New Security and Defence Designs – The Case of Finland

(Em Português : aqui )

Many things have happened in only a little more than a year. In my home country Finland a very basic foundation of your security policy has been shattered. Finlands is not any more a neutral country, not even an unaligned one, but a NATO member. That is a situation that very few finns would have thought even possible only 2 years ago but now it is a reality and a self evident fact that no one really calls into question.

Finland and Portugal are both small countries at opposite ends of the European continent. We are both neighbours to a bigger country. We are both little brothers to that bigger neighbour. BUt in one aspect we differ very much.

Where Portugal has the Atlantic along its border Finland has Russia. That has had a profound impact on our sense of security and our approach to foreign policy.

When the former Finnish defence minster Häkämies was asked some 15 years ago what Finland’s biggest security challenge is, he said that there are three challenges.

“They are Russia, Russia and Russia.”

15 years ago that statement raised a lot of eyebrows. It even created some criticism especially from the left side of the political spectrum in Finland.

Today that is viewed as a blunt statement of facts. That is our challenge, and as far as security goes, the only military threat one we have.

I will talk about the situation today, but to approach that point I want to go some time back in history. I’ll talk about the background story of Finland’s  development, how our sense of security was formed, what historical facts and happenings has lead to our approach. How we gradually have released ourselves from our post war trauma, how Finland has approached the west – because it has been a slow and not totally easy process.

I will talk about our security concept and how it differs from other countries’ security solutions. I’ll talk about the  thinking behind it.

And at the end I will discuss the reasons that eventually drove Finland and hopefully also Sweden to become nato members. What the war in Ukraine means for Europe and the world and how it challenges our view of where we are in the world. How should security be viewed in Europe, what is our biggest threat and how can we come out of this crisis with a firmer grasp on reality.

Because it is fair to say, dear friends, that we Europeans have been more than naive for too long a time.

There are moments in time that define a nation. For Finland it is easy to see what that occasion was.

I will come to the war in Ukraine later in this talk, but there are reasons why the war has resonated so strongly with the Finnish population.

On the 30th of November 1939 Finland was attacked by the Soviet Union in a war that was supposed to be very short and swift. Shostakovich had already written a musical piece that was to be performed in Helsinki a few days after the attack. Stalin thought that the Red army would be able to march unchallenged to our capital and that the Soviets would be welcomed as liberators and friends.

Much like Putin thought he would be welcomed in Kiev after only three days of fighting.

He did not receive that welcome.

Finland fought for 105 days in what is called The Winter War. Finland was the only country that fought against the Soviets that wasn’t invaded and conquered.

Finland  had to secede some territory, but the losses on the Soviet side were so dramatic that Stalin agreed to strike a peace deal with us Finns.

The winter war learnt us Finns that Russia is a threat, that it can’t be trusted, that it has imperial ambitions and that we have to – and are able to – defend ourselves. Alliances are good but in the end every country has to take care of itself. It is a question of economy, defence, production, education, and most of all cooperation.

That lesson has been the foundation for the Finnish security thinking ever since.

After the war Finland went through some very hard times. We were independent, but we were clearly under Soviet influence. There was a pragmatic need to have good relations with our neighbour in the east and it wasn’t totally without benefits. Finland had a lot of bilateral business relations with the USSR but on the other hand we had limited freedom of movement in the international sphere.

We balanced between the west and the east, slowly nudging us in a westward direction.

When NATO was formed in 1949 it was clear that Finland would not become a member. But neither did Sweden. Sweden stayed outside of NATO because of its long history of neutrality but also out of loyalty to Finland. Had we been left alone on the side of the soviet bear, history could have turned out differently.

But slowly we inched ourself westwards. First Finland became a member of the Nordic council in 1955. IN 1961 Finland struck a free trade deal with EFTA. In 1973 we signed a free trade deal with the EC and in 1986 we joined EFTA.

This all happened during a time where the Finnish approach by many was seen as overly pragmatic. The term “finlandisierung”, “finlandisation”, was coined.

We balanced for our survival, trying to uphold friendly relationships with the USSR while at the same time developing into a market-oriented western country.

I clearly remember how we were kind of ashamed about this “finlandisation” epithet. When I came to Angra as an 17 year old young boy in 1987 I had thought about it a lot and had all kinds of answers ready in my head in case somebody would ask me.

Well, nobody did.

And the era of finlandisation ended sooner than many would have thought.

The crash of the Soviet Union changed history. It did not End it, as Francis Fukuyama thought in his 1992 book, but it changed it.

And that also lead Finland to take the final steps needed to become fully integrated in the Western European context.

We became EU members in 1995 after a fairly tight national referendum. For me, for many Finns, it was a big emotional step. And ever since Finland has been one of the most EU-positive countries in the union. Even if we for a big part of our membership has been a net contributor economically.

But lets go back to security. These are the events that has formed our security concept. Rely on yourself, be ready, be prepared.

Finland has a population of 5,5 million. We have a wartime army strength of 270 thousand soldiers and a reserve of almost a million. We have the biggest artillery in Europe. We have a more powerful armed force than most European countries.

And this is not a new development. We have had a conscription based military during our whole existence. National defence is a national task, you could even call it a mission.

Every young man – and many women – is supposed to serve. And most do it. And it’s is not only a way of teaching military skills or upholding a military readiness, it is also a way of creating national unity.

I often say that the Finnish superpower is trust. A trust in society. Things are fairly easy in Finland. You seldom need a lot of paper work, the promise you make carries a lot of weight.

And I believe  that the shared military service has a lot to do with that.

When a whole class of young people is going through a shared experience, military service, it creates a bond that builds trust. And that trust later on carries into life and  society and makes it easy to agree on many things.

So did the history end with the Cold War? No.

While most European states implemented fundamental transformations of their armed forces in the wake of the Cold War—moving from large- scale warfighting capabilities toward small all-volunteer forces the Finnish approach to defense changed little. Being situated next to a military great power, Russia, the logic for our military defense did not change in the early 1990s, even when the Soviet Union collapsed. Though the Western framework for international security changed remarkably in the 1990s and after, Finland continued to procure main battle tanks, multiple launch rocket systems, fighter interceptors, ground-based air defense missile systems, and other military systems required by a defensive “big war approach.”

We prepared for a situation that most countries thought would never come. We prepared for the situation Ukraine is facing now  – and bought up tanks that the Netherlands didn’t think they’d need any more or cannons Germany wanted to get rid of.

In the middle of the biggest economic crisis Finland ever has had, the depression of the early nineties, we bought a significant amount of F/A 18s from the US. We were ridiculed for living in the old world but thought they might come handy some day. While at the same time hoping they wouldn’t.

The guiding principle in the military defense realm has been that quick U- turns are not possible. Military transformation takes about 30 years. Getting rid of existing capabilities is possible in a few years—building new ones takes years and decades. This is something several countries now has realised.

Today, as during the Cold War, the Finnish defense system is based on the principle that “even the biggest bear will not eat a porcupine.” It is not about matching the level of military capability around Finland’s vicinity; it is about making any potential military operation against Finland so costly that even attempting it does not seem an attractive option. Increasing international cooperation in the field of defense— with Sweden, for example—supports this logic.

I talked earlier about trust. An essential aspect and of a defense capability is the citizens’ will to defend the country. Every effort is made to ensure this will remains high. More than 80 percent of the adult population agrees that Finland should be defended militarily against an attack in all situations, even those in which success is not certain. This among the highest numbers in Europe. I think it is only surpassed by the number of Ukraine.

In other countries the result is significantly lower. As a 2015 Gallup International’s global survey concluded, “61% of those polled across 64 countries would be willing to fight for their country, while 27% would not. However, there are significant variations by region. Willingness to is lowest in Western Europe there it is 25%.”

The numbers are high not because we Finns don’t now what national defence is and what it might mean in practice, but because we do.

General conscription is also a major factor reinforcing the strength of Finnish society. . In addition to providing a required manpower pool of resources to the wartime defense forces, general conscription strengthens the entire society and its resilience during crises. Having a purpose in the society—and being ready to sacrifice time and effort—is a key unifying element. Practically every household in Finland has one or several citizen-soldiers in their midst. I have 5 children – 4 sons and a daughter. My middle son, Alvar, just came out of military service and will continue with an ordinary life studying economics.

I am an officer in the reserve. Most Finns have designated wartime units and designated tasks in case of a crisis.

But security is not only a military matter. The Finnish security doctrine is formed around a concept called the Comprehensive security model. It is built around military defence but above all around the concept that the whole of society has a task in case of a crisis.

We have national defence courses that are attended by most top business executives and civil servants. That means that both businesses and civil society know what builds security. Everybody has a task. Everybody knows what they can and should do in the case of a crisis.

Societal cohesion also has an impact Educated people with jobs and possibilities for a decent life have few or no incentives for anti-societal behaviour. This is particularly true when peoples’ absolute welfare is related to a sense of justice and the just distribution of wealth and welfare within society. That’s why equality of opportunity can’t be overlooked.

When you feel that you have a place in society you want to contribute. When you feel that you receive something you want to give. That is also at the core of the Finnish – or Nordic – model.

And especially today, when attacks can come in various ways, when hybrid warfare can hurt you as much as conventional warfare education is key.

Because Russia has extensive information warfare programs. We know what they did in the 2016 US election. We know what they did in the Brexit referendum. Many right – or left wing radical European parties have shady ties to RUssia. In this reality education is paramount and especially media literacy.

Even if Finland has been the target of extensive information operations from Russia the impact has been modest at best. An educated population can tell true from fake and is more resilient in the face of hybrid attacks.

But lets go back to the present day.

Many of us thought that Russia was a changed country. The good will that poured into Russia in the nineties and still well into this millennium was significant. Yes, maybe we took things for granted, and yes, maybe all the consultation the Russian government received in the 90s wasn’t top notch but still things could have gone in a very different direction.

In its attempt to secure power in the late 90s the circle around Yeltsin did some critical mistakes that really undermined the Russian political system.

And most of all – it underestimated Putin and thought he was a puppet that they could handle. He obviously wasn’t.

Putin is not a democrat. He is a nostalgic imperialist who doesn’t scoff at using even the most harsh of measures in order to achieve his goals.

He didn’t hesitate to level Groznyi. He didn’t hesitate to invade Georgia. He didn’t hesitate in removing his opponents from the playing field whether they are called Lebedev, Politkovskaya or Navalnyi. He didn’t hesitate to invade Crimea, to lie on international or national TV and now he didn’t hesitate to invade Ukraine thus causing the biggest threat to international security since the second word war.

For us it is difficult to see the rationale behind it. For a nostalgic imperialist the rationale is probably very simple. What other things has he caused?

The invasion of Ukraine lead to many things. It was a war that supposedly was motivated by a need to stop countries from joining NATO.

So far it has achieved several things, none of which provably were intended. It has very likely destroyed the economic future for Russia for several decades. It has plummeted the international status of Russia. When your only support in the UN comes from Belarus, Eritrea, Syria, Nicaragua and North Korea you know you have a problem.

The war caused two non-aligned countries, Finland and Sweden, to become NATO members. Well, Sweden is still waiting for Erdogan and Orban to get their act together, but eventually Sweden will enter.

Instead of stopping countries from joining NATO Putin has more than doubled Russia’s border with NATO. That is quite an achievement.

Because NATO wasn’t really on Finland’s radar. We have actually effectively tried to avoid a NATO debate. We rather talked about Nordic cooperation, because it was easier. We rather talked about the defence component of the EUropean Union, because that seemed friendlier.

Thanks to our history NATO was a more difficult subject.

My party was one of only two parties out of nine in parliament who had been positive towards a membership. Now all parties support it.

Support hovered around 20 percent for decades. When Russia invaded Georgia it didn’t move. When Russia invaded Crimea it didn’t move. When I two years ago called for a membership process when it was evident that Russia had something going on it didn’t move.

But when Russian tanks started marching towards Kiev the Finnish people had had enough. Support immediately went over 50% and is now at a steady 80%.

We Finns are pragmatic people. We can be stubborn, but when the situation changes we can change our minds. We thought for too long that you can deal with the Russians. When Putin showed his true face, to quote our President: “when his mask fell off”, we adopted to that reality. And the rest is history. In parliament 187 members voted for a membership and only 6 against. That is an enormous majority.

It was of course of paramount importance that Sweden also joined nato. That lead to some intense shuttling back and forth between Sweden and Finland in March and April of 2022. We Finns had to convince Sweden to change their position. And it wasn’t totally easy.

For Sweden being neutral is an integral part of their national identity. They have ABBA, IKEA, meat balls and neutrality. Parting with that was difficult and the Swedish PM Andersson was very reluctant at first.

Tage Erlander who was a prime minister in Sweden when NATO was formed, said in his memoirs that Sweden stayed out of NATO to an extent out of solidarity with Finland. No we Finns had, out of solidarity, to gently push Sweden into NATO.

And we succeeded, of which I am happy.

WIth Finland and Sweden as member NATO gains some significant capabilities. These countries are strong democracies, two of the more capable military powers in Europe and have  significant defense industries.

Neither of them is a burden and both  can  take care of their defensive reponsibilities.

Considering that, it is sad to see the extent to which a political game has been played around the ratification process. An alliance that essentially depends on the “three musketeers principle”, one for all, all for one, that can’t swiftly ratify the membership of two candidates that absolutely strengthen the alliance has a problem.

So let’s hope the promise Erdogan made in Vilnius a few weeks ago holds.

But in the meantime the war goes on. And it has exposed a lot of problems we had refused to see until now.

Europe has been all to dependent on the US for its defence. We have dismantled our defence industry and our readiness. Most countries have dismantled their conscription based systems and turned towards all voluntary forces that are small and more suitable for small limited tasks than defending Europe.

During this year Europe has helped Ukraine in many ways. Also militarily. It has also been a revelation in the negative sense that we do not have the adequate stockpiles. We have howitzers, but not enough ammunition. We might have planes, but few have tanks,

I was one of two Finnidh parlamentarians that started the European Leopard-initiative that lead to several European countries shipping Leopard 1 and 2 tanks to Ukraine. While we have plentiful numbers of these modern tanks in Europe only a few of the are in shape to be rolled out if there was to be a crisis.

Our readiness has been abysmally bad.

NATO does now cover a big part of the EU. It is not worthwhile building parallel structures. But even if we have NATO every country has to carry its own weight. There are very few things a think DOnald Trump deserves credit for, but bringing up the NATO 2% – rule is one of them. Every country should spend at least 2% of its GDP on defence for us to have credible capacities, living next door to Russia.

And taking a page from the Finnish comprehensive defence toolkit: Security is a broad concept. We realised last year what energy dependence means.

A reliance on fossil fuels and resources that are in the hands of authoritarian dictators lead to dependencies that can be catastrophic. We cannot close our eyes to democracy deficits when dealing with countries  and must take a critical look at our dependencies in general.

And as this summers forest fires have showed us time an again. Security is also an environmental issue. A world in which climate change rages in not secure for anybody. But that is a discussion for a differentiaali discussion. 

Thank you for listening, and I am happy to take any questions a you might have.

 

(Käännös Portigaliksi pidetystä puheesta konferenssissa ”Novos Desafios de Segurança e Defesa” 2.8.2023)

Novos desenhos de segurança e defesa: o caso da Finlândia

(In English: here )

Muitas coisas aconteceram em pouco mais de um ano. No meu país natal, a Finlândia, foi destruído um alicerce básico da política de segurança. A Finlândia já não é um país neutro, nem sequer um país não alinhado, mas um membro da NATO. Esta é uma situação que muito poucos finlandeses teriam pensado ser possível há apenas dois anos, mas que agora é uma realidade e um facto evidente que ninguém põe em causa.

A Finlândia e Portugal são dois pequenos países situados em extremos opostos do continente europeu. Somos ambos vizinhos de um país maior. Somos ambos irmãos mais pequenos desse vizinho maior. Mas num aspeto somos muito diferentes.

Enquanto Portugal tem o Atlântico ao longo da sua fronteira, a Finlândia tem a Rússia. Isso teve um impacto profundo no nosso sentimento de segurança e na nossa abordagem à política externa.

Quando, há cerca de quinze anos, perguntaram ao antigo Ministro da Defesa finlandês, Häkämies, qual era o maior desafio da Finlândia em termos de segurança, ele respondeu que havia três desafios:

”A Rússia, a Rússia e a Rússia”.

Há quinze anos, esta declaração deu que falar. Chegou mesmo a suscitar algumas críticas, especialmente do lado esquerdo do espetro político finlandês.

Hoje em dia, é vista como uma franca exposição dos factos. É esse o nosso desafio e, no que respeita à segurança, a nossa única ameaça militar.

Irei falar sobre a situação atual, mas para chegar a esse ponto quero recuar um pouco na história. Falarei sobre os antecedentes do desenvolvimento da Finlândia, como se formou o nosso sentimento de segurança, que factos e acontecimentos históricos conduziram à nossa abordagem. Como nos libertámos gradualmente do trauma pós-guerra, como a Finlândia se aproximou do Ocidente – porque tem sido um processo lento e não totalmente fácil.

Falarei sobre o nosso conceito de segurança e sobre como difere das soluções de segurança de outros países. Falarei sobre o pensamento por trás dele.

E, no final, abordarei as razões que acabaram por levar a Finlândia e, espero, também a Suécia a se tornarem membros da NATO. O que significa a guerra na Ucrânia para a Europa e para o mundo e como desafia a visão que temos da nossa posição no mundo. Como deve ser encarada a segurança na Europa, qual é a nossa maior ameaça e como podemos sair desta crise com um melhor conhecimento da realidade.

Porque verdade seja dita, caros amigos, nós, europeus, fomos mais do que ingénuos durante demasiado tempo.

Há momentos que definem uma nação. No caso da Finlândia, é fácil perceber qual foi esse momento.

Falarei da guerra na Ucrânia mais adiante, mas há razões para a guerra ter tido uma tão grande repercussão na população finlandesa.

A trinta de novembro de mil novecentos e trinta e nove, a Finlândia foi atacada pela União Soviética, numa guerra que se previa muito curta e rápida. Shostakovich já havia composto uma peça musical para ser apresentada em Helsínquia alguns dias após o ataque. Estaline pensou que o Exército Vermelho poderia marchar sem contestação até à nossa capital e que os soviéticos seriam recebidos como libertadores e amigos.

Tal como Putin pensou que seria bem recebido em Kiev após apenas três dias de combates.

Não foi esse o acolhimento que teve.

A Finlândia lutou durante cento e cinco dias na chamada Guerra de Inverno. Foi o único país que lutou contra os soviéticos e que não foi invadido e conquistado.

A Finlândia teve de ceder algum território, mas as perdas do lado soviético foram tão dramáticas que Estaline aceitou celebrar um acordo de paz com os finlandeses.

A Guerra de Inverno ensinou-nos, a nós, finlandeses, que a Rússia é uma ameaça, que não se pode confiar nela, que tem ambições imperiais, e que temos – e somos capazes – de nos defender. As alianças são uma coisa boa, mas, no fim de contas, cada país tem de cuidar de si próprio. É uma questão de economia, de defesa, de produção, de educação e, acima de tudo, de cooperação.

Essa lição tem sido a base do pensamento finlandês em matéria de segurança desde então.

Depois da guerra, a Finlândia passou por momentos muito difíceis. Éramos independentes, mas estávamos claramente sob influência soviética. Havia uma necessidade pragmática de manter boas relações com o nosso vizinho de Leste, o que não era totalmente desprovido de benefícios. A Finlândia tinha muitas relações comerciais bilaterais com a União Soviética, mas, por outro lado, a nossa liberdade de circulação na esfera internacional era limitada.

Balançávamos entre o Ocidente e o Leste, sendo lentamente empurrados para o lado ocidental.

Quando a NATO foi formada em mil novecentos e quarenta e nove, ficou claro que a Finlândia não se tornaria membro. Mas a Suécia também não. A Suécia ficou de fora da NATO devido à sua longa história de neutralidade, mas também por lealdade para com a Finlândia. Se tivéssemos ficado sozinhos ao lado do urso soviético, a história poderia ter tido um desfecho diferente.

Mas, lentamente, fomos avançando em direção ao ocidente. Em mil novecentos e cinquenta e cinco, a Finlândia tornou-se membro do Conselho Nórdico. Em mil novecentos e sessenta e um, a Finlândia celebrou um acordo de comércio livre com a EFTA. Em mil novecentos e setenta e três, assinámos um acordo de comércio livre com a Comunidade Europeia e, em mil novecentos e oitenta e seis, aderimos à EFTA.

Tudo isto aconteceu numa altura em que a abordagem finlandesa era vista por muitos como excessivamente pragmática. Cunhou-se o termo ”finlandisierung”, ”finlandização”.

Equilibrámo-nos por uma questão de sobrevivência, tentando manter relações amigáveis com a União Soviética e, ao mesmo tempo, evoluir para um país ocidental orientado para o mercado.

Lembro-me claramente de como nos sentíamos um pouco envergonhados com o epíteto de ”finlandização”. Quando vim para Angra, em mil novecentos e oitenta e sete, com dezassete anos, já tinha pensado muito sobre o assunto e tinha todas as respostas na ponta da língua para o caso de alguém me perguntar.

Bem, ninguém perguntou.

E a era da finlandização terminou mais cedo do que muitos pensavam.

O colapso da União Soviética mudou a História. Não acabou com ela, como pensava Francis Fukuyama no seu livro de mil novecentos e noventa e dois, mas mudou-a.

E isso também levou a Finlândia a dar os derradeiros passos necessários à sua plena integração no contexto da Europa Ocidental.

Tornámo-nos membros da União Europeia em mil novecentos e noventa e cinco, após um referendo nacional bastante renhido. Para mim, para muitos finlandeses, foi um grande passo em termos emocionais. Desde então, a Finlândia tem sido um dos países mais favoráveis à União Europeia dentro da própria União. Apesar de, durante uma grande parte da nossa adesão, termos sido um contribuinte líquido do ponto de vista económico.

Mas voltemos à segurança. Foram esses acontecimentos que moldaram o nosso conceito de segurança. Confiar em si próprio, estar pronto, estar preparado.

A Finlândia tem uma população de cinco vírgula cinco milhões de habitantes. Temos um exército de duzentos e setenta mil soldados em tempo de guerra e uma reserva de quase um milhão. Temos a maior artilharia da Europa. As nossas forças armadas são mais poderosas do que as da maioria dos países europeus.

E isto não é de agora. O serviço militar obrigatório foi sempre uma constante durante toda a nossa existência. A defesa nacional é uma tarefa nacional. Pode mesmo dizer-se que é uma missão.

Espera-se que todos os rapazes – e muitas raparigas – cumpram serviço militar. E a maioria dos rapazes cumpre. E não é apenas uma forma de ensinar competências militares ou de manter a prontidão militar, mas também um modo de criar unidade nacional.

Costumo dizer que o superpoder finlandês é a confiança. A confiança na sociedade. As coisas são bastante fáceis na Finlândia. Raramente se precisa de muita papelada, a palavra dada tem muito peso.

E creio que o serviço militar partilhado tem muito que ver com isso.

Quando um grupo inteiro de jovens passa por uma experiência comum, o serviço militar, cria-se um laço que gera confiança. E essa confiança, mais tarde, é transportada para a vida e para a sociedade e facilita a concordância em muitas coisas.

Então a história chegou ao fim com a Guerra Fria? Não.

Enquanto a maioria dos Estados europeus implementou transformações fundamentais nas suas forças armadas no rescaldo da Guerra Fria – passando de capacidades de combate em grande escala a pequenas forças totalmente voluntárias – a abordagem finlandesa à defesa pouco mudou. Estando situada junto a uma grande potência militar, a Rússia, a lógica da nossa defesa militar não se alterou no início da década de noventa, nem sequer quando a União Soviética entrou em colapso. Embora o enquadramento ocidental da segurança internacional tenha mudado consideravelmente nos anos noventa e seguintes, a Finlândia continuou a adquirir tanques de batalha, sistemas de lançamento múltiplo de foguetes, caças intercetores, sistemas de mísseis terrestres de defesa aérea, e outros sistemas militares necessários a uma abordagem defensiva de “grande guerra”.

Preparámo-nos para uma situação que a maioria dos países pensou que nunca iria acontecer. Preparámo-nos para a situação que a Ucrânia está a enfrentar agora – e comprámos tanques que os Países Baixos pensavam já não precisar ou canhões de que a Alemanha se queria livrar.

No meio da maior crise económica que a Finlândia alguma vez teve, a depressão do início dos anos noventa, comprámos uma quantidade significativa de F/A dezoito aos Estados Unidos. Fomos ridicularizados por vivermos no velho mundo, mas pensámos que poderiam vir a ser úteis um dia. Ao mesmo tempo que esperávamos que não viessem a sê-lo.

O princípio orientador no domínio da defesa militar tem sido o de que não é possível inverter a marcha rapidamente. A transformação militar demora cerca de trinta anos. Livrar-se das capacidades existentes é possível em poucos anos – construir novas capacidades demora anos, décadas. Isto é algo de que vários países já se aperceberam.

Atualmente, tal como durante a Guerra Fria, o sistema de defesa finlandês baseia-se no princípio de que ”nem o maior dos ursos come um porco-espinho”. Não se trata de igualar o nível de capacidade militar da vizinhança da Finlândia; trata-se de tornar qualquer potencial operação militar contra a Finlândia tão dispendiosa que nem sequer tentá-la seja uma opção atrativa. O aumento da cooperação internacional no domínio da defesa – com a Suécia, por exemplo – apoia esta lógica.

Há pouco falei de confiança. Um aspeto essencial de uma capacidade de defesa é a vontade que os cidadãos têm de defender o país. São envidados todos os esforços para que essa vontade se mantenha elevada. Mais de oitenta por cento da população adulta concorda que a Finlândia deve ser defendida militarmente contra um ataque em todas as situações, mesmo naquelas em que o sucesso não é garantido. É uma das percentagens mais elevadas da Europa. Penso que só é ultrapassada pela da Ucrânia.

Noutros países, o resultado é significativamente inferior. Como concluiu um inquérito global da Gallup Internacional em dois mil e quinze, ”sessenta e um por cento dos inquiridos em sessenta e quatro países estariam dispostos a lutar pelo seu país, enquanto vinte e sete por cento não estariam. No entanto, existem variações significativas por região. A vontade de lutar é mais baixa na Europa Ocidental, situando-se nos vinte e cinco por cento”.

Os números são elevados não porque nós, finlandeses, não saibamos o que é a defesa nacional e o que pode significar na prática, mas porque sabemos.

O serviço militar obrigatório é também um fator importante que intensifica a força da sociedade finlandesa. Para além de fornecer um conjunto de recursos humanos necessário às forças de defesa em tempo de guerra, o serviço militar obrigatório fortalece toda a sociedade e a sua capacidade de resistência em situações de crise. Ter uma finalidade na sociedade – e estar pronto a sacrificar tempo e esforço – é um elemento unificador fundamental. Praticamente todos os agregados familiares na Finlândia têm um ou vários cidadãos-soldados no seu seio. Eu tenho cinco filhos – quatro filhos e uma filha. O meu filho do meio, Alvar, acabou de sair do serviço militar e vai continuar com a sua vida normal de estudante de economia.

Eu sou um oficial na reserva. A maioria dos finlandeses tem unidades designadas em tempo de guerra e tarefas designadas em caso de crise.

Mas a segurança não é apenas uma questão militar. A doutrina de segurança finlandesa articula-se em torno de um conceito chamado modelo de segurança abrangente. É construído em torno da defesa militar, mas sobretudo em torno do conceito de que toda a sociedade tem uma tarefa em caso de crise.

Temos cursos de defesa nacional que são frequentados pela maioria dos executivos de topo e funcionários públicos. Isto significa que tanto as empresas como a sociedade civil sabem o que contribui para a segurança. Todos têm uma tarefa. Todos sabem o que podem e devem fazer em caso de crise.

A coesão social também tem um impacto. As pessoas instruídas, com emprego e possibilidades de uma vida decente, têm poucos ou nenhuns incentivos para um comportamento antissocial. Isto é particularmente verdade quando o bem-estar absoluto das pessoas está relacionado com um sentido de justiça e com a justa distribuição da riqueza e do bem-estar na sociedade. É por isso que a igualdade de oportunidades não pode ser negligenciada.

Quando sentimos que temos um lugar na sociedade, queremos contribuir. Quando sentimos que recebemos algo, queremos dar. Esta é também a essência do modelo finlandês – ou nórdico.

E, especialmente hoje em dia, quando os ataques podem surgir de várias formas, quando a guerra híbrida pode prejudicar-nos tanto como a guerra convencional, a educação é fundamental.

Porque a Rússia tem programas alargados de guerra de informação. Sabemos o que fizeram nas eleições de dois mil e dezasseis nos Estados Unidos. Sabemos o que fizeram no referendo do Brexit. Muitos partidos europeus radicais de direita ou de esquerda têm laços obscuros com a Rússia. Perante esta realidade, a educação é fundamental e, especialmente, a literacia mediática.

Mesmo que a Finlândia tenha sido alvo de operações de informação alargadas por parte da Rússia, o impacto foi, na melhor das hipóteses, modesto. Uma população instruída sabe distinguir o verdadeiro do falso e é mais resistente a ataques híbridos.

Mas voltemos à atualidade.

Muitos de nós pensámos que a Rússia era um país mudado. A boa vontade que se alastrou pela Rússia nos anos noventa e ainda durante este milénio foi significativa. Sim, talvez tenhamos tomado as coisas como garantidas, e sim, talvez toda as consultas de que o governo russo usufruiu nos anos noventa não tenham sido de primeira água, mas mesmo assim as coisas poderiam ter seguido um rumo muito diferente.

Na sua tentativa de assegurar o poder no final dos anos noventa, o círculo em torno de Ieltsin cometeu alguns erros críticos que minaram efetivamente o sistema político russo.

E, acima de tudo, subestimaram Putin e pensaram que ele era um fantoche que podiam manipular. Obviamente não era.

Putin não é um democrata. É um imperialista nostálgico que não se coíbe de utilizar até as medidas mais duras para atingir os seus objetivos.

Não hesitou em arrasar Grozny. Não hesitou em invadir a Geórgia. Não hesitou em remover os seus opositores do terreno, quer se chamem Lebedev, Politkovskaya ou Navalny. Não hesitou em invadir a Crimeia, em mentir na televisão internacional ou nacional, e agora não hesitou em invadir a Ucrânia, causando assim a maior ameaça à segurança internacional desde a segunda guerra mundial.

Para nós, é difícil ver a fundamentação lógica por detrás disso. Para um imperialista nostálgico, a fundamentação lógica é provavelmente muito simples. Que mais causou ele?

A invasão da Ucrânia conduziu a muitas coisas. Foi uma guerra que, supostamente, foi motivada pela necessidade de impedir os países de aderirem à NATO.

Até à data, teve vários efeitos, nenhum dos quais, comprovadamente, era pretendido. Destruiu, muito provavelmente, o futuro económico da Rússia por várias décadas. Fez cair a pique o estatuto internacional do país. Quando o único apoio na ONU vem da Bielorrússia, da Eritreia, da Síria, e da Coreia do Norte, a Russia tem um problema.

A guerra fez com que dois países não alinhados, a Finlândia e a Suécia, se tornassem membros da NATO. Bem, a Suécia ainda está à espera que Erdogan e Orban se organizem, mas acabará por entrar.

Em vez de impedir os países de aderirem à NATO, Putin mais do que duplicou a fronteira da Rússia com a NATO. É um feito e tanto.

Porque, na verdade, a NATO não estava no radar da Finlândia. De facto, tentámos evitar um debate sobre a NATO. Preferimos falar da cooperação nórdica, por ser mais fácil. Preferimos falar da componente de defesa da União Europeia, pois parecia mais amigável.

Devido à nossa história, a NATO era um assunto mais difícil.

O meu partido foi um de apenas dois, num total de nove, no parlamento, que se mostraram favoráveis a uma adesão. Agora, todos os partidos a apoiam.

Durante décadas, o apoio rondou os vinte por cento. Quando a Rússia invadiu a Geórgia, não se alterou. Quando a Rússia invadiu a Crimeia, não se alterou. Quando, há dois anos, eu próprio apelei a um processo de adesão, já que era evidente que a Rússia estava a planear algo, não se alterou.

Mas quando os tanques russos começaram a marchar em direção a Kiev, os finlandeses fartaram-se. O apoio ultrapassou imediatamente os cinquenta por cento e está agora nos oitenta por cento.

Nós, os finlandeses, somos pessoas pragmáticas. Podemos ser teimosos, mas quando a situação muda, podemos mudar de ideias. Durante demasiado tempo, pensámos que era possível negociar com os russos. Quando Putin mostrou a sua verdadeira face ou, para citar o nosso Presidente Niinistö, ”quando lhe caiu a máscara”, adotámos essa realidade. E o resto é história. No Parlamento, cento e oitenta e sete deputados votaram a favor da adesão e apenas seis votaram contra. Trata-se de uma enorme maioria.

Naturalmente, era extremamente importante que a Suécia também aderisse à NATO. Isso levou a um intenso vaivém entre a Suécia e a Finlândia em março e abril de dois mil e vinte e dois. Nós, finlandeses, tivemos de convencer a Suécia a alterar a sua posição. E não foi tarefa fácil.

Para a Suécia, a neutralidade faz parte integrante da sua identidade nacional. Têm os ABBA, o IKEA, as almôndegas e a neutralidade. Não foi fácil abandonar essa identidade e o primeiro-ministro sueco Andersson mostrou-se muito relutante no início.

Tage Erlander, que era primeiro-ministro da Suécia quando a NATO foi formada, disse nas suas memórias que a Suécia ficou de fora da NATO, de certa forma, por solidariedade para com a Finlândia. Agora, nós, finlandeses, tivemos, por solidariedade, de empurrar suavemente a Suécia para a NATO.

E conseguimos, o que me deixa muito feliz.

Com a Finlândia e a Suécia como membros, a NATO ganha algumas capacidades significativas. Estes países são democracias fortes, duas das potências militares mais capazes da Europa e têm indústrias de defesa consideráveis.

Nenhum deles é um fardo e ambos podem assumir as suas responsabilidades defensivas.

Tendo isso em consideração, é triste constatar até que ponto o processo de ratificação foi objeto de um jogo político. Uma aliança que depende essencialmente do ”princípio dos três mosqueteiros”, um por todos, todos por um, e que não consegue ratificar rapidamente a adesão de dois candidatos que a reforçam de forma inequívoca, tem um problema. 

Por isso, esperemos que a promessa que Erdogan fez em Vilnius há algumas semanas se mantenha.

Mas, entretanto, a guerra continua. E expôs muitos problemas que, até agora, nos tínhamos recusado a ver.

A Europa tem estado demasiado dependente dos Estados Unidos para a sua defesa. Desmantelámos a nossa indústria de defesa e a nossa prontidão. A maioria dos países desmantelou os seus sistemas de serviço militar obrigatório e virou-se para forças voluntárias que são pequenas e mais adequadas a tarefas limitadas do que à defesa da Europa.

Durante este ano, a Europa tem ajudado a Ucrânia de muitas formas. Também militarmente. Foi também uma revelação, no sentido negativo, o facto de não dispormos de stocks adequados. Temos obuses, mas não temos munições suficientes. Podemos ter aviões, mas poucos têm tanques.

Fui um dos dois deputados finlandeses que lançaram a iniciativa europeia “Leopard”, que levou vários países europeus a enviar tanques Leopard um e dois para a Ucrânia. Embora tenhamos um número abundante destes tanques modernos na Europa, apenas alguns estão em condições de ser utilizados em caso de crise.

Temos estado terrivelmente mal preparados.

Atualmente, a NATO cobre uma grande parte da União Europeia. Não vale a pena construir estruturas paralelas. Mas mesmo que tenhamos a NATO, cada país tem de suportar o seu próprio peso. A meu ver, há muito poucas coisas pelas quais Donald Trump merece crédito, mas a regra dos dois por cento da NATO é uma delas. Todos os países devem gastar pelo menos dois por cento do seu PIB em defesa, para que tenhamos capacidades credíveis, já que vivemos ao lado da Rússia.

E a crer no abrangente kit de ferramentas de defesa finlandês, a segurança é um conceito amplo. No ano passado, apercebemo-nos do que significa a dependência energética.

Depender de combustíveis fósseis e de recursos que estão nas mãos de ditadores autoritários conduz a dependências que podem ser catastróficas. Não podemos fechar os olhos aos défices democráticos quando lidamos com países e devemos ter uma visão crítica das nossas dependências em geral.

E como os incêndios florestais deste verão nos têm mostrado uma e outra vez, a segurança é também uma questão ambiental. Um mundo em que as alterações climáticas grassam não é seguro para ninguém. Mas isto seria tema para outra conversa.

Obrigado por me ouvirem e tenho todo o gosto em responder a quaisquer questões que me queiram colocar.

New Security and Defence Designs – the Case of Finland

(Em Português : aqui )

Many things have happened in only a little more than a year. In my home country Finland a very basic foundation of your security policy has been shattered. Finlands is not any more a neutral country, not even an unaligned one, but a NATO member. That is a situation that very few finns would have thought even possible only 2 years ago but now it is a reality and a self evident fact that no one really calls into question. 

Finland and Portugal are both small countries at opposite ends of the European continent. We are both neighbours to a bigger country. We are both little brothers to that bigger neighbour. BUt in one aspect we differ very much. 

Where Portugal has the Atlantic along its border Finland has Russia. That has had a profound impact on our sense of security and our approach to foreign policy. 

When the former Finnish defence minster Häkämies was asked some 15 years ago what Finland’s biggest security challenge is, he said that there are three challenges. 

“They are Russia, Russia and Russia.”

15 years ago that statement raised a lot of eyebrows. It even created some criticism especially from the left side of the political spectrum in Finland.

Today that is viewed as a blunt statement of facts. That is our challenge, and as far as security goes, the only military threat one we have. 

I will talk about the situation today, but to approach that point I want to go some time back in history. I’ll talk about the background story of Finland’s  development, how our sense of security was formed, what historical facts and happenings has lead to our approach. How we gradually have released ourselves from our post war trauma, how Finland has approached the west – because it has been a slow and not totally easy process. 

I will talk about our security concept and how it differs from other countries’ security solutions. I’ll talk about the  thinking behind it. 

And at the end I will discuss the reasons that eventually drove Finland and hopefully also Sweden to become nato members. What the war in Ukraine means for Europe and the world and how it challenges our view of where we are in the world. How should security be viewed in Europe, what is our biggest threat and how can we come out of this crisis with a firmer grasp on reality. 

Because it is fair to say, dear friends, that we Europeans have been more than naive for too long a time. 

There are moments in time that define a nation. For Finland it is easy to see what that occasion was. 

I will come to the war in Ukraine later in this talk, but there are reasons why the war has resonated so strongly with the Finnish population. 

On the 30th of November 1939 Finland was attacked by the Soviet Union in a war that was supposed to be very short and swift. Shostakovich had already written a musical piece that was to be performed in Helsinki a few days after the attack. Stalin thought that the Red army would be able to march unchallenged to our capital and that the Soviets would be welcomed as liberators and friends. 

Much like Putin thought he would be welcomed in Kiev after only three days of fighting.  

He did not receive that welcome. 

Finland fought for 105 days in what is called The Winter War. Finland was the only country that fought against the Soviets that wasn’t invaded and conquered. 

Finland  had to secede some territory, but the losses on the Soviet side were so dramatic that Stalin agreed to strike a peace deal with us Finns. 

The winter war learnt us Finns that Russia is a threat, that it can’t be trusted, that it has imperial ambitions and that we have to – and are able to – defend ourselves. Alliances are good but in the end every country has to take care of itself. It is a question of economy, defence, production, education, and most of all cooperation. 

That lesson has been the foundation for the Finnish security thinking ever since. 

After the war Finland went through some very hard times. We were independent, but we were clearly under Soviet influence. There was a pragmatic need to have good relations with our neighbour in the east and it wasn’t totally without benefits. Finland had a lot of bilateral business relations with the USSR but on the other hand we had limited freedom of movement in the international sphere. 

We balanced between the west and the east, slowly nudging us in a westward direction. 

When NATO was formed in 1949 it was clear that Finland would not become a member. But neither did Sweden. Sweden stayed outside of NATO because of its long history of neutrality but also out of loyalty to Finland. Had we been left alone on the side of the soviet bear, history could have turned out differently. 

But slowly we inched ourself westwards. First Finland became a member of the Nordic council in 1955. IN 1961 Finland struck a free trade deal with EFTA. In 1973 we signed a free trade deal with the EC and in 1986 we joined EFTA. 

This all happened during a time where the Finnish approach by many was seen as overly pragmatic. The term “finlandisierung”, “finlandisation”, was coined. 

We balanced for our survival, trying to uphold friendly relationships with the USSR while at the same time developing into a market-oriented western country. 

I clearly remember how we were kind of ashamed about this “finlandisation” epithet. When I came to Angra as an 17 year old young boy in 1987 I had thought about it a lot and had all kinds of answers ready in my head in case somebody would ask me. 

Well, nobody did. 

And the era of finlandisation ended sooner than many would have thought. 

The crash of the Soviet Union changed history. It did not End it, as Francis Fukuyama thought in his 1992 book, but it changed it. 

And that also lead Finland to take the final steps needed to become fully integrated in the Western European context. 

We became EU members in 1995 after a fairly tight national referendum. For me, for many Finns, it was a big emotional step. And ever since Finland has been one of the most EU-positive countries in the union. Even if we for a big part of our membership has been a net contributor economically. 

But lets go back to security. These are the events that has formed our security concept. Rely on yourself, be ready, be prepared. 

Finland has a population of 5,5 million. We have a wartime army strength of 270 thousand soldiers and a reserve of almost a million. We have the biggest artillery in Europe. We have a more powerful armed force than most European countries. 

And this is not a new development. We have had a conscription based military during our whole existence. National defence is a national task, you could even call it a mission. 

Every young man – and many women – is supposed to serve. And most do it. And it’s is not only a way of teaching military skills or upholding a military readiness, it is also a way of creating national unity. 

I often say that the Finnish superpower is trust. A trust in society. Things are fairly easy in Finland. You seldom need a lot of paper work, the promise you make carries a lot of weight. 

And I believe  that the shared military service has a lot to do with that. 

When a whole class of young people is going through a shared experience, military service, it creates a bond that builds trust. And that trust later on carries into life and  society and makes it easy to agree on many things. 

So did the history end with the Cold War? No. 

While most European states implemented fundamental transformations of their armed forces in the wake of the Cold War—moving from large- scale warfighting capabilities toward small all-volunteer forces the Finnish approach to defense changed little. Being situated next to a military great power, Russia, the logic for our military defense did not change in the early 1990s, even when the Soviet Union collapsed. Though the Western framework for international security changed remarkably in the 1990s and after, Finland continued to procure main battle tanks, multiple launch rocket systems, fighter interceptors, ground-based air defense missile systems, and other military systems required by a defensive “big war approach.” 

We prepared for a situation that most countries thought would never come. We prepared for the situation Ukraine is facing now  – and bought up tanks that the Netherlands didn’t think they’d need any more or cannons Germany wanted to get rid of. 

In the middle of the biggest economic crisis Finland ever has had, the depression of the early nineties, we bought a significant amount of F/A 18s from the US. We were ridiculed for living in the old world but thought they might come handy some day. While at the same time hoping they wouldn’t. 

The guiding principle in the military defense realm has been that quick U- turns are not possible. Military transformation takes about 30 years. Getting rid of existing capabilities is possible in a few years—building new ones takes years and decades. This is something several countries now has realised. 

Today, as during the Cold War, the Finnish defense system is based on the principle that “even the biggest bear will not eat a porcupine.” It is not about matching the level of military capability around Finland’s vicinity; it is about making any potential military operation against Finland so costly that even attempting it does not seem an attractive option. Increasing international cooperation in the field of defense— with Sweden, for example—supports this logic.

I talked earlier about trust. An essential aspect and of a defense capability is the citizens’ will to defend the country. Every effort is made to ensure this will remains high. More than 80 percent of the adult population agrees that Finland should be defended militarily against an attack in all situations, even those in which success is not certain. This among the highest numbers in Europe. I think it is only surpassed by the number of Ukraine. 

In other countries the result is significantly lower. As a 2015 Gallup International’s global survey concluded, “61% of those polled across 64 countries would be willing to fight for their country, while 27% would not. However, there are significant variations by region. Willingness to is lowest in Western Europe there it is 25%.”

The numbers are high not because we Finns don’t now what national defence is and what it might mean in practice, but because we do. 

General conscription is also a major factor reinforcing the strength of Finnish society. . In addition to providing a required manpower pool of resources to the wartime defense forces, general conscription strengthens the entire society and its resilience during crises. Having a purpose in the society—and being ready to sacrifice time and effort—is a key unifying element. Practically every household in Finland has one or several citizen-soldiers in their midst. I have 5 children – 4 sons and a daughter. My middle son, Alvar, just came out of military service and will continue with an ordinary life studying economics. 

I am an officer in the reserve. Most Finns have designated wartime units and designated tasks in case of a crisis. 

But security is not only a military matter. The Finnish security doctrine is formed around a concept called the Comprehensive security model. It is built around military defence but above all around the concept that the whole of society has a task in case of a crisis. 

We have national defence courses that are attended by most top business executives and civil servants. That means that both businesses and civil society know what builds security. Everybody has a task. Everybody knows what they can and should do in the case of a crisis. 

Societal cohesion also has an impact Educated people with jobs and possibilities for a decent life have few or no incentives for anti-societal behaviour. This is particularly true when peoples’ absolute welfare is related to a sense of justice and the just distribution of wealth and welfare within society. That’s why equality of opportunity can’t be overlooked. 

When you feel that you have a place in society you want to contribute. When you feel that you receive something you want to give. That is also at the core of the Finnish – or Nordic – model. 

And especially today, when attacks can come in various ways, when hybrid warfare can hurt you as much as conventional warfare education is key. 

Because Russia has extensive information warfare programs. We know what they did in the 2016 US election. We know what they did in the Brexit referendum. Many right – or left wing radical European parties have shady ties to RUssia. In this reality education is paramount and especially media literacy. 

Even if Finland has been the target of extensive information operations from Russia the impact has been modest at best. An educated population can tell true from fake and is more resilient in the face of hybrid attacks. 

But lets go back to the present day. 

Many of us thought that Russia was a changed country. The good will that poured into Russia in the nineties and still well into this millennium was significant. Yes, maybe we took things for granted, and yes, maybe all the consultation the Russian government received in the 90s wasn’t top notch but still things could have gone in a very different direction. 

In its attempt to secure power in the late 90s the circle around Yeltsin did some critical mistakes that really undermined the Russian political system. 

And most of all – it underestimated Putin and thought he was a puppet that they could handle. He obviously wasn’t. 

Putin is not a democrat. He is a nostalgic imperialist who doesn’t scoff at using even the most harsh of measures in order to achieve his goals. 

He didn’t hesitate to level Groznyi. He didn’t hesitate to invade Georgia. He didn’t hesitate in removing his opponents from the playing field whether they are called Lebedev, Politkovskaya or Navalnyi. He didn’t hesitate to invade Crimea, to lie on international or national TV and now he didn’t hesitate to invade Ukraine thus causing the biggest threat to international security since the second word war. 

For us it is difficult to see the rationale behind it. For a nostalgic imperialist the rationale is probably very simple. What other things has he caused?

The invasion of Ukraine lead to many things. It was a war that supposedly was motivated by a need to stop countries from joining NATO. 

So far it has achieved several things, none of which provably were intended. It has very likely destroyed the economic future for Russia for several decades. It has plummeted the international status of Russia. When your only support in the UN comes from Belarus, Eritrea, Syria, Nicaragua and North Korea you know you have a problem. 

The war caused two non-aligned countries, Finland and Sweden, to become NATO members. Well, Sweden is still waiting for Erdogan and Orban to get their act together, but eventually Sweden will enter. 

Instead of stopping countries from joining NATO Putin has more than doubled Russia’s border with NATO. That is quite an achievement. 

Because NATO wasn’t really on Finland’s radar. We have actually effectively tried to avoid a NATO debate. We rather talked about Nordic cooperation, because it was easier. We rather talked about the defence component of the EUropean Union, because that seemed friendlier. 

Thanks to our history NATO was a more difficult subject. 

My party was one of only two parties out of nine in parliament who had been positive towards a membership. Now all parties support it. 

Support hovered around 20 percent for decades. When Russia invaded Georgia it didn’t move. When Russia invaded Crimea it didn’t move. When I two years ago called for a membership process when it was evident that Russia had something going on it didn’t move. 

But when Russian tanks started marching towards Kiev the Finnish people had had enough. Support immediately went over 50% and is now at a steady 80%. 

We Finns are pragmatic people. We can be stubborn, but when the situation changes we can change our minds. We thought for too long that you can deal with the Russians. When Putin showed his true face, to quote our President: “when his mask fell off”, we adopted to that reality. And the rest is history. In parliament 187 members voted for a membership and only 6 against. That is an enormous majority. 

It was of course of paramount importance that Sweden also joined nato. That lead to some intense shuttling back and forth between Sweden and Finland in March and April of 2022. We Finns had to convince Sweden to change their position. And it wasn’t totally easy. 

For Sweden being neutral is an integral part of their national identity. They have ABBA, IKEA, meat balls and neutrality. Parting with that was difficult and the Swedish PM Andersson was very reluctant at first. 

Tage Erlander who was a prime minister in Sweden when NATO was formed, said in his memoirs that Sweden stayed out of NATO to an extent out of solidarity with Finland. No we Finns had, out of solidarity, to gently push Sweden into NATO. 

And we succeeded, of which I am happy. 

WIth Finland and Sweden as member NATO gains some significant capabilities. These countries are strong democracies, two of the more capable military powers in Europe and have  significant defense industries. 

Neither of them is a burden and both  can  take care of their defensive reponsibilities. 

Considering that, it is sad to see the extent to which a political game has been played around the ratification process. An alliance that essentially depends on the “three musketeers principle”, one for all, all for one, that can’t swiftly ratify the membership of two candidates that absolutely strengthen the alliance has a problem. 

So let’s hope the promise Erdogan made in Vilnius a few weeks ago holds. 

But in the meantime the war goes on. And it has exposed a lot of problems we had refused to see until now. 

Europe has been all to dependent on the US for its defence. We have dismantled our defence industry and our readiness. Most countries have dismantled their conscription based systems and turned towards all voluntary forces that are small and more suitable for small limited tasks than defending Europe. 

During this year Europe has helped Ukraine in many ways. Also militarily. It has also been a revelation in the negative sense that we do not have the adequate stockpiles. We have howitzers, but not enough ammunition. We might have planes, but few have tanks, 

I was one of two Finnidh parlamentarians that started the European Leopard-initiative that lead to several European countries shipping Leopard 1 and 2 tanks to Ukraine. While we have plentiful numbers of these modern tanks in Europe only a few of the are in shape to be rolled out if there was to be a crisis. 

Our readiness has been abysmally bad. 

NATO does now cover a big part of the EU. It is not worthwhile building parallel structures. But even if we have NATO every country has to carry its own weight. There are very few things a think DOnald Trump deserves credit for, but bringing up the NATO 2% – rule is one of them. Every country should spend at least 2% of its GDP on defence for us to have credible capacities, living next door to Russia. 

And taking a page from the Finnish comprehensive defence toolkit: Security is a broad concept. We realised last year what energy dependence means. 

A reliance on fossil fuels and resources that are in the hands of authoritarian dictators lead to dependencies that can be catastrophic. We cannot close our eyes to democracy deficits when dealing with countries  and must take a critical look at our dependencies in general. 

And as this summers forest fires have showed us time an again. Security is also an environmental issue. A world in which climate change rages in not secure for anybody. But that is a discussion for a differentiaali discussion. 

Thank you for listening, and I am happy to take any questions a you might have. 

 

(Käännös Portigaliksi pidetystä puheesta konferenssissa ”Novos Desafios de Segurança e Defesa” 2.8.2023)

Kaikki olisi voinut mennä myös toisin

Jos Venäjän asevoimat olisivat olleet paremmassa kunnossa, Ukrainan puolustus olisi horjunut ja Eurooppa ja Yhdysvallat olisivat epäröineet avunannossa, Vladimir Putin olisi saattanut onnistua siinä järjettömässä sodassa, jonka hän aloitti varhain torstaiaamuna 24. helmikuuta 2022.

Silloin Eurooppa näyttäisi hyvin erilaiselta.

Volodymir Zelensky olisi joko tapettu venäläisten erikoisjoukkojen toimesta tai hänet olisi lähetty Siperiaan jonkinlaisen näytösoikeudenkäynnin jälkeen. Tai ehkä hän olisi johtanut Varsovassa tai Vilnassa maanpaossa ollutta hallitusta.

Ukrainaan olisi mahdollisesti perustettu jonkinlainen nukkehallitus. Entiselle presidentille Janukovitšille olisi ehkä annettu allekirjoitettavakseen jokin paperi, minkä jälkeen hän olisi jälleen hävinnyt kuvioista. Nukkehallitus olisi tuskin sekään toiminut pitkään. Ukraina olisi hajotettu ja tilalle olisi tullut joukko Venäjän liittovaltion alueita.

Näin tapahtui Venäjän suuressa keisarikunnassa 1800-luvulla ja Putin on tehnyt hyvin selväksi, että tämä on myös hänen tavoitteensa.

Toistaiseksi tavoite on onneksi onnistuttu torpedoimaan.

Venäjän armeija epäonnistui alkuperäisissä pyrkimyksissään, Ukrainan vastarinta on ollut sankarillista ja länsimaat ovat puolustaneet Ukrainaa, kansainvälistä oikeutta ja Ukrainan oikeutta valita oma tiensä.

Nyt keskitymme siihen, miten voimme jatkossa auttaa Ukrainaa poliittisesti, taloudellisesti ja sotilaallisesti niin, että se kykenee vastustamaan Venäjän laajenemistavoitteita.

Avun on oltava pitkäjänteistä. Ukrainan on kyettävä rakentaman nykyaikaiset puolustusvoimat, jotka pystyvät turvaamaan maan itsenäisen tulevaisuuden. Ukrainan valtio tarvitsee taloudellista apua selviytyäkseen perustoiminnoistaan, ja maan jälleenrakentaminen vaatii mittavia resursseja.

Länsimailta vaadittavat panostukset ovat pieniä verrattuna siihen, mikä on vaihtoehto.

Ukrainan vapaus ja vakaus merkitsevät tulevina vuosikymmeninä vapautta ja vakautta myös Euroopassa. Jos Venäjän sotavoimat nujertavat Ukrainan ja pyyhkii sen pois maailman kartalta, sen kohteeksi joutuu ennemmin tai myöhemmin myös muita maita.

Juuri nyt on tärkeintä voittaa käynnissä oleva sota, tavalla tai toisella.

Mutta sen jälkeen on kyse rauhan voittamisesta – ja se voi olla yhtä vaativaa.

Rauhan saavuttaminen Itä-Euroopassa edellyttää kahta asiaa Putinin mielettömän sodan jälkeen.

Ensimmäinen on tietenkin hallinnon vaihtuminen Venäjällä.

Putin on tehnyt selväksi, että tässä sodassa on hänelle kysymys elämästä tai kuolemasta. Sodan lopputulos määrittelee hänen paikkansa Venäjän historiassa.  Putin pelkää naapurimaiden – eikä vähiten Ukrainan – niin sanottuja värivallankumouksia, sillä ne voisivat uhata hänen autoritaarista valtaansa. Hänen on todistettava, että hän pystyy samaan kuin Iivana Julma, Pietari Suuri ja Katariina II.

Meidän on ymmärrettävä, ettei rauhaa voida saavuttaa niin kauan kuin Putin on vallassa.

Ennemmin tai myöhemmin Putinin valta-asema romahtaa ja hän jättää Kremlin. Yhä useammat Venäjän johdossa ja sen lähellä olevista näkevät tämän edessä olevan kehityksen.

Mutta vallan vaihtuminen on pohjimmiltaan Venäjän asia.

Meidän toimillamme ei ole tässä asiassa merkitystä. Voimme kuitenkin ilmaista selvästi, että meille Venäjä on olemassa Putinin jälkeen, ja että me haluamme ilman muuta luoda rauhanomaiset, vakaat ja hyvät suhteet tulevan Venäjän kanssa.

Toinen rauhan edellytys on, että integroimme Ukrainan täysimääräisesti eurooppalaisiin ja atlanttisiin rakenteisiimme, ennen kaikkea EU:hun. Hallinnon vaihtuminen Venäjällä ei ole meidän käsissämme, mutta tämä on.

Tie EU-jäsenyyteen ei ole lyhyt tai helppo. Suomi ja Ruotsi saivat omat neuvottelunsa päätökseen alle kolmessa vuodessa, mutta ne olivat tuolloin jo osa sisämarkkinoita. EU on kehittynyt huomattavasti sen jälkeen, kun maamme liittyivät siihen vuonna 1995.

Ja sitten on vielä Nato – tavalla tai toisella Ukrainan turvallisuus on ankkuroitava myös transatlanttiseen yhteistyöhön.

Ukrainan sankarillinen vastarinta ja länsimaiden politiikka ovat pysäyttäneet Putinin suunnitelmat. Eurooppa on muuttunut perusteellisesti. Rauhaan pääseminen tulee viemään vuosia, ehkä vuosikymmeniä.

Uusi hallinto Venäjällä ja Ukraina täysin EU:ssa, siinä ovat uuden eurooppalaisen rauhan avaimet.

(Kirjoitus julkaistu lehdessäni 2023)

Adlercreutz: Suomi on tehnyt osuutensa. Nyt Unkarin ja Turkin on aika toimia.

 Emme ole vielä perillä, mutta tämä on askel eteenpäin, sanoo Ruotsalaisen eduskuntaryhmän puheenjohtaja Anders Adlercreutz, kun eduskunta tänään ratifioi  Nato-jäsenyyden. Hän viittaa siihen, että Unkari ja Turkki eivät ole vieläkään ratifioineet Suomen Nato-jäsenyyttä.

-Tämä eduskunta, joka aloitti prosessin, on nyt tehnyt oman osuutensa. Nyt on Unkarin ja Turkin vuoro kantaa vastuunsa ja siirtää sisäpolitiikka syrjään. Ruotsi ja Suomi vahvistavat Natoa, jäsenyytemme tekee koko Euroopasta turvallisemman. On aika saattaa ratifiointiprosessi päätökseen, jotta voimme liittyä Natoon samanaikaisesti, toteaa Adlercreutz.

Adlercreutz sanoo, että Nato-jäsenyys on paras tapa varmistaa, että kaikki voivat elää Suomessa turvallisesti. RKP on pitkään kannattanut Suomen Nato-jäsenyyttä, myös silloin kun se oli epäsuosittu mielipide.

– Pitkään olimme tässä keskustelussa melko yksin. Vielä vuonna 2018 Torvalds oli ainoa presidenttiehdokas, joka liputti jäsenyyden puolesta. Vuoden 2021 lopussa kehotin meitä käynnistämään jäsenyysprosessin. Nyt reilu vuosi myöhemmin, on se todellisuutta. Mielipiteet muuttuivat nopeasti ja hyvä niin. Ympärillämme oleva synkkä todellisuus sai aikaan suunnanmuutoksen, Adlercreutz sanoo.

Adlercreutz korostaa, että Suomi päättää jatkossakin omasta puolustuksestaan ja painottaa, että meidän tulee olla aktiivinen ja rakentava toimija Natossa.

– Puolustuksemme perustana ovat jatkossakin omat joukkomme. Näin sen tuleekin olla.  Jäsenyyden myötä saamme kuitenkin myös muiden liittouman maiden tuen. Liitymme Natoon yhtäläisin oikeuksin ja velvollisuuksin. Varuskunnistamme tulee nyt Naton varuskuntia. Samalla on tärkeää huomioida, että meillä tuskin tulee olemaan Suomessa pysyviä vieraiden maiden joukkoja. Tämä jo pelkästään siksi, että meillä itsellämme on niin hyvät valmiudet, Adlercreutz sanoo.

Naton jäsenten odotetaan käyttävän kaksi prosenttia bruttokansantuotteestaan puolustusmenoihin. Suomi on jo ylittänyt tämän tavoitteen.

– Venäjän hyökkäys Ukrainaan osoittaa, että olemme ajatelleet oikein  jo pitkään. Nyt on tärkeää, että meidän hyvä otteemme ei herpaannu. Meidän on pidettävä kiinni siitä, että puolustusmenomme ovat vähintään 2 prosenttia BKT:stä.

Soraa ladulla, mutta jäitä hattuun

Turkin ulkoministerin mukaan Turkin F-16-sopimuksella ei ole mitään tekemistä Suomen ja Ruotsin Nato-jäsenyyden kanssa. Se on yksi tapa ilmaista asia. Tässä kuitenkin olemme. Kaikki on yhteydessä kaikkeen, eikä mikään tapahdu tyhjiössä.

Prosessi, jonka piti olla nopea – koska me pohjoismaalaiset olemme tottuneet luottamaan siihen, mitä meille sanotaan – on viivästynyt. Turkki ja Unkari eivät vastustaneet Suomen ja Ruotsin jäsenyyttä, kunnes he yhtäkkiä vastustivatkin sitä.

Jos sinulla on vain vasara, kaikki näyttää naulalta. Ja jos politiikkasi tueksi ei löydy  luottamuspääomaa, niin kaikesta tulee sorkkarauta tai  tai peukaloruuvi. Miten asiaa nyt katsookaan.

Suomen ja Ruotsin Nato-jäsenyydestä on tullut molempia: kyynisiä peukaloruuveja rumassa pelissä. On helppo ajatella, että on täysin tarpeetonta protestoida Erdoğania vastaan Ruotsissa ja tehdä se niin räikeällä tavalla. Samaan aikaan olemme kuitenkin liittymässä Natoon nimenomaan siksi, että niinkin voisi toimia. Haluamme suuremman kollektiivisen tuen taaksemme, koska näemme, mitä Venäjällä tapahtuu oikeusvaltion suhteen ja näemme Putinin aikeet.

Haluamme Naton tukea juuri siksi, että voisimme protestoida tavalla, joka ehkä ylittää rajan. Tällä hetkellä näyttää siltä, että se, mitä haluamme suojella, viivyttää nopeaa jäsenyysprosessia. Todellisuus ei tietenkään ole näin suoraviivaista. Meidän ei myöskään pitäisi pitää Turkin virallista sanaa koko totuutena tässä keskustelussa. Sisäpolitiikka ja myös asekaupat ovat täällä paljon tärkeämpiä.

Me näemme tämän ja siksi on tärkeää, ettemme anna periksi esitetyille järjettömille vaatimuksille. Suomi ja Ruotsi soveltavat omia lakejaan, eivät Turkin lakeja. Se, mikä on rikollista Turkissa, ei ole rikollista täällä. Eikä kansalaisiamme luovuteta.

Keväällä me kaikki toivoimme nopeaa prosessia. Samaan aikaan en näe mitään suurta huolta prosessin viivästymisestä. Kun ymmärryksemme Venäjän armeijan raakuudesta, mutta myös sen kyvyttömyydestä lisääntyy, lisääntyy myös ymmärryksemme omista kyvyistämme ja valmiudestamme. Jäsenyysprosessi voi kestää vielä kuukauden tai vuoden – me voimme odottaa. Joka tapauksessa on selvää, että meidän ei pidä uhrata sitä, mitä haluamme suojella – oikeusvaltiota –nopeuttaaksemme pääsyä maaliin.

Tällä hetkellä tilanne rajallamme on parempi kuin lähes vuosisataan. Venäjän kolme sotilastukikohtaa rajallamme ovat käytännössä tyhjentyneet miehistä. Meillä on Euroopassa sota, mutta samaan aikaan Suomeen ei kohdistu akuuttia uhkaa.

Joten otamme rauhallisesti. On jopa itsetarkoitus, että liitymme Natoon yhdessä Ruotsin kanssa. Siksi, että se on järkevää turvallisuuspolitiikkaa.

Samaan aikaan Putin hieroo käsiään yhteen. Riittää, että siellä täällä pystytään aiheuttamaan närää ja pahennusta tasaisin väliajoin, niin prosessi viivästyy.

Toki hän joutuu jatkuvasti erottamaan kenraaleja ja hänen kansainvälinen maineensa on tahrittu. Erdoğanin ja Orbanin pelit vahingoittavat kuitenkin myös Naton mainetta. Järjestöllä, joka perustuu siihen, että sen jäsenet seisovat yhdessä solidaarisina kriisitilanteessa, on tällä hetkellä vaikeuksia hyväksyä kaksi maata, jotka selvästi vahvistavat liittoumaa. Asia,  jonka pitäisi olla sen historian helpoin päätös.

Tämä ei lupaa hyvää sellaisia aikoja ajatellen, jolloin on tehtävä vaikeampia päätöksiä.

Siksi nopea, tehokas ja ennen kaikkea vakuuttava Turkin ja Yhdysvaltojen välinen F-16-kauppa voisi auttaa vahvistamaan Natoa paljon enemmän kuin mitä  lentokoneet  itsessään antavat ymmärtää.

Lopuksi on tässäkin tilanteessa hyvä ymmärtää, että puolustuksemme  viime kädessä ensisijaisesti riippuu meistä itsestämme.

Adlercreutz: Tärkeä päätös Leopardi-talkoista

Saksa on tänään vahvistanut, että Ukrainaan lähetetään Leopard 2 -taistelupanssarivaunuja. Kansanedustaja Anders Adlercreutz on tyytyväinen, että liittokansleri Olaf Szholz on vihdoin antanut vihreää valoa Ukrainan tehokkaalle tukemiselle.

– Tämä oli välttämätön päätös. Venäjä lisää Ukrainan puolustukseen kohdistuvaa painetta, ja Ukrainan resurssit ovat rajalliset. Mitä nopeammin autamme, sitä tehokkaampaa tuki on, ja sitä nopeammin sota voi päättyä. Se on meidän etujemme mukaista, se on Ukrainan edun mukaista ja paradoksaalisesti myös Venäjän intresseissä,  Adlercreutz sanoo.

Joulukuun lopussa Adlercreutz ja vihreiden kansanedustaja Atte Harjanne julkaisivat tekstin, jossa ehdotettiin eurooppalaisen koalition perustamista Ukrainan tukemiseksi nykyaikaisilla Leopard 2 -panssarivaunuilla. Sen jälkeen keskustelu on edennyt nopeasti.

– Tahto auttaa on ollut vahva. Samaan aikaan on ollut huolestuttavaa nähdä, miten vaikeaa on ollut tehdä päätöksiä. Ukrainan käsissä olevat panssarivaunut eivät ole hyökkäysaseita, vaan ne ovat välttämättömiä ukrainalaisille puolustautuakseen. Ja koska tässä tapauksessa kyse ei ole vain panssarivaunujen toimittamisesta vaan myös koulutuksesta, vie avun saaminen aikaa. Ukrainalla ei ole varaa tällaisiin viivästyksiin. Meidän on toimittava nopeasti, Adlercreutz sanoo.

Tänään Saksan ilmoituksen jälkeen, vahvisti puolustusministeri Mikko Savola, että Suomi osallistuu kansainväliseen yhteistyöhön Leopard 2 -taistelupanssarivaunujen lähettämiseksi Ukrainaan. Adlercreutz painottaa, että vaikka Suomen panos ei tule olemaan kovin mittava, niin on tärkeää, että teemme osamme.

– Keskustelun aikana on käynyt ilmi, että kaikki maat eivät pidä kalustoaan hyvässä kunnossa. Me olemme pitäneet. Meillä on suuri määrä panssarivaunuja, jotka ovat myös toimintakuntoisia. Niitä tarvitaan nyt Ukrainassa, ja mielestäni on aivan selvää, että Suomi on mukana tarkkaan harkitulla määrällä panssarivaunuja, Adlercreutz sanoo.

Ukraina tarvitsee eurooppalaiset Leopard-talkoot

(English version here)

Sota Ukrainassa etenee kohti toista vuottaan. Aloite on nyt Ukrainalla, mutta nopeaa loppua ei ole näköpiirissä. Kuluttava sota jatkuu.

Ukrainan menestys on nojannut paitsi vahvaan maanpuolustustahtoon, myös länsimaiseen koulutus- ja materiaalitukeen. Tämä tuki ratkaisee osaltaan sen, miten sota päättyy. Meidän, Euroopan ja koko vapaan maailman etu on, että se päättyy Ukrainan mahdollisimman ripeään voittoon. Olisi vaarallista, jos Venäjä kokisi hyötyneensä rikollisesta hyökkäyssodasta millään tavalla. Materiaalista tukea Ukrainalle on siis jatkettava ja vahvistettava.

Sodan alussa kaikissa maissa keskusteltiin paljon avun tasosta ja lähetettävästä materiaalista. Olemme tämän vuoden aikana oppineet paljon. Myös sen, että uudet kyvykkyydet nopeasti voivat muuttaa tilannetta sotatanteereella. Askel askeleelta lähetettävän materiaalin määrää ja suorituskykyä on kasvatettu. Muutos on kuitenkin ollut hidasta. Nyt olisi aika ottaa askel eteenpäin.

Talvi on saapunut. Jäätynyt maa muuttaa jälleen sekä Venäjän että Ukrainan toimintamahdollisuuksia. Tämänkin on syytä näkyä avun laadussa.

Vaikka Ukrainaa on tuettu päättäväisesti, jotkin asejärjestelmät on edelleen rajattu tuen ulkopuolelle. Näihin lukeutuvat läntiset, modernit taistelupanssarivaunut. Tällaiset vaunut lisäisivät merkittävästi Ukrainan iskukykyä taistelukentällä. Uusi kalusto edellyttää koulutusta, ja siksi erityisen arvokasta olisi toimittaa ukrainalaisille laaja määrä samaa vaunutyyppiä, jonka käyttöön ukrainalaisjoukot voidaan kouluttaa tehokkaasti.

Saksalaista alkuperää oleva Leopard 2 -vaunu soveltuisi tarkoitukseen erinomaisesti. Sen eri variaatioita on 1970-luvun lopun jälkeen rakennettu tuhansia kappaleita, ja käyttäjämaihin lukeutuvat Saksan ohella muun muassa Alankomaat, Ruotsi, Tanska, Espanja, Norja, Puola, Kanada sekä Suomi. Vaunu onkin yksi yleisimmin käytössä olevista länsimaisista taistelupanssarivaunuista. Suorituskyvyltään se peittoaa Venäjän neuvostoperäisen kaluston. Kylmän sodan asetelma kun oli, että länttä puolustetaan laadulla neuvostojoukkojen määrää vastaan. 

Yhteisellä eurooppalaisella ponnistuksella olisi mahdollisuus antaa merkittävä lisätuki Ukrainan maataistelukykyyn ja auttaa ehkä ratkaisevalla tavalla Ukrainaa ylläpitämään saavuttamaansa momentumin sodassa. 

Suomella on yhteensä noin kaksisataa Leopard 2 -taistelupanssarivaunua. Maantiede rajoittaa Suomen mahdollisuuksia luovuttaa suurta määrää keskeistä käytössä olevaa kalustoa, mutta Suomen osallistuminen pienelläkin määrällä vaunuja olisi arvokasta, jos eurooppalaiset panssarivaunutalkoot saadaan käyntiin. Sitä tarvitaan nyt. 

Käynnistämällä tämän keskustelun, voisimme myös kylvää isomman ja tehokkaamman tuen siemenen. 

Suomen oma puolustuskyky ei saa vaarantua, mutta on selvää, että Ukrainan menestys sodassa on myös Suomen turvallisuuden kannalta ratkaisevaa. Mikäli vaunuja luovutetaan, on tietysti tärkeä valmistella korvaavat hankinnat.

Eskalaation riskiä tukeen liittyen ei ole syytä yliarvioida. Läntisen tuen luonnetta taistelupanssarivaunut eivät tosiasiassa olennaisesti muuta, eikä lännen tukea Ukrainaan tulisi mitoittaa Venäjän narratiivin vaan omien etujemme ja arvojemme puolustamisen mukaan.

(Yhteiskirjoitus Atte Harjanteen kanssa julkaistu Hufvudstadsbladetissa 27.12.2022)

 

Hyvää itsenäisyyspäivää 2022 – Glad självständighetsdag 2022

Kun ohjusiskut Kiovaan alkoivat, ukrainalainen kansanedustaja Inna Sovsun lähetti perheensä  maaseudulle. Itse hän jäi kaupunkiin hoitamaan työtään. Puhuin hänen kanssaan vain muutama viikko sodan alkamisen jälkeen. Hän kertoi, miten selviää arjestaan ja miten sota on yhdistänyt ukrainalaiset. Hän kertoi myös ystävistään ja siitä, miten he tukevat toinen toisiaan. Hän kertoi kollegastaan, joka parhaillaan taisteli etelä-ukrainassa. 

Ukrainan sota on saanut meidät taas kerran pohtimaan omaa asemaamme. Mitä itsenäisyys on, ja etenkin, mitä sen eteen on tehty. Miten se on saavutettu?

On helppo nähdä yhtäläisyyksiä Ukrainan ja Suomen välillä. Aivan kuten Putin aliarvioi tällä hetkellä Ukrainaa, Stalin aliarvioi aikoinaan meidän kykyämme yhdistyä kansakuntana ja unohtaa pienet erimielisyytemme ulkoisen uhan edessä. Putin ja Stalin kuvittelivat, että maan sisäiset poliittiset erimielisyydet takaisivat heille helpon voiton. 

Toisin kävi. Tällä hetkellä sotilaallinen voitto Ukrainassa tuntuu Putinin näkökulmasta mahdottomalta. 

Kaikenlaista muuta hän on sen sijaan saanut aikaan. Palaan siihen hetkeen kuluttua. 

Putins krig i Ukraina borde vara totalt främmande för vår tid. Ett krig där man erövrar mark, vill radera ett folk, begår krigsbrott på löpande band, i vilket man påstår sig vara inbegripen i ett heligt krig, det är inte av denna världen. Det är inte 2000 talet, det är inte den civilisation vi byggt upp. 

Det är inte ett krig våra barn borde se i denna värld. 

Men samtidigt är det bekant. Narrativet är bekant. Skälen är bekanta. Motiveringarna känner vi igen. Våra krig var i mycket ett krig mellan olika världsbilder. Det samma ser vi nu i Ukraina. 

Hyvät ystävät,

Suomen ensimmäisinä itsenäisyyden vuosina loimme nykyisen yhteiskuntajärjestyksemme. Ståhlberg, tuo oikeusvaltiomme ehkä merkittävin rakentaja, iski perustuslain paalut niin syvälle, että ne kestivät tulevat sodatkin. 

Nyt tätä järjestystä halutaan murtaa. Siitäkin on kysymys, kun Putin hyökkää Ukrainaan. 

Halutaan saada meitä luopumaan oikeusvaltiosta, oikeuksistamme, tasa-arvosta, ja ennen kaikkea sääntöihin perustuvasta kansainvälisestä sodanjälkeisestä maailmanjärjestyksestä, 

Se ei onnistu. Sen sijaan EU on tänään yhtenäisempi kuin koskaan ja Venäjän näkymät ovat kaiken kaikkiaan synkät. 

Bästa vänner,

Vår rättsstat klarade kriget tack vare alla dem som kämpade för vår frihet. Och nu klarar Europa också denna prövning. Rättsstaten består, det internationella samfundet är resilient. 

Detta år har medfört stora förändringar. Vi har vaknat till en ny verklighet. En verklighet, där vi klart ser, att det ibland är värt att ha stöd av varandra. För Finlands del raserades många murar detta år. När jag för ett år sedan talade för att vi borde börja vår NATO-medlemskapsprocess trodde jag inte att vi skulle vara här nu. För all del, inte många av oss trodde heller på att vi skulle ha ett krig i Europa. Inte jag heller. 

Politiikkaa seuratessa tuntuu usein siltä, että keskustelu pyörii hyvin pienten kysymysten äärellä. Tänä vuonna on kuitenkin myös syntynyt isoja päätöksiä, päätöksiä, joita olemme tehneet yhdessä. 

Suomi ei seiso yksin. Nato-jäsenyyden myötä saamme turvaa. 

Tämä ei tarkoita, etteikö omaa puolustustamme pitäis hoitaa ihan niin kuin olemme tehneet tähänkin saakka. Päävastuu säilyy meillä ja tämä on vastuu, johon me suomalaiset mielellämme sitoudumme. Maanpuolustustahto on Suomessa vahva. Ja syystä. 

Nato-medlemskapet betyder inte att vi inte kan avsäga oss vårt ansvar för att försvara Finland. Det ansvaret är fortfarande vårt. Och tack vare den tradition, den inställning vi haft under hela vår självständighet är vi väl rustade. Vi är förberedda för kriser av flera slag. 

Men säkerhet byggs inte enbart med vapen. Säkerhet och självständighet byggs av en gemensam syn på samhället, på en förståelse och en tillit till varandra. På tron på att du vill mig gott, och att jag kan bistå dig. 

Turvallisuus rakentuu monesta asiasta. Tämän vuoden aikana keskustelu on pitkälti pyörinyt sotilaallisen turvallisuuden ympärillä. Syy siihen, on Putinin julmassa sodassa. 

Mutta kun turvallisuutta vahvistamme tulee muistaa kaikki sen osat. Tulee muistaa yhteisöllisyys, luottamus, yhteydenpito. 

Turvallisuus on sitä, että joskus koputtaa naapurin ovea, ja tarkistaa, että kaikki on, kuten pitää. Turvallisuus on sitä, että voi lainata maitoa naapurilta, jos se jäi ostamatta. 

Turvallisuus om yhteiskunnan läpi kulkevaa luottamusta. Se helpottaa arkea. Se auttaa eteenpäin – ja isompienkin töyssyjen yli. 

Tästä talvesta voi hyvinkin tulla monelle ihmiselle hankala. Energian hinnat ovat uudella tavalla nostaneet omavaraisuuden keskusteluun. Inflaatio kiristää monen kukkaroa. Näidenkin haasteiden yli pääsemme luottamuksen ja yhteistyön turvin. 

Kyrkslätt är en trygg kommun att bo i. Vi vet var vi står, vi känner till vår historia. Det ger också trygghet. Identitet ger trygghet. Vi flyter inte i ett tomrum utan växer fast i våra erfarenheter, i våra vänner, i de berättelser vi hör. 

Minnen bevaras inte om de inte flyttas vidare. Idag är en utmärkt dag för att göra just detta. Om självständigheten är den grund Finland vilar på så är minnena dess armeringsstål. Trådar som stärker den, som förenar den med bygget ovanför och som garanterar att inte bara det som byggs idag, utan också imorgon håller och kan vila på ett stabilt fundament. 

Muistot tukevat tulevaisuutta. Ja tulevaisuus näyttää kaikesta huolimatta hyvältä. Se minkä olemme oppineet viimeisten vuosien aikana, tulee auttamaan meitä tästä eteenpäin. Uskon niin.

Hyvät sotiemme veteraanit, lotat. Hyvät kuntalaiset, hyvät ystävät.

Bästa lottor och veteraner, bästa vänner.

Itsenäisyys on kaiken perusta. Se ei ole ilmainen. Sitä koetellaan joka päivä. Moni ihminen eri puolilla maailmaa tietää mitä sen menettäminen tarkoittaa. Tänään meidän on syytä olla erityisen kiitollisia siitä, mitä meillä on. 

Kirkkonummen kunnan puolesta haluan toivottaa teille oikein hyvää ja arvokasta itsenäisyyspäivää 

Å Kyrkslätts kommuns vägnar vill jag önska er en god självständighetsdag fylld med varma minnen och tacksamhet. 

Älkäämme astuko Putinin ansaan

Reilu viikko sitten piti Putin puheen, jonka päätteeksi hän allekirjoitti asiakirjat neljän Ukrainan alueen liittämisestä Venäjään. Puheen järjettömyys ylitti jopa sen puheen, jonka hän piti ennen Ukrainan hyökkäystä.
Ensisijainen argumentti oli odotettu: ”Olemme sodassa Naton kanssa”. Takaiskut on helpompi hyväksyä,  jos vastustajaa suurennetaan. Puheessa oli myös toinen narratiivi: eurooppalaiset haluavat tehdä lapsillemme sukupuolikorjauksia, perheemme ovat uhattuina. Isät eivät ole isiä, pojat eivät ole poikia. Länsi on täynnä satanisteja, jotka ovat hylänneet ”perinteiset arvot”. Eivätkä vain perinteisiä arvoja, vaan myös perinteisen ”aidon” energian.
Punaisen torin hieman väkinäisissä juhlissa yksi puhujista vaati pyhää sotaa.
”Satanistit, me tulemme luoksesi! Pelätkää meitä! Pyhä sota!”
Venäjän ortodoksisen kirkon patriarkka Kirill on puhunut sodasta lippuna taivaaseen, iankaikkiseen elämään ja kunniaan. Tämä on lupaus, jota minkään suuren kristillisen kirkon johtajan ei ole kuultu lausuvan pitkään aikaan.
Neuvostoliittoaikoina yritettiin Venäjä esittää jonkinlaisena progressiivisena vaihtoehtona konservatiiviselle lännelle. Segregaatiota ja luokkayhteiskuntaa kritisoitiin.
Tämän päivän Venäjä on laittanut maailmankirjat aivan uusiksi. Nyt viljellään ajatusta ideologisesta taistelusta liberaalin lännen ja perinteisen uskonnollisen Venäjän välillä. Progressiivinen länsi on uhka, perinteinen ja uskonnollinen Venäjä taas hyvä.
Tämä on  vastakkainasettelu, jota Venäjällä on jo pitkään viljelty. Se on vastakkainasettelu, joiden varaan Euroopan populistiset puolueet ovat rakennettu: Liberaali yhteiskunta, jossa yksilön vapaus ja itsemääräämisoikeus ovat keskiössä, on uhka vallitsevalle maailmanjärjestykselle. Tai pikemminkin: uhka sille maailmanjärjestykselle, jonka varassa Putinin asema on.
Tämä tekee taistelusta eksistentiaalisen. ”Our way of life” ei tietenkään ole uusi argumentti, mutta jos Kreml yhdistää sodan Venäjän olemassaoloon ja  siihen maailmankuvaan, jota he väittävät edustavansa, tulee tilanne vaikeutumaan entisestään. Onko sitten enää paluuta?
Miten tällaisista lähtökohdista voi lähteä neuvottelemaan?
On syytä huomata, että Venäjän Kremlin kannattajien retoriikka on ollut samaa länsimaissa useiden vuosien ajan. Ei ole sattumaa, että Trump nousi valtaan samalla retoriikalla. Tätä samaa  Kremlin megafoneina toimivat tuhannet online-toimijat ovat pitkään toistaneet.
Kreml on huomannut mitkä asiat jakavat länttä  ja pyrkii nyt vahvistamaan niitä. Yhtenäinen länsi on heille ongelma, kun taas sisäisistä konflikteista ja polarisoitumisesta kärsivä länsi olisi huomattavasti heikompi ja siten helpommin lyötävissä
Se on myös syy siihen, miksi energia on niin hyvä ase. Se ei ole ikinä ollut täysin neutraali keskustelunaihe, mutta tänä päivänä se on jopa polarisaation ytimessä. Energia liittyy konkreettisella tavalla tottumuksiin ja välttämättömyyksiin. Energia kytkeytyy elämäntapaan – joka nyt on muutoksen edessä. Keltaiset liivit otettiin Kremlissä ilolla vastaan. Energiakysymys ei käytännön tasolla ole ”neutraalia” tiedettä.
Vihreä siirtymä tarkoittaa, että irtaannumme menneisyydestä.
Samalla se tarkoittaa sitä, että Venäjä riisutaan aseista askel askeleelta. Energiaa voidaan käyttää aseena vain kerran, ja kun se siirtymä on tehty, ei patruunoita enää ole jäljellä. Siirtymä on siksi asia, jota meidän tulisi nopeuttaa, ei sabotoida.
Ruotsissa oli juuri vaalit ja Suomessa mennään kohti vaaleja. Venäjän julma hyökkäyssota Ukrainassa tulee aivan varmasti vaikuttamaan keskusteluihin. Samalla on syytä tunnistaa keskustelun taustalla olevat  ristiriidat, joita Putinin narratiivi niin systemaattisesti on pyrkinyt rakentamaan ja käyttämään hyväksi.
Länsi voi vastustaa tätä vaikuttamista. Jotta se onnistuisi,  meidän kuitenkin ensin tunnistaa vaikuttamista. Ukrainan sota tulee kestämään aikansa.  Ukraina ei voi selviytyä ilman ulkopuolista apua. Ja ulkopuolinen apu on uhattuna, jos länsi antaa itsensä häiriintyä Putinin yllättävien siirtojen ja vaikuttamisen seurauksena.