Norway police pic sends temperatures soaring

They may not be armed but they’re certainly packing! A photo purporting to show a trio of buff Norwegian traffic police in their summer uniform has spread like wildfire across social media.

Norway police pic sends temperatures soaring
Norwegian traffic police as photographed in 2010, and as photoshopped lust objects. Photo: Toni Kaarttinen/Flickr
It all seems to have started when Anton Maijan, who describes himself as  “Go-Go dancer with the Berlin Boys”, posted the picture on his Facebook page. 
“Now summer has started you can see some agents of the Norwegian traffic police in their special summer uniform,” he wrote. 
The photo was then shared a gargantuan 7,500 times.
Before long it had hit the micro-blogging service Twitter.

Norwegian traffic police summer uniform. No words – except what an incentive for them to hit the gym!

— Frank Bouette (@frankbouette) June 25, 2015

For some reason the amount of sharing picked up over the weekend, as the Oslo Pride festival had its grand finale.

The appeal is universal.

Some pointed out that the combination of bulging muscles and tight uniforms was reminiscent of the work of an artist and illustrator from a next door nation. 

The Norwegian polices new outfits are clearly designed by Tom of Finland:

— Tobias Andersson (@tobiias) June 30, 2015

Before long, however, people began to suspect that the bulging wet lycra look might not be entirely genuine. 

@TheLocalNorway someone had fun in Photoshop via @MortenElster @TheEliselise @politietoslo

— AnneLinn KumanoEnsby (@annelinn) July 1, 2015


Others cite it as an example of what a difference a little Photoshop can make.



Photoshop versus Reality. Norwegian Police Officers. #sexy #versus #not #photoshop #police #norway

A photo posted by Alessandra Torre (@alessandratorre4) on Jul 1, 2015 at 8:11am PDT

Toni Kaarttinen, the Finnish editor and photographer who took the original picture on holiday in Norway back in 2010, told The Local that he had initially been unhappy when he came across his photo on Facebook without any credit. 
“I was following a Facebook group and suddenly there was a picture that looked really familiar, so I had to go and check, 'is it my picture?'. At first I was a bit surprised and maybe just a little bit disappointed, because there was no request, but then I thought it was kind of amusing.”
He's now Facebook and Instagram friends with Ion Wolf, the man responsible for the photoshopped version. 
“It was quite easily able to track down the guy who made the photoshopped version,” he said.
He says he originally took the picture simply because he found the idea of bicycle police interesting, as they don't exist in Finland. 
“With the policemen and uniforms, of course there’s always a sexual undertone, but not in the way it was photoshopped later on,” he continues. 
“It's like a play on the masculinity of the policemen,” he argues. “There's a bit of a Tom of Finland aesthetic in the photoshopped version of the picture.” 

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Norwegian police end emergency carrying of arms

The temporary arming of all police in Norway, ordered after an attack in Kongsberg left five dead, ended on Friday morning. 

Police in Norway will no longer be armed after the temporary order was dropped. Pictured is a police van in Oslo.
Police in Norway will no longer be armed after the temporary order was dropped. Pictured is a police van in Oslo. Photo by David Hall on Flickr.

The order for all police in Norway to be armed following an attack in Kongsberg last week was lifted on Friday morning. 

The police said in a statement Friday that, based on the information it had received from police security service PST, there was no longer any basis for maintaining the national armament order. 

“Norwegian police are basically unarmed in daily service, with firearms being stored in police vehicles, and police can be armed in connection with specific missions when needed. In that sense, we are now moving to a normal situation,” Tone Vangen, emergency preparedness director for the police, said in a statement

The police had been armed since last Wednesday following the incident in Kongsberg where Danish citizen Espen Andersen Bråthen killed five with an undisclosed sharp object and shot at police with a bow and arrow.

During police questioning, Bråthen confessed to the killings and to wounding three others. 

Police said earlier this week that the victims were chosen at random. The Danish citizen was undergoing a psychiatric evaluation, which is necessary to determine whether Bråthen can be held legally responsible for his actions.

The 37-year-old had previously announced publicly that he had converted to Islam and police initially reported that there had been fears of radicalisation. 

But police later said that mental illness was to be considered the primary motive for the attack. 

 “As far as motive is concerned, illness remains the main hypothesis. And as far as conversion to Islam is concerned, this hypothesis is weakened,” police inspector Per Thomas Omholt said to reporters earlier this week.