NATO to accept Sweden, Finland very quickly if they decide to join alliance — Stoltenberg

nato-to-accept-sweden,-finland-very-quickly-if-they-decide-to-join-alliance-—-stoltenberg

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Swedish jurist specialized in ECHR here who works a lot in the EU and Brussels.

I'll try to give context as to why I don't think Sweden will join Nato, nor should. There's few reasons to join, there's tons of negatives though.

First off, we haven't been in a war in over 200 years for a reason. This has also benefitted the world at large in prodigious ways, Sweden saved over 350 000 refugees during ww2 etc.

Now among the negatives of joining Nato are that Sweden has some of the strongest soft-power in the world, and arguably the most influential per capita. It has a population less than the city of New York, barely 10.4 million, and a GDP less than multiple Chinese cities. Yet the amount of patents, inventions, mentions, medals, etc. is absurdly high.

For a reason. Neutrality is part of that. There's no such thing as true neutrality, anyone sane knows this and it's ubiquitously true outside of westerners narrow perception of the world. But Sweden is one of the countries least far away from it at the very least. This makes it a nexus for not only diplomacy but also trade-talks, arbitration, debates etc. with one out of the three main International-trade-courts of Europe being located in Sweden.

Not only that, it isn't a history of isolationism but rather of fervent service to humanity and peace. Folke Bernadotte, the current King's godfather who was murdered in Israel, was considered by the UN the worlds most important diplomat at the time of his death (1948). Followed by Dag Hammarsköljd who also got murdered in service of the UN, and to this day the UN-medal awarded to those who die in the service of the UN bears Dag Hammarsköld's name.

Add to this things like the Nobel Prize and a fuckload of exports in inventions, brands, music and more there's no way in hell Sweden will join Nato bar some huge international changes.

For example, despite the Swedish population having the worlds worst opinion on China, it's Sweden's most important Asian trade-partner by far. Even more so if you consider that Sweden's exports to China is mostly things of the "future" like tech, engineering, medical, pharmaceutical- and the ilk. Things that nations like China can do without importing from Sweden but Sweden can't make do without exporting. This because of how our historic exports such as iron, timber and other more "old"-school exports can often not hold a candle in terms of quantity against international actors. Which is why Sweden has moved to specialize in quality, but quality is only as powerful as your brand and your reputation which once again goes back to neutrality and appealing to everyone whilst upsetting no one.

But what would the positives of joining Nato be? For Sweden? Not much. Russia is never going to invade Sweden without first taking Finland. Despite how callous it might sound, Sweden knows that Finland is still upholding their old invasion-defence that Sweden mostly removed in the 80-00's. To put things in perspective, during ww2 and the cold war, Sweden had the mobilization-power of over 1.6 million people. We had over 2 million AK5's. That's the sixth largest army in the world if counted today. We still have conscription from this time. We don't have the invasion-defense anymore, ofcourse, but my point is that Finland partially does. Now ofcourse this'd never win against any major power but that was never the intention, it was just making it such an arduous fuckfest to invade that it wasn't worth it. To this day we still have explosive-charges on most major bridges, railways, roads and more because of the old-guard intent of scorching all infrastructure incase of invasion whilst giving a rifle to every reservist.

So what we end up with is that in the hypothetical situation that Russia not only invades Finland, but also Sweden, without somehow also pissing off the Balticum, Poland and other actors who hate Russia, Nato would be a good thing for Sweden.

Now the thing is Putin isn't insane and as I mentioned at the very start: Sweden's soft-power hits several weightclasses above our military one. You could conquer Sweden within a day, but the fallout of that would hit your country in far stronger ways than any military defeats would.

So. TLDR Sweden, despite having dismantled most of its "war"-military, still isn't worth invading or even trade-warring with because it just wouldn't ever be worth it for the attacker. Sweden's natural resources are mostly not tactically useful, no gas or oil, it's population and culture is very homogenic, there's not much strategic value of the geographic area except controlling the Baltic Sea which Russia already arguably does.

Joining Nato would only tarnish an already sullied reputation of neutrality more, it'd devalue a lot of Sweden's power and interests. The negatives far outweigh the positives, at least in my humble opinion.


I am however curious as to what the Finns think, since I don't see much reason as to why they wouldn't want to join if possible nowdays. Except perhaps rousing the russian bear and bullshit again.

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