Transatlantiska tvivel: Söker våra grannländer efter en plan B?


  • Jakob Gustafsson
  • Eva Hagström Frisell
  • Robert Dalsjö
  • Anna Matheijs

Publish date: 2021-11-02

Report number: FOI-R--5188--SE

Pages: 68

Written in: Swedish

Research areas:

  • Säkerhetspolitik


  • alliance security dilemma
  • Denmark
  • Estonia
  • EU
  • European Intervention Initiative
  • Finland
  • Framework Nations Concept
  • Joint Expeditionary Force
  • Latvia
  • Lithuania
  • NATO
  • Norway
  • Poland
  • strategic autonomy
  • the transatlantic link
  • USA


Donald Trump's inauguration in 2017 and a world order in flux, precipitating in-creased American attention towards the Asia-Pacific, brought about stormier trans-atlantic relations. President Trump's scepticism towards NATO and American overseas commitments caused worries in the Baltic Sea region, the countries of which all rely on American support for their security. This study utilises earlier research on the so-called alliance security dilemma to identify a number of possible policy responses for states fearing abandonment. Three of these are investigated more thoroughly: increased engagement to make one's ally reciprocate; finding alternative or, reinforcing existing, alliances; and bolstering national military capabilities. The study finds that even though the countries of the Baltic Sea region have worried about American political and military retrenchment, their main way of handling this has been through increased engagement and willingness to accommodate American demands and wishes. Developing other alliances and cooperation formats, and beefing up national capabilities, mainly serve to preserve - not to replace - US engagement. In this way, these measures intend to complement, rather than to compete with, the transatlantic link.