One started wondering what it would mean in a scenario similar to RAND think-tank’s war in Baltic scenario. One thing that springs into mind is that NATO would have a lot more space to cover. Of course Finland has not run her defenses as down as say Holland or Germany have, but still amount of brigades has been cut from 22 to about 8. Most of the cut brigades were “older” types, but now there is significvant pressure to form them again. Personnel is there, but you have to re-equip them. This is the beef that army has. So considering NATOs dilemma, there is a slim chance that in current depleted form FDF could give brigades to defend Baltic states. In fact Finland would herself need more equipped brigades to mount viable defense. Not to go into current Finnish Naval and Airforce procurement programs which are both necessary and, at least considering the Navy’s program, underfunded.
Here NATO could help herself: equipment made available for FDF to equip more brigades in reasonable price. FDF had to demolish a lot of equipment in austerity measures since 2005, but I guess much could be replenished from stokpiles from former WP countries (in short term) and by normal procurement in long run. This is wiable because reservist are beiin always phased out from older generations as new ones step in. Thus familiarity with equipment goes threought the entire army in about 15 years.(And as the new conscrition, or armed service, law goes through faster as amount of refresment trainig is being hiked up.)
So to put it shortly: before FDF can contribute much outside Finland proper, there has to be sizeable re-armament program, in which NATO can assist by making pricing attractive. Unfortunately one can scarcely find such altruism in modern world, where companies and countries are out to make money, and thus pricing is not made reasonable, it is made best for seller. Which might be OK with womens’ accessories, but common defense should be more than that.
If this Army re-armament is not done, Finland is not much help for NATO. More of a liability than of producer of hard security.
Reblogged this on vara bungas and commented:
Can you describe why anybody should expect FI to “contribute outside FI proper” especially in form of FDF brigades? It could be nice of course, but FI is neutral. Does it still matter?
Hi Varabungas and All,
This thought comes from the RAND paper about the defense of Baltic states in case of RU assault. SWE has driven her defense force down, and has just now woken and smelled the coffee. BUT not much will be able to be accomplished/rebuild before 2020. FIN i9n another hand has not gone so deep, but we have still gone from 22 brigades to about 10. AND demolished/given away much of the equipment. NOT enough have been aquired to fill the gaps. SO if I have a point, it is that in current form FIN is not producing security, it is using it. IF someone fields the equipment and monies, we can rebuild quite rapidly but I dont see that in horizon.
If RUS and NATO go to war FIN and SWE will be part in it, whether we want it or not.If not as active ally, than protecting the neutrality. SO one would want to decide on whose ally you’d rather be.
Your point about “neutrality” is painfully acute, and there is urgent need to make active decisions about it in both SWE and FIN