Securitizing societal resilience? Case of Latvia's comprehensive state defence system



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Tartu Ülikool


Due to Latvia’s geopolitical location and its particular understanding of the security environment it is located in, the state has since the war on Ukraine perceived hostility and threats to its security. While among the possible threats and threatening entities is a state with a great disbalance of power against Latvia’s defence capabilities, Russia, there has been a need to improve and develop the deterrence policy against possible threats and crisis, including a potential war situation. Through the lens of securitization theory developed by Barry Buzan, Ole Waever and Jaap de Wilde, also known as the Copenhagen School, this thesis examines whether an attempt has been made at securitizing societal resilience in the framework of the Comprehensive state defence system of Latvia, and if so, what aspects of societal resilience are given prevalence to and why. The overall conclusion is that an attempt to securitize societal resilience through implementing the Comprehensive state defence system in Latvia has taken place. The aspect of societal resilience that is given prevalence according to the argumentation of policymakers is ensuring engagement of a wide spectrum of private and public actors in state defence. By emphasizing this aspect of societal resilience, it, in turn, ensures the achieving of another societal resilience objective, which is the willingness of society members to defend the state.