The essence of hybrid warfare and its initiators
Material posted: Publication date: 12-11-2017

After the collapse of the Soviet Union, there were irreversible changes in the system of international relations, the US has become a hegemon in world politics and in all spheres of society – from the economic to the spiritual.

The US in its strategy for the 21st century aims not only to preserve its current status of an absolute hegemon and world policeman, but also increased its influence in the world and planting it, even by force. American analysts have identified at least two major rivals, which may prevent US to remain at the forefront in all spheres of society is China and Russia. It was the Russian Federation as the successor state of the Soviet Union, deserves special attention.

Throughout the history of Western countries are trying to weaken the geopolitical influence of Russia, to remove it from the list of leading countries. There is a view that one of the key technologies aimed against Russia, today is hybrid warfare. Former adviser to NATO parliamentarian from the Netherlands and major General retired Frank van Kappen gave the definition of hybrid: "the Hybrid war — a mix of classical warfare with the use of irregular armed formations. The state, which is a hybrid war, making a deal with non — state actors-militants, local groups, organizations, and the relationship is formally denied. These performers can do things that the state itself can not do because every state is obliged to abide by the Geneva conventions and the Hague conventions on the laws of war on land, the agreements with other countries. Dirty work can be shifted to non-state actors".[1]

In this connection it is possible to give a definition of hybrid threats in order to better understand the term hybrid war. In 2010, a NATO working group gave the following definition of "hybrid threat" is a threat, a real or potential enemy (government, nongovernmental organization or terrorists), which is realized or anticipated the possibility of simultaneous application of traditional and non-traditional military methods to achieve their goals.[2] as there is no legal definition of a hybrid war, we give another definition. Modern expert, David Kilcullen, the author of scientific work "the Accidental guerilla", says that the term hybrid warfare is the best definition of modern conflicts, but the author stresses that it involves the combination of guerrilla and civil wars, and insurgency and terrorism.[3] for Example, the introduction of the United States and other countries-members of anti-Russian sanctions in 2014. The sanctions policy against Russia continues to this day. For example, restrictions on funding of Russian banks and companies in the oil and gas sector under the new us law on sanctions enters into force on 28 November. This was reported on the website of the U.S. Treasury.[4]

Active management of hybrid wars encourages the allocation of ways or methods of modern warfare of a new generation.

First, political-diplomatic methods, for example, political pressure. An example would be the United States support for separatist tendencies and nationalist movements in the republics of the former Soviet Union such as Georgia, Ukraine, Moldova. The following method is economic and financial, namely, the imposition of sanctions, embargo. Examples are: the introduction of anti-Russian sanctions speculation in oil prices. There are also methods of information-technical and information-psychological pressure. Their main task is to focus people against the authorities, against the ruling elite of the state. One result is the establishment of a puppet regime with the aim of submission to the ruling elite in the interests of the country-rival. Common methods today are the color revolutions and international terrorism by various terrorist organizations. (Al-Qaeda, ISIL). You can remember the color revolutions in Georgia, Kyrgyzstan, Moldova, Ukraine, took place in the late 20th and early 21st centuries. Speaking of terrorism, it should be emphasized that every year an increasing number of terrorist groups, terrorist attacks (This is confirmed by research data, reflected in "the Global ranking of terrorism 2015," compiled by the British Institute for Economics and peace. According to the study in the period from 2000 to 2014, as a result, only 61 thousand terrorist attacks killed more than 140 thousand people)[5], now we're talking about international terrorism as a global problem that requires a solution is not one country, and the world community as a whole.

Today, the term has received wide publicity in the world, it was used by many European and American politicians and experts. For example, Pavel Klimkin, Minister of foreign Affairs of Ukraine, in his interview stressed that the Russian "occupation" of Crimea and Eastern Ukraine and hybrid war against Ukraine can not be compared with any other conflict, even with those who goes to Syria.[6] Also conduct a "hybrid war" Russia was accused and continue to accuse the President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko, German Chancellor Angela Merkel.[7] This neologism caught on, it began to mention to use more politicians in Western Europe. What worries most is the fact that this term was associated exclusively with Russia. And in this collocation a lot of anti-Russian sense. In their opinion, the Russian Federation seeks only world domination and hegemony.

Refer to the national military strategy of the United States of America by 2015, "Similar "hybrid" conflicts can consist of military force, as Russia did in the Crimea or from VEO (violent extremists organizations) that produce the basic potential of the combined weapons, as demonstrated by ISIS in Iraq and Syria. Hybrid conflicts may also consist of state and non-state actors working together to achieve common goals, using a wide range of weapons, as we have seen in the East of Ukraine. Hybrid conflicts contribute to the ambiguity complicate the decision-making process and hamper the coordination of an effective response. With these advantages for the aggressor, it is likely that this form of conflict will continue in the future."[8] If you think about the meaning, one can clearly see that the US in its strategy compare Russia with ISIS. Not only in the US strategy, but in the Western media often appears information, in which Russia is accused of waging hybrid war.

Take articles on a specific topic from the American magazine "Revue del' OTAN magazine" (ed. – electronic journal NATO), the articles can clearly be seen the idea and even the fear that international organisations such as the Alliance, have no idea how to adapt to wars, to the "new" type of aggression. Moreover, it is argued that "the Russians turned out to be trickier that in the information war, they are terrible, that Russia Today hits the target".[9] as a result, for Western people it creates a horrifying picture that the "aggressive" Russia is in all respects superior to the West. Such perception management aimed at achieving the support of the citizens, increase in military spending and measures to strengthen pressure on Russia. Is the mind control of US citizens, the pressure on their world through the media.

On the other hand, Russia and her supporters have reason to believe that it was against them waged undeclared war. All applicants for world domination is coming with a sword to our land, and we also reproached that Russia is fighting "against the rules". And the fate of all of them were unenviable.[10]

One of the methods of hybrid war, as mentioned earlier, is terrorism. The UK intelligence services with the US, such as MI6 and the CIA have developed a project using terrorism to addressing global geopolitical issues and goals in the struggle with the Soviet Union within the cold war. After the Second World war established the organization of GLADIO. This organization was involved in terrorist acts in Europe.[11] the media were accused of acts of terrorism or the Soviet Union or the Communist parties of Europe.

Following the development of the West, al – Qaeda, the organization existed in the territory of Afghanistan and Pakistan. On the basis of al-Qaeda and created ISIS. It is necessary to conclude that the Russian policy in Syria to prevent civil war and confrontation of terrorism is justified: the main goal of Russia is to prevent the increasing influence of terrorist groups in the region, which is to us an important strategic economic center.

So we finally see what the West stands for hybrid wars, examine the international situation today. Refer to the main methods of hybrid war:

  1. Military strength: troops and military bases of NATO are moving to the East to the borders of Russia, should first of all talk about the Baltic States.
  2. Military-economic methods: the sanctions, the freezing of the Russian accounts abroad.
  3. Information-psychological pressure, the prosecution of Russian forces in the conduct of hostilities in the East of Ukraine, the accusations in the annexation of Crimea, and also in the destruction of Aleppo in the media. American media claim that cyber attacks Russian hackers have influenced the results of presidential elections in the United States. In fact, the use of hacker attacks were registered only by the US and Israel against Iran. Washington is conducting a misinformation.

Thus, it can be argued that the concept of hybrid war is a neologism introduced by the Western countries headed by the United States of America, which has a long structure and content. Methods of hybrid warfare was directed against Russia, particularly active they are after the collapse of the Soviet Union. Now used absolutely all means of conducting such wars. One of the dangerous methods is terrorism; If it was not the policy of the Russian Federation in Syria, a banned group the group has long been leaked into the country and terrorist acts occurred regularly. The country is not only necessary, it is obliged to oppose wars and to preserve their status, to maintain prestige in the international arena and the country's image abroad.


  1. Kudors A. 2015. Note d'information. Guerre hybride: un nouveau défi de sécurité pour l'europe. URL: - notes-fr.pdf.
  2. D. Kilcullen: The Accidental Guerrilla / C. Hurts & CO., - 2009. – 306 p.
  3. Mokshanov M. G. nye Aktual'issues protivostojanija gibridnym vojnam v uslovijah sovremennoj dejstvitel'nosti / M. G. Mokshanov // Nauka. Mysl’. - № 3. - 2015. 60-62
  4. The National Military Strategy of the United States of America 2015 The United States Military''s Contribution To National Security June 2015. 25 p.
  5. La guerre hybride et le choix de la riposte. URL: - Nato-crisis/Russia-Ukraine-crisis-war/fr/index.htm.
  6. Belozerov, V. K., Soloviev A. V. Hybrid war in the domestic political and scientific discourse. 2015. Kommersant-Vlast Magazine. Pp. 5-11.


[1] Public-political magazine "Echo of Russia" (Access 31.10.17)

[2] A. Kudors 2015. Note d'information. Guerre hybride: un nouveau défi de sécurité pour l'europe. URL: - notes-fr.pdf (accessed 21.10.2017).


[4] (Accessed 26.10.2017)

[5] The Global Terrorism Index 2015 /files/2015Report_2.pdf

[6] Access (23.10.2017)

[7] (Access 27.10.2017)

[8] The National Military Strategy of the United States of America 2015 The United States Military''s Contribution To National Security June 2015 p. 4

[9] La guerre hybride et le choix de la riposte. URL: - Nato-crisis/Russia-Ukraine-crisis-war/fr/index.htm (accessed 22.10.2017).

[10] V. K. Belozerov, A. V. Soloviev. Hybrid war in the domestic political and scientific discourse. 2015. Kommersant-Vlast Magazine. P. 8-9

[11] (Access 27.10.17)


Kirilina Elizaveta

Tags: assessment , war , strategy , A.Snesariev's competition