Finland and Sweden should Join NATO

Henri Kouam
5 min readMay 19, 2022


The Russia-Ukraine war has prompted countries such as Sweden and Finland to rethink their policies of non-interference. This has served them in the past and presented them as countries that choose not to meddle in global skirmishes, but Russia’s attack on Ukraine is a stark reminder of how despotism can unseat well-functioning democracies. Sweden has remained non-interventionist since the backlash against the king following Swedish losses in the Napoleonic Wars. The coup d’etat that followed in 1812 caused Jean Baptiste Bernadotte to establish a policy of non-intervention, which has remained since the end of the Napoleonic Wars in 1815. Finland’s foreign and security policy aims at preserving its independence and the democratic core values of society and promoting the well-being and security of its citizens.

Following Russia’s aggression against Ukraine, both countries have decided to join NATO to reinforce their security, borders, and military capabilities. This decision is, perhaps, accelerated by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, but it is nonetheless warranted to prevent further Russian expansionism in parts of Europe that do not possess the military guarantees bough on by a security alliance.

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Also, the North American Treaty Organization has been expanding for the last two decades

After being founded in 1949, NATO’s membership has grown from 12 founding members to 28, with major enlargement rounds in 1952, 1955, 1982, 1999, 2004, and 2009. All countries that have joined have done so freely and in line with their domestic democratic principles. Czech, Hungary, and Poland joined in 1999 and other Eastern European countries such as Bulgaria, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Romania, Slovakia, and Slovenia joined NATO in 2004. Since then, some have argued that NATO has come to represent the liberal values that have underpinned the new world and post-WWII order. However, this order has not successfully protected nor facilitated the ascension of countries that need it the most. Rather than chastise Europe’s myopic approach to NATO — as evidenced in pre-Trump defense spending, the renewed commitment should be ideological and much as financial.

Some people have balanced the Ukrainian war on the West that sought to expand East, completely ignoring the right of…

Henri Kouam

I am an economist and contributor to Nkafu policy, a think tank. I cover global economic, fiscal and monetary policy with policy and asset price implications.