Editor’s Note: This is the first in an ongoing WPR series about NATO members’ contributions to and relationships with the alliance.
In February, a battalion of 1,000 NATO soldiers arrived in Lithuania, the first of a series of deployments in Eastern Europe that come as a response to the threat posed by Russia. According to Reuters, the battalion is led by Germany and also includes soldiers from Belgium, the Netherlands, Norway and Luxembourg. In an email interview, Agnia Grigas, nonresident senior fellow with the Atlantic Council and the author of books including “Beyond Crimea: The New Russian Empire,” discusses Lithuania’s engagement on various NATO initiatives and why Lithuanian policymakers have upped defense spending of late.
WPR: How have Lithuania’s defense spending and military recruitment policies evolved in recent years, and what other steps has it taken to prepare for its own territorial defense?