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Sweden, the Swastika and Stalin

The Swedish experience in the Second World War

John Gilmour

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This book fills a gap in the existing literature on the Second World War by covering the range of challenges, threats, issues, dilemmas, and changes faced and dealt with by Sweden during the conflict.

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List of Figures
Part One: 1 Shades of Neutrality? Political Challenges and Social Changes 1900-1939
2 Wartime Power and Personalities
3 Isolation, 1939-1941
4 Towards the Turning Point, July 1941-July 1943
5 Eastern Approaches and Western Reproaches: Finland's Continuation War and the Collapse of Germany, June 1941-May 1945
6 Trading with Germany and the Allies - Blackmail and Brinksmanship
Part Two: 7 Security, Subversion, Spies and Sabotage
8 The Battle for Sweden's Mind - Propaganda and Censorship
9 Race, Rejection, Reception, Rescue, and Redemption - Swedish Humanitarian Endeavours
10 Military Matters
11 The Front at Home - Beredskapstiden
12 Looking Back in Anger? The Assault on 'Small-State Realism'
Abbreviations and Glossary
Reference Sources and Bibliography

About the Author

John Gilmour teaches modern Scandinavian history and specialises in Scandinavia and the Second World War. From an initial research interest in the British wartime relationship with Sweden, he has broadened his scope to cover events in the occupied countries of Norway and Denmark; the German co-belligerent of Finland; and the committed neutral, Sweden.


Gilmour has the ability of bringing together various aspects of history, in particular its political, military and diplomatic dimensions, which makes his book useful also for Swedish-speaking readers. Remarkably, there is at the moment no equivalent introduction available in Swedish.
- Johan Östling, Department of History, Lund University
Gives the reader a fresh and authoritative view of wartime Sweden, from the nation's dealings with Nazi Germany to everyday life and social change. More controversially, Gilmour assesses key decisions by the Swedish leadership and tackles post-war questions about Swedish actions in the era of the Holocaust
- Professor Krister Wahlbäck, Swedish Ministry for Foreign Affairs
It is so rare to have a scholar so competent in the source material of Sweden during the Second World War book in English has managed to give such a comprehensive picture.
- Jonas Frykman, Professor of European Ethnology, Lund University
Sweden, the Swastika and Stalin (2010) is the first modern book in English to cover just about all major aspects of Sweden during WWII. It should become required reading for all students of 20th century Scandinavian history.
- Lars Gyllenhaal, Swedish Military History Commission
Unlike Boëthius, Gilmour has built an argument from the sources rather than an emotional approach towards Swedish conduct.
- Major Claes Henrikson, Militär Historia

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