk of Sweden being drawn into such a war and attacked by the Soviet Union. Were this to happen, we would not be able to endure alone for any length of time.

The main security policy aim of the state authorities was, as far as possible, to secure Sweden's freedom and independence. Theoretically, it was possible to undertake a massive expansion of the Swedish National Defence. The small country's resources, however, set limits for what could be accomplished by so doing. It must therefore have appeared necessary to seek to secure or at least make probable some type of wartime support in the defence of Sweden. At the same time, it was a strong Swedish interest that measures with this aim should not lead to such ties that we automatically would be drawn into a great-power war.

Against this background, focusing on indirect assistance served its purpose. By taking limited - mainly unilateral - measures, favourable preconditions could be created for assistance which could be deployed rapidly and, in addition, could more or less immediately arrest an attack on Sweden. The decisive issue was of course whether the Western Powers - i.e. primarily the United States - would have been prepared to provide the presupposed indirect assistance. As far as has been estab- lished, no guarantees ever existed. According to now declassified U.S. policy documents, the United States appears still to have been fully intent on assisting Sweden. It has not been possible to establish whether this U.S. policy was known in Sweden at the time.

The efforts of the Cabinet and the Military High Command to prepare Sweden for a contingency when the neutrality policy was on the verge of failure and the country was threatened with imminent attack by the Soviet Union undoubtedly meant, in many cases, difficult balances. Specific actions taken can be discussed. The Commission's overall assessment, however, is that it would have been irreconcilable with the responsibility resting with Sweden's political and military leadership, had no measures been taken to facilitate the reception of assistance from the Western great powers.

Four follow-up questions

Given the above stated necessity of making certain preparations for receiving assistance it is of interest to shed light upon the consequences of the policy choice in four dimensions: international law; Sweden”s security-policy freedom of action; Soviet reactions; and finally,

concordance between policy publicly declared and implemented.

International law aspects

The first issue concerns whether the measures taken contravened Sweden's obligations according to international law. According to international law, as stated in section 2.1, not even a permanently neutral state may be precluded from conducting peacetime discussions with another state or a military alliance on how assistance would be provided in the event of the neutral state being attacked. For a state like Sweden not committed to neutrality by treaty or national legislation, any such restrictions applied even less. What has emerged concerning Swedish preparations to receive military assistance from the Western Powers in the event of an attack from the Soviet Union has thus, in the Commission”s opinion, been completely compatible with international law.

Was freedom of action in security policy lost?

It has been stated above that Sweden”s independent position outside of the great power blocs was a means to the overall end of securing the country's freedom and independence. Through this, we intended to avoid being automatically drawn into a great-power war. Had the freedom of action been lost as a consequence of the preparations to receive assistance our position would have been worse than that of the NATO states. They could benefit from well—prepared and extensive military cooperation which of course was out of the question for Sweden.

Nothing has appeared, however, to suggest that the Swedish Military High Command together with representatives of the armed forces of the Western Powers drew up any plans to coordinate operational activities with NATO in the event of a Soviet attack on Sweden or on the Scandinavian neighbour states. In this context it is important to empha- size that the preparations for receiving assistance were mainly unilateral, and that the operational contacts with the Western Powers during the first half of the 1950s, as far as the Commission is aware, involved no ties or obligations to act in a certain manner in war or diminished the prospects of remaining outside a major war, if Sweden was not attacked. In this sense, Sweden's freedom of action was not restricted.

There is also another aspect to take into account concerning Swedish freedom of action, viz whether the Swedish preparations to receive assistance from the Western Powers would have reduced Sweden”s prospects of withstanding pressures or take actions against [territorial] violations from the West in a critical situation. It does not appear likely

that the Swedish preparations would have had any real meaning in this regard. The preparations to receive assistance were most likely viewed more as a confirmation of Swedish realism than as something which in itself provided the West with a strengthened negotiating position. It should be added that the Commission has come across no information in Swedish or foreign archives which sheds closer light on this issue.

Soviet perceptions of Sweden

An additional issue is what impact the Swedish preparations could have had in Moscow. It was certainly known that some form of intelligence cooperation with the Western Powers existed. In addition, Sweden openly procured advanced military equipment from the Western Powers and participated in Cocom's control of technology transfer to the Eastern bloc. The official contacts - possibly other contacts too between the Swedish National Defence and the military establishments of the Western Powers should have been well known in Moscow. Through espionage and the exploitation of leaks, the Soviet Union attempted to augment the perception of Sweden already created by other sources. The full picture also included Sweden as a Western democracy having ideological affinities with both the Nordic neighbouring states and the Western great powers.

Therefore, in our opinion, it can be presumed that the Soviet Union, for these general reasons, suspected or was even convinced that Sweden also on operational issues cooperated with the Western Powers. Non- official Soviet assessments also indicated that they viewed the wording of the Swedish Defence Doctrine to be of secondary importance since they did not reckon with Swedish neutrality as being possible in the event of a major war. Against this background, it is uncertain whether potential specific knowledge of preparations made to facilitate Western assistance would have significantly affected the Soviet image of Sweden.

If Moscow was convinced that operational cooperation existed, it is possible, moreover, that this view could give rise to two partly Opposing effects. On the one hand, it can be argued that the Soviet Union would have been less inclined to respect Sweden's territorial integrity, if the Swedish National Defence was perceived as an integrated part of NATO and it was believed that Sweden would automatically joint the West in the event of a major war. On the other hand, it is conceivable that an impression of Swedish association with NATO, and consequently, risks of counteraction from the Western Powers in the event of an attack on Sweden, might have served as a deterrent on the Soviet Union and thus helped preserve the peace.

Was there a full correspondence between declared policy and actual policy implementation ?

Finally, there is the issue of possible discrepancy between the foreign and security policy publicly declared by the Government and actions actually taken. Obviously, the Government has no obligation to make public information on the planning of and activities for the defence of the country, if it can be assumed that making such information public would be detrimental to national security. But at the same time, a requirement must be that the Government does not knowingly provide misleading or false information.

From this point of view, it has been judged of interest to examine the information in these aspects which the Government presented in signifi- cant foreign policy statements in Parliament or in the bills preceding the defence decisions during the pertinent years. Such an examination has shown that the Government especially on two occasions, discussed the issue of preparations for military cooperation with other states, viz in the 1950 Foreign Policy Declaration and in Prime Minister Erlander”s reply to a question in Parliament on the so-called Hjalmarson affair in 1959. At the same time, the 1959 debate was the culmination of a debate on and off during the 1950s - on the boundaries and prerequisites for the policy of neutrality.

In the 1950 declaration, the Government dissociated itself from such preparations for cooperation bordering on defence union. This con- cerned, for example, combined staff talks and combined defence plans, i.e. combined preparations for operational cooperation in war, regarded as incompatible with the Swedish policy of neutrality. On the other hand, unilateral Swedish measures that could facilitate operational coordination with other states at a later date, for example in the form of reception of an indirect assistance in war, were not precluded. Against this back- ground, the extensive exchange of information with the Western Powers in the 1950s must - with the obvious exception of Vougt”s memorandum of 1951 - be judged to come within the limits of the 1950 declaration. It is another issue that this can have created the essentially false impression that the Government opposed all forms of military cooper- ation with other states.

The Prime Minister”s reply to the question in Parliament in 1959 categorically ruled out preparations for and consultations on military cooperation with members of a great-power alliance. As related above in chapter 7, however, it must have been clear to the Government, first that unilateral preparations had been made for the kind of cooperation which would have made it possible to receive primarily indirect assistance from the United States or the United Kingdom, and second,

that there had been consultations and other contacts with Denmark, Norway, the United Kingdom and the United States on military cooperation and/or reception of wartime assistance. The 1959 statement thus conveyed a deliberately erroneous picture of what had actually occurred. In this context it should be noted that the planning for assistance, as far as the Commission has been able to assess, continued without major changes in the years following 1959. Furthermore, it is worth mentioning that the pertinent section of the 1959 reply to the question in Parliament had been omitted when the Government in 1968 returned to certain issues on what the policy of neutrality required.

With the exception of the 1959 reply, the Government”s officially stated positions and declarations provided scope for national, unilateral preparations to receive military assistance from and to cooperate with the Western Powers in the event of a Soviet attack on Sweden. As empha- sized above, Sweden”s contingency preparations for war, as far as they have been disclosed, did not transgress these limits. It must be concluded that, by and large, those preparations had Government approval.