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The Baltic States: top 10 results of NATO membership

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jonasvarnas
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The Baltic States: top 10 results of NATO membership

#1 Post by jonasvarnas »

On March 29, 2004 Lithuania, Latvia, and Estonia joined NATO. It was a historic turning point for the defence policy and security of the whole region. The event marked not only a strategic, but also an emotional period in the transition and integration of the Baltic States into the Transatlantic community. Future in the framework of the organization seemed to be certain and cloudless. The declared aim of the joining the alliance was ensuring the regional and national security of the Baltic States. Even today Latvia, Estonia and Lithuania continue to perceive the alliance as the only factor for national stability and security and wait for further financial, military and political support.
At the same time the leading NATO member states are getting more and more tired of the financial burden they bear in the organization helping the Baltic States. In the cause of time the geopolitical situation has dramatically changed. It forced all member states to revalue the role of the organization on the international arena and the place of each of them in the alliance. In the interview to the Washington Post's editorial board Donald Trump questioned the need for the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, which has formed the backbone of Western security policies since the Cold War. (https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/pos ... gton-post/). The potential US president said that "we certainly can’t afford to do this anymore," Trump, adding later, "NATO is costing us a fortune, and yes, we’re protecting Europe with NATO, but we’re spending a lot of money."
Does supporting the Baltic States really hesitate other NATO member countries? Do they see the results of such support or only frustration?
On the other hand the Baltic States themselves haven't achieved the desired objectives as well.
Here are top 10 results of NATO membership.
1. NATO membership had to increase the regional and national security. But according to the new Military Strategy of the Republic of Lithuania (approved by the Minister of Defence on March 17) “the security situation of Lithuania has deteriorated, while Russia’s actions, undermining the rule-based European security architecture, pose the greatest threat to the security of Lithuania.” The document declares that the probability of conventional armed aggression against Lithuania or other NATO countries in the region is no longer a theoretical one and it may increase due to Russia’s growing military power and intention to use it.
2. Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia should spend at least 2% of their GDP on defense. Only Estonia spent that much. Latvia and Lithuania are forced to increase allocations to defense to the detriment of other areas such as economic and social. It should be added that countries that were seriously hit by the European financial crises pay also large NATO membership fees.
3. A direct consequence of redirection money from social to military sphere is the growth of social and political tensions inside the Baltic States. Numerous teachers' strikes in Lithuania last month have become an indicator of the instability and discontent of the population.
4. The Baltic States turned to be the NATO firing range. They become the host nations for a huge number of military exercises and are forced to provide their territories for building military infrastructure, such as air fields and training grounds. Delfi.lt wrote on March 14 that Lithuania is planning to expand its training grounds in Pabradė and Gaižiūnai by cutting down some of the surrounding forests. (http://en.delfi.lt/corporate/lithuania- ... d=70680378) It doesn’t fit with the Lithuanian Environmental Protection Policy.
5. The Baltic States are turning to the obsolete weapon storage area where foreign countries intend to keep their out-of-date military equipment.
6. Another disappointing step was Lithuania's restoring mandatory service for young men. The country that is experiencing demographic problems will for sure face another wave of youth outflow from the country.
7. NATO's militarization of the region led to the deformation of consciousness of youth and the substitution of such concept as “readiness to defend” on “willingness to kill”. The Baltic people who were always peace-loving nations are taught by foreign military instructors to be brutal and intransigent.
8. The Baltic States in order to make their contribution and not to be a burden to the Alliance sent their soldiers to the crisis regions. Some of them didn't return, some of them returned wounded. Only during Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan Estonia lost 9 soldiers, Latvia -3 and Lithuania - 1. What for?
9. Being at the epicenter of the information war between two major powers - NATO and Russia - the Baltic States' population have been disoriented. Absolutely different points of view on modern geopolitical situation often make it impossible to see the truth and feel safe.
10. As a result the Baltic States that were once looking for full NATO membership in reality have completely lost their independence in decision making and weakened their voice on international political arena by themselves.

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Tab
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Re: The Baltic States: top 10 results of NATO membership

#2 Post by Tab »

So many Russian people were moved into these states which has now changed the balance between the Ethnic population and those that came from Russia. Those who are of Russian background want Russia to hold sway in the area as they feel they will be better of with the Russians. Those who are ethnic to the country want to be able to chose their own path in the world and not the Russian one. Hence the clash.

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