Russia’s cyber warfare and disinformation campaigns in Belarus and Ukraine: what we need to know to counteract it?
Thursday 19 May, 3:00pm
Moderator: Roger Hilton, Media Presenter at GLOBSEC
Please register here
Franak Viačorka, Senior Advisor to Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya, Head of the Foreign Policy Department
Benjamin Heap, Senior Expert (A5) GBR-LVA CIV, NATO Strategic Communications Centre of Excellence, Latvia
Yuliana Shemetovets, spokesperson for the Belarusian Cyber Partisans
Ivan Tkachenko, a student of Kyiv-Mohyla Academy, volunteer for the Ukrainian cyber-partisans
Katarina Klingova, Senior Research Fellow of the Centre for Democracy & Resilience, Globsec
In his 2017 testimony to the Committee on Armed Services at the US National Congress, Christopher S. Chivis (RAND Corporation) said: ‘As used today in relation to Russia, “hybrid warfare” refers to Moscow’s use of a broad range of subversive instruments, many of which are non-military, to further Russian national interests.
Moscow seeks to use hybrid warfare …to divide and weaken NATO; to subvert pro-Western governments; to create pretexts for war; to annex territory; and to ensure access to European markets on its own terms’. Five years on, Russia’s ongoing war in Ukraine proves just that: it used its state propaganda not just in Russia itself but also in other countries of the region, including Belarus, to justify its ’special operation’ in Ukraine; it brainwashes its population to entice hatred; it is awashed in self-denial of the committed atrocities; it annexed and occupied territories of neighbouring states; and it lives a dream-turned-nightmare as a restorer of the Russian World (Russkiy Mir) which might include countries of the former USSR.
- How can we stop the misinformation campaign waged, for several decades, by Russia in Belarus, Ukraine and other countries?
- How can we penetrate the flow of lies and Russia-sponsored brainwashing, to allow the truth to be more widely understood and shared? How can we mobilise those who do disagree with the state and pro-Russian propaganda, to counteract misinformation?
- What has already been done in Belarus to counter the propaganda and what are the prospective next steps? These and other questions will be discussed at the expert webinar jointly convened by the Research Centre of Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya Office (OST Research Centre) and the Oxford Belarus Observatory (OBO), with the support of the GLOBSEC Policy Institute.