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Some aspects of the understanding of modern conflict
Material posted: Publication date: 08-11-2016
Today is actively discussing the idea of war as a special condition of society, social relations, when the supranational organizations, the state, classes, social groups seek to achieve vital goals, like using armed struggle and of any other vehicles (hybrid war).

In this paradigm it appears that the methodological basis for detection of fact waged against the Russian war (without the use of tools of armed violence) can be a category of damages.

Ukrainian philosopher A. I. Pozdnyakov considers that if the military damages should, in the first place, to understand the damage to the national heritage caused (caused) by the use of the armed forces (as a result of armed violence), it is no less obvious is another kind of damage that, with equal reason may be considered a war, though he caused not the actual military and political-diplomatic, economic, scientific-technical, information-psychological, ideological, etc., means and methods. This strategy of weakening the state-the enemy is called "the strategy of indirect action".

Our geopolitical opponents (USA, EU) have sought, seek and will strive to continue to cause damage to any of the available methods and means, and in peacetime. This damage is also war damage, especially in the presence of potential military opponents, the more enemies.

War damage include in its scope the following types of damage:

  • damage to national heritage due to the use of armed violence, military force;
  • damage to the defense of the country, its military organization, the armed forces caused by "peaceful" (non-military) means and methods.
  • In modern conditions it is necessary to pay special attention to indirect ways of influencing the state, causing damage in all areas and to improve the theory of war.
  • The main directions of influence on the state of the opponent by means of indirect actions:
  • economic – the subordination of the economy through control of major financial and industrial assets or weakening it by imposing sanctions;
  • the political isolation of the state in the international arena;
  • spiritual – transformation of social and individual consciousness with the help of destructive informational influence.

The experience of wars in recent decades suggests that the preparation of war against geopolitical rival always involves two stages:

  • attempt to change the political regime in the state (conspiracies, coups, revolutions, the "colour revolutions", revolutions) that in case luck makes it unnecessary to military intervention;
  • the military invasion itself (usually used in case of failure of the "peaceful" way to change the political regime).

This combination can be used in "normal order", i.e. first the coup, then a military invasion, and in combination (the attempt to transform the state in the course of warfare). However, the "internal aspect" is always present.

On this basis, it can be argued that in a period of threat it is necessary to pay special attention to the internal security of the state and analyze possible problem situation that can be used by the enemy for "explosion of the state from within".

You should pay attention to the following pattern, after a failed attempt to change the government in the state enemy by "indirect action" as a rule, with a high probability should attempt a military solution. It can be assumed that the attempt to change power in the country is the specific time marker for the military-political leadership of the state from which to count down the time before a possible military invasion.

The strategy of indirect action includes, as well as the strategy of armed confrontation, the creation of an infrastructure for realization of goals.

To achieve its strategic objectives geopolitical opponent uses different types of special entities for the conduct of traditional and hybrid war, which together form a global network.

To such ad hoc networks (actors in the war) are mostly military and paramilitary networks and leading a hybrid war against the national statehood. This military bases, special operations forces, intelligence, private military and intelligence campaign, specially trained militants, extremists (e.g., the fascist ultranational capitalist organization).

In this connection pertinently to pay attention to the results of the analysis of strategies of indirect actions performed by T. Gracheva, which emphasizes that, in accordance with the order "On the establishment of an operational United group of forces to conduct unconventional warfare" at the Pentagon, the following objectives concerning the formation of military and paramilitary networks:

  1. The establishment of networks of clandestine operational groups, which are able to penetrate the battle group of the enemy, to split them, to seize control over them and destroy.
  2. Preparation of the operational environment for large-scale intervention by us forces or for operations of local armed groups.
  3. The gathering of intelligence.
  4. Search and formation of the opposition forces (networks) in the target country of the future aggression, which would be useful to ensure that the invading armed forces of the United States.

The United States actively use political networks and leading irregular war in the political space of a national state. These include biased information networks, including those operating in cyberspace, a network of forces unconventional warfare (designed to organize the revolution), including focused on is the nongovernmental (nonprofit) organization, "the fifth column". In addition to undermining the political foundations by the revolution, these networks are designed to transform a sovereign state in a vassal of the global centre and make it part of the "allies and partners", leading a war for "international order promoted by American leadership."

It is time to realize that the US-backed NGO network (NGO) – actors doing non-traditional (hybrid) war. The Pentagon on one of the slides illustrating the concept "Win in a complex world", outlines the field of battle, where the designated location of troops and weapons. And next to them as equal combatants by the NGOs (NGOs), acting in the interests of the Pentagon.

The US-controlled network of NGOs and NGOs are irregular war in the spiritual space of a national state for the spread of "universal values". This human rights and religious organizations destructive orientation, biased structure, acting against traditional spirituality, as well as TRANS-regional networks that pursue political goals (for example, "Islamic state", which likely created specifically to deal with Assad in Syria).

Economic network used by the U.S. armed forces to conduct irregular warfare in the economic space of the national state. TNC and TNB, economic "fifth column" (acting in the interests of "open economy" to the detriment of national) and criminal organizations of different scale.

The above allows to conclude that the ideology of modern warfare is the network.

It is necessary to develop theories of war and peace in the modern era is based on the strategy of hybrid war being waged against Russia.

The next problem in the scientific understanding of the war is to examine the war from a legal point of view, namely from the standpoint of international law. Under international armed conflict means an armed conflict between having international legal personality (sovereign States).

In the era of network wars and a significant proliferation in the world, to settle political differences are increasingly being used not the armed forces of States and non-state organizations (including the military). Despite the fact that the form of fighting, in case not much different from those that lead the regular army, from a formal point of view used in warfare organizations (PMC, terrorist, etc.) do not belong to the state, and, consequently, military action in this case does not fall under the legal definition of war.

Political goals in modern conditions are prosecuted by the States concerned through non-state actors, which complicates the analysis of war as a social phenomenon, but does not alter its nature.

Thus, the essence of war in modern conditions has not changed is the resolution of political disputes between States and coalitions, including the use of other States to resolve the contradictions at the political and geopolitical level in their favor (the situation with Ukraine).

War, as a means of resolving conflicts, acts not only as a final stage in their development. With the outbreak of war formed a new set of contradictions generated by its specific feature – the armed struggle and indirect methods of influence. Depending on the extent of the fighting methods of resolving contradictions of the armed struggle are: fight, operation, battle, campaign, and ways of resolving contradictions in unarmed struggle are shares in the economic, political and spiritual sphere, to reduce the aggregate capacity of the state, with the ultimate goal of changing the political regime.

Contradictions in the armed struggle of any scale (strategic, operational or tactical) are formed and exist objectively, regardless of the desires and will of the people. But as the armed struggle conducted by the people, they have a determining influence on the timing and means of overcoming and resolving contradictions. To resolve any conflict of armed struggle, it is necessary to identify, to understand, to learn.

Contradictions in the sphere of the naked confrontation also exist objectively (political, economic and spiritual sphere of society), however they may be artificially exacerbated through targeted influence from outside.

An important condition for the scientific approach to identify inconsistencies of military and non-military confrontation – the ability to distinguish among these core and non-core, major and other, internal and external.

The main contradiction in the development of military Affairs (including in modern times) is the contradiction between the existing ways of fighting (in this case, various types of information impact on the system of state and military administration, as well as the mass consciousness of the population of the adversary state) and new means of warfare (weapons based on new physical principles and new weapons and military equipment coming into service troops). Military equipment is the material basis of the process of war in terms of armed confrontation, and each special weapons involves the appropriate application method.

The economic power of the state and its media capabilities, constitute the material basis of hybrid wars (strategy of indirect actions).

The relationship between the control means and methods of combat and indirect (non-military) action is contradictory. Means of dealing more mobile, and methods of combat (non-combat) actions have a tendency to stability, lag. In view of this, between the new weapons (with new tools of indirect impacts) and existing methods of struggle, contradiction arises. The one who quickly adapting ways of dealing with a new means of warfare, gets a big chance to win.

This contradiction determines all the others, namely the contradiction between means of destruction and protection, between offensive and defensive military (and nonmilitary) action between the new methods of combat (non-military) action and the old methods of command and control (civil population of the state) between increased dynamism, transience of fighting (hybrid) actions and capabilities of functioning of the human psyche.

These and similar contradictions characterize the dialectics of development of military and non-military methods of struggle. But this does not mean that you can ignore them. Each particular contradiction of armed and unarmed struggle must be overcome. Sometimes minor contradictions are not being resolved in a timely manner may, under certain circumstances, to move into first place and become the main.

This is what happens with the contradiction between the increasing use of information as a way of influencing the enemy and the absence of comprehensive information protection systems within the country and social consciousness. But the essence of war as the main contradiction in the hierarchy of other contradictions remains the same.


  1. A. Snesarev. The philosophy of war. Moscow: Lomonosov, 2013. P.27.
  2. The Russian Military encyclopedia: 9 T. M., 1994. Vol. 2. P. 233.
  3. A brief Glossary of terms for the leadership of the armed forces. M., 1994. P.14-15.

Gennady Akimov

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