Sweden

From Roses, Tulips, & Liberty
The Swedish Republic

Republiken Sverige
Flag of Sweden
Flag
Location of Sweden
CapitalStockholm
Official languagesSwedish
LegislatureRiksdag
EstablishmentRepublic in 1944

Sweden is a nation in Northern Europe. It borders Denmark to the south, Norway to the west, and Finland to the east. It was once a monarchy ruled by the House of Palatinate-Zweibrücken (1654-1851) and Habsburg-Zweibrücken (1851-1944). Sweden became a republic in 1944 after a national referendum was held.

History

Role in the Franco-Dutch War (1672-1674)

Sweden was a member of the Triple Alliance, along with England and the Dutch Republic. The Triple Alliance, formed in 1668, was formed as a coalition against the French after they had occupied the Spanish Low Countries in the War of Devolution (1667-1668). The Triple Alliance had expected France to invade the Dutch Republic, and so had shored up protection in the southern Dutch border. The French invaded in 1672, sparking the Franco-Dutch War, which ended in 1674 in a French defeat. In the resulting Treaty of Nijmegen, the French gains in the previous Treaty of Aix-la-Chapelle was reversed, and proved the Swedish Empire to be competent and reliable allies for England and the Dutch Republic.

The 1851 Instrument of Government, and the return of absolute rule

Upon the heirless death of King Eric XVIII in 1850, his sister, Hedwig, was expected to become queen. However, the Riksdag was wary of her connections to the Austrian Habsburgs through her marriage. The Riksdag opted to elect a different king, a cousin of Eric XVIII. However, by the fall of that year, Hedwig, backed by loyal men in the Swedish army and supported by Britain, launched a coup against the Riksdag. This led to the 1851 Instrument of Government, which elevated the role of the Swedish monarch and severely curtailed the rights of the Riksdag. The Swedish ruling dynasty would be then known as Habsburg-Zweibrücken since Hedwig's rule up until the abolition of monarchy in 1941.

Scandinavian Wars (1864-1866)

After the Augustine Wars, Denmark's supremacy and influence over Scandinavia has waned and was forced to give Norway its independence. However, in 1865, Denmark had launched an invasion against Norway, aiming to reintegrate it into Denmark. Sweden and Hanover intervened on behalf of Norway and declared war on Denmark. Together, they were able to decisively defeat Denmark. Sweden was able to extract favorable trade concessions from the Danes, and forced them to relinquish control of Bornholm Island, a strategically located island in the Baltic Sea. Additionally, Sweden forced Denmark to cede some of their southern territories to Hanover. This victory tipped the balance of power in the Baltic favorably towards the Swedish.

Resurgence of Swedish imperialism in the late 19th century

Treaty of Territorial Acquisition in Guinea (1875)

The recent victory of Sweden against Denmark boosted the morale of the Swedish people. The new king, Gustav Frederick I, wanted to realize his ambition of a renewed Swedish Empire outside of Europe. This led to the signing of the Treaty of Territorial Acquisition in Guinea (1875). The treaty resulted from the Guinea Conference in 1875, in an ambitious effort to demarcate and divide colonial claims in the Guinea region of Africa among the "minor powers" of Europe, including Poland, Genoa, Pomerania, and Tuscany. Although the larger powers of Europe did not recognize this treaty, including Britain, Sweden continued to send an expedition led by Ludvig Adelvorg in 1876, attracting the ire of the larger colonial powers. Out of all the signatories of the Guinea treaty, only Sweden had maintained a successful presence in Western Africa, with its colony of Swedish Guinea (Swedish: Svenska Guinea).

Swedish role in the Great War

Franco-Swedish Telegraph (June 1937)

Sweden, still under Habsburg-Zweibrücken rule, initially had unclear loyalties during the onset of the Great War. However, French Grand Marshal Camille Laframboise had hoped Gustav Frederick II to side with the Tripartite Coalition due to their connection to the Austrian Habsburgs. Gustav Frederick II had shown signs of affinity towards the Tripartite Coalition, being the first to recognize France's new puppet states of Arpitania and Piemonte. In June 1937, the Franco-Swedish telegraph was intercepted by Great Britain, where Camille Laframboise had convinced Gustav Frederick II to pre-emptively declare war on Norway, a British ally, then neutral. This had caused outrage in both Norway and Sweden, causing the entry of Norway into the war against France.

1937 Coup

The Franco-Swedish Telegraph affair had caused republican members of the Riksdag and military officers to conspire against Gustav Frederick II. In August 1937, republican forces led by Emil Holmström launched a coup against Gustav Frederick II, and forced him to abdicate the throne in favor of his 11-year old son and sign the 1937 Instrument of Government, which restored the supremacy of the Riksdag. Since his son was too young to rule, Holmström declared regency rule led by the Riksdag.

Swedish Republic

During regency rule by the Riksdag, the republicans in the party began a propaganda campaign against the monarchy. Members of parliament advocated for the abolition of monarchy, and the transition to a republic. In 1942, they pressured Gustav Frederick III to sign a legally binding agreement to hold a referendum for the abolition of the monarchy once he becomes of age in 1944. Members of the government were in regular correspondence with Russian diplomats, worrying Great Britain that they might slide under National Republican influence.

1944 Instrument of Government

After Gustav Frederick III became of age in 1944, the national referendum for the abolition of monarchy was conducted. The turnout was 80%, with 71% of the votes voting in favor of abolishing the monarchy. A few months later, the abolition of the monarchy was formalized in the 1944 Instrument of Government.

Decolonization

In order to appease Russia, Sweden began a project to decolonize Swedish Guinea. Emil Holmström worked with Akan, Mole, Fon, and other Guinean leaders to forge a new constitution for an independent Guinean Union. A transitionary government for Guinea was established in 1945, becoming fully independent by 1948. Up until the present day, the Guinean Union and Sweden maintain strong trade and diplomatic ties.

Lundgren Affair (1950)

A decorated general by the name of Olaf Lundgren came under investigation by government authorities as he was suspected of embezzling funds allocated for the military to his bank account. Swedish authorities found evidence of the funds being used for Lundgren's personal use, as they found vacation homes in the ACB islands and Trinidad; and funds that were supposed to be used for new fighter aircraft were used by Lundgren for his yachts in Gothenburg. The public expressed outcry and staged protests for Lundgren to be tried and court-martialed. He was eventually tried and sentenced to 10 years in prison for charges of corruption and personal use of government funds.

However, 6 months into his sentence, he was pardoned by the new government, an action which caused many soldiers and military personnel to resign from their posts out of anger and resentment. Later investigations would find the new government accepting bribes from an imprisoned Lundgren.

An interview from Lundgren would reveal his motive to embezzle money is that he didn't think that Sweden would be involved in any large-scale conflict. Critics claim that his motive is bogus due to the fact that Sweden shared a border with the Finnish National Republic. Sweden would experience a deficit of manpower after the affair, with most soldiers deciding to enter civilian life or enlisting in the Varangian Group Military Company.

Lundgren's legacy would be forever cemented with the phrase 'to pull/commit a Lundgren'(Swedish: att begå en Lundgren) or 'Lundgren'd' as an act of embezzling company or government funds for personal use.

List of monarchs

House of Palatinate-Zweibrücken

  • Charles X Gustav: 1654 - 1660
  • Charles XI:  1660 - 1697
  • Charles XII: (Carolus Rex): 1697 - 1735
  • Charles XIII: 1735 - 1771
  • Eric XV: (b. 1735): 1771-1797
  • Eric XVI: (b. 1766):  1797-1825
  • Eric XVII: (b. 1794): 1825-1844
  • Eric XVIII (b. 1820): 1844-1851

House of Habsburg-Zweibrücken

  • Hedwig (b. 1821): 1851-1868
  • Gustav Frederick (b. 1847): 1868-1909
  • Eric XIX (b. 1875): 1909 - 1925
  • Gustav Frederick II (b. 1900): 1925-1937
  • Gustav Frederick III (b. 1926) (regency held by the Riksdag): Heir apparent.