Finland Cozies Up to Iran
by Kenneth Sikorski • April 30, 2019 at 4:00 am
- Just a little more than ten years ago, Finland’s flagship telecommunications company, Nokia, was found to have sold to Tehran surveillance technology, which was used a year later to suppress dissident demonstrators’ use of social media.
- “[T]here are two documented instances where [the Finnish company] Cargotec-tied cranes have been used for public executions.” — United Against Nuclear Iran (UANI) press release.
- How Finland behaves today is eerily reminiscent of its behavior with the Soviet Union during the Cold War. During that time, Finnish politicians, academics and journalists practiced self-censorship. They knew whom not to talk about, let alone criticize. Today it is criticism of Islam that is aggressively prosecuted under the guise of combating “hate-speech” or “disparaging of religious groups”. It is the same M.O., just a different place and time.
There is a special saying in Finland describing a person’s naïvety: it is called being “blue-eyed”. Unfortunately, there is not a saying that describes the same trait for an entire political class.
Successive Finnish governments could be accurately described as extremely “blue-eyed,” especially during the last decade or so in their relations with Iran.
Part of the problem seems to lie with Finnish politicians, who seem truly to believe that having a dialogue — any dialogue — regardless of who is on the opposite side of the table, is better than having no dialogue at all. So you can easily end up with the equivalent of a businessman trying to reach an agreement with Al Capone, while each holds completely different assumptions about the underlying terms of an agreement, including whether agreements are even meant to be kept.