This paper puzzles with the routinised construction of security issues in a comparative outlook in the Baltic Sea and the Eastern Mediterranean. In observing the quest of small states in pursuing physical and ontological security, this paper sets out to assess the theoretical, conceptual, and empirical paradigms derived from the Baltic Sea and the Eastern Mediterranean. Specifically, small states in the Baltic Sea – including Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Sweden, Latvia, and Lithuania – and small states in the Eastern Mediterranean – including Cyprus, Israel, Jordan, and Lebanon – have two altered, yet comparable realities in their daily device, formulation, and practice of foreign, security, and defence policies. While the Baltic Sea small states often find themselves more unified in their approach towards security, the Eastern Mediterranean small states have a multitude of gaps and do not experience such an in-depth level of cooperation. In the case of the Baltic Sea, small states often have a common perceived threat: Russia. On the other hand, small states in the Eastern Mediterranean have different contestations and collaborations. For example, Cyprus mostly perceives Turkey as its primary security concern, while maintaining good relations with Jordan, Lebanon, and Israel, who by contrast do not exhibit the same level of hostility towards Turkey. Nonetheless, similarities persist. For instance, small states in either region may group together, collaborating on a daily basis over security and defence, while identifying common patterns for further improvement in their policy work. Drawing from the Baltic Sea paradigm, small states in the Eastern Mediterranean may learn and benefit in their everyday construction of their own regional security realities.
Baltic Sea, Eastern Mediterranean, Ontological Security, Regional Security, Small States