Russia’s Hybrid Warfare Aims to Destabilize NATO

The Institute for the Study of War (ISW) concludes in its current situation report on the war in Ukraine that Russia appears to be pursuing a tactic of hybrid warfare at the Russian-Finnish border, similar to the approach used by Russia and Belarus in 2021 to create a migrant crisis at the Polish border.

Both strategies are likely aimed at destabilizing NATO, as reported by the German news website The ISW had previously observed that the Kremlin may have enabled or even directly managed the artificial creation of a migrant crisis at the Belarusian border with Poland. At that time, Belarusian security forces assisted thousands of migrants from the Middle East in crossing the border. The Kremlin used the staged crisis to falsely accuse NATO of aggression against Belarus.

In response, Finnish authorities closed four border checkpoints at the southeastern border with Russia last weekend. The Finnish Border Guard reported that since September, about 300 asylum seekers, mainly from Iraq, Yemen, Somalia, and Syria, have arrived at the Finnish border from Russia. Finland joined NATO in April, triggering strong reactions in Moscow. Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov then threatened that Russia would take all “countermeasures” it deemed necessary to ensure its security.

Image:, CC BY 4.0,Military exercises Center-2019-02.jpg, via Wikimedia Commons (Image size changed)

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