Sweden Signs New Defense Bill with US

(LibertyInsider.org) – Sweden, the Scandinavian country long known for its neutral position throughout the Cold War, has been building its partnership with NATO since 1994. It has yet to officially join the alliance, but a new defense bill its leaders just signed with the US appears to be the next step. Sweden is reportedly working to become NATO’s newest ally in response to the continued conflict in Ukraine, with fears mounting that the Nordic territory could be among Russia’s next land grab targets.

Sweden is on the cusp of joining NATO, according to Breitbart, and this latest agreement between it and the United States helps to seal the deal. It allows US forces full access to Swedish military bases, improving security efforts in the event of a war in the region. The US will be able to store equipment in some of the locations as well.

Turkey stood in the way of Sweden’s ratification into the NATO alliance for over a year. Leaders accused the Scandinavian country of diminishing the threat their people faced from Kurdish militants and similar groups. BBC News reports that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has since relented, withdrawing its objections and paving the way for Sweden’s membership.

Finland, which shares roughly 830 miles of its eastern border territory with Russia, was the last country to join NATO. Its leaders made the leap in April, also moving under the threat of a possible Russian invasion. Soviet forces reportedly invaded Finland in 1939, seizing 10% of the country’s land, and leaders feared a similar attack could easily devastate the country even more without NATO’s support. Sweden doesn’t share any border territory with Russia, but the former Soviet state is just a skip across the Baltic Sea.

All NATO countries are obligated to defend one another during times of war, so if Russia invades Finland and/or Sweden, the US and 29 other allied countries will have their backs.

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