Kärnvapen för slagfältsbruk och europeisk säkerhet - en strategisk faktors regionala betydelse


  • Martin Goliath
  • Mattias Waldenvik
  • Fredrik Westerlund
  • Mike Winnerstig
  • Niklas Granholm
  • John Rydqvist

Publish date: 2017-06-13

Report number: FOI-R--4430--SE

Pages: 69

Written in: Swedish


  • Tactical nuclear weapons
  • sub-strategic nuclear weapons
  • non-strategic nuclear weapons
  • strategic stability
  • Europe
  • NATO
  • Russia


The global strategic balance is in flux and the security situation in Europe has worsened as a result of Russian aggression. Uncertainties about the future of security has also meant a renewed focus on nuclear weapons. The balance of the strategic arsenals is slowly evolving. The impact of missile defence and the demise of key arms control regimes is a concern in some capitals. At the same time some nuclear weapons states, notably Russia, has put increased emphasis on sub-strategic nuclear weapons. Like all nuclear weapons they have a political role, but if used they are intended for tactical or operational targets coupled to enemy forces, rather than urban centers or other value targets. For Russia they also have a role in compensating for gaps in conventional capability. This report deals with the strategic and military implications of sub-strategic arsenals in Europe. A key question which is addressed is how military operations are affected by the increasing capabilities of Russia. Even if used only in a deterrent role they will affect operational planning in the broader European theatre. This means they will also affect Sweden's security calculus. For the sake of future long-term defence planning and national strategy the question needs more attention.