The Poked Bear
Russia Threatens Military “Countermeasures” if Sweden Joins NATO

We know that Putin, really, really hates NATO expansion, but even by the standards of today’s Russia, this is extreme: The Kremlin’s ambassador to Sweden said in an interview that Russia would take military action against Stockholm if it decides to join NATO. The Independent reports:

In an interview with Swedish newspaper Dagens Nyheter, Viktor Tatarinstev warned against joining the Nato alliance, saying there would be “consequences”.

Decrying what he called an “aggressive propaganda campaign” by the media, Tatarinstev stressed that “Sweden is not a target for our armed troops”.

But with a recent surge of Swedish support for joining Nato, the ambassador said: “If it happens, there will be counter measures.

“Putin pointed out that there will be consequences, that Russia will have to resort to a response of the military kind and re-orientate our troops and missiles.

“The country that joins Nato needs to be aware of the risks it is exposing itself to.”

Sweden has already borne more than its share of Russia’s increasing aggression following Moscow’s seizure of Crimea, with Kremlin jets and subs making more frequent and more serious incursions into Swedish airspace and local waters. And now this. Back in March, we reported on Russian ambassador Mikhail Vanin’s threat to nuke Danish warships in the Baltic if the country signed on with NATO’s missile shield program. Based on this story, Tatarinstev has now taken from Vanin the dubious honor of being the Russian ambassador to make the most insane threat to a northern European country yet.

Russia’s victim complex always makes itself most apparent when NATO comes up, and this story is no exception, as the ambassador really hits his stride further into the interview:

Tatarinstev blamed souring Swedish-Russian relations on a media campaign in which “Russia is often described as an attacker who only thinks of conducting wars and threatening others”.

Gee, wonder why.

Features Icon
show comments
© The American Interest LLC 2005-2017 About Us Masthead Submissions Advertise Customer Service