New fighter jets costing even more

Norway’s long-debated new F35 fighter jets from the US are setting off another cost bomb for the new Norwegian government. The latest numbers from the defense ministry suggest they’ll now cost around NOK 90.2 billion, well over even an adjusted and expanded budget that itself was way above initial estimates. Most of the cost uncertainty […]

Tough talk against China and Russia

There’s been lots of criticism directed at both China and Russia in Norwegian media this week, some of it coming from Norway’s own Jens Stoltenberg. He’s in his last year as secretary general of NATO, as speculation swirls whether he’ll eventually come home to be governor of Norway’s central bank. It’s unlikely Stoltenberg, a former […]

Norwegian frigate under US command

UPDATED: Norway seems to be relying more than ever on the US for its defense, now through base policy and fleet agreements that go beyond Norway’s membership in the NATO alliance. For the first time ever, one of the country’s four frigates has been put under US command for the next nine months, while Norwegian […]

Fate of military equipment ‘unsure’

Defense Minister Frank Bakke-Jensen said neither he nor military brass know what’s happened to around NOK 600 million worth of weapons, vehicles, communications equipment and other military hardware that had been provided to Afghanistan’s security forces. They either fled or surrended to the Taliban in recent weeks, leaving a fortune of modern equipment behind. Nearly […]

Afghan evacuation ‘completely over’

Norway pulled its last remaining military personnel out of Afghanistan in the early morning hours of Monday. That also brings an end to the chaotic evacuation of  both Norwegian and Afghan civilians during the past week, and the closure of Norway’s last remaining military field hospital at the airport in Kabul. A deadly terrorist attack […]

Bombing in Kabul halts evacuations

UPDATED: Norway’s military field hospital inside the airport in Kabul was still operating and busy on Friday, after bomb blasts in and around the Afghan capital’s airport area Thursday afternoon. All Norwegian government personnel still in Afghanistan were accounted for, according to Lt Col Ivar Moen at the Norwegian military’s operative headquarters, but evacuation efforts had […]

Police and special forces sent to Kabul

Norwegian police and members of the military’s special forces have been sent back to Afghanistan, while Norway’s military field hospital in Kabul has to be shut down. The goal is to provide reinforcements and speed work underway to evacuate both Norwegian- and foreign citizens by the Taliban’s deadline of August 31. “It’s extremely demanding there,” […]

Norway closing its embassy in Kabul

Norway joined other western allies late Friday afternoon in announcing closure of their embassies in Afghanistan, at least temporarily. The announcement came after the Islamic extremist group Taliban has conquered large portions of the country since the US and NATO started pulling out after 20 years of unsuccessfully trying to stabilize it. “We hoped for […]

Last troops soon to leave Afghanistan

Prime Minister Erna Solberg has confirmed that the last Norwegian troops stationed in Afghanistan will be leaving this summer. The pull-out has widespread support in Parliament, but Labour Party leader Jonas Gahr Støre still claims it was correct to join US and NATO forces in the war-torn country years ago. Støre made several trips to […]

Solberg survives Bergen Engines breakdown

Prime Minister Erna Solberg has avoided a lack of confidence vote in Parliament after she and her justice minister, Monica Mæland, apologized for the government’s lack of preparedness regarding the aborted sale of Bergen Engines this spring. That’s mostly because no one wants to unseat her government just 100 days ahead of the September election. […]