The 4 countries forming Scandinavia, Denmark, Finland, Norway and Sweden, share, beyond their history and a cool weather, many geographical, demographic and economic characteristics. Thus, they have a relatively small population, 5,8 m for Denmark, 5,5 m for Finland, 5,5 m for Norway and 10,5 m for Sweden, for a very large territory, 2,2 m km2 for Denmark (due to Greenland), 340.000 km2 for Finland, 385.000 km2 for Norway and 450.000 km2 for Sweden. In fact, these 3 of these countries have a very low population density, between 16 and 23 inhabitants per km2 for Finland, Norway and Sweden, but 160 inhabitants per km2 for the Danish metropolis, against, for example , 105 inhabitants/km2 in France and 230 inhabitants/km2 in Germany. They also have a nominal GDP per capita significantly higher than the European average, from $53.000 in Finland to almost $100.000 per capita per year in Norway, which benefits from significant hydrocarbon resources, compared to the European average of $42.000.
In addition to similar languages rooted in their Viking history and a certain appetite for kit furniture, the Scandinavians also share an unenviable characteristic, that of being on the front line against Russian military power. Only two of the 4 countries share a land border with the Russian Federation, Finland for 1340 km and Norway for 196 km, but all of the Scandinavian coasts, whether in the Baltic Sea (Finland, Sweden and Denmark), in the North Sea (Norway, Denmark) or in the Norwegian Sea (Norway), are directly accessible to all of the Russian Baltic or Northern fleets, while the Scandinavian airspace is in direct contact with that of the Russia. Until now, despite the economic, social and cultural ties that united these countries, they had chosen diverging trajectories, Denmark, Finland and Sweden having joined the European Union unlike Norway, and Denmark and Norway having joined NATO, unlike Finland and Sweden, two countries traditionally attached to a posture that is all the more neutral as any desire to approach NATO immediately led to a strong reaction and numerous threats from from Moscow.
However, when Russian forces began their offensive against Ukraine in February 2023, the perceived threat level across Europe rose several notches, especially for countries that felt most threatened, such as the Baltics. and their Scandinavian counterparts. In fact, after just over 3 months of war, Helsinki and Stockholm jointly announced their candidacy to join NATO, taking advantage both of a clear shift in their public opinion and of the fact that Moscow was then, and remains today, unable to effectively threaten the two countries, its troops being concentrated on Ukraine. While this approach will have ultimately been more complex than anticipated, in particular due to instrumentalization by Hungary and Turkey, it will have made it possible, at the same time, to engage in direct discussions for better cooperation and integration of forces armies of the 4 countries. This is now done, at least as far as the air forces are concerned. In effect, according to the norwegian press, the chiefs of staff of the Scandinavian air forces announced that they would henceforth act as a single armed force.
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