‘China and Russia pose biggest threat’

Norway’s military intelligence unit (E-tjenesten) delivered its annual evaluation of national security on Monday, and pointed to the same largest threat as the state’s police intelligence unit did last week: spying by foreign countries, with China and Russia as the most active. Lt General Morten Haga Lunde, head of the agency formally known as Etterretnings-tjenesten, […]

Frigate bill spurs new Oil Fund debate

Defense Minister Frank Bakke-Jensen told Parliament on Tuesday that attempts to raise the sunken frigate KNM Helge Ingstad will start Thursday and already have cost around a half-billion kroner. Within a half-hour of his speech came word of more salvage delays, while debate is swirling over government plans to dip into the country’s Oil Fund […]

All deny blame for helicopter scandal

Not a single Norwegain defense minister over the past 18 years was willing to take responsibility at hearings this week into the country’s expensive and deeply troubled NH90 helicopters. The politicians blamed defense officials, who in turn blamed the helicopters’ Italian producer. In addition, reported newspaper Aftenposten, came news that there’s a still a great […]

Norway rebuilds its northern defense

The Norwegian defense department plans to invest nearly NOK 2.5 billion rebuilding and expanding military facilities that were set up in its far northern areas during the Cold War. Many were dismantled or vacated during the 1990s, but rising tensions with Russia and between Russia and other western allies has prompted military brass to re-establish […]

NATO’s Stoltenberg scolds homeland

Jens Stoltenberg addressed the annual conference hosted by Norway’s employers’ organization NHO many times when he held government power in the country. This week he was back in his role as secretary general of NATO, and he wasn’t at all pleased with his homeland’s defense spending. His address to Norway’s business leaders, top politicians and […]

Foreign minister admits letting Libya down

Norwegian Foreign Minister Ine Eriksen Søreide admitted in Parliament this week that not enough was done to stabilize Libya after the NATO bombing attacks in 2011. Norway was active in the bombing itself, with many of its F16 fighter jets taking part. It’s been almost eight years since the former left-center government, led by Jens […]

Defense minister blasts sexual harassment

Norwegian Defense Minister Frank Bakke-Jensen lashed out at sexual harassment in the armed forces, during his annual address to the military organization Oslo Militære Samfund earlier this week. He was clearly unhappy that efforts to hinder it have not succeeded. “The defense chief (Admiral Haakon Bruun Hanssen) has said that sexual harassment makes him furious,” […]

Storm disrupts frigate salvage

The Norwegian Navy faced even more problems this week in the wake of its frigate Helge Ingstad’s collision with a tanker in November. Stormy weather over the New Year’s holiday weakened one of the cables meant to secure the mostly-sunken frigate, and now it’s sunk deeper. Navy officials had hoped to stabilize the badly damaged […]

Trump worries Norway again

NEWS ANALYSIS: The resignation of US Defense Secretary James Mattis has set off deep concern and another wave of uncertainty in Norway, as it has elsewhere. It also comes just as Norway is grieving a young Norwegian woman’s brutal murder in Morocco that’s been tied to the terrorist group IS, which Mattis’ boss, US President […]

Frigate’s captain finally speaks out

Six weeks after Norway’s doomed frigate KNM Helge Ingstad collided with a tanker and sank, its commander Preben Ottesen has finally granted an interview. He told Oslo newspaper VG newspaper that he doesn’t feel he shirked his duty, nor does he feel any shame, only sadness over seeing his warship badly damaged, tipping over and mostly […]