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A Convincing Finnish Move: Implications for State Identity of Persuading Sweden to Jointly Bid for NATO Membership
Swedish Defence University, Department of War Studies and Military History, Joint Warfare Division.ORCID iD: 0000-0001-8073-5581
2022 (English)In: Studia Europejskie, ISSN 1428-149X, Vol. 26, no 4, p. 73-110Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

This article examines the consequences for Sweden’s state identity by the decision of Finland and Sweden to apply for membership in NATO. Taking its starting point in Sweden’s shattering loss of its easternmost provinces in the 1809 Treaty of Fredrikshamn, it explores Sweden’s initial formulations of a policy of neutrality and its evolution until the end of the Cold War. The article then directs attention to how Social Democratic leaders managed to institutionalise a Swedish “active foreign policy”, exerting a lasting, formative influence on Sweden’s state identity. It also addresses the rapprochement of Finland and Sweden after the end of the Cold War and the consequences of the bilateral dynamics that characterised their EU-membership applications. The article critically discusses how Sweden reformulated its concept of neutrality into a nebulous concept of nonalignment and adopted a security policy rooted in a cooperative security approach. Based on key findings drawn from this historical account, this article addresses the processes that lead to Finland and Sweden unexpectedly deciding on jointly applying for NATO membership. It concludes with a forward-looking assessment of how a Swedish NATO membership will ultimately stabilise Sweden’s adaptable state identity and its implications for the Nordic countries’ regional military strategy.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2022. Vol. 26, no 4, p. 73-110
Keywords [en]
Sweden, Finland, State Identity, Neutrality, Non-Alignment, NATO Membership
National Category
Political Science
Research subject
War Studies
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:fhs:diva-11448DOI: 10.33067/se.4.2022.3OAI: oai:DiVA.org:fhs-11448DiVA, id: diva2:1735352
Available from: 2023-02-08 Created: 2023-02-08 Last updated: 2023-05-03Bibliographically approved

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Lundqvist, Stefan

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CiteExportLink to record
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Citation style
  • apa
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Language
  • de-DE
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  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
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  • asciidoc
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