Advertisement / Customer service | About Us | Contact Us | Tell us what you think | Jobs | Shopping | Scandinavian travel | Archive | Cookies

Scandinavia Today / Sweden



More young Swedish men pour into Syria to fight - Could western hypocrisy be blamed?

Tuesday, 08 October 2013
They are here in Sweden, just as in the Nordic countries and most of western Europe  but don't feel at home and when the opportunity emerge for them to air out their frustration, they take the option which unfortunately is also extremely dangerous.

More young men in Sweden continue to pour into Syria to take part in the civil war ranging on there. The war that has already displace more that 2 million people and kill hundred of thousand, and which has seen the usage of chemical and biological weapons, that almost brought the world to a third world war.

The question is why are young men living in a safe country - Sweden, for example,  would want to risk their lives to go out there and fight for a country which they apparently have very little relation with?

Some commentators are now blaming alienation and lack of contact and integration in the Swedish system as one major reason. They are in Sweden but feel not welcome. They find it hard to get a foot into a career or keep the adrenalin active in other activities here. The boredom and lack of hope in a supposedly developed and future looking country makes then feel not at home.

Swedes Fighting in SwedenSwedes fighting in Syria / Granscole
They live in a society that has given them false hope that they will practice their religion freely and use it in the environment where there is free speech to push their cultures into the main stream. It has not come this way thus they start feeling alienated first from "whom they are" and then to what the society they live in expects of them. 

We have reported in the past how scores of Swedes go to Syria to fight along side terrorist organisation linked to the network, al-Qaida. A recent event that has triggered this write up is a report of more than 5 young men from the Swedish locality of Vivalla in Örebro, Swedish Somalis, who have travelled as recently as in the summer Syria to fight. This has stirred up very strong emotions in the Swedish town.
The municipality, police, and the residents have all been taken aback when the issue became public knowledge.
They are described as lovely guys - talented, good with people but still could not find it easy to call Sweden home. As such they continued to listen and look into that illusive place they hear is out there that will given them the peace, quietness and self-development they so badly crave.
The most stressful issue there is also that the young men left the country where they grew up, and in many cases were they were born, to war in a country that they have no obvious connections. Here the authorities and the police are still counting "at least five" young people as those who have left the country for the mission. However, multiple sources put the data to at least twice that number and even more.
Fighting in SyraIn one family, the family of Ali,  his two sons, 22 and 24 years old, went to Syria in the summer to fight. The third, the youngest son, followed later. Mr Ali has tried to persuade them to back come home but he is meeting acute resistance from them.
"We were very surprised and had no suspicions at all. We believe that the idea came from others who are older or more experienced. These guys had friends who are non-Somalis, and that's what we suspect, but we have no proof. We believe that there is a network," Ali told radio Sweden.
Besides the problems of identity of the young people, something the authorities have no idea or willingness on how to address, the fear is that these young people will gain significant military skills while out there. If they survive, and come back home to Sweden, they would have gained contact with terrorist groups such as al Qaida. They would have gained more knowledge on how to operate military equipments and set up bombs and booby traps and this like that. 
They'll become very dangerous to the community and Sweden at large.
How do you solve such a problem?
Since this is not a Sweden specific case as many are leaving the Nordic countries and the larger parts of Europe, flocking to Syria to fight, mainly non-Europeans means that these young people find it hard to see  Europe a place they can call home.
By Team

What do you think about this article? Did you spot an error? Please make a comments and join our network

Print Friendly and PDF