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Willingness to defend one's own country and to resist in the Baltic states


[ 1 ] Rīga Stradiņš University, 16 Dzirciema Street, Rīga, LV-1007, Latvia

Year of publication


Published in

Security and Defence Quarterly

Journal year: 2020 | Journal volume: vol. 30 | Journal number: no. 3

Article type

scientific article

Publication language


  • Lithuania
  • Estonia
  • Latvia
  • Defence
  • Resistance

EN This article addresses the question of willingness to defend one’s own country and a similar notion of resistance, should Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia be attacked. The study principally relies on quantitative data from a dedicated nationally representative survey across all three countries. The data acquired thereof reaffirm findings from previous studies concluding that the highest level of willingness to defend one’s own country is in Estonia, while it is lower in Latvia and in Lithuania. Asked if and how respondents would resist in case of an attack, more willingness to resist either non-violently or violently was expressed by respondents in Lithuania, ahead of the number of willing to do so in Estonia and more so in Latvia. Demographic background of the respondents visualized and discussed in the article provides further nuances of both research questions. While situation with the willingness to defend Estonia is relatively comfortable, this should not be treated as a reason for complacency. There is still room for progress within some groups of the society. Meanwhile, valuable lessons could be drawn for policies of Latvia and more so of Lithuania to avert some of the less flattery trends identifed in this study.

Date of online publication


Pages (from - to)

15 - 30



License type

CC BY-NC-ND (attribution - noncommercial - no derivatives)

Open Access Mode

open journal

Open Access Text Version

final published version

Release date


Date of Open Access to the publication

at the time of publication

Points of MNiSW / journal


Points of MNiSW / journal in years 2017-2021