Sweden Denies Knowledge of Defense Advisor Nils Bildt, Fox News Guest

View of Stockholm
Stockholm's old town, photographed in 2009. Swedish government sources have denied knowledge of a man described by Fox News as an advisor. Reuters/Bob Strong

Updated A man described on U.S. TV news as a Swedish defense and national security adviser is unknown to authorities in the country, Stockholm says.

The man, named as Nils Bildt, appeared on Fox News last week to defend President Donald Trump’s view that high immigration was leading to mass criminality in Sweden. But government and military sources told the New York Times they had never heard of him.

“We don’t know this guy,” Mikael Abramsson, a spokesman for the Swedish military, told the paper. “We have never heard of him in the Swedish armed forces, and he cannot speak on our behalf.”

Rasmus Eljanskog, a spokesman for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, said nobody by this name worked at the ministry.

Magnus Ranstorp, the head of terrorism research at the Swedish Defense University in Stockholm, said: “There is no such position in the Swedish hierarchy… and he’s not even on the radar in Swedish security circles. And everyone knows everyone.”

What’s more, Nils Bildt may not even be called Nils Bildt. According to the New York Times Bildt was born Nils Tolling, but Swedish daily Aftonbladet reported he used the name “Bildt,” which is the same as that of former prime minister Carl Bildt, when trying to launch a political career in 2013.

Carl Bildt denied being related to this Nils Bildt,  according to the Washington Post.

Fox News's The O’Reilly Factor's executive producer David Tabacoff said in a statement: "Our booker made numerous inquiries and spoke to people who recommended Nils Bildt and after pre-interviewing him and reviewing his bio, we agreed that he would make a good guest for the topic that evening."

Speaking on the show on Monday, O'Reilly said: “Last week we did a segment on Sweden and its Muslim immigrant situation. Both sides were presented as always.

"After the segment some left wing people objected to one guest, Nils Bildt who was introduced by me as a "Swedish Defense and National Security Advisor."

"The Swedish government also weighed in saying they’ve had no contact with Mr. Bildt. Now, we looked into the situation and the criticism is valid. It’s valid. Mr. Bildt does consulting work on terrorism, that’s true — but we should have clarified that he had no direct role with the Swedish government.

"To be fair, the information we gave you in the segment was accurate but in hindsight a more relevant guest should have been used on the anti-immigrant side. You should also know that before the segment was booked we asked the Swedish Ambassador to appear, he declined. That invitation stands."

This article was updated to include the statements provided by Fox News.