Transatlantic Initiative on Nordic-Baltic Security

A series of private strategy sessions and public events bringing top policymakers from the Nordic-Baltic region together with Washington’s international security policy community.
  • Defending the Baltic Sea Region

    On May 9, the Atlantic Council hosted a scenario-based decision game centered on collective deterrence and defense in the Baltic Sea Region. The tabletop exercise gathered thought leaders, regional experts, policymakers, and current and former officials to explore defense challenges in the region. Conducted in close partnership with the Swedish Ministry of Defense, this game aimed at assessing the range of issues confronting senior decision-makers in the context of an array of plausible regional crisis scenarios.

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  • Sustaining NATO’s Strength and Deterrence

    On June 6, 2016 the Atlantic Council hosted a public conference on Sustaining NATO’s Strength and Deterrence.The event took place in Vilnius, Lithuania and served as the Council’s major public event in the Baltic region one month ahead of NATO’s seminal 2016 Warsaw Summit. The discussions featured a keynote address by Lt. Gen. Ben Hodges, Commanding General of US Army Europe, as well as remarks by Lithuania’s Minister of National Defense, H.E. Juozas Olekas, and Minister of Foreign Affairs, H.E. Linas Linkevičius. The event convened key regional and US leaders, military officials, and senior experts for a high-level discussion on the strategic issues facing NATO's eastern flank.
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  • Obama and Nordic Leaders United Against Russian Aggression

    President Barack Obama said Friday that an agreement between the U.S. and five Nordic nations to increase cooperation in the face of rising Russian aggression is an effort to ensure that "smaller nations are not bullied by larger nations.”
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  • Defending Europe’s Eastern Flank

    On April 14, 2016, the Atlantic Council hosted a major public conference on Defending Europe’s Eastern Flank on Capitol Hill. The conference served as the major public ‘curtain raiser’ in Washington for NATO’s 2016 Summit in Warsaw this July.

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  • NATO’s Regional Security Posture

    On Wednesday, April 13, 2016, the Atlantic Council hosted a private strategy session on NATO’s Regional Security Posture featuring Danish Chief of Defense General Peter Bartram. With its ability to sustain high operational tempo, Denmark is one of the United States’ staunchest allies, and in many ways, the model NATO ally. Yet Denmark, as with nearly all of its European allies, faces defense spending constraints that will impact its future military forces. Developing ways to overcome this challenge in the midst of the new threat landscape in Europe will be critical to sustain transatlantic security. General Bartram addressed these and other issues with a group of leading experts while at the Council.

    General Bartram was appointed Chief of Defense in March 2012, culminating a decorated career in the Danish military that included command postings in Kosovo, Afghanistan, Defense Command Denmark, and NATO Allied Command Transformation in Virginia.

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  • A Regional Approach for Nordic-Baltic Defense Cooperation

    On March 31, the Atlantic Council hosted a private workshop aimed at building a regional approach for Nordic-Baltic defense cooperation. The event convened a range of Nordic and Baltic experts, embassy representatives, and US government officials to develop new and actionable policy proposals to strengthen regional security and stability. Panel discussions focused on assessing Russian power in the Nordic-Baltic region and filling the capabilities gaps in the Baltic Sea.

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  • Security Challenges in the Nordic-Baltic Region

    On October 28, the Transatlantic Security Initiative hosted a roundtable with a senior team from Finland’s Ministry of Defense. The conversation focused on a number of Nordic-Baltic security issues, including US engagement in the region, regional responsibility, and the future of NATO partnerships. The event was part of the Council’s larger project on Nordic-Baltic Security and the Transatlantic Link, which aims to formulate new ideas for enhancing regional defense cooperation.
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  • Nordic-Baltic Security and the US Role

    pdfRead the Issue Brief (PDF)

    The United States and the Nordic states enjoy a strong, productive relationship. However, stability in the Nordic-Baltic area is under increasing stress, which has implications for both NATO and its partner members, Finland and Sweden. In "Nordic-Baltic Security and the US Role," the Atlantic Council's US Navy Senior Fellow Mark Seip argues that the United States must prioritize bolstering assurance among NATO members, principally the Baltic states. Additionally, the United States and NATO should enhance its capabilities through collaboration, leverage soft power instruments, and find mutuality between NATO and its key partners, Finland and Sweden. In do¬ing so, the United States and the Nordic nations stand to solidify the gains of the thriving region and strengthen European security.

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  • Nordenman: BALTOPS 2015 Highlights New Friction Between West, Russia

    Brent Scowcroft Center Deputy Director Magnus Nordenman writes for US Naval Institute News about BALTOPS, an annually recurring multinational exercise designed to enhance flexibility and interoperability, as well as demonstrate the resolve of allied and partner forces to defend the Baltic region:

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  • Sweden’s Role in the Nordic-Baltic Region and the Transatlantic Relationship

    On May 20, the Atlantic Council's Brent Scowcroft Center on International Security hosted a discussion on "Sweden's Role in the Nordic-Baltic Region and the Transatlantic Relationship" with Sweden's Minister of Defense Peter Hultqvist and experts from the Atlantic Council.

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