The day after Russia invaded Ukraine, news came from Moscow that Russia would have to retaliate if Sweden and Finland joined NATO.
Albin Aronson is a security policy analyst at the Swedish security research firm FOI. He believes that if we apply to NATO, Russia will not be able to launch an armed attack on Sweden. However, he hopes they will show their dissatisfaction.
– It’s probably about sending robots around the Baltic Sea. They may fly high in the Baltic Sea. He says he could probably imagine a cyber attack on Sweden or even their encroachment on Swedish airspace.
It takes several months
The application period for NATO will probably take several months. First, a form must be submitted. After that, the 30 member states will meet and decide whether or not to join Sweden.
At the same time, countries including Denmark and the United Kingdom have said they will help Sweden in the event of an attack. But that did not convince researcher Albin Aronson.
– British Defense Minister Ben Wallace can say on TV “We will help Sweden”. But if it is not on paper, it does not apply. We all live under the rule of law. It really needs a security rule to be bound. That’s when the fifth chapter of NATO comes into the picture.
So Albin Aronson did not believe that Russia would attack Sweden if it wanted to send a NATO application. But he believes security guarantees are needed during the application period. For example, placing regular forces in the Baltic Sea to convey the message that Sweden is receiving aid during an attack. Another example would be the promises of the major powers in NATO, the United States, Great Britain and France to be included in an umbrella called the nuclear umbrella.
– This is not about nuclear weapons in the Swedish territory, but the guarantee that these forces will be able to defend themselves with nuclear weapons if anyone attacks Sweden.
– It’s scary. Nuclear weapons are terrible. But overall, many believe that blocking nuclear weapons has a stabilizing effect.
Five questions about Swedish NATO membership
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