Bill O’Reilly has addressed the mystery of the Swedish guest he had on his show last week.
Nils Bildt landed headlong into the fake news debate last Thursday when he appeared on The O’Reilly Factor to talk about crime in Sweden – days after Trump gave a speech decrying an attack in the country that did not take place. Bildt talked of an immigrant problem, of crime stats, and a politically-correct culture that bars these issues “being openly and honestly discussed” in that country.
Bildt was identified on the FNC program as a “Swedish Defense and National Security Advisor.” Except few in Sweden had ever heard of him, much less taken advice from him.
“He is not in any way a known quantity in Sweden and has never been part of the Swedish debate,” Swedish Defense University leadership professor Robert Egnell told the Associated Press. Swedish newspaper Dagens Nyheter reported Bildt left Sweden for the United States in 1994, adding that neither the Swedish armed forces nor the Foreign Ministry had heard of Bildt. Bildt has said he’s related to Carl Bildt, the former Swedish prime minister and Swedish foreign minister, but WorldViews reports it contacted Carl Bildt who said his brother is a successful Swedish entrepreneur who, yes, is named Nils, but is not this guy.
“Last week we did a segment on Sweden and its Muslim immigrant situation,” O’Reilly said on Monday’s show. “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.”
Bildt had earlier said in a statement, that he is “an independent political advisor” and that “Fox News is solely responsible for the header or title used” to identify him when he appeared on O’Reilly’s show. He also said that his bona fides are “not really the issue; the issue is Swedish refusal to discuss their social problems and issues.”