keskiviikko 6. kesäkuuta 2012

Finland and NATO, in the views of Nikolai Makarov, Erkki Tuomioja and Timo Soini

According to Finnish Foreign Minister Erkki Tuomioja, General Nikolai Makarov , the chief of Russian armed forces, “lives in the world of the cold war”. According to Tuomioja, the speech of the chief of the Russian armed forces should not be evaluated as a voice of the responsible person, who would be politically relevant in Russia Federation. Possible Tuomioja spoke only in his own name, and his concerns and views haven’t any politically responsible credence in Finland.

General Nikolai Makarov said on 4 June 2012 that the Finnish deepening co-operation with NATO can create threat to Russia's safety. Makarov also criticized that the Finnish government gives support for Georgia's efforts to revanchism. Makarov was pondering, who would be against the Finnish soldiers, when they have so active military training in eastern Finland. What exactly has the Russian general said in reality and in which context, it is unclear on the basis of the interpretive summaries in the Finnish media. Only shortly earlier the Finnish president Sauli Niinistö spoke at the NATO meeting. His affectionate compassion for Nato and his words for the deepening of cooperation surprised.

After General Makarov’s analysis, Erkki Tuomioja (Social Democratic) said own sentences - but perhaps he spoke only in his own name - and then also the leading opposition party leader Timo Soini (nationalistic True Finns party) spoke about Makarov’s analysis. Soini emphasized that Finland makes independently its own decisions about military cooperation.

According to Vice Chair of the Foreign Affairs Committee, Pertti Salolainen (The National Coalition Party), the General Makarov’s speech is a sign of Russia's tightening foreign policy. Unlike Foreign Minister Tuomioja, Salolainen believed even that Makarov did not speak only in own name (i.e. without any significance), but General would reflect President Putin's policy.

The public estimations of the Finnish leading politicians about Nikolai Makarov’s analysis are special. Finnish Foreign Minister Tuomioja decided to play down as if the chief of the Russian armed forces is “irresponsible”, “irrelevant” and the General’s views haven’t any significant role.

Timo Soini decided to comment from the view and perspective of “prolonged puberty” of the Finnish national tradition as if military geographic analysis violates the Finnish identity. For the leader of the True Finns party, it is question about Finnish nationalistic identity!

I have to say that General Makarov did not say anything strange, new and different. Similar analyzes have been done in Russia and in Finland for decades, and even more. Of course, the Eastern enlargement of the military alliance NATO will have some military impacts. The fact is even expected from the Russian point of view. Soini could repeat again and again that Finland will do own military decisions, but Soini’s boring reiteration cannot change the realities of the global military and political causes and effects. If you play with white pieces in chess, you can reiterate word about your own game, but in reality - according to the logic of chess -the black player takes account of your transfers.

Finnish alliance with NATO's military forces would create strategically and tactically a new situation in the Baltic Sea Region, the Leningrad military district and in the Murmansk region.

Pertti Salolainen said quite rightly that the General does not speak only on own names. Unfortunately Salolainen had only short memory in other question, when he spoke about Russian tightening foreign policy: in reality, analysts and researchers have done repeatedly similar guidelines and analyzes over the years. Makarov’s analysis should have been already well-known.

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