Baltic Sea

Estonia’s Security Options Eroded by Far-Right Governing Party

Estonia’s relations with neighboring Finland have been unsettled by late July’s announcement that the country’s ambassador in Helsinki, Harri Tiido, resigned. Tiido cited difficulties in maintaining strong cooperation between Estonia and Finland due to a string of controversial statements...

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A Chain of Friendship: Reflections on the Baltic Way and Inspiration for Belarus

On Aug. 23, 1989, about two million Estonians, Latvians and Lithuanians joined hands in a 690-kilometer human chain across the three Baltic countries in protest of Soviet occupation. The first reenactment of that “Baltic Way” took place in 1991,...

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Protests in Belarus: Geopolitical Considerations and the Future of Lukashenko

Not too long ago, few observers believed that Belarus could be on the brink of political revolution. The regime of Alexander Lukashenko, established in 1994 and strengthened throughout the years, seemed stable, as decades of oppression pushed the opposition...

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U.S.-Latvia Defense Cooperation in Light of Trump’s Troop Withdrawals

Defense cooperation rarely enters the public eye. Although sometimes highlighted by politicians, generals, or major headline-making military exercises, much of it takes place under the radar as fairly mundane military financing and contact. However, it recently has entered the...

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Sino-Russian Narratives of Cooperation and What It Means for the Baltics

When the topic of possible Sino-Russian convergence comes up, analytical opinions can differ dramatically. Some say the two countries are growing closer — others point to the historical issues sticking out from the carpets under which leaders Vladimir Putin...

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How Putin is Rehabilitating the Nazi-Soviet Pact

During a press conference in 2005, Russian President Vladimir Putin argued that there is no need to talk "every day" about such "realities of the past" as the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact, European colonialism or slavery in the US. At the...

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Maritime Security Issues in the Baltic Sea Region

In June, NATO conducted a scaled down version of its annual BALTOPS naval drills in the Baltic Sea. But with a heavy emphasis on land-based deterrence since re-independence, the Baltic States and NATO alike have been largely plagued by...

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Latvia’s New State Defense Concept

In early June, Latvia published the 2020 iteration of its State Defense Concept (Valsts Aizsardzības Koncepcija) to replace the 2016 version. The Concept is a political planning document which will guide the details of defense policy and planning for...

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Cyberwarfare in Latvia: A Call for New Cyberwarfare Terminology

Two recent Russian malicious cyber operations in Latvia targeted the government and a social media platform. But, legally, those instances do not rise to the level of a “cyberattack” as defined by the Tallinn Manual 2.0. Despite not satisfying...

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Baltic Security: The Same Challenges Remain, Even During a Pandemic

The implications of the COVID-19 pandemic go far beyond health issues and economy. It is a much broader challenge for the security of Western countries, not least for those at NATO’s Eastern frontier, like the Baltic states....

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