Understanding the silent war

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09 Apr 2021

Author: Lasha Pataraia
Subject: Government/Political systems, Security and defense, Political behavior, ICT Information and Communications Technologies, Peace and Conflict Studies
Published by: Kolegium Europy Wschodniej im. Jana Nowaka-Jeziorańskiego we Wrocławiu
Keywords: Silent war; Russian cyber warfare; Security; Georgia;

Summary/Abstract: I have been researching Russian cyber warfare and intelligence capabilities for more than a decade, and for all that time its significance and soft power was underestimated in Georgia. In order to assess the nature of ongoing Russian cyber operations against Georgia, we should start with the basics to better understand the role of cyber-security in today’s global security environment. For decades, the world’s most harmful threats were radical groups, terrorists and criminal organisations, intelligence agencies and military regimes. The weapons feared around the globe were weapons of mass destruction: chemical, biological, radioactive and nuclear. But there has been a significant shift in the global security landscape: after decades of a nuclear arms race between Russia and the United States, both shifted from being nuclear powers to cyber powers. Cyber capabilities are mostly hidden and can be used by anybody, and are thus more dangerous than traditional weapons. New threats have emerged as technology advances and we are now facing a fifth-dimensional warfare: the silent war.

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