Day 82: Moscow Warnings Over NATO Membership, EU Pushes Oil Sanctions

    Photo: AP [via The Independant]

    The Facts

    • Moscow has warned Finland and Sweden that there will be far-reaching consequences if they join the western military alliance NATO. A joint application is expected soon, as Finland's government has confirmed that it plans to apply while Sweden's ruling party has dropped its longstanding opposition to joining.

    • Ukraine is continuing to consolidate its defense of Kharkiv, where opposition forces have reportedly been pushed back to the Russian border. The success may provide Ukrainian forces with a route eastwards to threaten Russian supply lines and intensify pressure on their efforts to take the Donbas region.

    The Spin

    Anti-Russia narrative

    Russia's unprovoked war against Ukraine is pushing the two countries closer to NATO membership than ever before, and Moscow's threats against Finland and Sweden have backfired. As sovereign states, they're entitled to choose their own national security strategy and Russia's aggressiveness simply pushes them toward NATO.

    Pro-Russia narrative

    Finland invaded Russia in 1941 together with German troops. NATO's land borders with the Russian Federation will more than double if Sweden and Finland join the alliance. NATO has ignored Russia's security concerns by breaking its promise not to expand eastward in return for German reunification, and NATO's aerial bombing campaign against Yugoslavia in 1999 is proof of the organization's aggressiveness.

    Nerd narrative

    There is a 95% chance that Finland will join NATO by 2024, according to the Metaculus prediction community.

    Establishment split



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