On 21-22 September, we organised an international workshop on “Case Studies of Russian Warfare and Influence” with participants from Georgia, Ukraine, Serbia, Latvia, the United States and Sweden. The aim of the workshop was to take a holistic approach to how Russia conducts warfare and influence against countries in its immediate surroundings, i.e. against states at the intersection between the East and West.
The workshop was funded by Riksbankens Jubileumsfond (Grant No: F20-0119) and organized by the Land Operations Division, the Department of Military Studies and Military History of the Swedish Defence University (SEDU).
The findings of the workshop will be part of a forthcoming book on “Russian Warfare and Influence: Small States in the intersection between the East and West” (Bloomsbury Academic). We here focus on the small states at the intersection between the East and West as actors and stakeholders and are interested in how they operate and react based on their specific conditions, rather than on the modus of major powers.
On 1 September I co-organised a writing workshop on “Russian Frozen Conflicts”. The day was spent working on a chapter on proxy regimes in the Caucasus and the Balkans for a forthcoming book on Russian Warfare and Influence on small states in the intersection between the East and the West that I am co-editing with Docent Niklas Nilsson (Swedish Defence University). The book will be published by Bloomsbury Academic.
This week I have co-organised a Staff-Ride for a course on land operations and tactics for the Higher Command and Staff Program at the Swedish Defence University together with Lieutenant Colonel Per Lindahl, Head of the Land Operations Division. It was a very successful trip where we used five different themes – Offensive/Defensive, Division/Command, Technology, tactics, and Logistics – as a starting point for discussions and seminars at various themed terrain locations.
We also spent a day studying and reflecting on the consequences of the profession, leadership, courage and symbolic values during a visit to Verdun.
On 1 May I will start my second three years term as a member of the Research and Education Board (Forsknings- och utbildningsnämnden, FoUN) of the Swedish Defence University. I will also serve as a member of the Research Board (Forskningsnämnden).
Today I was participating in a panel on Ukraine as part of our Strategic Leadership Development education (“Strategisk Chefsutveckling (SCU)”). I spoke on the Urban Warfare dimension, sharing some of the findings of a forthcoming book chapter in a forthcoming edited volume on Advanced Land Warfare: Tactics and Operations (Oxford University Press, forthcoming) that I am editing together with Assoc. Prof. Niklas Nilsson.
My college Niklas Nilsson, Associate Professor and Senior Lecturer in War Studies and my co-convenor of the Hybrid Warfare Research Group (HWRG) and the Land Warfare Research Group (LWRG) will talk on Ukraine in a live webinar moderated by the Vice-Chancellor of the Swedish Defence Robert Egnell on Perspectives on the war in Ukraine.
Attending the Finish National Defence University’s Russia seminar 2022. The seminar discusses Russian military policy and the research development in that field. The main theme of the seminar will be ”Russian Concept of War and Operation, Management, and Use of Military Power – Conceptual Change”.
Security challenges arising from hybrid threats and hybrid warfare, HT&HW, are today high on the security agenda not only in Sweden but across the globe. Despite the attention and the growing body of studies on the subject, there is a lack of research bringing attention to how these challenges can be addressed. This article contributes to such an approach by sharing the findings of a project that brings together practitioners and scholarly perspectives on this subject spanning the threats themselves as well as the tools and means to counter them. The article outlines the Western response to hybrid threats and hybrid warfare. It is argued that there is no single response to HT&HW, nor to building resilience. HT&HW needs to be addressed through a comprehensive, all-inclusive approach. Finally, the article outlines how we address these challenges in practice.
Today I was a member of the grading committee for Nicholas Olczak successfully defended his dissertation “Understanding China’s Rise: Competing Online Identity Discourses behind Short-term Changes in Foreign Policy” at Stockholm University.
Today I held a guest lecture at the Akademia Sztuki Wojennej in Warszawa, Poland for one of their master programs. Today’s topic was “The Grey Zone, Hybrid Threats and Hybrid Warfare: Concepts & Cases.” As always excellently chaired by the Director of Global Affairs and Diplomacy Studies National Security Dr Marzena Żakowska.
This week I scouted and planned for a forthcoming staff ride in the Ardennes to be conducted next spring for a course on the Higher Joint Command and Staff Programme at the Swedish Defence University. It was great to be back after two years on zoom and I am very much looking forward to next spring when we (hopefully) can conduct the course as it is supposed to be conducted.
As always it was rainier than the pictures suggest…
Together with two of my colleges I conducted scouting and planning for a forthcoming staff-ride/field exercise in the Netherlands and Germany. the focus is on tactics and pedagogics, using Operation Market Garden and Operation Veritable as objects of study.
It was a very successful trip, creating insights essential before conducting the sharp exercise in November (hint: the overpass is being developed creating a radically new approach) as well as a lot of new pedagogical ideas that we will develop further.
On 5-6 November I am participating in the Warsaw Security Forum (WSF) 2021. WSF is a leading European platform devoted to transatlantic cooperation and focused on elaborating shared responses to common security challenges.
New RSIS commentary on Hybrid Threats and Hybrid Warfare.
Hybrid warfare strategies blend conventional warfare, irregular warfare and cyber-attacks with other influencing methods, such as disinformation, diplomacy and foreign political interference. There is a need for novel comprehensive approaches to counter them.
Today Dr Niklas Nilsson and I presented the findings of our edited volume on Hybrid Warfare at the Department of Military Studies of the Swedish Defence University’s annual staff day. We also received the Head of Department’s coin of recognition for the book.
Today I gave a lecture on Hybrid Threats and Hybrid Warfare at the War Studies University, Poland. A lot of interesting discussions on Hybrid Threats and Warfare, what to about them as well as the role of Ukraine for European Security and the role of NATO in the grey zone.