On January 2, Dr. Matthew Kroenig, vice president and senior director of the Scowcroft Center, argues in Foreign Policy that one of under-the-radar threats of 2024 is a potential “unfrozen conflict” between NATO and Russia in the Arctic. Even as melting ice has allowed “geopolitical competition [to heat] up in the High North,” the addition of Finland and (potentially) Sweden to the Alliance has made it more difficult for Russia to gain a foothold in the region.

In the event of conflict, NATO could attack Russian supply lines and cut off and isolate Russia’s Northern Fleet. This vulnerability could also become important pressure point against Russia in peacetime—but only at the risk of creating another possible flash point for nuclear escalation.

Matthew Kroenig

The Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security works to develop sustainable, nonpartisan strategies to address the most important security challenges facing the United States and the world.

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