The Bases of Baltic Security Policies
The article gives an overview of the security trends and national activity measures of the Baltic states. The paper is based on the analysis “A comparison of the Baltic security policy documents” that the author carried out in the Estonian Academy of Security Sciences.
The article points out the main security threats, and national attitudes to terrorism and organised crime are described in more detail on the basis of the documents of the Baltic States. Fighting against such security threats like terrorism, organised crime and corruption is mainly the task of the states, but every Baltic country has highlighted the possibilities for its citizens to stand against such types of crimes. Raising the awareness of the population is one of the main national measures. For example, the Lithuanian security policy document emphasises that the people oppose drugs and psychotropic substances because organised crime distributes them. Estonia and Latvia also emphasise the education of society. Estonia considers the awareness of the population the most efficient measure in the prevention of radicalisation. At the same time, when shaping the national security policy, the government cannot rely only on informing the citizens. Both Latvia and Lithuania have underlined the importance of national regional development because the poverty of the population in its turn gives rise to new threats to internal security.
The article highlights various activities of Latvia and Lithuania that are recommended as worth considering transposing into the Estonian security policy. Among the events of the summer and autumn of 2020, the elections in Belarus and the ensuing developments definitely take the centre stage. Taking into account the country’s connection to Russia, the need for the Baltics to support the Belarusian citizens is pointed out, because Belarus’ falling totally in the Russian sphere of influence is strategically very inconvenient for the Baltic countries. The ongoing conflict in Ukraine should also be taken into account. Only Latvia has stressed the need to support the country in its security policy document. It is important to recognise that conflicts abroad can become a serious concern for the internal security of every country because of illegal migration, organised crime or corruption brought about by them. Thereby the main message of the article is to develop further the cooperation of the Baltic States in order to ensure the general security and safety of the three countries.