CONTRA # 6 1997

Illegal files kept with the Swedish Security Police
The former member of the Swedish Security Police (SÄPO), Stig Johansson, reports on illegal files on political views kept within the force. In spite of ta government decree in 1969, which banned all files keeping information based on the political views, the SÄPO kept a force spying on participants in a right-wing group organizing lectures for policemen in Stockholm. Among lecturers were a former chief of the Archives of the Swedish Labour Movement Tage Lindbom and a judge from the City Court of the City of Västerås (Sweden's sixth largest city). Participants in the lecture series were registered and the police later destroyed the files.

Inefficiency with the Swedish Police Force
The Swedish legal system is inefficient, twice as expensive as Finland, if you look at the cost per capita. The Swedish legal system is also more expensive than the systems in Denmark and Norway. The Swedish police is most unsuccesful in solving crimes and every year fifty percent more speedings are reported than the number of thefts and burglaries solved. The police seems happy to concentrate its resources on things like guarding hockey games (popular as the policemen usually get a free access to the game).

Edmund Burke - the father of conservatism
Edmund Burke died 200 years ago, but is still an important philospher for conservatives around the world. Burke was an eloquent proponent of liberty, supporting the independence movements in America and India - opposed to the policy of his native Britain. Burke's most renowned book was "Reflections on the Revolution in France" (the first translation into Swedish ever published by Contra in 1982). It must be noted, however, that Burke was critical against what we today see as the fundaments of democracy, claiming that the majoriity of the people would be volatile and open to the changes of views caused by political fashion. Although he was sceptical towards democracy he was very much in favour of the free market economy, in opposition to the mercantilist views of his time.

The legal framework for closing down nuclear power plants
Contra legal correspondent Carl Johan Hardt studies the legal framework behind the decision taken by the Swedish government to close down reactor one at the Barsebäck nuclear power plant (located close to the Swedish city of Malmö and the Danish capital Copenhagen). Barsebäck has a permit according to the present law on nuclear power, but in spite of this the government wants to withdraw the permit and close the plant down. Is this legally possible? The plant is owned by a listed company, Sydkraft, which has a 60 percent foreign (40 per cent German and 20 per cent Norwegian) ownership.

Advertising and Men
Todays modern advertising seems to develop a sexist view on men, which are seen as incompetent and weak, and more and more as "sex objects".

Heroes of the cold war, Richard Wurmbnrand
The Romanian (Jewish) protestant pastor who served sentence in Romanian jail, was released in exchange for 5,000 US dollars. After his release he started his Voice of the Martyrs, distributing Bibles and religious litterature to the countries behind the iron curtain. Rev Wurmbrand is still active in his movement.

A scenario on a possible war in the Middle East
What would happen after a Syrian attack on Israel? Will Israel be forced to use its nuclear potential, and if so, what would be the reaction of the international opinion, if Israel defends itself against a possible annihilation.

Rudolf Höss
A biography of the head of the the German concentration camp Auschwitz.

How could a responsible and decent family father turn into a ferocious butcher?