Norway’s Boycotting Wal-Mart While Investing In Iran

Here is the WALL STREET JOURNAL article, who’s subtitle is tough:

  • “President Trump says Oslo is a ‘great ally.’ So why is it boycotting Wal-Mart while investing in Iran?

….Last week Mr. Trump praised Norway as a “great ally.” Despite vast wealth and generous social spending, however, the Norwegians skimp when it comes to the common defense of the U.S. and Europe. Norway is a member of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, but it consistently fails to meet the NATO guideline of putting 2% of gross domestic product toward its military. Instead, Norway relies for protection on the U.S., which spent 3.3% of GDP on defense in 2016.

One might expect Norwegians to appreciate the imbalance in their favor. But at times Oslo acts toward the U.S. like some cartoon “limousine liberal” who sneers at the cops and the methods they use to protect his neighborhood. Norway’s government pension fund has singled out for divestment several U.S. defense contractors—including BoeingHoneywellLockheed Martin and Northrop Grumman —“because they are involved in production of nuclear weapons.” But these companies help make such weapons only for the U.S. government, and NATO’s most recent strategic review declares America’s nuclear umbrella to be “the supreme guarantee” of the alliance’s security.

Norway’s pension fund divested from Wal-Mart for purported “serious violations of human rights.” Despite Norway’s reliance on oil, the fund has divested from some two dozen U.S. companies because they produce a different fossil fuel, coal. 

In 2016 Norway’s government authorized its pension fund, controlled by the country’s finance ministry, to purchase Iranian government bonds. Thus, the fund boycotts U.S. defense companies, while allowing investments in the government of Iran, the leading state sponsor of terrorism and a patron of Bashar Assad’s atrocities in Syria. Norway is also quickly building academicbankingenergy and other ties with Tehran.

That’s a contrast with Oslo’s cool stance toward Israel. In May, Norway’s biggest trade union, which represents a quarter of the working-age population, voted for a complete boycott of Israel. Press reports in December suggested that Oslo would cut funding for nongovernmental groups that advocate boycotts of Israel. But on Jan. 2 the Norwegian mission in Palestine announced that no policy had changed and “as before, the Norwegian Government will not provide support to organizations that have stated boycott of Israel as their primary goal” (emphasis added). At the United Nations last month, Norway voted to criticize America’s recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital. Haiti abstained….

 

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