While other branches of the Armed Forces saw their appropriations cut in the early 1930s, the Air Force was reinforced. This reinforcement was intensified at the outbreak of the Second World War in 1939. In the post-war period, the Swedish Government chose to remain neutral between the alliance of the Western powers (NATO), and the Warsaw Pact nations of Eastern Europe. This neutrality required a strong Swedish defence.
The Swedish Air Force – fourth largest in the world
In the 1950s and 60s, the Swedish Air Force was considered the world’s fourth largest one, and eventually the first in the world with only jets. The decision to invest in strong air combat forces also meant that the domestic manufacture of planes increased greatly.
Closures in the 1970s
After several decades of expansion, the 1970s witnessed the beginnings of the closure of wings, which would continue into the 2000s. According to a Swedish Parliament decision, the Air Force and the other branches of the Armed Forces now cooperate with international defence organisations to promote peace and security.