René Nyberg – 8th February 2018
Russian hybrid operations and information warfare have dominated the headlines of late. Billed as a new threat to Western democratic societies, Russian hybrid operations run the gamut from fake Facebook accounts targeting unsuspecting U.S. voters with fake news to economic information used for foreign policy gain. The term itself may indeed be new but the concept is as old as warfare and diplomacy, and Russia’s neighbors have had to live with it for a long time. Few countries can match Finland’s long experience of dealing with Soviet and Russian hybrid warfare—before, during, and after the Cold War—and few countries have had as much success in standing up to it. The secret of Finland’s success can be found in the resilience of Finnish society, which is derived from its unique history and record of combining firmness with flexibility in dealing with its much larger, difficult, and unpredictable neighbor.