Barely Anyone Talks of Low Tension in the Arctic Anymore,


[…] As late as the middle of November last year, the Norwegian Minister of Foreign Affairs Anniken Huitfeldt used the slogan ”High North – Low Tension,” as she stood in front of the audience at the annual Russia Conference in Oslo. Already more as an aim, than reality.

When she gave a speech at the Kirkenes Conference barely three months later, this permanent feature of every Arctic MFA presentation was tucked away in an archive in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Oslo. That is not accidental. A solid portion of realpolitik is behind the change.

It is no longer possible to claim that the High North and the Arctic are areas of low military tension. Even as an aim, it is so far removed from today’s situation that is becomes almost meaningless. […]

On both sides of the border with Russia on one side, and Finland and Norway on the other side, military exercises are part of everyday life. The amount of weapons is increasing and the same can be said for the number of soldiers in uniform, at least on the western side. […]

I have the habit of looking for light, also when the sky is colored dark.

That is why I emphasize that voices exist also among the Armed Forces’ own analysts, albeit not in the public domain, who question how far the military escalation in the north can go before it has gone too far. I also notice that the forces on the Western side who are fighting for a total isolation of Russia are losing to reality.

This was seen most recently as a Russian fighter jet collided with an American drone over the Black Sea a few days ago. Basically, an event more feared than anything else, precisely because such possibly unintentional confrontations are pointed to as one of the most relevant reasons for why we can move from a ”cold” to a ”warm” war. Läs artikel