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Russia already conducts ‘hybrid war’ in Poland and Baltics – Polish expert

Russia started 'hybrid war' in Poland and the Baltics. Such an opinion was expressed by Polish journalist Matthew Chekaj, referring to the annual report on cybersecurity published by the Polish Internal Security Agency.

Russia already conducts "hybrid war" in Poland and Baltic states - Polish expert

The journalist notes that Russia's tactics with the use of cyber attacks, economic pressure, corruption, blackmail, special operations intelligence, support for the guerrilla, is called "hybrid war", which is now going on in Ukraine, Joinfo.ua reports referring to Jamestown Foundation.

According to the report of the Polish Internal Security Agency, since August 2014, the number of hacker and cyber attacks has increased enormously. If in 2011 and 2012 the number of hacker attacks a year ranged from 200 to 400, in 2013 the Polish government computers had recorded more than 5,500 attacks, and in 2014 – 7500 such incidents.

The authors of the report indicate that in August 2014 the main financial and government websites of the country, including the website of the Polish President and the Warsaw Stock Exchange, were subjected to numerous DDoS-attacks. Responsibility for this activity was taken by the so-called online group calling itself "Cyber Berkut," which stated it was acting "in retaliation against the Polish government's support of the post-EuroMaidan Ukrainian authorities." Meanwhile, the document does not indicate that the hacker attacks on Poland were carried out from Russia, but stresses that the activity of the trolls in the Polish blogosphere is pro-Russian.

According to Chekaj, the Kremlin's goal in this hybrid war is not just to sow propaganda among the Poles but to try to embroil Poland with its neighbors, to sow distrust and tension between them. The article states that Russia is unlikely to send "little green men" to Poland, given the small Russian-speaking community in Poland and Poles' strong cooperation with NATO. But they do not seek for it. Chekaj believes that for them it is enough to sow political and economic instability, to create a powerful "fifth column" in Poland, and to sow discord in Europe.

In turn, Lee Edwards, a historian and a member of the research center of The Heritage Foundation, urges the United States to form a strategy to counter Russian aggression and propaganda as soon as possible. In his article "Why Putin's 'Russification' Campaign Against the Baltics Should Be Big News for Us" in The Daily Signal, the author writes that the United States ignores the potentially serious crisis in the sphere of foreign policy.

Edwards gives a simple plan of priority steps of the United States in Ukraine: place meaningful defensive weapons in the hands of the Ukraine military now, not next month; facilitate Ukraine's membership in the European Union; toughen the economic sanctions against Russia; create a plan to counter Russian propaganda and other instruments of Russian influence.

It should be recalled that Russia is already conducting hybrid war in Latvia.