Sweden’s anti-Israel stance fuels its demographic exchange

The new extreme-Left Swedish minority government, which took over the reins of power in Stockholm in October, has thus far made one (1) policy decision: to recognise a state called “Palestine”, and to support this state with massive financial backing.

These are funds taken directly from Sweden’s pensioners. For the first time in post-war history, homelessness among Swedish pensioners is becoming a talked-about issue. There is a logical correlation between this new poverty and massive spending on “Palestine” from a limited Swedish budget that also has to provide the pensions of today’s Swedish pensioners, the people who have worked hard all their lives to earn those pensions.

Only to see them now being paid out not in Stockholm and Gothenburg but in Ramallah and Gaza.

The new Swedish minority government’s blatantly antagonistic behaviour towards the world’s only Jewish state is increasingly mirrored by ever more blatantly anti-Jewish sentiment among certain swathes of the Swedish populace. For “anti-Jewish” read “anti-Semitic”.

The most recent case in point is a spate of threatening emails sent to a rabbi in Gothenburg, Sweden’s second-largest city. Yesterday Rabbi Hillel Hayyim Lavery-Israëli received the sixth in a series of threatening emails that refer to him as a “pig” and “damned child-killer” and warning that the city’s main synagogue, whose congregation he serves, will be “destroyed and levelled with the ground” and that the rabbi himself will be “cast into the eternal fires of damnation”.

Bearing in mind the number of times the rabbi of Sweden’s third-largest city, Malmö, has been attacked, there is every reason to take these threats seriously.

Two days before this email arrived, Svenska Dagbladet, one of Sweden’s most notable newspapers, reported on the Har Nof massacre in which four Jews were butchered while at morning prayers in a Jerusalem synagogue and a police officer was gunned down. Another seven people were seriously wounded in the knife, axe and gun attack carried out by Arabs in the Israeli capital. The Swedish newspaper’s headline – the only angle it felt was worth reporting – was that following this atrocity against innocent Jewish Israeli civilians it would “now be more difficult to criticise Israel” because of the sympathy people might unfortunately feel for Jews as a result of the slaughter.

That was the newspaper’s only concern: that it would now be “more difficult” to criticise Israel. The default, in other words, being that one should always criticise the Jewish state and that anything that might obstruct this noble cause is to be regretted.

It is worth noting that Svenska Dagbladet is not some underground production from a far-left or Nazi right-wing extremist party but is probably the most moderate, notable and respected of Swedish newspapers. Mainstream and – that word again – respected.

So a threat to a rabbi in Sweden, following on from the Swedish government’s abuse of Swedish national funding to support Fatah and Hamas terrorists in the “State of Palestine”, and a mainstream news outlet’s regret that it feels temporarily unable to indulge in anti-Israel provocation and indoctrination, are all part of a long-standing pattern.

Sweden is at a crossroads. Jews have been living in this wonderful Scandinavian state for 250 years. Fully integrated, law-abiding, socially assimilated while largely successful in maintaining their distinct religious identity. Yet still the object of hatred and anti-Semitism on both macro and micro levels: via an amateur government dabbling in statecraft as a kind of hobby or sideline, via a virulently anti-Israel media, and via intellectually challenged individuals whose latent anti-Semitism is being fuelled increasingly openly and eagerly – and officially.

As a consequence, Jews are leaving Sweden. 15,000 Jews, an officially recognised minority living in this marvellous country for two and a half centuries, are under threat and exiting. They are being replaced by a fast-expanding and in some cases increasingly extremist, fanatical Muslim population. Muslims have been living in Sweden for about 50 years and they now number about 600,000, with another 100,000 scheduled to arrive before 2014 is over and even more in 2015.

It is an unnecessary, skewed and flawed demographic exchange. And it sends all the wrong signals to precisely the wrong people: that discrimination, bullying, victimisation and antagonism based on ethnic/religious grounds is not only permissible, it is actually welcomed.

Welcomed by the government, the media, the intelligentsia and news consumers fed on an undiluted diet of propaganda and indoctrination with a clear political bias and a demographic agenda.

The population exchange that Sweden is now facing is all set to leave an indelible – and dangerous – mark on the psyche of this once-proud nation.

Indelible and dangerous, yes. And permanent.

What remains now is to gauge the impact on the Swedish psyche over the coming decades.

About the Author
Ilya Meyer is former deputy chair of the West Sweden branch of the Sweden-Israel Friendship Association. He blogs about Israel and Sweden’s relationship with Israel at the Times of Israel and at He made his debut as a writer of political thrillers with The Hart Trilogy: "Bridges Going Nowhere" (2014), "The Threat Beneath" (2015) and "From The Shadows" (2016), where the action switches seamlessly between Samaria, Gaza, Israel and Sweden. The books are available from as ebooks and also in paperback. Work has started on a fourth book, "Picture Imperfect".