How the secret Swedish symbol for a Soviet submarine changed the history of North America

Part 41 of The Americas Connected series

by Richard L. Thornton, Architect and City Planner

The village of Backvicken on Ven Island dates to the Late Neolithic Period. Nearby are stone cairns and stone circles that are identical to those found near where I live in the Georgia Mountains.

The other day, a relative and I were discussing classified (top secret) documents.  He was active duty with Naval Intelligence at the same time that I was an overseas “asset,” but on my passport, listed as a civilian.  It is a little-known fact that most overseas field intelligence is gathered by civilians, who have some sort of military background and who are not officially employed by the US Government. 

We were compensated in other ways via professional opportunities upon returning home or being provided a hot, beautiful, super-intelligent, Pro-NATO “Official Swedish girlfriend,” while serving my country.  My Swedish hosts were justifiably concerned about the blond female Soviet spies, who frequented discos in Malmo, Sweden and Copenhagen, Denmark. They pretended to be wholesome Swedish gals and I would probably not be able to tell the difference.

After being my “official girlfriend” Britt went on to become a successful lawyer and member of the Swedish Riksdag (parliament) for many years. Initially, she viewed herself as being my tour guide, Swedish language teacher and chaperone. She introduced me to other lovely Swedish flickor, who were “safe” (not Soviet spies). It was through Britt that I first met Agnetha Fältskog and Ani-Frid Lyngstad, before they were the A’s in ABBA. By the time this photo was made at Ven, we had developed a much warmer relationship.

Relative X was doing something so “top secret” back then that to this day, he can’t tell me what he did or specifically where he was.  He told that if  he had taken a classified document home with him, he would have been locked in federal prison for at least 20 years! 

I responded to him that I was never an active-duty Naval officer, only Inactive Reserve, so I never saw an official classified document, other than the ones I produced myself.  LOL 

My primary secret assignment in Sweden was to keep watch for a terrorist cell in some apartments down the hall, occupied by members of Black September.  The current administration in Stockholm was not allowing Sweden’s navy and coast guard to keep watch on terrorists, who intended to bomb or kidnap passenger ships and ferries. Weird Swedish Prime Minister Olav Palme somehow decided that Sweden was about to be attacked by the United States, whereas the Royal family and Sweden’s military-naval officers, knew full well that as always during the previous 500 years, Sweden’s only fears needed to be of Russia and foreign terrorists. The people of the United States and Canada will always be Sweden’s friends.

I also was given a 2 ½ week leave to accompany a female NATO biologist as a bodyguard. She was obtaining samples and analyzing fallout from Soviet nuclear tests that had settled on foliage in Lapland.  We both looked like Sami’s, so anybody else assumed that we were a cute young Sami couple in love. Swedish tourists would even ask us for directions.

Another assignment was to help keep watch for Soviet subs, heading out the Oresund Channel to the North Sea and Atlantic Ocean.  The Swedish Navy and Coast Guard also had non-uniformed personnel unofficially doing that at times, but their activities had to be concealed from Olav Palme. He deluded himself into thinking that the Soviet Union was a friend of Sweden.

I kept a watch of the ship channel, west of this planned pedestrian village, from the top of this cliff. In this part of Ven were petroglyphs, identical to those that can be found in the Georgia Mountains, even near where I live now.

Here’s the thing.   The only way for submarines in the Soviet Baltic Fleet to reach the Atlantic was to surface about 600 meters west of Ven Island . . . which happened to be immediately opposite my project site.   If they tried to travel on the surface at night or in the fog without bright running lights, they would most likely to be rammed by the heavy commercial ship traffic in the Oresund Channel, so generally, Soviet submarines surfaced between two fairly large Soviet warships, slightly behind their smokestacks.

That way, no one on the shore of Sweden or Denmark could see the sub and the smoke would block the view from reconnaissance aircraft.   However, we could see the submarine from the top of the cliff at StIbbskyrkaklippa  (Saint Ibb’s Church Cliff).  It was one of the oldest Christian churches in Scandinavia – dated to the Viking Era.

View of the western cliffs on Ven Island.

In that era, the Rikspolisstyrelsens säkerhetsavdelning  (Swedish CIA/NSA) was heavily infiltrated with Soviet moles.   They visited me once a month, but if they searched my apartment while I was gone, they would find nothing that looked like I was involved with watching Soviet ships or watching anything, but hot Swedish and Brazilian gals.   There were a lot of Brazilian immigrant senoritas in my apartment building, who liked to sun bathe topless.

I could either give my field notes to an covert female Swedish Naval Intelligence officer who worked in the ticket office for the ferry to Ven Island or my official Swedish girlfriend and I would meet with a young Danish Naval Intelligence Officer and his official girlfriend at Tivoli Gardens in Kobenhavn (Copenhagen) on Friday night.

My field notes consisted of sketches of various types of Swedish Viking Age or Bronze Age boats that symbolized various types of Soviet ships.  The angle of the historic style of ship, would determine the time of day.

 I used a Bronze Age  Hjortspringbåt to symbolize a Soviet submarine.   It looked like this:

On petroglyphs at Ven Island and in southern Sweden, Bronze Age artists carved symbols of the Hjortspringbåt that looked like this.

Petroglyph of a Hjortspingbåt on Ven Island, Sweden
Petroglyph of a Hjortspingbåt in Borstahuslan County, which is north of Landskrona and Ven Island.

Fast forward to February 2017

One Sunday  afternoon at the spare of the moment, I decided to drive over to the Traveler’s Rest Historic Site with my three canine buddies to examine and photograph the Tugaloo Stone, to see if I could make sense of it.  When I got home, I loaded the digital photos into my computer.

Out of curiosity, I rotated my photo on the computer screen 180 degrees.    I beheld this view below: “Holy S#*&!   The history of North America was NOT what we thought it was.”

This is just one of the six faces of the stone that portray Scandinavian Bronze Age symbols. Note that the man on the far right is wearing a horned helmet, typical of the Scandinavian Bronze Age, but not the Viking Age. He is holding a steering oar. This could not be a indigenous canoe, hollowed out of a log, but large Chontal Maya trade boats did have steering oars. On the other hand, Chontal Maya boats did not have double prows and sterns lake the Swedish Bronze Age boats.
These are the types of boats portrayed on petroglyphs in southern Sweden, which originated from Mainland Europe. Several of these types of boats can also be found on the petroglyphs in Northeast Georgia.

The Truth is out there somewhere!

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