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Russia’s response to NATO’s request has not yet arrived

Prior to Sweden’s accession to NATO, many observers had warned of a potentially dangerous period of deadlock between decision and actual membership in NATO. But that period was above all until NATO granted Sweden the status of an invitee, which happened this summer.

The stakes for Sweden are now small. What was dangerous was when you left the neutrality of the coalition but were not invited by NATO. Magnus Christianson, Senior Lecturer in Military Sciences at the Norwegian Defense Academy, says that if Russia attacks Sweden, it will still be a NATO problem because we have invitee status.

Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Turkey are still vetoing and speaking out against letting Sweden and Finland in so far.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan receives Prime Minister Ulf Kristersson in Ankara in November.

Photo: Lotta Hardelin

Before making the request, Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg hoped that the Sweden-Finland path in NATO would go quickly. He did not think that the Turkish president’s criticism of the countries would delay the process.

for two weeks Stoltenberg then points out that the road here went fast anyway.

– So far this has been the fastest accession process in NATO’s recent history, we must remember that Finland and Sweden applied for membership in May, and then in June he invited all NATO allies, including Turkey, Finland and Sweden to join his membership, he said. 7th of December.

Magnus Christianson believes the Secretary General has changed his rhetoric.

– It seems that even Stoltenberg misread Erdogan, says Magnus Christianson.

Hungary continues too To defer approval of the application to the future without making any clear demands of the counter-performer. And according to Magnus Christianson, the Hungarian Viktor Orban is not a concern, because it is a smaller country that is more dependent on NATO and the European Union.

Prior to the NATO operation, there was speculation that Russia would respond to NATO’s Scandinavian applications with everything from military escalation to cyberattacks and verbal threats.

On December 21, the Russian regime said that the Russian army will establish a military district in the northwest of Russia – that is, closer to the border with the North District. Otherwise, Russia’s response to the applications has been minimal so far, but sooner or later the country will need to adapt its military strategy.

– Russia is much weaker than we thought. Sooner or later, Sweden and Finland will become members, and then the Russian defense situation will deteriorate significantly. Magnus Christianson says the Putin regime is pushing this problem in front of them because they have worse problems in Ukraine.

Hungary continues to delay approving Sweden's NATO request.  Prime Minister Viktor Orban said it would only be ratified in February.

Photo: Attila Kispendic/AFP

Trot sin call state Sweden does not have the full protection that is the point of NATO membership, as long as Turkey and Hungary act as brake pads. Instead of security guarantees, it applies the “security assurances” that other countries have committed themselves to apply. The cost to the United States of breaking this insurance is high, but much less because it would jeopardize the relationship with Sweden and not the whole of NATO.

Hope for a NATO operation largely hinges on the elections in Turkey in June next year. If Recep Tayyip Erdogan is re-elected, Sweden expects to have served its political objective to the president and be accepted into NATO. Magnus Christianson thinks the NATO debate is starting to swing.

– Now there is more discussion about whether Sweden has chosen the right foreign policy path in this matter. And other questions such as what happens if Turkey wants to divide Sweden and Finland and only ratifies the Finnish request. And what if Erdoğan does not win the election and NATO instead begins to focus on a domestic Turkish political crisis?

Read more:

The anonymous list of NATO negotiators: this is how Sweden met Turkey

Anne Lind on negotiations with Turkey: ‘These were very harsh words’

Ewa Steinberg: Sweden does not have a sustainable Plan B in terms of NATO

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