The Kremlin’s options in responding to the alliance’s expansion are more limited than it might appear.
Finland beat back Russian threats and propaganda to embrace NATO. Educational reforms and a free press played key roles
Countering a Swedish-Finnish bid for NATO membership has been a perennial Kremlin goal. That now looks to have failed as the countries seem poised to join.
Sweden’s prime minister and her Finnish counterpart are now strongly hinting that the two countries will join the alliance, and soon. So, what’s changed?
Gone is the notion that the Nordics should preserve a “special relationship” with an increasingly unpredictable Russia.
Nothing would signal European solidarity more clearly than to see neutral nations apply for NATO membership.
The United States, NATO, and regional players must work together to enhance political cohesion and create a unified security strategy for the Baltic Sea.
Given Russia’s recent military build-up near Ukraine and the debate on Finland’s possible NATO membership, it’s easy to forget that Helsinki is already intimately tied to the West.
Finland and Sweden reject the Kremlin’s bullying, but resist a decision on NATO membership.
The security of the Baltic Sea region will continue to be determined by the climate of east-west relations and EU-NATO cohesion.