Brent Scowcroft Center Deputy Director Magnus Nordenman writes for Defense News on the security situation in the Nordic-Baltic region:
The recent Swedish hunt for a suspected Russian submarine, perhaps in distress, deep into Swedish territorial waters says much about the changing security climate in the Nordic-Baltic region, and the need for more Nordic-Baltic defense spending and a long-term NATO focus on the region.
The high-profile search outside of Stockholm, which comes on the heels of a multinational naval exercise in the area, Northern Archer, is but the latest of a series of incidents and events over the past two years, where Russia has prodded and tested the Nordic-Baltic nations using military means.
In just the past few weeks, Russian operatives have snatched an Estonian intelligence officer and brought him across the border into Russia, and Swedish and Finnish airspace have been violated repeatedly. During the submarine hunt, a Russian reconnaissance flight was intercepted inside NATO airspace over Estonia.