SVT, the Swedish public service television, has caused irritation in Italy because of an ad campaign promoting SVT as “free television”, not folding under political pressure. The campaign portrays Italy as a warning example of the opposite, due to Silvio Berlusconi’s strong hold of some 90 per cent of Italian tv which in turn “gave him” the last election. The campaign did not amuse the Italians who unite in front of the insults from their northern EU neighbours. The Swedish ambassador in Rome Staffan Wrigstad was called up to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the embassy was the target of hundreds of email protests.
The reactions from Swedish politicians show that the left haven’t lost their tactic skills. Both (m), (c) and (kd) voice concern over the fact that Swedish state owned television makes political statements, while the left, (s) and (v) do not want to interfere. Quad erat demonstrandum, sort of.
Stockholm Spectator has a summary in English, while Expressen has some interesting views in Swedish, if you belong to those who believe that SVT might not be that free of political interference after all.