Swedes surveyed about recent submarine hunt

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A photo of a sonar image made available by the Swedish military which they say shows sub-sea tracks left behind by a mini-submarine. (Swedish Armed Forces/AP)
A photo of a sonar image made available by the Swedish military which they say shows sub-sea tracks left behind by a mini-submarine. (Swedish Armed Forces/AP)
Three in four Swedes believe the Swedish Armed Forces have solid evidence that a foreign submarine violated Sweden’s territorial waters in October.

The survey results are “interesting”, Fredrik Bynander of Sweden’s National Defence College told Swedish Television News.

Bynander has researched the submarine hunts of the 1980s and 1990s and said the survey result is noteworthy considering how little trust Swedes have previously had in the Armed Forces when it comes to the submarine issue.

“Our recent history is pretty much forgotten. I think we would have seen a different result if the old mentality remained today,” Bynander said. He added that the Swedish public displayed little skepticism during the October submarine hunt, compared to how Swedes reacted in the Eighties and Nineties.

Back then, journalists were also more knowledgeable about defence issues and asked harder questions, according to Bynander. This time around, “the media have been largely positive about the way in which the Armed Forces have presented their information,” he said.

The survey asked: “Do you believe the Armed Forces when they say they have strong evidence that a foreign submarine was in the archipelago in the autumn?”

Seventy-five percent of respondents answered yes, while 14 percent said they were unsure or did not know, and 11 percent said they did not believe the Armed Forces have sound proof.

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