At the end of the 1960s and the beginning of the 1970s the Social Democratic government of Sweden shifted its policy in relation to the Soviet influenced part of the world. The Soviet Union repeatedly lauded Sweden’s policy of “friendship” and the policy was in Soviet daily newspaper Pravda described as:
an important contribution to the strengthening of European security.
The policy of Stockholm in support of Allende’s regime in Chile and the Indochinese communists was also mentioned by Soviet state controlled media as “positive”. Mr. Olof Palme, the Swedish prime minister later assassinated, termed this policy “active neutrality”. It could have been a term produced by the Kremlin. In fact it stood for criticism of the West and silence about injustices in communist countries.
Olof Palme started attacking American policy in Indochina in the early 1970s. Swedish aid to the regime in Hanoi and its appendix Viet Cong/NLF had started already in 1969. In 1967 and 1970 anti-American so called “war crimes tribunals” were held in Stockholm to propagandize the cause of the Vietnamese communists. It should be noted that the 1970 “tribunal” was organized by the Soviet international front organization World Peace Council (WPC).
Of interest is to note that during the years of 1970 to 1976 Swedish ministers only visited communist countries in the Soviet sphere. The Olof Palme governments from 1973 could only rule with support in parliament by Sweden’s Communist Party (VPK). This led to the Social Democrats being forced to make concessions to VPK.
During the Palme years as prime minister Sweden even progressed into a leading subversive center for Soviet style communism. Growing amounts of aid was distributed to communist-leaning and Marxist regimes as well as to various terrorist organizations. The most important aid was to North Vietnam with aid continuing into the 1980s. In 1979, for example, over US $ 200 million, were received in Swedish aid by the heirs of Ho Chi Minh.
Latin American terrorism received generous support, directly or indirectly. The regime in Havana benefited greatly. Allende’s extreme leftist regime was lauded. Sweden received a large number of Latin American refugees, some with ties to terrorist organizations. Circa 400 Argentinians, just under 400 Bolivians, almost 500 Brazilians, nearly 2,500 Chileans, around 350 Colombians, over 200 Peruvians and 730 or so refugees from tiny Uruguay. Many certainly had legitimate reasons for being admitted as refugees but many slipped into Sweden to continue supporting terrorist causes. These refugees in some cases established links to the Cuban Embassy in Stockholm. The Swedish-Cuban Society was then regarded as an important link with the embassy. Sweden also moved into becoming a “transition zone” for terrorists trained in the USSR for infiltration into the West.
Among those apprehended were Nelson Gutierrez, second-in-command of MIR, a Chilean Maoist organization. The Mexican terrorist Gonzales Carrillo, was sent to Sweden in January 1976 from Havana. He had been condemned in Mexico to 40 years of imprisonment for political terrorism. On April 1, 1977, the Swedish police broke up an international terrorist group and arrested over 30 of them, some of them from Latin America. The group had planned to kidnap a Swedish ex-minister to achieve the release of West German terrorists imprisoned in then West Germany.