Best of the Week
Most Popular
1. The Trump Stock Market Trap May Be Triggered - Barry_M_Ferguson
2.Why are Central Banks Buying Gold and Dumping Dollars? - Richard_Mills
3.US China War - Thucydides Trap and gold - Richard_Mills
4.Gold Price Trend Forcast to End September 2019 - Nadeem_Walayat
5.Money Saving Kids Gardening Growing Giant Sunflowers Summer Fun - Anika_Walayat
6.US Dollar Breakdown Begins, Gold Price to Bolt Higher - Jim_Willie_CB
7.INTEL (INTC) Stock Investing to Profit From AI Machine Learning Boom - Nadeem_Walayat
8.Will Google AI Kill Us? Man vs Machine Intelligence - N_Walayat
9.US Prepares for Currency War with China - Richard_Mills
10.Gold Price Epochal Breakout Will Not Be Negated by a Correction - Clive Maund
Last 7 days
Stock Market Increasing Technical Weakness - 22nd July 19
What Could The Next Gold Rally Look Like? - 22nd July 19
Stock Markets Setting Up For A Volatility Explosion – Are You Ready? - 22nd July 19
Anatomy of an Impulse Move in Gold and Silver Precious Metals - 22nd July 19
What you Really need to Know about the Stock Market - 22nd July 19
Has Next UK Financial Crisis Just Started? Bank Accounts Being Frozen - 21st July 19
Silver to Continue Lagging Gold, Will Struggle to Overcome $17 - 21st July 19
What’s With all the Weird Weather?  - 21st July 19
Halifax Stopping Customers Withdrawing Funds Online - UK Brexit Banking Crisis Starting? - 21st July 19
US House Prices Trend Forecast 2019 to 2021 - 20th July 19
MICROSOFT Cortana, Azure AI Platform Machine Intelligence Stock Investing Video - 20th July 19
Africa Rising – Population Explosion, Geopolitical and Economic Consquences - 20th July 19
Gold Mining Stocks Q2’19 Results Analysis - 20th July 19
This Is Your Last Chance to Dump Netflix Stock - 19th July 19
Gold and US Stock Mid Term Election and Decade Cycles - 19th July 19
Precious Metals Big Picture, as Silver Gets on its Horse - 19th July 19
This Technology Everyone Laughed Off Is Quietly Changing the World - 19th July 19
Green Tech Stocks To Watch - 19th July 19
Double Top In Transportation and Metals Breakout Are Key Stock Market Topping Signals - 18th July 19
AI Machine Learning PC Custom Build Specs for £2,500 - Scan Computers 3SX - 18th July 19
The Best “Pick-and-Shovel” Play for the Online Grocery Boom - 18th July 19
Is the Stock Market Rally Floating on Thin Air? - 18th July 19
Biotech Stocks With Near Term Catalysts - 18th July 19
SPX Consolidating, GBP and CAD Could be in Focus - 18th July 19
UK House Building and Population Growth Analysis - 17th July 19
Financial Crisis Stocks Bear Market Is Scary Close - 17th July 19
Want to See What's Next for the US Economy? Try This. - 17th July 19
What to do if You Blow the Trading Account - 17th July 19
Bitcoin Is Far Too Risky for Most Investors - 17th July 19
Core Inflation Rises but Fed Is Going to Cut Rates. Will Gold Gain? - 17th July 19
Boost your Trading Results - FREE eBook - 17th July 19
This Needs To Happen Before Silver Really Takes Off - 17th July 19
NASDAQ Should Reach 8031 Before Topping - 17th July 19
US Housing Market Real Terms BUY / SELL Indicator - 16th July 19
Could Trump Really Win the 2020 US Presidential Election? - 16th July 19
Gold Stocks Forming Bullish Consolidation - 16th July 19
Will Fed Easing Turn Out Like 1995 or 2007? - 16th July 19
Red Rock Entertainment Investments: Around the world in a day with Supreme Jets - 16th July 19
Silver Has Already Gone from Weak to Strong Hands - 15th July 19
Top Equity Mutual Funds That Offer Best Returns - 15th July 19
Gold’s Breakout And The US Dollar - 15th July 19
Financial Markets, Iran, U.S. Global Hegemony - 15th July 19
U.S Bond Yields Point to a 40% Rise in SPX - 15th July 19
Corporate Earnings may Surprise the Stock Market – Watch Out! - 15th July 19
Stock Market Interest Rate Cut Prevails - 15th July 19
Dow Stock Market Trend Forecast Current State July 2019 Video - 15th July 19
Why Summer is the Best Time to be in the Entertainment Industry - 15th July 19
Mid-August Is A Critical Turning Point For US Stocks - 14th July 19
Fed’s Recessionary Indicators and Gold - 14th July 19
The Problem with Keynesian Economics - 14th July 19

Market Oracle FREE Newsletter

Top AI Stocks Investing to Profit from the Machine Intelligence Mega-trend

European War Games: Responses to Russian Military Drills

Politics / GeoPolitics May 07, 2015 - 02:22 PM GMT

By: STRATFOR

Politics

Several events have coincided to demonstrate the dynamic, if not guarded, relationship between Russia and the Nordic and Baltic states. Ten NATO countries and Sweden launched a two-week planned exercise in the North Sea on May 4 to improve their anti-submarine warfare capabilities. On the same day, Finland — not a NATO member — began mailing letters to about 900,000 reservists informing them of their roles in a potential crisis situation. Meanwhile, Sweden's Foreign Ministry formally complained to Russian authorities that Russian navy ships were disrupting cable-laying work in waters between Sweden and Lithuania, the latest in a series of formal complaints over Russia's activity in the area. Concurrently, the Swedish and Lithuanian foreign ministers met with Moldova's pro-West leaders in Chisinau.


All of these events confirm that the Nordic and Baltic states are working to boost security cooperation in response to Russia's military activity in the region. Consequently, the security buildup will continue — on both sides.

Analysis

Russian military activity, especially flights, along NATO's borders has increased in past months. In March, Russian military activity in the Black Sea, Baltic Sea and along the Finnish border spiked as part of snap drills simulating a full-scale confrontation with the West. The exercises were not so much a direct threat to the region as a colossal demonstration of Russian capability against NATO and other regional powers, particularly Baltic and Nordic countries.

Russia consistently pushes security boundaries in the region as a show of power. On May 3, Latvia's military reported that two Russian naval ships and a Russian submarine were located 5.2 nautical miles from Latvian territorial waters in the Baltic Sea, only the latest in a series of similar incidents over the past few months. Similarly, on April 28, Finland's navy fired grenade-size underwater charges at shallow depth as a warning to a suspected foreign submarine reportedly located in waters near Helsinki. In October 2014, Sweden's military conducted a large-scale search for a suspected foreign submarine near Stockholm.

Russian activity in waters near the Baltics and Nordic countries, however, is not limited to submarines. Russian naval vessels, allegedly participating in military exercises, have also disrupted the laying of the NordBalt cable, designed to facilitate the trade of electricity between Sweden and Lithuania, four times.

Moves and Countermoves

The Nordic and Baltic countries are located in a region of strategic importance to Russia. The expansion of NATO to the Baltic countries in the early 2000s brought the alliance closer than ever to Russia, within 130 kilometers (80 miles) of St. Petersburg. And Norway, a NATO member, has pushed for the alliance to become more active in the Barents Sea and in the Arctic, where Russia is increasing its presence.

Finland and Sweden are formally non-aligned and have remained neutral since the Cold War. Nevertheless, the crisis in Ukraine and increased Russian military activity in the region have reignited the debate over Finnish and Swedish defense alignments. Though neither country is formally applying for NATO membership, Sweden is for the first time participating in NATO's anti-submarine drills. Both Finland and Sweden are involved in efforts to boost regional defense cooperation to counter Russian maneuvers in the region. In early April, officials from Finland and Sweden joined their Danish, Norwegian and Icelandic counterparts to jointly call for greater military cooperation among the countries.

Increased Russian military activity in the region has led some countries to strengthen their domestic defenses as well. On March 19, Lithuania's parliament voted to reinstate compulsory military conscription in direct response to the crisis in Ukraine. Although Finnish officials have denied that the letter campaign to 900,000 reservists is related to increased Russian activity along Finland's borders, the campaign's scale points to a link.
 
Finally, several countries, most notably Sweden and the Baltic states, have been highly involved in efforts to build a broad regional alliance to counter Russia's moves in Central and Eastern Europe. On May 4, Swedish Foreign Minister Margot Wallstrom and Lithuanian Foreign Minister Linas Linkevicius visited Moldova in preparation for the Eastern Partnership summit in Latvia later this month. Sweden and the Baltics, among others, have also vigorously encouraged Ukraine, Georgia and Moldova to take steps to further integrate with the European Union and to boost ties with countries such as Turkey and Romania to create a U.S.-backed alliance network that would reach from the Baltics in the north to the Black Sea and Turkey in the south.

Russia's military activity near the Baltic and Nordic states will not end anytime soon. Such activity is unlikely to escalate. However, Russian military exercises and movement will serve as a constant reminder of the potential threat Russia poses to the region. Still, the Nordic and Baltic nations will strive to cooperate on regional defense and strengthen defense policies in NATO and non-NATO states. And because of Russia's provocations in the region, even countries that have traditionally shied away from military alliances, such as Finland and Sweden, will likely heed their calls. 

"European War Games: Responses to Russian Military Drills is republished with permission of Stratfor."

This analysis was just a fraction of what our Members enjoy, Click Here to start your Free Membership Trial Today! "This report is republished with permission of STRATFOR"

© Copyright 2015 Stratfor. All rights reserved

Disclaimer: The above is a matter of opinion provided for general information purposes only. Information and analysis above are derived from sources and utilising methods believed to be reliable, but we cannot accept responsibility for any losses you may incur as a result of this analysis.

STRATFOR Archive

© 2005-2019 http://www.MarketOracle.co.uk - The Market Oracle is a FREE Daily Financial Markets Analysis & Forecasting online publication.


Post Comment

Only logged in users are allowed to post comments. Register/ Log in

6 Critical Money Making Rules