Hacker News Re-Imagined

Finland will seek NATO membership immediately

  • 840 points
  • 10 days ago

  • @fsloth
  • Created a post

Finland will seek NATO membership immediately


@thinkingemote 10 days

Replying to @fsloth 🎙

Has Finland significant pro-Russian politicians? Or at least pro before February 2022?

I visited there a while ago and there was a feel of Russian friendliness at the least with significant independence on the streets. But that's just my feelings and I wasn't paying attention back then.

Reply


@0x737368 10 days

Replying to @fsloth 🎙

Wow, some real hot takes in here. It's particularly funny that commenters here mention what happened in Georgia and Ukraine as reasons for Finland joining NATO, when it's exactly those countries cosying up to NATO/the West at Russia's security what lead to the conflicts.

Goes to show how people will happily swallow the media narrative without thinking about the big picture.

Reply


@867-5309 10 days

Replying to @fsloth 🎙

politics tramples intellectual curiosity

Reply


@diedyesterday 9 days

Replying to @fsloth 🎙

It's about time these lazy Euro countries contributed to their own security instead of just taking it for granted as always, assuming the rest of NATO members (specially the active ones) would be there for them, without themselves bearing any cost or even paying it any active attention.

Similar to how those who have not vaccinated themselves enjoy the collective immunity that others (who have taken the trouble/time/cost/etc. to get vaccinated) have provided for them.

Reply


@99_00 9 days

Replying to @fsloth 🎙

I wonder how the Finnish people will feel the next time something like the 2011 military intervention in Libya, or the invasion of Afghanistan, or the NATO bombing of Yugoslavia takes place.

On the other hand, it's clear that the Russian military is a complete joke. It's being ripped apart by militias.

One has to wonder what developed nation, even a small one, with nation with trained and disciplined armed forces would do to it.

To me the Ukraine situation shows the pointlessness of NATAO more than anything else.

Russia is too weak to be a threat.

Reply


@alkonaut 10 days

Replying to @fsloth 🎙

This makes the formal application next week a foregone conclusion. But, it already was.

Perhaps more interesting is that it makes the swedish application almost inevitable as well, and it might happen at the same time.

Reply


@durnygbur 10 days

Replying to @fsloth 🎙

Look at the map, the NATO doesn't have much land borders with Russia. With Finland joining... the length of land border will multiply. This will surely pose a challenge.

Reply


@formerly_proven 10 days

Replying to @fsloth 🎙

Finish president: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MhLNBxpo8zY

> Russia, you caused this.

Reply


@evo_9 10 days

Replying to @fsloth 🎙

The invasion of the Ukraine has done more to strengthen NATO than anything the West could have ever done on its own.

Reply


@maratc 10 days

Replying to @fsloth 🎙

Warning: hot take.

While it is unlikely that Putin would care a bit about Sweden, this is a huge gamble on Finland's side. HUGE.

This can go in one of the two directions: either Putin dislikes but somehow swallows it (the way he did with Baltic states in 2004), or he can go about preemptively wrecking Finland (the way he did with Georgia and Ukraine in 2008 and 2014 respectively).

Considering Russia was very negative on a prospect of having NATO some 450 km from Moscow, the prospect of having them 150 km from St. Petersburg might aggravate Putin even more. And St. Petersburg is not just another Russian city — it's Putin's home city.

Starting with Mannerheim, Finland had a wise policy for the last 70 years, where they largely refrained from taking sides on the USSR/West thingy, and the Soviets let them be. Joining NATO is a complete reversal of that policy, and it is an extremely dangerous gamble at an extremely dangerous time.

Reply


@alangibson 10 days

Replying to @fsloth 🎙

The actions of a Russian leader directly resulting in their border with NATO growing by 1500 km has got to go down as one of the all time great strategic eff-ups.

If this whole fiasco does result in WWIII, it'll be because of Finland joining NATO.

Reply


@tpmx 10 days

Replying to @fsloth 🎙

Timeline (from Swedish press yesterday - Omni):

Today, May 12: Finnish president Niinistö presents his view on the NATO issue.

Friday, May 13: A new Swedish security policy analysis is presented in parliament. All 8 parties represented there have collaborated on this.

Saturday, May 14: Heads of the Finnish Social Democratic Party meet and decide on the NATO issue. Swedish and Finnish FMs join a NATO meeting in Berlin.

Sunday, May 15: Heads of the Swedish Social Democratic Party meet and decide on the NATO issue.

Tuesday/Wednesday, May 17/18: Finnish President Niinistö visits Stockholm.

Reply


@Bud 10 days

Replying to @fsloth 🎙

As part of its application, Finland will agree to donate 5.7 billion umlauts to other NATO nations each year, excluding Germany, which already has enough.

Reply


@cycomanic 10 days

Replying to @fsloth 🎙

I'm generally quite critical of NATO, but I would argue that once Putin threatened consequences if Finland or Sweden join NATO he pretty much forced their hands. Despite the skepticism towards NATO in both countries and "pride of neutrality" (for lack of a better term) in Sweden in particular, there is an even stronger wariness toward Russia, and you really don't want to yield to the bullying, because were does it end?

Reply


@whb07 10 days

Replying to @fsloth 🎙

Hurray for US citizens footing the security bill for more of the EU.

If the US goes bankrupt (it already is), makes one wonder if the other countries will come to our aid and supply us with money, weapons, personnel when the time comes.

Reply


@Cloudef 10 days

Replying to @fsloth 🎙

Here hoping I won't be called to war now ...

Reply


@ochoseis 10 days

Replying to @fsloth 🎙

To appreciate this may require some understanding of the historical context. I’d heard of the Winter War between Finland and the USSR prior to WWII, but had no idea that:

- Finland was formerly part of the Russian Empire

- Finland held out, but conceded a significant chunk of land to the USSR (Karelian Isthmus, now part of Russia…sounds kind of like eastern Ukraine)

- The Soviet forces were generally inept

- The West essentially abandoned Finland to avoid confronting the USSR

- Ever since WWII, Finland has been careful to remain neutral

The “World War Two” channel on YouTube has a series of entertaining videos detailing the history starting around here: https://youtu.be/HZunUjmHTeA

Reply


@jitter_ 10 days

Replying to @fsloth 🎙



@Grustaf 10 days

Replying to @fsloth 🎙

Putin invades Ukraine to prevent it from joining NATO, so Finland decides to apply to joining NATO. That doesn't seem to improve their national security.

Reply


@kkfx 8 days

Replying to @fsloth 🎙

My fellow HN-ers that's simple: Finnish and Scandinavians have historical reasons to be anti-Russians and to have a more or less deep inferiority sense due to demography and resources, they have choose neutrality in the past because that was their best option to remain in peace and prosper as much as possible, being tied mostly to UK.

No UK and USA have demanded local neoliberal rulers to join or being considered not much friend anymore, and then their government, as for instance Italian Gov. choose to betray their Citizens interest for their own economical ones, choosing to apply, of course without any public debate and vote.

IF their Citizens decide that's time to remember what Democracy means they'll organize a quick massive general strike ordering immediate resignation of their own government to go to vote and after with a new government starting the debate, if not they'll get the consequences and we from the EU as well since so far not so many Citizens start acting to going out of NATO...

Oh, no, I'm not pro-Putin, I'm a Citizen who came from a WWII Partisans family and so I recognize and can't support nor original nazis nor new one, no dictators included so while I can't support Putin being a dictator who also choose religion as a way to stay in power, I can't support as well and more (since they are here, not in another country) anglo-neoliberals and their subjects, local neoliberals traitors of their own people and countries for the sake of someone else.

I understand that neoliberals need a war to remain in power and committing a mass murder crime to make their new dream society, a copy of actual Chines one with minor variations (choosing suite&tie + black color instead of uniform and red color) but us the people need the exact opposite and seeing actual effect of propaganda... Well... I understand that due to the extreme vulnerability of many I can't live myself in a democracy, a thing that behind anger push me toward not really nice sentiments and considerations about old-classic government model with a deeply divided population and the historic outcome of such division.

Reply


@zinekeller 10 days

Replying to @fsloth 🎙

Can we change the link to the official English translation? https://www.presidentti.fi/en/press-release/joint-statement-...

Reply


@ckastner 10 days

Replying to @fsloth 🎙

One has to appreciate the irony that Putin's attempt to reduce the size of a hypothetical¹ border between NATO and Russia will probably result in actually doubling it.

¹Hypothetical because there was no realistic chance that Ukraine would have been allowed to join.

Reply


@Borrible 10 days

Replying to @fsloth 🎙

"When we look across the border now, we see a Finn on the other side. If Finland joins NATO, we will see an enemy."

Putin to a Finnish journalist in 2016 according to Finnish President Sauli Niinistö in an interview with the German magazine 'Der Spiegel'

https://www.spiegel.de/international/world/finnish-president...

I guess, the russians are finnished.

Reply


@koshergweilo 10 days

Replying to @fsloth 🎙

I'm not surprised that it's happening but I am surprised that it's taken less than three months for this to turn from a rumor to reality

Reply


@refurb 10 days

Replying to @fsloth 🎙

Anyone see any resemblance to the defense treaties of WW1?

Reply


@noselasd 10 days

Replying to @fsloth 🎙

Title is not quite right, this seems to be the President and Prime Minister recommending to the parliament that Finland should join NATO. The final decision is not made.

Reply


@fsloth 10 days

Replying to @fsloth 🎙

There was some discussion on plausible NATO membership of Finland and Sweden. At that point the disucssion was based on guestimates from media.

But now it's official. This is not the NATO membership application, but a statement from the political leadership in Finland that they support and suggest parliament proceeds with the application process with maximum urgency.

The President and Prime Minister of Finland have published their position on NATO membership. This more or less seals Finland joining NATO.

In Finnish system, the Prime Minister has most political power but president is the head of foreign policy. Their common statement was the required signal for the parliament to proceed with the process.

Translation: During the spring, there has been an important discussion about Finland's possible NATO membership. Time has been needed for domestic position formation both in Parliament and in society as a whole. Time has been needed for close international contacts with both NATO and its member countries, as well as with Sweden. We have wanted to give the debate the space it needs.

Now that the time for decision-making is approaching, we also state our own common positions for the information of parliamentary groups and parties. NATO membership would strengthen Finland's security. As a member of NATO, Finland would strengthen the entire defense alliance. Finland must apply for NATO membership as a matter of urgency. We hope that the national steps still needed to reach this solution will be taken swiftly in the coming days.

Sauli Niinistö The president of the Republic

Sanna Marin Prime minister

Reply


@nymalt 10 days

Replying to @fsloth 🎙

Didn't Russia (last month) threaten Finland/Sweden with 'consequences' should they decide joining NATO? Wondering what would those be. Putting both countries in a new list of 'very unfriendly countries'?

Reply


@ssl232 10 days

Replying to @fsloth 🎙

Usual caveats that I'm not a diplomat, don't have all the facts, etc etc., but this doesn't seem like a rational move for Finland or NATO. The UK just yesterday agreed to protect Finland in the event of an attack, and the UK's involvement would likely bring in many other NATO powers anyway, so arguably they're getting protection they'd otherwise have to pay for for free. And actually, officially joining NATO will have consequences, as Putin has lined out. We can't just go on ignoring that Putin exists and has demonstrated he is willing to follow through with his threats, especially when it comes to NATO expansion. I'm no fan of him nor his regime, but thinking he'll back down if we just escalate the situation a little more is fantasy.

It's a fact that Russia feels threatened by having NATO on their border. It's a fact that Ukraine and Finland also share borders with Russia. It's a fact that Putin is not going to allow himself to be removed from power by the West without a fight (at this point it's a case of stay in power or get killed). Can the West not have a bit more nuance in its collective foreign policy, recognising these facts and that we're far from living in a perfect world with flowers and rainbows? The former USSR states in Eastern Europe have until now (or until the early 2000s NATO expansion at least) served as a half-decent buffer zone between the West and Russia, and it's served as a relatively stable diplomatic saddle point in keeping the peace.

EDIT: sigh, are we really just reddit these days, using downvotes to express disagreement? I'm not going to change my mind based on downvotes. Comment to tell me how I'm wrong.

Reply


@throwaway4good 10 days

Replying to @fsloth 🎙

Kaliningrad is going to be squeezed ...

Reply


@freddealmeida 10 days

Replying to @fsloth 🎙

I guess we are going to ww3 stupid policies will destroy Europe

Reply


@omega3 10 days

Replying to @fsloth 🎙

Let's hope that Sweden will also follow suit.

Reply


@kseistrup 10 days

Replying to @fsloth 🎙



@serpix 10 days

Replying to @fsloth 🎙

As a Finnish citizen, reservist this has been a very emotional spring. Both of my grandfathers were in the war with Russia. Both of my grandmothers had to leave and burn their homes in the areas annexed by Russia. Twice. I am 100% for Nato.

Reply


@oscarfr 10 days

Replying to @fsloth 🎙

Russia made the best move to get Finland and Sweden to join NATO. Did NATO hire Putin?

It almost seems like some sort of reverse psychology thing… Russia saying "We forbid you to join NATO" is one of few things that would get these countries to join NATO. "Don't tell us what to do!"

What is Putin's play?

Reply


@parenthesis 10 days

Replying to @fsloth 🎙

The stronger Russia tries to blow the cloak of NATO away from its borders, the tighter its neighbours will seek wrap themselves in NATO.

(Aesop's fable of The North Wind and the Sun.)

Reply


@ta123456789 10 days

Replying to @fsloth 🎙

The polls in Finland showing > 50% support at the start of the war, and now even > 70% support for NATO. So this has seemed inevitable for almost two months. Any other choice would have been political suicide for the leading party SDP, and probably would have resulted in a new election. Whether it is the right choice I am not yet convinced, but basically it is now or never if Finland wants to join. Later it would be impossible to join.

Reply


@user3939382 10 days

Replying to @fsloth 🎙

They should have a referendum and ask the Finish people if this is what they want. It makes the country a target in the event of a broad conflict.

Reply


@jl2718 10 days

Replying to @fsloth 🎙

Regimes change. I expect soon. Then what? Are we still locked into opposition with the Russian people? Given a blank slate, what relationship do we want between NATO/EU countries and Russia?

Reply


@Ciantic 10 days

Replying to @fsloth 🎙

For some background, in 1990s Russian president Boris Yeltsin said to Finns, you never need to fear again. That fear came back when war started, but it became also political before the war. On December 2021 Putin stated that Finland & Sweden should not join NATO. Finnish President talked to him and noticed a change in Putin, that he was serious.

Invasion of Ukraine had not started in December 2021 yet, but it became urgent issue for Finnish President as it was seen that Finnish & Swedish NATO membership was being tied to Putin's war rhetoric at the time. Then came Finnish president's New Years remarks which was seen as a serious even in neighboring Sweden.

It's notable though that in Finland politicians have used wording "Nato-option" for decades, this conditioned the public to know what to expect if things turn sour. In Sweden NATO membership is a bit more difficult, because they didn't have such wording.

In Finland decision to joining NATO was mostly driven by sudden opinion change when war started. This opinion change was so radical that government didn't need to campaign for NATO, leadership could just focus on getting support from NATO members. Finnish and Swedish government have already negotiated with most of the NATO members so the application phase shouldn't be too hard.

Before war only ~20% favor, ~50-60% against

25.2. 53% in favor, 28% against

11.3. 62% in favor, 16% against

6.5. 76% in favor 12% against

See polling data from here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Finland%E2%80%93NATO_relations

Reply


@havkom 10 days

Replying to @fsloth 🎙

Probably together with Sweden, possibly on monday.

Reply


@supergirl 10 days

Replying to @fsloth 🎙

seems like the absolute worst time to join NATO. Russia is as close to war with NATO as ever and now they decide it's a good time to join? they may find themselves at war the day after joining. Russia is way more closer to war with NATO than it was with Finland.

on the other hand, they don't have much choice. Finland was not neutral, just not formally in NATO. they were anti-Russia independents. but now things got serious so they run for shelter. basically they waited until the last moment to formally join NATO, but they were always kind of aligned with NATO. same for Sweden. for example, they both sent military aid to Ukraine I believe, so it's clear they are aligned with NATO. might as well sign the paper.

Reply


About Us

site design / logo © 2022 Box Piper