Welcome to the club!

After decades of fence-sitting, Finland has finally joined NATO as the 31st member nation.  This more than doubles NATO’s border area against Russia, and really annoys Russian President Vladimir Putin, who has done all he can to keep the international alliance at bay.

Perhaps most importantly, NATO membership offers the nation of 5.5 million people the protection of NATO’s Article 5 principle which states that an attack on one member of NATO is an attack on all members of the alliance.

Finland is no stranger to working with NATO, and its troops have regularly participated in training exercises with the organization for years. The Finnish Defense Force operates many of the same weapons systems as other NATO countries including German Leopard main battle tanks and US-built F-18 fighter jets.