April 11, 2022

Inching Closer Toward NATO with Mika Aaltola and Anna Wieslander

Will Finland and Sweden join NATO? Since Russia launched its unprovoked war of aggression against Ukraine in late February, European political and security dynamics have changed in profound ways. For Finland and Sweden, the invasion has ignited a new round of debate around the question of NATO membership, causing both countries to reexamine their longstanding policy of remaining outside the transatlantic military alliance. Despite this movement, no political decision has yet been made in either country, and obstacles may remain in the way of membership. Nevertheless, it appears that a seismic shift in foreign and security policy could be on the horizon for both countries. Anna Wieslander and Mika Aaltola join Andrea Kendall-Taylor and Jim Townsend to discuss what we might expect to see going forward.

Anna Wieslander serves as director for Northern Europe at the Atlantic Council. In addition to her role at the Atlantic Council, she chairs the Institute for Security and Development Policy in Stockholm and serves as secretary general of the Swedish Defense Association.

Mika Aaltola is the Director of the Finnish Institute of International Affairs. He is also a tenured professor of International Relations and European Union Affairs at Tallinn University in Estonia and holds the rank of docent at Tampere University.

  • Commentary
    • Sharper
    • April 17, 2024
    Sharper: NATO 75

    From July 9–11, NATO leaders from across the Atlantic will gather in Washington, DC for the 2024 NATO Summit, which marks the 75th anniversary of the alliance. This meeting wi...

    By Anna Pederson, Anna Avanesyan & Charles Horn

  • Podcast
    • July 3, 2023
    NATO’s Security Guarantees for Ukraine

    As NATO prepares for its annual summit in Vilnius this July, one of the biggest topics on the agenda will be how to guarantee long-term security for Ukraine. Given that member...

    By Andrea Kendall-Taylor, Jim Townsend, Liana Fix & Eric Ciaramella

  • Commentary
    • The Wall Street Journal
    • April 2, 2023
    Putin’s Shakespearean Demons

    Imagine the condition in the heart of Europe today had NATO’s boundaries remained frozen after 1989....

    By Robert D. Kaplan

  • Podcast
    • February 17, 2023
    Assessing NATO’s Evolving Role

    Over the past year, Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has reinvigorated NATO, with the presence of major war on the European continent highlighting the alliance’s importance for co...

    By Andrea Kendall-Taylor, Jim Townsend, Benedetta Berti & David Cattler

View All Reports View All Articles & Multimedia