This thesis looks at how key actors hold certain expectations on how their country and its representatives should act, and that these expectations are formed on the basis of their collective foreign policy identity, which in turn is a product of historical and ideological experiences. More specifically the thesis looks at what discourses surrounds Sweden's participation in EU-led peace operations in Africa, and how key actors reacted to facts and information that challenge their expectations. The findings are that key actors to a large extent either dismissed the challenging facts, or tried find ways to account for the unexpected behaviour which did not challenge their assumptions. A social constructivist framework is used, and the theory of cognitive dissonance is borrowed from social psychology in order to shed light on the empirical findings. For methods, discourse analysis and process-tracing are employed. The conclusion of the thesis is that social constructivism and cognitive dissonance, with certain qualifications, are able to account for the reactions of key actors in the two cases that have been explored.