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Fast-growing Swedish Asatru org exposed

About

Xander is a student of Anthropology, and a general history nerd. He focuses on studying Heathen Lore and reconstructing the fragments of the ancient traditions, in order to see how they can be applied to a modern community of believers.

Modern Heathenry in Sweden has been steadily growing since the 1970’s, having formed there roughly around the same time that some of the earliest Heathen groups were starting to take shape in the USA and a handful of other countries around the world. Much like the USA, a few long-standing organizations like ‘Forn Sed (Sweden)’ account for some of the largest groups of Heathens while a majority still either remain independent or maintain much smaller local groups. Recently, however, the internal dynamics of Swedish Heathenry have been changing. A newer organization called ‘Nordiska Asa-Samfundet‘, which has only just popped up in the past year or two, has managed to expand rapidly and become one of the largest organized Asatru groups in Sweden. They’ve even managed to get formal recognition from the Swedish government. Now the question on many people’s minds is ‘Who, exactly, are these people?’.

Image of Stenar Sonevang
Stenar Sonevang NAS Spokesperson [Photo from NAS website]

In a recent interview Nordiska’s Spokesman, Stenar Sonevang, claimed that Nordiska Asa-Samfundet is entirely non-political and open to anyone who wishes to explore the quote: “Primitive Germanic faith”. Painting the organization as a diverse and accepting environment, Stenar firmly denied any and all accusations of racism and insisted that Nordiska Asa-Samfundet is entirely devoid of political agenda beyond promoting the ancient Norse religion.

 

 

Behind the scenes

“The Sweden Democrats are out to stop crime with folk dancers and Soldiers of Odin instead of police officers. I mean more police." Quote by Anders Ygeman, Swedish Interior Minister

Unfortunately, this narrative quickly crumbles upon close inspection. For example, despite claims to the contrary, almost every member of Nordiska’s listed leadership is either a current or past member of the same political party, known in Sweden as Sverigedemokraterna or ‘Swedish Democrats’ (abbreviated SD). The SD runs on an anti-immigration platform and regularly espouses ‘Ethno Pluralism’ (commonly known in the US as ‘Racial Segregation’), and Swedish governmental reports have referred to the party as openly xenophobic.

Spokesman Sonevang was the Regional Chairman of the SD in Norrköping until he was discovered and fined for trying to illegally transport Xanax in an airport, which promptly preceded his exodus from the party. Nordiska’s resident ‘Theologian’ Omar Richter was also previously employed by the SD party, and was still listed on their official website as an accountant at the time of this posting. In addition, he was also a visible supporter of the SD’s youth organization, the SDU. Sverigedemokraterna actually officially expelled the SDU from its ranks in September of last year due to the youth organizations inconvenient ties to the radical Neo-Nazi groups “Nordisk Ungdom” and the “Nordic Resistance Movement”. In this video [See Below] you can actually see Mr. Richter (36 seconds) in an SDU advertisement reciting rhetoric common to Nordisk Ungdom.

This trend runs right up to the top, with Nordiska’s Chairman Mattias Ericson. While Huginn’s Heathen Hof was unable to confirm or deny whether Ericson is a member of the party, we did manage to uncover other troubling connections via Ericson’s publicly available Facebook profile.

Photo of Sibbe's work history from Facebook, listing both Nordiska and the AFAPerhaps most telling is the group’s behind the scenes connection with the American based “Asatru Folk Assembly“. A number of the Nordiska leaders were involved in an online group called “Vi som vill förbjuda Forn Sed Sveriges arbete mot det Nordiska urfolket, translated “We who want to ban Forn Sed Sweden’s work against the Nordic natives” (a group which was deleted after it was outed in the Swedish paper ‘Dagen’, but you can see the web cached version HERE). This group, which was focused on attacking Nordiska’s largest competitor Forn Sed Sweden, was organized and hosted by Sibbe Bladh-Hvass; an AFA employee with connections to a number of Völkisch groups and pages.

So now we have a group which claims to have no political agenda and no ties to racist or fascist ideologies of any kind, in which several of their registered leaders can be linked to some of the most violent and radical racist and/or fascist organizations in Sweden and ALL seem to be ardent supporters of a single xenophobic political party which regularly advocates for Racial Segregation. What’s more, this organization seems to be riding the same wave of surging membership numbers as the old SDU, an organization that was so radically racist that their notoriously xenophobic parent party EXPELLED THEM.

It should be obvious by now that what Nordiska Asa-Samfundet says and what they actually do are two entirely different things. Like the proverbial wolf in sheep’s clothing, Nordiska welcomes everyone in with open arms and talk of friendly political neutrality. In such a politically turbulent time, where groups can often be incredibly polarized, it’s easy to understand why a reprieve from those stressors would appeal to many. However, that promising exterior appears to only be a thin veneer. That sheep isn’t your friend, it’s bait; because with Nordiska Asa-Samfundet, it would seem the wolves are never far off…


[EDIT]

This article previously stated that Omar Richter was listed as a current employee of the SD party. While this was not inaccurate, as the SD did still have him on their site, we were provided with evidence that he is not, in fact, working there anymore. In the interest of accuracy, the text was changed to reflect this. 

2016 Huginn's Heathen Hof