Thursday, 20 October 2016

occupied with parallels


I've been watching Occupied, which is the show about Norway attempting to cease oil production and move to Thorium power.

In the story, adjacent nations don't care so much for the Norwegian idea and Russia intervenes with what starts out as an undercover occupation.

In this Jo Nesbø version of a near future the Americans have left NATO and the EU and adjoining Sweden can see the benefits of keeping the oil flowing.

The series shows the beautiful scenery of Norway and the sleek modernity of its architecture and infrastructure, much built from the taxation proceeds of the natural resources it found. Curiously less so with the Norwegian military, who send a couple of Orion propeller planes (based on a 1957 commercial design) to look at what is happening around the oil rigs.

Not long ago, the plot line for this could all seem quite improbable, but already the power moves of the series seem less far fetched. Maybe Thorium power plants aren't in vogue, but the potential noises off from Trumpton already talk of NATO exit and pay-as-you-go security systems.

The biggest American reactor (Palo Verde, AZ) is cooled by evaporating the water from treated sewage. Having watched yesterday's 'Presidential' debate from Las Vegas, the trip from Vegas along Route 93 to the reactors easily serves up several poignant metaphors.

Russia wasn't best pleased with the Occupied show either, although recent Crimean, east Ukrainian and Syrian situations starkly demonstrate Putin's post cold war attitude. And right now the Russians have a Kirov battlecruiser, Sierra attack submarine, Udaloy destroyer and their flagship Admiral Kuznetsov aircraft carrier dispatched from Severomorsk travelling straight down the British coastline towards the English Channel on their route to the Mediterranean. Presumably to Syria.

Nesbø didn't make this bit up, it's happening right now.

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