Something Swedish

New Swedish Defense System

3 Comments

Have you heard about Sweden’s new military defense system? I promise that it’s unlike any other and worth reading about.

A few months ago Russian submarines were believed to be lurking around in Swedish waters without permission (article here), triggering 200 of Sweden’s military to embark on a three day mission around the archipelago.

Exactly one month ago, The Swedish Peace and Arbitration Society (SPAS), the worlds oldest peace organization,  installed an alternative defense system in the waters outside of Stockholm in response. So far so good – no new reports of Russian submarines yet. How does it work?

singing_sailor01

Well, it is called SSUDS, which is of course short for “The Singing Sailor Underwater Defense System” and one of its features is to send out a Morse code: “This way if you are gay.” Once you get close enough to actually see the defense system, a submarine will find a neon pink outline of a scantily clad sailor thrusting his pelvis, surrounded by hearts with the text: “Welcome to Sweden. Gay since 1944” (the year Sweden legalized homosexuality) in both English and Russian so there is no misunderstandings.

*SPAS has no government affiliation, and receives no Swedish military funds

The_Singing_Sailor_sea_II

The Singing sailor might seem like a joke (hence me taking a month to write about it), but it’s not. It’s purpose is not only to scare off Russia’s military, but to open a discussion within Sweden concerning a re-distribution and re-allotment of military funding and resources into new, forward thinking ways to fight wars without weapons: “the world doesn’t need more weapons. Military rearmament in itself is a major contributing cause of conflict, and that conflicts take a violent and destructive process.” – SPAS

 The_Singing_SailorThe_Singing_Sailor_2_back

What do you think? Is this an effective way to keep countries within their own borders? Is it using cultural differences to escalate or diffuse a tense political relationship between two countries? Do you think it will succeed in starting the discussion concerning Sweden’s military funds?

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3 thoughts on “New Swedish Defense System

  1. It’s definitely interesting, but I’m not sure that Russian submarines with explicit orders to attack are going to be scared off. Then again, I don’t get the impression that that’s what it’s meant to do. My feeling is that it’s supposed to foster debate, rather than constitute an actual solution. Really, I think it might be an example of “memetic warfare”, which has already been explored on a military level. Screwing around with images, ideas, and information, to bend things in your favor.

  2. I think it’s an interesting idea. At least they’ve made one good point: equipping governments with ever-increasing armaments does nothing to promote peace. I feel the need to point out, however, that SPAS has no government affiliation, and receives no Swedish military funds- not sure if that was clear from the post.

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