The Swedish Way

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Published October 26, 2004

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E-mail Steve

Oct. 22,  2004 2:28 PM
London

Hyde Park is still dark at 6:30 a.m., pitch dark. I hesitated before going in, then saw one runner go by and decided to follow him. It's windy, cool, and dark, and gradually the sun comes up and it's blue. It is a good time in the park with almost no one around. I looked at the dark grass and thought about how different this was from being in Iraq.

I'm working on a series on Muslims in Europe and just returned from Malmo, Sweden, a city with a large population of immigrants. During interviews the Swedes would not say anything negative. Doctors, police chiefs, and teachers were all extremely diplomatic in their choice of words. It was only after a long while that they would start to say what they thought, that the city could not handle such rapid immigration, that it was not able to absorb or integrate the immigrants. I interviewed one nurse, then talked with her for a while off-camera, where she said that she was actually afraid to come to work because sometimes people in the emergency room would yell and become physically abusive in their demands for rapid treatment. Her eyes got wide. She said "it is not the Swedish way" to behave like that. So I got the cameraman Barnaby and interviewed her again.  Police and firefighters have also gotten attacked while trying to do their jobs in certain sections of the city.

We drove around Malmo in a rented Volvo and asked a lot of Swedes for directions. When you call to a Swede on the street, they will stop, politely come over, and patiently explain where to go, usually in excellent English. Pedestrians do not cross against the light, even when there are no cars coming.

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Steve,

I love to read and watch your reports...It seems like so much that comes back from Iraq is watered down and NOT what is really happening for the Iraqi people and our young brave soldiers...I feel your reporting is genuine and real...

Keep up the good work...

— Tony (Denver, CO)


Steve,
 
I am a 65-year-old FOX News Junkie.  I catch FOX & Friends about 7:00 am ET and stay with it through Sean Hannity's show.  But, when you come on, the story is new, it's told at a level that conveys emotion and feelings.  Your coverage as an embedded journalist in Afghanistan and Iraq was the best, but your FOX colleagues did great work too.  I think that you are the best out of all the networks.

Regards,
 
— Don (Herdon, VA)



Steve,

Your reporting on Chechnya moved me. Moved me. And I have yet in 36 years to be moved by a reporter. I do read and look forward to your column every day. Stay safe, please.
 
Respectfully,

Travis



Steve,
 
Your stories remind me of Ernie Pile.  Every hear of him?  Most considered him one of the heroes of WWII because he got the story behind THE story.  He was with the troops, lived with the troops and cried with the troops. 
 
I enjoy your reporting.  Keep up the good work but be careful.
 
— Allen (Keyser, WV)



Mr. Harrigan -

I just discovered your blog on FOXNews.com. All I can say, is ... wow! Reading it was much more interesting than the canned reports we see on TV all the time - gives your readers a more human feel of what it is like to be there, in the middle of it all. I only wish there were more of your accounts there, I could have read those for hours.

Thanks for you doing what you do, and please let our military people know we appreciate what they are doing for us.

— Shannon (Louisville, KY)



Steve,

I keep FOX News on all day long, and anytime I see you, no matter how busy I am, I stop and watch. I am 63 years old, but must say you are my HERO.

— Mary (Milton, FL)



Mr. Harrigan,
 
As I read your story about lending your cell phone to some of our Marines, I was able to remember a time when I was in a similar situation in the military.  Had you lent me your cell phone in those dark hours, my son's name would probably be Steven Harrigan instead of Joshua Brian.  I wish you safety and joy.
 
— Ronald (Navy Veteran, '86-'90)



Steve, you are just an amazing reporter, going where no one in their right mind should go!  You first caught my attention when you were in northern Afghanistan LONG before there was a “war.” You seem to thrive on sharing the stories of what’s really going on with the men and women in the wars, and I really appreciate and actually enjoy your war reporting.  War is hell and you bring it home to us in a positive way, which is the way I see it.  You make it their story, which is the way it should be, but your own reporting is also memorable.  Hope you never quit.

 — Nita (Milford, CT)



Steve,

My son is a Soldier. Thank you for that story.

— Julie (Kentucky)

URL

http://www.foxnews.com/story/2004/10/26/swedish-way