This time of year, Battle Road in Minute Man National Park outside of Boston is encased by a thick layer of treacherous snow and ice. Those who do brave the slick path in winter are rewarded with mile after mile of quiet to reflect on the relationship between insurgents and occupiers in America’s past as they walk Revolutionary War battlefields.
The American narrative of resistance is essential to the nation’s identity even today, particularly if you raise your children in New England. Like all stories, however, this narrative is more complex than is taught to elementary schoolchildren. Come summer, flowers and flags will bloom alongside the monuments to close-fought skirmishes. Not all the flags will be American. Some will be British.
This complicated relationship between occupied and occupiers is worth remembering when watching Okkupert (English title: Occupied), an understated and compelling 10-part Norwegian-language television drama envisioning a Russian grab for Norway’s oil and gas (Europe’s largest reserves). It was only available in Norway until Netflix recently brought the series to U.S. viewers with subtitles. It is essential viewing for anyone trying to understand how flawed our assumptions about NATO, the future of Northern European security, and Russia’s relationship with Europe might be.