The Swedes like talking about Sweden as a safe, generous, and most prosperous country in the world. They would like to think of Sweden as paradise on earth. However, there is a powerful party in Sweden that propagates a different point of view. This party believes that Sweden is for migrants, that Sweden should hold a Swexit referendum because the EU is obsolete. In addition, they think that Russia is a partner, but not an enemy.
On September 9, the Swedes will go to the polls to elect their new parliament. Liberals and Social Democrats in power have been losing their influence, whereas the right-wing conservative alliance led by the moderate coalition party may not have enough votes to form a government. Nevertheless, the two traditional blocs are not eager to join the coalition with the growing influence of Swedish Democrats - nationalists, whom many accuse of racism and xenophobia.
Sweden is a parliamentary constitutional monarchy, in which the parliament is elected by party lists. The Swedish parliament, the Riksdag, has 349 seats. According to the poll conducted by Demoskop for Expressen publication, the difference between the Alliance for Sweden (Moderate Party, People's Party, Christian Democrats and Center Party) and the "red-green" (Social Democrats, Left Party and Green Party) was 0.2 percent in favor of the first .Yet, the isolated Swedish Democrats gain more than 20 percent and may win the elections. Eight years ago, they received only four percent of the vote (in 2014 - more than 12 percent).
Swedish Democrats can change Sweden from the point of view of its Russophobic sentiment. According to the European Values rating, Sweden is one of the five most anti-Russian countries in Europe.
The Swedish Democrats party calls to stop immigration and hold a Swexit referendum on the country's membership in the European Union. "The EU is a supranational political association, in which politicians from other countries, whom we do not elect, show a greater influence on the Swedish law than the Swedish parliament does," party leader Jimmy Okesson said. He calls for a more protectionist economic policy that could reduce imports of foreign goods, for example, by raising tariffs to the benefit of domestic producers. In addition, Okesson believes that one should ease tensions with Russia.
At this point, Sweden is not alone in Europe. The policy of multiculturalism, tolerance and political correctness has yielded fruit. Nationalist forces come to power in Austria, Germany, France, Poland, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Italy, and the Netherlands. Some call those forces ultra-right, others refer to them as xenophobic and even fascist forces. However, words do not change the essence of the matter: people go to vote for those who do not want to be "merciful" to migrants and promise to protect interests of the indigenous population.
As many as 600,000 migrants have arrived in the 9.5-million-strong Sweden from 2014 to 2018. It takes eight years for those efforts to pay off. "Six hundred thousand people correspond to 40 Swedish municipalities out of 15,000 people. Think about what they need from the point of view of infrastructure, public employment, housing, schools, buses, medical centers, etc.," Mats Edman, editor of Dagens Samhälle wrote. "In order to maintain the declared level of well-being, we will have to work up to 70 years and more, or we'll need to alter our requirements for welfare," he concludes.
What annoys the Swedes most is that migrants bring rampant crime, reluctance to integrate, boorish behavior and violence against women.
Ulf Kristerson, the leader of Alliance for Sweden, believes that these problems caused many Swedes to lose faith in the state. Sweden is paying its price for 20 years of a very unsuccessful integration policy, he told The Financial Times. "Arson attacks on vehicles seem very organized, almost like a military operation," said Prime Minister Stefan Löfven.
On August 16, Expressen publication published a video, in which a masked man warns the police about a retaliation action for treating migrants like cattle.
Natalia Plevako, the head of the Center for Nordic Countries of the Institute of Europe of the Russian Academy of Sciences, told Pravda.Ru that Alliance for Sweden could cooperate with Sweden Democrats, because coalition partner Christian Democrats may not get the required four percent of the vote. This does not mean favorable changes for Russia, though. "If Social Democrats form a government, Sweden will not join NATO. If Alliance for Sweden does that, then Sweden will possibly apply for NATO membership," she said.
Democrats of Sweden, Natalia Plevako believes, express popular beliefs. "They change their image and promote radical sentiment to look like a party that people may rely on. They have very good chances to win a large percent of votes in the upcoming election, up to 14, the expert told Pravda.Ru.
Lyuba Lulko (Stepushova)
Read article on the Russian version of Pravda.Ru