Sweden & Nato: Launch codes

Sweden & NATO
Monday. Malmö. Militarily.

After a long day of traveling yesterday, we’re back in Malmö again. I so prefer trains to planes. As efficient as air travel is, the amount of wasted time at airports is mind-numbing and body-crunching. Not to mention how ass-flattening the seats are on low-fare carriers.

When we left about a month ago, Sweden was still formally a neutral country. Now, we’re explicitly part of an expansive military alliance with an enormous nuclear arsenal. Just like when I moved here in 1978, the threat is still the ‘Russian Bear.’ But now I have two citizenships, both of which include me in the NATO club. So now the bear can hate me twice as much…

Sweden’s hypocritical neutrality has always disturbed me, so the country’s NATO membership and the inherent compulsory alignment that comes with joining the club will invariably add a more defined foreign policy. Will joining the North Atlantic Treaty Organization be an efficient deterrent to stifle future imperialistic ambitions that the 72-year-old Putin might be pondering? Probably.

But since the Russian president has already threatened to use tactical nuclear weapons several times over (some of which are possibly already stored with his buddy Lukashenko in Belarus), I don’t see how even Article 5 can do anything other than trigger an escalation to the point where Putin feels so cornered that he actually uses a nuke.

The mere threat of a nuclear war in Europe is, in my opinion, still a pretty persuasive deterrent against NATO’s ‘musketeer policy’ should Vlad one day decide to repatriate the Baltic nations and other former USSR satellite states.

Article 5 provides that if a NATO Ally is the victim of an armed attack, each and every other member of the Alliance will consider this act of violence as an armed attack against all members and will take the actions it deems necessary to assist the Ally attacked.

The numbers and letters visible in the Enigmative image above reminded me of launch codes. Maybe it’s time to watch War Games again.