Finland Joins NATO in Foreboding But Fitting Historical Coming Out

Biden and other NATO cheerleaders celebrating “peace” and “security” with Finland joining the bloc this week is not just grotesque. It is a foreboding warning of a more disastrous war.

During the Cold War decades, Finland prided itself in adopting a non-aligned position in relations between the United States and the Soviet Union. Of course, there were good reasons for this Finnish nominal neutrality. The Nordic country not only shared a long border with Soviet Russia, thereby making its neutrality an essential Moscow requisite for security. But in addition, too, Finland bore the shame of having been defeated by the Red Army as a member of the Nazi-led Axis Powers.

European revisionist whitewashing of history tends to minimize the fact that many European states were allied with the Third Reich in its war of extermination against the Slavic peoples. The Finnish army played a key role in helping to launch the Nazi invasion of the Soviet Union known as Operation Barbarossa in June 1941. The Finns were part of the northern pincer whose southern counterpart ran through Ukraine. It was the Finnish army along with the Wehrmacht troops that besieged Leningrad (St Petersburg) in a genocidal blockade that lasted for 872 days until it was completely broken by the Red Army, which went on to defeat the Nazi Reich in Berlin and their Axis allies, including Finland.

Thus, after World War Two, Finland’s non-alignment was not a matter of noble principle on behalf of the Finns, but rather a matter of reparation for the crimes committed against the Russian and Slavic peoples.

All this odious history has been widely forgotten in the West today. This week, when Finland joined the U.S.-led NATO military alliance there was much celebration and metaphorical trumpet-blowing.

Finnish President Sauli Niinistö declared the “era of non-alignment was over”. The tone was one of emancipation, or shall we more accurately say, “coming out”. The celebratory affectation was more due to a delight that Finland has been able to seemingly shed its dark and nefarious past as a Nazi collaborator.

Such historical gymnastics may seem astounding to those with a clearer grasp and understanding of history. But there again, we are living in times when historical memory has been largely obliterated. The European Parliament, for example, has voted in recent years to cast blame on the Soviet Union as an instigator of World War II along with Nazi Germany. One wonders how long will it take before the Soviet Union is held to blame in entirety by European politicians and the role of the Third Reich is absolved altogether. We are living in Orwellian times when perpetrators become victims, and peace means war.

Similar obliteration of historical memory is seen with the U.S.-led NATO alliance supporting the Kiev regime whose military forces openly venerate Nazi collaborators like Stepan Bandera, Mykola Lebed, and Roman Shukhevych. The perversion of history means that Kiev President Vladimir Zelensky is feted in Warsaw this week even though the ancestors and “heroes” of today’s Ukrainian NeoNazis carried out massacres of millions of Poles along with their SS Einsatzgruppen partners.

The North Atlantic Treaty Organization is today the axis of military power that inherits the historical role of Nazi Germany. The driving force is American imperialism which took over from German imperialism in the historical project to subjugate and conquer Russia. Formed in 1949, NATO’s mission was always offensive, not defensive as its propagandist media advertise. Just ask the people of Serbia, Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, or Syria about that.

NATO’s relentless expansion toward Russia’s borders since the dissolution of the Soviet Union in 1991 is the hallmark of its aggressive intent. Earlier promises of non-expansion have been shamelessly broken by successive “agreement-incapable” U.S. leaders who are servants of imperial power.

Finland stayed out of NATO for decades because such a move would have been inconceivable and intolerable for the threat it presented to the Soviet Union and subsequently the Russian Federation.

This week, Finland became the 31st member of NATO, and the 15th new member since 1990, and the reunification of Germany. Since the supposed end of the Cold War, there have been seven rounds of NATO expansion, all of which have brought offensive military forces closer and closer to Russian territory. The Finnish (NATO) border is now only 160 km from St Petersburg.

With a Nordic frontier of 1,300 kilometers, Finland’s accession to NATO effectively doubles the existing territory on which NATO can install military forces targeting Russia. Finland also affords NATO significantly new access to Baltic Sea lanes proximate to Russia’s coast and maritime routes. Nordic neighbor Sweden is also due to join the military bloc in the coming months. That will mean that, except for Russia, the Baltic Sea is surrounded by eight NATO states: Estonia, Lithuania, Latvia, Poland, Germany, Denmark, Sweden, and Finland. This is part of a wider scramble for Arctic natural resources and a desire to shut Russia out.

It remains to be seen if NATO troops and weapons start deploying substantially in Finland. Jens Stoltenberg, the NATO Secretary-General, said this week that there were no plans for such a move and that it would require Helsinki’s request. A change of government in Finland after elections last week brings in a hawkish pro-NATO Prime Minister Petteri Orpo. Ironically, he was elected because Finnish voters were worried about the economic decline of their country. New NATO military obligations will add to their nation’s burgeoning financial debt and economic woes.

The mere potential, however, of NATO deployment in Finland is sufficient grounds for Russia to condemn the new heightened threat to its national security. Moscow said this week it will respond with reciprocal security measures on Finland’s border.

In a few weeks, NATO is embarking on the largest-ever military games in the organization’s history since its founding in 1949. Exercise Air Defender will involve over 220 warplanes and 10,000 troops from 24 nations, including Finland. It will see the biggest movement of U.S. soldiers to Europe since the end of the Cold War. American commander Lieutenant General Michael Loh said of the exercises: “This is now putting the alliance together quickly, with a credible force, to make sure that if Russia ever lines up on the NATO border, that we’re ready to go.”

It’s preposterous propaganda to claim that Russia is planning to attack any European country. This is the Americans and their allies fantasizing about their own projection and setting up a self-fulfilling prophecy. So, if Russia deploys to the border with Finland, is that adjudged to be “Russian aggression”?

The U.S.-led NATO axis has created today’s dangerous belligerent spiral from its decades of aggressive build-up on Russia’s borders. The current conflict in Ukraine is manifestly the result of the United States and its allies ignoring Russia’s repeated concerns about NATO expansionism and in particular the intended inclusion of Ukraine.

Instead of a reasoned understanding of history, Washington is pushing headlong with increasing NATO hostility toward Russia, ignoring the best advice from some of its most respected thinkers and diplomats, including the late George Kennan, former ambassador to the Soviet Union Jack Matlock and Professor John Mearsheimer.

Among those boasting this week over the accession of Finland to NATO was U.S. President Joe Biden. In a twisted view of history, he said Russia’s alleged attempts to divide NATO had failed by its “unprovoked” assault on Ukraine.

The American president declared that Finland joining NATO was a portent of a more peaceful and secure Europe. Biden said the same thing 24 years ago when NATO was joined by Poland, the Czech Republic, and Hungary, in the first of many waves of post-Cold War expansion. That same year, in 1999, the U.S.-led NATO axis bombed former Yugoslavia for 78 days in the biggest inter-state violence in Europe since the end of World War Two. German troops were deployed along with other NATO forces for the first time since the defeat of the Third Reich in 1945.

Biden and other NATO cheerleaders celebrating “peace” and “security” with Finland joining the bloc this week is not just grotesque. It is a foreboding warning of a more disastrous war.

Strategic Culture Editorial, April 7, 2023

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