The Rebirth of North Norway

Courtesy Reuters

IT IS interesting to speculate upon the reasons for the sustained attention which Norway is giving to her long-neglected northern provinces. Is it due to the international crisis and the dangers of the new common border with Russia? Crisis is not new to the north and the border has often in the past been shared with Russia. Is it an expression of greater Norwegian nationalism? As early as the fourteenth century, Norwegian kings jealously guarded their Lapland-marches and built a fortress to assert their domain. Is it due to economic factors? The northern fisheries and other industries are ancient and have always been linked with the south. Have the opportunities for settlement in Nordland, Troms and Finnmark been the vital factor? For centuries large colonies have migrated from the south in times of famine or misfortune. Can it have stemmed from sympathy in the wake of the German "scorched earth"

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