Russia’s military assault on Ukraine has shocked the world, and it has had a profound impact on the security situation in the Baltic Sea region. The Swedish, Estonian and Latvian sites that we examine in the Cold War Coasts project are entering a new, unexpected development phase.
In Sweden, the awareness of Gotland as a strategically important island in the Baltic Sea has been heightened, and the prospects for Russian forces to occupy Gotland as part of a potentially escalating military conflict has been discussed openly in Russian media. However, accounts of Gotland’s shifting pasts often fail to take into account the complexity of its military history and how current developments tie into centuries of local experiences. In a longer essay, published in Svenska Dagbladet, Cold War Coasts project leader Per Högselius seeks a more nuanced discussion, attempting to strengthen the historical awareness about Gotland among the general public. Read the essay here.