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Carl Bildt's in Carter's Cables
Recently released despatches from 1977.
EVERYWHERE (Rixstep) — On 24 April 2014, WikiLeaks released 367,174 US diplomatic cables and associated records for 1977, the first year of Jimmy Carter's presidency. Amongst those cables and records can be found nine cables dealing with Sweden's Carl Bildt.
Background: 1949 – 1976
Nils Daniel Carl Bildt was born in the summer of 1949. The social democrat Tage Erlander had been prime minister for three years. Sweden had escaped the worst of the destruction of the second world war, and the Swedish economy would soon start pinning the meter.
Tage Erlander picked Olof Palme as his successor, appraising him as the most significant political talent he'd ever seen. Palme succeeded Erlander in 1969. (Erlander's 23 years and 3 days of leadership is one of the longest in democratic history anywhere.)
Palme continued the social democrat tradition, unbroken in 40 some years, until 1976 when a coalition of the Centre Party, the Liberal Party, and the 'Moderates' won a close election. Their stated goal was to form a government, but there were issues, as the Centre Party won on a 'no nuclear energy' ticket and the other two parties were not of the same mind.
Carl Bildt was 27 years old when the secret party deliberations began, 27-28 when involved in the cables seen below.
The Swedish national elections were held on Sunday (always a Sunday) 19 September. The social democrats lost for the first time since 1932. A coalition of the Centre Party, the Liberals, and Carl Bildt's 'Moderates' got 50.8% of the vote.
Leaders of the three parties went immediately behind closed doors. Their colleagues were not permitted to know what they talked about. The media were totally shut out. The only leak was to surface some 40 years later with the WikiLeaks release of PlusD.
Sweden and the world got to know the results of the secret deliberations 8 October. Bildt had already informed a foreign power one week earlier.
Perhaps even worse was Bildt's attitude when confronted with the revelations: no 'sorry I was young and inexperienced' but arrogance and scorn. 'Trying to nail me?' he challenged Aftonbladet. 'That's not easy for beginners.'
1. BEGIN SUMMARY. THE LADERS OF THE LIBERAL, CENTER AND MODERATE PARTIES, TOGETHER WITH THEIR CLOSEST AIDES, CONTINUE TO WORK LATE INTO THE NIGHT IN THEIR EFFORTS TO ESTABLISH A COHESIVE GOVERNMENT PROGRAM. INFORMATION ON THE PROGRESS OF THE TALKS CONTINUES TO BE VERY CLOSELY HELD, BUT SOURCES CLOSE TO THE NEGOTIATIONS INFORM US THAT THE PARTY LEADERS HAVE PASSED THE MAJOR OBSTACLE POSED BY THE NUCLEAR ENERGY ISSUE, THAT THERE WILL BE A THREE-PARTY GOVERNMENT, AND THAT DISCUSSIONS ARE PROGRESSING SATISFACTORILY. END SUMMARY.
2. THE RIKSDAG WILL OPEN ON OCTOBER 4 IN A SHORT CEREMONY WHICH WILL FOLLOW THE ELECTION OF A NEW SPEAKER, WHO WILL BE OFFICIALLY RESPONSIBLE FOR SUPERVISING THE GOVERNMENT FORMATION. IT IS EXPECTED THAT CENTER PARTY LEADER THORBJORN FALLDIN WILL BE ELECTED PRIME MINISTER LATER IN THE WEEK, AND WILL THEN OFFICIALLY PRESENT THE GOVERNMENT PROGRAM ON OCTOBER 8. PRESS REPORTS INDICATE THAT THE RIKSDAG GROUPS OF THE RESPECTIVE PARTIES WILL BE INFORMALLY BRIEFED OCTOBER 4 ON THE OUTLINE OF THE GOVERNMENT'S PROGRAM AND COMPOSITION.
3. CARL BILDT, AIDE TO MODERATE PARTY LEADER GOSTA BOYMAN, CONFIDED TO POLITICAL COUNSELOR AND EUR/NE DEPUTY DIRECTOR WOODS THAT TENTATIVE AGREEMENT HAD BEEN REACHED ON THE NUCLEAR ENERGY ISSUE, AND THAT DISCUSSION HAS TURNED TO SPECIFICS OF THE NEW GOVERNMENT. BILDT SAID HE UNDERSTOOD THAT UNDER COMPROMISE SOLUTION REACHED BY THE THREE LEADERS, TWO NEW NUCLEAR PLANTS (BARSEBACK II AND RINGHALS III) WOULD NOT BE CHARGED AT LEAST UNTIL 1978, DESPITE THE FACT THAT BARSEBACK II IS SCHEDULED TO BE LEADED THIS MONTH. NO NEW PLANTS WOULD BE CONSTRUCTED. IN ADDITION, A ROYAL COMMISSION WOULD BE APPOINTED TO STUDY ALL ASPECTS OF NUCLEAR SAFEGUARDS AND WOULD BE CHARGED TO REPORT IN TIME FOR THE 1978 MAJOR DEBATE IN THE RIKSDAG ON ENERGY POLICY. BILDT ADDED THAT THE COALITION WOULD NOT BE ADVERSE TO HOLDING APUBLIC REFERENDUM ON THE ENTIRE QUESTION OF THE FUTURE OF NUCLEAR POWER IN SWEDEN AFTER THE INVESTIGATIVE COMMISION SUBMITS ITS REPORT.
4. BILDT ALSO STATED THERE WILL IN FACT BE A THREE-PARTY GOVERNMENT, ALTHOUGH ALLOCATION OF POSITIONS AND PERCENTAGE OF REPRESENTATION WAS STILL UNDER DISCUSSION. HE STATED THAT NEW GOVERNMENT HAS EVERY CHANCE OF REMAING IN POWER AT LEAST UNTIL 1982 IF THE SOLUTION TO THE NUCLEAR PROBLEM CAN BE RECONCILED WITH THE DIFFERING PERSPECTIVES OF THE COALITION PARTNERS, WHICH HE BELIEVES IS LIKELY IF THE COMPROMISE PLAN IS IMPLEMENTED.
5. COMMENT: FALLDIN'S AGREEMENT TO THIS COMPROMISE WILL SEEM TO SOME OF HIS MORE RABID ANTI-NUCLEAR SUPPORTERS TO BE A RETREAT, THOUGH IN HIS MORE MODERATE MOMENTS IN THE CAMPAIGN HE DID INDICATE HE WOULD GO ALONG WITH THE IDEA OF AN INVESTIGATIVE COMMISSION. HE WILL THUS PROBABLY FACE SOME CRITICISM, BUT MOST SWEDES ARE LIKELY TO ACCEPT THIS SOLUTION AS MAKING THE BEST OF A BAD SITUATION. SOCIAL DEMOCRATS CAN BE EXPECTED TO ASK WHERE SWEDEN IS GOING TO GET ADEQUATE ENERGY FOR THE NEXT THREE YEARS, GIVEN THE DELAY AND POSSIBLE CANCELLATION OF NUCLEAR ENERGY EXPANSION PROGRAM.
1Note that the young Carl Bildt has no formal political position. He's merely an 'aide' to Bohman and his title will change wildly the following year. As far as anyone knows, the agreement on secrecy was not violated by anyone else - only by Bildt who didn't run to the Swedish media or the Swedish tabloids but to the US and the CIA? When the Swedish media finally found the story some 38 years later, Centre Party leader Thorbjörn Fälldin and Liberal Party leader Per Ahlmark were furious. (So were the Swedish people.) But Carl Bildt dismissed it all by claiming he never knew the deliberations were confidential.
2Note the level of detail in Bildt's info. Bildt met with emboff Ronald Woods who turned the info over to the embassy who in turn sent it to the CIA.
That brings the narrative up to the year 1977.
This is the first 'Carter cable' dealing with Carl Bildt. Earlier cables (1976) exposed Bildt as a CIA informer already before he had his own portfolio and was only the personal secretary of conservative political leader Gösta Bohman. The revelations about 1976 caused an uproar amongst the Swedish political leaders Bildt betrayed. There have been no further judicial repercussions despite the severity of the implications, although Aftonbladet had an extensive article series.
1977 February 3, 00:00 (Thursday)
BOHMAN VISIT APRIL 27-MAY 2
1. DURING DINNER AT THE RESIDENCE WITH MINISTER OF FINANCE BOHMAN JANUARY 31, I HAD AN OPPORTUNITY TO LEARN MORE ABOUT HIS PROSPECTIVE VISIT TO WASHINGTON. TWO OTHERS AT DINNER, CARL BILDT, HIS POLITICAL ADVISER, AND LARS WOHLIN, UNDERSECRETARY OF THE MINISTRY OF FINANCE, WILL ACCOMPANY BOHMAN ON HIS TRIP.
2. I STRONGLY RECOMMEND THAT THE DEPARTMENT ENDEAVOR TO ARRANGE A PRIVATE MEETING BETWEEN BOHMAN AND SECRETARY BLUMENTHAL, I.E., WITHOUT OTHER MINISTERS OF FINANCE PRESENT. IF THIS CANNOT BE ARRANGED DURING THE IMF MEETING PERIOD APRIL 28-29, THEN I WOULD URGE THAT IT BE DONE APRIL 27, APRIL 29 (SATURDAY), OR MAY 2. BOHMAN WAS CLEAR THAT SATURDAY, APRIL 29, WOULD BE A WORKING DAY FOR HIM.
3. BOHMAN AND WOHLIN SHOULD ALSO MEET WITH UNDER SECRETARY OF STATE COOPER AND ASSISTANT SECRETARY OF THE TREASURY BERGSTEN, PARTICULARLY TO DISCUSS NORTH-SOUTH QUESTIONS. THE SWEDES HAVE, AND WILL PROBABLY CONTINUE TO HOLD, DIFFERENT VIEWS THAN THOSE WE HAVE PUT FORTH IN CIEC ON MATTERS OF DEBT, COMMODITY AGREEMENTS AND RESOURCE TRANSFERS. THE US POSITIONS ON THESE AND RELATED QUESTIONS WILL HAVE EVOLVED BY LATE APRIL, POSSIBLY IN CONNECTION WITH ANOTHER CIEC MINISTERIAL MEETING, AND A FRANK EXCHANGE WITH BOHMAN AND WOHLIN WOULD BE HELPFUL.
4. RIKSBANK OFFICIALS--DIRECTOR CARL-HENRIK NORDLANDER AND DEPUTY HANS LUNDSTROM--WILL PRESUMABLY ARRANGE THEIR OWN SCHEDULE IN WASHINGTON THROUGH THE SWEDISH EMBASSY. NORDLANDER, REPLACING KRISTER WICKMAN, IS NEW TO HIS RESPONSIBILITIES AND FOR THAT REASON APPROPRIATE COURTESY CALLS MIGHT BE ARRANGED AT THE FEDERAL RESERVE AND TREASURY.
5. I WILL BE DISCUSSING BOHMAN'S SCHEDULE WITH AMBASSADOR WACHTMEISTER ON FEBRUARY 10 OR 11 AND WILL SUGGEST THAT HIS EMBASSY WORK CLOSELY WITH EUR/NE IN MAKING ARRANGEMENTS.
Bohman and Bildt were over for dinner at the US embassy the previous Monday with a few cabinet members. They asked their remarks be kept strictly confidential, which they were until 28 November 2010, when something unexpected happened.
1977 February 4, 00:00 (Friday)
THE SWEDISH ECONOMY
1. GOSTE BOHMAN, MINISTER OF FINANCE, HIS UNDER SECRETARY LARS WOHLIN, POLITICAL ADVISER CARL BILDT, AND J. ALLEN HERNELIUS, CHAIRMAN OF THE RIKSDAG FOREIGN AFFAIRS COMMITTEE DINED AT THE RESIDENCE JANUARY 31. CONVERSATION MOSTLY DEVOTED TO ECONOMIC SITUATION IN SWEDEN OF WHICH HIGHLIGHTS ARE GIVEN BELOW. (MEMCON BEING POUCHED.)
2. THE SWEDISH ECONOMY.
A. AS CONVERSATION TURNED TO THE SWEDISH ECONOMY THROUGHOUT THE EVENING, THE GOS MINISTER AND HIS ASSOCIATES LARGELY CONFIRMED WHAT THE PRESS AND OTHER SOURCES HAVE STATED. SWEDEN IS FACING A VERY DIFFICULT YEAR, AND EVEN IMPROVING CONDITIONS IN THE US WON'T HELP MUCH. THE SITUATION, MEASURED IN TERMS OF UNEMPLOYMENT AND CURRENT ACCOUNT BALANCE, WILL WORSEN BEFORE IT IMPROVES. THE EXPLANATION LIES LARGELY IN THE RAPID ESCALATION OF LABOR COSTS IN THE PAST TWO YEARS. THIS, COMBINED WITH SWEDEN'S REMAINING IN THE EUROPEAN MONETARY "SNAKE" AND LESS INFLATIONARY DEVELOPMENTS ELSEWHERE, ESPECIALLY WEST GERMANY, HAS LED TO A LOSS OF MARKET SHARES FOR SWEDEN IN ITS PRINCIPAL MARKETS. REMEDIES APPLIED BY THE SOCIAL DEMOCRATS IN 1975-76 TO "BRIDGE" THE RECESSIONARY TENDENCIES DISGUISED THE REAL STATE OF AFFAIRS, AND THE BROAD INTERNATIONAL UPTURN WHICH WAS EXPECTED IN 1976 DID NOT TAKE PLACE AS STRONGLY AS HOPED FOR.
B. THE DIFFUCULT CIRCUMSTANCES FACING MANY COMPANIES BEGAN TO BE PUBLICLY VOICED IN THE FALL OF 1976. GROWING INVENTORIES AND SHRINKING MARKETS FOR MANY EXPORT-ORIENTED INDUSTRIES LED TO CALLS FOR LAYOFFS, AND THE CHORUS STRENGTHENED IN JANUARY. BOHMAN REMARKED THAT THE REAL UNEMPLOYMENT FIGURE IS FIVE PERCENT, NOT THE PUBLICLY-PROCLAIMED FIGURE OF LESS THAN 2 PERCENT. HE MEANT THAT GOVERNMENT TRAINING AND RELIEF PROGRAMS ARTIFICALLY ABSORB MANY WHO WOULD BE OTHERWISE LOOKING FOR WORK.
C. A KEY FACTOR IN SWEDEN'S OUTLOOK IS THE FINAL GENERAL WAGE INCREASE SETTLEMENT. THE GOS BUDGET PROJECTS LABOR COST INCREASES OF EIGHT PERCENT. THE MINISTER HELD TO THE OFFICIAL LINE THAT THIS WAS THE REAL UPPER LIMIT WHICH WOULD BE ACCEPTABLE. THE MINISTER HINTED CLEARLY THAT THE GOS "WOULD ACT" IF THE WAGE SETTLEMENT EXCEEDED WHAT THE GOVERNMENT THOUGHT THE ECONOMY COULD TAKE. WOHLIN'S VIEWS INCLUDED THE THOUGHT THAT SWEDEN'S WAGE SETTLEMENT SHOULD BE LESS THAN THAT OF WEST GERMANY, HOPEFULLY FOR TWO YEARS, TO ENABLE SWEDEN TO RESTORE ITS RELATIVELY STRONG COST-COMPETITIVE POSITION OF THE EARLY 1970S. IN THIS REGARD, THE MINISTER AND WOHLIN THOUGHT THAT THE GROWING NUMBER OF PRESS REPORTS ABOUT LAYOFFS--OR REQUESTS FOR LAYOFFS-- WERE HAVING A BENEFICIAL EDUCATIONAL EFFECT ON LABOR LEADERS AND THE SWEDISH PUBLIC.
3. DEVALUATION. WHETHER SWEDEN SHOULD DEVALUE TO ASSIST ITS EXPORTS IS A WIDELY DEBATED QUESTION AT PRESENT. THE MINISTER HELD TO THE GOVERNMENT LINE THAT DEVALUATION WAS NOT NECESSARY AND MIGHT BE MORE HARMFUL THAN HELPFUL. WOHLIN'S COMMENTS LEFT MORE LEEWAY, HOWEVER, AND HE SEEMED MORE INCLINED TO ACCEPT IT UNDER CERTAIN CIRCUMSTANCES. "SOME ECONOMISTS," HE SAID, "MAKE A CASE FOR A TEN PERCENT, EVEN 30 PERCENT, DEVALUATION. . . BUT I THINK THE KEY FACTOR IS A WAGE SETTLEMENT WHICH WILL RE-ESTABLISH OUR COMPETITIVE SITUATION VIS-A-VIS THE WEST GERMANS. . ."
4. NUCLEAR POWER. BOHMAN REVEALED THE FRUSTRATIONS CREATED IN SWEDEN BY THE NUCLEAR POWER ISSUE. HE APPRECIATED THAT IT WAS A "QUESTION OF MORALITY" WITH SOME LEADERS (FALLDIN) WHICH MADE IT A VERY DIFFICULT ISSUE TO RESOLVE. THE ENERGY COMMISSION, UNDER MR. RAINIER, ABOUT WHICH CONSIDERABLE PUBLICITY HAS BEEN GENERATED, IS A WEAK REED. IT WON'T HAVE TIME ENOUGH TO EXAMINE THE ISSUES--ITS REPORT IS DUE IN 1978--AND ITS "BALANCED" MEMBERSHIP WILL MAKE CONSENSUS UNLIKELY, LEAVING THE SWEDISH PUBLIC UNDECIDED. "IT IS NOT SET UP FOR EFFECTIVE OPERATION," HE THOUGHT.
5. BOHMAN'S VISIT. WE DISCUSSED THE MINISTER'S FORTHCOMING VISIT TO THE US FOR THE IMF INTERIM COMMITTEE MEETING APRIL 28-29. A SEPARATE CABLE CONTAINS MY SUGGESTIONS.
6. NOTE. THE MINISTER ASKED, AND THE AMBASSADOR AGREED, THAT HIS AND HIS COLLEAGUES' REMARKS BE HELD IN STRICT CONFIDENCE.
1Bohman specifically asks that all their remarks be kept 'strictly confidential'.
2Personal secretary Bildt, who here has become a 'political adviser', is not otherwise cited.
3Bohman gives the US advance info on dimensions of possible Swedish currency devaluation.
1977 April 13, 00:00 (Wednesday)
VISIT TO WASHINGTON OF SWEDISH DELEGATION
1. CARL BILDT, PERSONAL ASSISTANT AND POLITICAL ADVISER TO MINISTER OF ECONOMY BOHMAN, WILL ACCOMPANY LATTER TO WASHINGTON FOR IMF MEETINGS IN LATE APRIL. IN DISCUSSION TODAY WITH POLCOUNS, BILDT EXPRESSED HOPE SEVERAL APPOINTMENTS WITH DEPARTMENT OFFICERS MIGHT BE ARRANGED FOR HIM ALONE ON APRIL 28 AND 29.
2. BILDT WOULD LIKE VERY MUCH TO MEET WITH ANTHONY LAKE ON POLICY PLANNING STAFF; OFFICERS RESPONSIBLE FOR SOVIET AND EASTERN EUROPEAN AFFAIRS (HE HAS STRONG BACKGROUND AND INTEREST IN COMMUNIST AFFAIRS); EXPERTS ON OIL PROBLEMS AND THE POLITICS OF THE MIDDLE EASTERN OIL SITUATION. COUNSELOR MATS BERGQVIST OF SWEDISH EMBASSY HAS BEEN ASKED BY BILDT TO FOLLOW UP THIS REQUEST.
3. BILDT READILY ACCEPTED SUGGESTION THAT HE ADD MEETING WITH EUR BUREAU OFFICERS RESPONSIBLE FOR US-SWEDISH RELATIONS.
4. GIVEN BILDT'S KEY POSITION AS ADVISER TO BOHMAN AND OTHER MODERATE PARTY MINISTERS IN SWEDISH CABINET, EMBASSY HOPES DESIRED MEETINGS CAN BE SCHEDULED.
1Tony Lake was director of policy planning for the Carter administration.
2Remember the US arranged these high-level meetings for a Bildt still without portfolio.
3EUR is where Victoria Nuland works today - State's Bureau of European and Eurasian Affairs.
1977 April 25, 00:00 (Monday)
SCHEDULES OF MESSRS. BOHMAN AND BILDT
FOLLOWING SCHEDULES WERE PROVIDE BY SWEDISH EMBASSY:
MONDAY, MAY 2
12:00 LUNCHEON WITH RICHARD COOPER
15:00 ALICE RIVLIN, CONGRESSIONAL BUDGET OFFICE.
16:30 ARTHUR BURNS, FEDERAL RESERVE (APPOINTMENT WITH SECRETARY BLUMENT;AL STILL UNCERTAIN).
THURSDAY, APRIL 28
11:00 JOSEPH TWINAM, DIRECTOR, ARABIAN PENNISULA AFFAIRS (NEA/ARP).
12:00 DAVID C. GUMPERT, OFFICE OF INTERNATIONAL SECURITY POLICY (PM/ISP).
13:00 GREGORY S. TREVERTON, NSC (EAST/WEST QUESTIONS)
15:30 ROBERT BARRY, DEPUTY DIRECTOR, OFFICE OF SOCIAL AFFAIRS (EUR/SOV).
16:30 RONALD E. WOODS, ACTING DIRECTOR EUR/NE
FRIDAY, APRIL 29
09:30 BARRY BLECHMAN, BROOKINGS
11:00 HAL SONNENFELDT, JOHNS HOPKINS UNIVERSITY
12:00 THOMAS ROSS, ASSIST SECRETARY OF DEFENSE FOR PUBLIC AFFAIRS AND WALTER SLOCOMBE, DEPUTY ASSISTANT SECRETARY FOR INTERNATIONAL SECURITY AFFAIRS (DOD/ISA).
1The Brookings Institution in Embassy Row in Washington DC is a richly funded right wing think tank.
2Bohman is the official reason for the visit, Bildt's only Bohman's 'personal secretary', yet look who gets the meetings.
1977 June 10, 00:00 (Friday)
JUNE 23-24 OECD MINISTERIAL: SWEDISH DELEGATION WILL CONSULT IN ADVANCE WITH FRENCH
1. AS REPORTED EARLIER, MINISTERS OF FINANCE AND COMMERCE WILL HEAD SWEDISH DELEGATION TO MINISTERIAL. OTHER MEMBERS WILL BE LARS KARSTROM, MINCOMMERCE/FONAFFAIRS; HANS ADEN, MINCOMMERCE/FONAFFAIRS; BERTIL LUND, MINISTRY OF ECONOMIC AFFAIRS; KARL BILDT, SPECIAL ADVISOR TO MINISTER BOHMAN; FRANK BELFRAGE, MINISTRY OF FOREIGN AFFAIRS (MULTILATERAL ASSISTANCE).
2. MINISTERS WILL BE IN PARIS SEVERAL DAYS BEFORE OPENING OF MINISTERIAL FOR DISCUSSIONS WITH FRENCH OFFICIALS, ACCORDING TO ADEN.
1Note how Bildt's title keeps changing. The other Swedish representatives are bona-fide cabinet members.
2Belfrage came to work under Bildt 2006 as state secretary, currently as head of Bildt's ministry for foreign affairs.
1977 June 17, 00:00 (Friday)
U.S. NUCLEAR REPROCESSING POLICY
1. THREE IMPORTANT FIGURES FROM THE COALITION GOVERNMENT JOINED US FOR LUNCH JUNE 16 TO DISCUSS NUCLEAR MATTERS. THEY WERE UNDERSECRETARY OF LABOR CARL THAM, COORDINATOR FOR THE LIBERAL PARTY AND MEMBER OF THE ENERGY COMMISSION; MODERATE MP ANDERS WIJKMAN, ALSO A MEMBER OF THE COMMISSION; AND CARL BILDT, COORDINATOR FOR THE MODERATE PARTY. (FROM OUR SIDE IT WAS CHARGE, POLCOUNS, ECONCOUNS AND SCIATT.)
2. THE SWEDES REFERRED TO THE NUCLEAR POWER CONTROVERSY IN SWEDEN, ITS POTENTIAL FOR AFFECTING THE TENURE OF THE COALITION GOVERNMENT, AND THE POSSIBLE IMMEDIATE EFFECT ON SWEDEN OF THE ANNOUNCED US POLICY ON FJUCLEAR FUEL REPROCESSING.
3. WIJKMAN AND THAM MENTIONED THE RECENTLY CONCLUDED REPROCESSING CONTRACT BETWEEN THE SWEDISH NUCLEAR FUEL SUPPLY COMPANY AND THE FRENCH GOVERNMENT-OWNED COGEMA. THE CONTRACT WILL COVER THE REPROCESSING OF ABOUT 70 TONS OF WASTE FUEL FROM BARSEBACK II AND RINGHALS III FROM NOW THROUGH 1979. THE FIRST REPROCESSING SHIPMENT WILL NOT TAKE PLACE UNTIL 1979. THE SWEDES ARE CONCERNED THAT THE UNITED STATES MAY NOT APPROVE SWEDEN'S REQUEST FOR RETRANSFER OF SPENT FUEL TO FRANCE. THEIR DOUBT ON THIS ISSUE IS BASED ON DR. JOSEPH S. NYE'S STATEMENT AT SALZBURG IN MAY (WIJKMAN AND THAM WERE PRESENT) AND ON THE AMPLIFICATION OF DR. NYE'S STATEMENT GONTAINED REF B.
4. THE SWEDES DESCRIBE THE POLITICAL ISSUE AS FOLLOWS: ACCORDING TO SWEDISH LAW (THE SO-CALLED CONDITIONS ACT OF MAY 1, 1977), THE OWNERS OF NUCLEAR POWER PLANTS MUST HAVE A VALID CONTRACT FOR REPROCESSING NUCLEAR FU L AND DEMONSTRATE HOW AND WHERE SAFE FINAL STORAGE OF THE REPROCESSED WASTES MAY TAKE PLACE. THE ARRANGEMENTS FOR REPROCESSING AND DISPOSAL BEING MADE BY THE OWNERS OF RINGHALS III AND BARSEBACK II ARE TO BE "JUDGED" BY THE GOVERNMENT WITHIN THE NEXT FOUR MONTHS. ALTHOUGH THE CONTRACT WITH COGENA MAY BE "ACCEPTABLE," SOME SWEDISH NUCLEAR OPPONENTS IN THE PARLIAMENT MAY CLAIM THAT THE UNITED STATES MAY NOT GIVE PERMISSION TO RETRANSFER SPENT FUEL TO FRANCE, THUS RENDERING THE ARRANGEMENT WITH COGEMA UNACCEPTABLE BECAUSE IT CANNOT BE IMPLEMENTED. THE SWEDISH NUCLEAR POWER PROGRAM COULD BE STOPPED BY US DENIAL OF PERMISSION TO RETRANSFER. THE PROBABLE RESULT WOULD BE A SPLIT IN THE COALITION GOVERNMENT WITH CONSEQUENT LOSS OF ABILITY TO GOVERN.
5. FOREIGN MINISTER SODER WILL VISIT WASHINGTON FROM JUNE 29 TO JULY 1 (REF C) AND PLANS TO RAISE THE REPROCESSING POLICY WITH THE SECRETARY TO SEEK ASSURANCE OR AT MINIMUM A POSITIVE SIGNAL THAT THE UNITED STATES WILL CONSIDER EXPEDITIOUSLY AND FAVORABLY A SWEDISH REQUEST FOR PERMISSION TO RETRANSFER SPENT NUCLEAR FUEL TO FRANCE. SOME ASSURANCE OR ENCOURAGEMENT ON THIS ISSUE, ACCORDING TO WOJKMAN, THAM AND BILDT, IS ESSENTIAL FOR THESE REASONS:
(A) US REFUSAL TO CONSIDER OR DENIAL OF PERMISSION TO RETRANSFER SPENT FUEL MAY POSSIBLY LEAD TO A CRISIS IN THE COALITION GOVERNMENT THAT COULD CAUSE ITS ULTIMATE DOWNFALL,
(B) US REFUSAL OR DENIAL COULD HALT THE SWEDISH NUCLEAR POWER PROGRAM (REACTORS 7 TO 10) AND WE COULD BE ACCUSED OF INDIRECT INTERFERENCE IN SWEDISH INTERNAL AFFAIRS, AND
(C) THE SWEDES WILL BEGIN NEGOTIATIONS OF A REPROCESSING CONTRACT WITH COGEMA IN NOVEMBER FOR NUCLEAR WASTES THAT MAY BE GENERATED IN THE 1980'S. AN EXPRESSION OF THE US ATTITUDE TOWARD SWEDISH REPROCESSING RETRANSFER REQUESTS PRIOR TO THESE NEGOTIATIONS IS CRITICAL.
6. COMMENT: THESE THREE POLITICAL EXPERTS WERE STATING THE SAME CONCERN ABOUT US POLICY THAT WE HEARD ON MAY 18 FROM OUR MFA FRIENDS, BUT THE POLITICAL TYPES COULD SPEAK MORE OPENLY OF THEIR FEARS FOR BREAK-UP OF THE PRESENT COALITION OVER THIS ISSUE--AND THEY DID. THEY STATED CANDIDLY THAT IF FOREIGN MINISTER SODER DID NOT GET SOME STATEMENT OF REASSURANCE FROM THE SECRETARY THAT SWEDEN'S REQUESTS FOR EXPORTS OF NUCLEAR WASTE WOULD BE FAVORABLY CONSIDERED, THEN THE USG POSITION WOULD BECOME PART OF THE DEBATE THIS FALL ON NUCLEAR POLICY, AND THE DANGER OF THE GOVERNMENT NOT SURVIVING WAS SIGNIFICANT. POSSIBLY THEY OVERESTIMATE THE PERIL, BUT WE HAVE NO DOUBT THAT BOTH THEY AND THE SWEDISH GOVERNMENT OFFICIALLY ARE FEELING VERY STRONGLY THE NEED FOR SOME USG STATEMENT IN THE NEAR FUTURE. THE EMBASSY IS AWARE OF THE NEED FOR THE USG TO MAINTAIN A FIRM FRONT WHILE OUR NUCLEAR POLICY IS BEING ELABORATED AND IMPLEMENTED. WE DO BELIEVE, AS STATED IN STOCKHOLM 2178, THAT THE UNIQUENESS OF THE POLITICAL PROBLEM IN SWEDEN, AND SWEDEN'S EXEMPLARY RECORD ON NONPROLIFERATION, ENTITLE IT TO AN EXCEPTION. WE ALSO BELIEVE THE PRESENT GOVERNMENT DESERVES THIS MUCH CONSIDERATION FROM THE USG. THEREFORE FROM THE STOCKHOLM VIEWPOINT--AND WE RECOGNIZE THAT LARGER VIEWS MUST BE CONSIDERED--WE RECOMMEND THAT THE SECRETARY MAKE A POSITIVE STATEMENT ON THIS MATTER TO MRS. SODER.
1No matter the agenda, count on Bildt being there.
2Bildt won't be an MP for another two years, much less 'cabinet' like the others, yet there he is.
3Bildt's title changes again, from secretary to adviser to party coordinator. And he still hasn't stood anywhere for election.
4The meeting concerns a scheme to save the current non-socialist government, the merits of which are taken for granted by the US.
1977 September 29, 00:00 (Thursday)
1. UK EMBASSY HERE AND VISITING SWEDISH UNDER SECRETARY CARL BILDT HAVE INQUIRED WHETHER REMAINING SECTIONS OF PENTAGON PAPERS HAVE YET BEEN HANDED OVER TO HALPERIN, IN ACCORD WITH OYR EARLIER DECISION (REFTEL).
2. FOR YOUR INFORMATION, AND WE HAVE SO INFORMED UK AMD SWEDISH EMBASSIES, PAPERS HAVE NOT YET BEEN RELEASED. THIS WILL PROBABLY OCCUR IN ABOUT TWO WEEKS, AFTER RESOLUTION OF TECHNICAL DIFFERENCES BETWEEN USG AND HALPERIN. THESE DIFFERENCES DO NOT CONCERN MATERIAL ITSELF, WHICH WILL BE HANDED OVER IN SAME FORM AS PROVIDED THREE EMBASSIES ON SEPTEMBER 2. WE WILL INFORM YOU ONCE THIS TAKES PLACE.
1The Pentagon Papers expose US war lies. You know who has to be there for the US from Sweden.
2Note how Bildt's title changes yet again, all these changes in the same year. Now he's 'under secretary'.
3Why the panic over those documents, Carl Bildt? Have you done something you don't want the world to know?
4They might now call Bildt an 'under secretary', but the year is still 1977 and Bildt won't have anything 'official' until 1979.
1977 November 2, 00:00
MINISTER OF ECONOMY RAISES ARMS SALES POLICY
1. IN THE COURSE OF MY COURTESY CALL ON GOSTA BOHMAN, SWEDISH MINISTER OF ECONOMY, HE REFERRED TO THE MANY YEARS WHEN, AS ONE OF THE LEADERS OF THE SWEDISH OPPOSITION, HE HAD A KEEN INTEREST IN DEFENSE MATTERS. HE HAD BEEN ON THE SWEDISH DEFENSE COMMISSION, AND WAS A MEMBER OF THE RIKSDAG DEFENSE COMMITTEE. IT WAS OF CONCERN TO HIM, THEREFORE, BOHMAN SAID, THAT HE HAD BEEN TOLD THERE WERE INCREASING "COMPLICATIONS" ON THE SALE OF U.S. MILITARY ITEMS AND COMPONENTS TO SWEDEN. BOHMAN NOTED THAT SWEDEN BELONGED TO NEITHER MILITARY BLOC IN WESTERN EUROPE AND, DETERMINED TO DEFEND ITSELF EFFECTIVELY, BORE A PARTICULARLY HEAVY DEFENSE EXPENDITURE BURDEN. SWEDEN RELIES IN THIS AREA ON U.S. MATERIAL, HE SAID. HE ADDED THAT HE KNEW THAT COLLABORATION BETWEEN OUR DAO STAFF AND THE SWEDISH MILITARY WAS EXCELLENT.
2. COMMENT: BOHMAN WAS NOT SPECIFIC ENOUGH FOR ME TO REPLY IN ANY DETAIL. I MENTIONED BY CONSULTATIONS IN WASHINGTON ON THE GE 404 ENGINE AS MY INITIATION TO THE MILITARY TECHNOLOGY RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN OUR GOVERNMENTS. IN ADDITION, I EXPRESSED MY UNDERSTANDING OF, AND APPRECIATION FOR, SWEDEN'S POLICY OF NON-ALIGNMENT AND NEUTRALITY. THE EMBASSY LEARNED LATER FROM BOHMAN'S ASSISTANT, CARL BILDT, THAT THE MINISTER'S REFERENCE TO "COMPLICATIONS" CONCERNED THE 9L VERSION OF THE SIDEWINDER MISSILE AS WELL AS THE COMPONENTRY AND ENGINES (GE 404) FOR THE B3LA. BILDT SAID THE MINISTER HOPED U.S. WOULD REMAIN FLEXIBLE ON ARMS SALES TO SWEDEN IN THE COMING MONTHS WHILE THE GOS DEBATED ITS FUTURE WEAPONS SYSTEMS.
1Bildt - back to mere 'assistant' here - is called on to clarify Bohman's mysterious munitions message. Bildt wants US weapons.
1977 November 7, 00:00 (Monday)
SWEDES PLAN FURTHER CAMPAIGN AGAINST NEUTRON BOMB
1. AT A STOCKHOLM MEETING NOVEMBER 3 CALLED TO PROTEST THE NEUTRON BOMB, SPEAKERS FROM A NUMBER OF SWEDISH PEACE ORGANIZATIONS DENOUNCED THE WEAPON AND PLANNED FURTHER STRATEGY AGAINST ITS PRODUCTION AND DEPLOYMENT. IT WAS AGREED THAT A DEMONSTRATION IN DOWNTOWN STOCKHOLM WOULD TAKE PLACE ON NOVEMBER 27, (ENDING PRESUMABLY AT THIS EMBASSY). IN ADDITION PEACE GROUPS SIGNALLED THEIR INTENTION TO SEND A RESOLUTION FROM THE MEETING DIRECTLY TO PRESIDENT CARTER.
2. ARGUMENTS ASSEMBLED AGAINST THE WEAPON ARE THOSE WE CAN EXPECT WILL BE THE MAINSTAY OF THE CAMPAIGN IN SWEDEN. DR. FRANK BARNABY, BRITISH-BORN HEAD OF THE STOCKHOLM INTERNATIONAL PEACE INSTITUTE (SIPRI), SPOKE OF THE EFFECTS OF IONIZING RADIATION AND THE GENETIC DAMAGE TO FUTURE GENERATIONS SHOULD SUCH A WEAPON BE USED. HE ALSO WARNED THAT DEPLOYMENT WOULD ENHANCE THE INFLUENCE OF THOSE WHO ARGUED THAT A NUCLEAR WAR IS FIGHTABLE AND WINABLE. HE ALSO FELT THAT DEVELOPMENT OF THE WEAPON WOULD INCREASE THE LIKELIHOOD THAT STATES NOT NOW IN POSSESSION OF NUCLEAR WEAPONS WOULD ATTEMPT TO OBTAIN THEM, CITING THE "IMPACT STATEMENT ON THE NEUTRON BOMB OF THE NATIONAL SECURITY COUNCIL TO THE U.S. SENATE." BARABY FELT, MOREOVER, THAT THE BOMB COULD ERASE THE BORDER BETWEEN NUCLEAR AND NON-NUCLEAR WEAPONS.
3. PER-ANDERS FOGELSTROM OF THE LEFT-WING SOCIAL DEMOCRATIC PARTY-ORIENTED SWEDISH PEACE AND CONSILIATION ASSOCIATION DECRIED THE VIEW THAT THE WEAPON IS A "CLEAN, INNOCENT CHILD WEAPON," SARCASTICALLY QUOTING UNNAMED PENTAGON SOURCES WHO WERE REPUTED TO HAVE CLAIMED THAT THE BOMB WOULD ENABLE NATO TO "RETAKE THE SISTINE CHAPEL IN THE EVENT SOVIET TANKS OCCUPIED ST. PETER'S SQUARE WITHOUT KILLING THE POPE." FOGELSTROM DENOUNCED THE "PROPERTY IS MORE IMPORTANT THAN PEOPLE" VIEW THAT IS ALLEGED TO LIE BEHIND THE BOMB'S DEVELOPMENT, QUOTING OTHER UNNAMED US GENERALS WHO LAMENTED THE LACK OF SUCH A WEAPON IN WORLD WAR II. BENGT GUSTAVSSON, HEAD OF THE SWEDISH UNITED NATIONS ASSOCIATION ALSO CONDEMNED THE "ANTI-PEOPLE, PRO- PROPERTY" BIAS OF THE BOMB, AND CALLED IT A RESULT OF THE CYNICISM OF WEAPONS THEORISTS. HE BELIEVED INCREASING EXPENDITURES ON WEAPONS WERE ANOMALOUS IN A WORLD WHICH HAS "NEVER BEFORE HAD SO MANY UNEMPLOYED AND STARVING PEOPLE."
4. RESOLUTION ADOPTED BY MEETING TO BE SENT TO PRESIDENT CALLS A DECISION TO DEVELOP THE NEUTRON BOMB AND CRUISE MISSILE A THREAT TO WORLD PEACE AND EUROPEAN SECURITY, AS WELL AS A VIOLATION OF US COMMITMENTS UNDER THE HELSINKI AGREEMENT TO WORK FOR "PEACE AND FREEDOM" IN EUROPE. IT RECALLS THE PRESIDENT'S COMMITMENTS TO HUMAN RIGHTS AND STATES THAT THE RIGHT TO LIVE IN SECURITY IS THE MOST ELEMENTARY HUMAN RIGHT."
5. ONE OF THE GROUP'S ORGANIZERS ALSO MENTIONED THAT HE WOULD TRY TO ORGANIZE A PANEL DISCUSSION ON THE NEUTRON BOMB AND NUCLEAR DISARMAMENT WITH PARTICIPATION FROM THE US AND SOVIET EMBASSIES. WE HAVE NOT, HOWEVER, RECEIVED ANY INVITATIONS YET.
6. FUTURE DIRECTION OF LOBBY EFFORT IS TO BE SEEN IN EXPECTATION VOICED AT MEETING THAT JANUARY GATHERING OF SWEDISH POPULAR MOVEMENTS (A PEOPLES RIKSDAG) WOULD BE USED TO CONDEMN THE NEUTRON BOMB. ALSO, ANTI-BOMB GROUPS PLAN TO INSIST THAT THE SWEDISH GOVERNMENT SPONSOR A RESOLUTION IN THE UNGA DEMANDING THAT THE WEAPONS BE SCRAPPED.
7. COMMENT: IN THE NEUTRON BOMB, LEFT-WING SWEDISH GROUPS UNDOUBTEDLY BELIEVE THEY HAVE AT LAST FOUND A NEW ISSUE TO UNITE THEM AGAINST THE US. THE MAIN ARGUMENTS USED IN THE SWEDISH PROTEST APPEAR TO BE (A) THE ANTI-NUCLEAR VIEW THAT ANY ADDITION OF NEW WEAPONS TO THE NUCLEAR ARSENAL IS PER SE DESTABILIZING AND DANGEROUS AND (B) THE PACIFIST VIEW THAT THE NEUTRON BOMB IS BAD BECAUSE IT KILLS PEOPLE, AND BY A SLOW AGONIZING PROCESS AT THAT. GROUPS OPPOSING THE WEAPON ARE WELL-ORGANIZED, EVEN IF THEY DO NOT REPRESENT, FOR THE MOST PART, INFORMED OPINION ON STRATEGIC MATTERS. MODERATE PARTY COORDINATOR CARL BILDT, FOR EXAMPLE, HAS TOLD US THAT THOSE INVOLVED IN MILITARY THINKING IN SWEDEN ARE FAR LESS WORRIED ABOUT THE BOMB THAN THOSE REPRESENTED BY THE STOCKHOLM MEETING. HOWEVER, GIVEN THE STRONG OBJECTIONS TO THE WEAPON STATED TO US BY SWEDEN'S REPRESENTATIVE TO THE GENEVA DISARMAMENT NEGOTIATIONS, MRS. INGA THORSSON, AS WELL AS HER RECENT STATEMENTS AGAINST THE BOMB AT THE UNGA, WE DO NOT AT ALL EXCLUDE THE POSSIBILITY THAT SWEDEN WILL INTRODUCE SOME KIND OF RESOLUTION AT THE UN SPECIAL SESSION ON DISARMAMENT NEXT SPRING CALLING FOR A BAN ON THE WEAPON'S DEPLOYMENT.
1Bildt and the neutron bomb: he's all in favour, and he assures the US his military friends like it too.
2Bildt - now a 'party coordinator' - above all wants to help quell antagonism towards his beloved US.
3The prospect that the bomb kills 'by a slow agonizing process' doesn't bother Bildt in the slightest.
4Ambassador and former Carter campaigner Kennedy-Minott implies Bildt doesn't know everything.
1978 – Present Day
Swedish prime minister Olof Palme was assassinated on the well-lit downtown Stockholm street Sveavägen late in the evening of 28 February 1986 as he walked with wife Lisbet to the subway after an evening at the cinema.
Olof and Lisbet Palme had no bodyguard - Sweden was considered a 'safe place'.
Carl Bildt had formally entered politics in 1979, married the daughter of his party's leader a few years later after divorcing his first wife, dropped out of university (he never finished and got a degree) and assumed chairmanship of his party's youth league.
Bildt was in parliament when the famous 'Whisky class' Russian sub ran aground outside the southern coastal town Karlskrona, was appointed to the commission investigating the incident before Palme came back to power in 1982, and took the final report, almost before the ink was dry, straight to his friends at the CIA in Langley. Palme, who by then had resumed control of a wobbly Sweden, was to famously have remarked 'den där jävla Bildt' ('that fucking Bildt').
Palme's closest associate through the Erlander years, Ingvar Carlsson, became prime minister after Palme but lost in the 1991 national elections, thereby putting Bildt in the PM residence at Rosenbad. Bildt immediately set about making sweeping changes such as withdrawing all support for Nelson Mandela and the ANC, and starting the transition to membership in the EU.
A clever coordinated effort by Bildt, the CIA, and NATO had already pushed public opinion more towards the right, closer to a US traditionally regarded with a high level of scepticism, and into a maelström of irrational russophobia. (Bildt has always hated both social democracy and Russia.)
Bildt lost the national elections in 1994, stepped down as party leader for the conservatives, accepted a seat on Lundin Oil's board of directors, became implicated in the company's involvement with genocide in their African areas, and as a result was summoned to answer questions before the Constitutional Committee.
Bildt was later called in by the UN to help mediate the peace in the former Yugoslavia; he is in some areas today classified as persona non grata as a result.
Bildt was recruited in 2002-2003 to 'sell' the coming US invasion of Iraq for the Committee for the Liberation of Iraq. Recently Bildt has been a staunch defender of mass surveillance by the NSA and Sweden's own counterpart, the FRA.
The WikiLeaks release of 'PlusD' ('Public Library of US Diplomacy') brought about a storm of articles in the Swedish media (foremost Aftonbladet) when it was discovered Bildt had been a CIA informer since at least 1976.
Bildt was also found to be in breach of office for migrating official ministry correspondence away from the government's own servers and onto Gmail servers where the NSA had direct access. Despite the clear violation, the practice continues to this day.
Bildt is suspected as being the 'spider in the web' in the case of Assange in Sweden, responsible for the current impasse.
Reacting to his appearance at the NetMundial conference in Brazil, famous hacker Jake Appelbaum was heard to refer to him in a speech in São Paulo as 'Carl Motherfucking Bildt', somewhat echoing the appraisal of Olof Palme 32 years earlier.
Some things change; Carl Bildt remains the same.
WikiLeaks PlusD: The Carter Cables
Rixstep Special Report: Our Man Bildt
The Technological: Carl Bildt Always Knows Too Much
Industry Watch: Bildt's Party & Mandela's Darkies
Industry Watch: Bildt Hired as War Hawk
The Technological: Carl Bildt Does a Sarah Palin
Industry Watch: Board Members at Lundin, Big Shots at Bildt
Industry Watch: Carl Bildt Hits Head, Wakes Up in Aššur
Industry Watch: Party of Carl Bildt Late in Recognising Mandela
Industry Watch: Bildt's Tough Questions for Barack
The Technological: Carl Bildt: 'Keep Building Those Factories!'
Industry Watch: Jen-Rob Meets Carl Bildt
Industry Watch: On Swedish Soil: Julian Assange, Carl Bildt & Mutual Legal Assistance
Industry Watch: The Duplicity of Carl Bildt's 'Moderates'
Industry Watch: Carl Bildt Summoned by Subcommittee
Red Hat Diaries: Out with the Old, In with 1984
Red Hat Diaries: Dog in a Duckpond
Industry Watch: Assange Slams Media for Libel
Learning Curve: What Carl Bildt Did for Iraq
Hall of Monkeys: Teo Loses His Ish Again
Learning Curve: Swedish Right + Bonniers = TRUE