Hybrid Wars Part 1: Disrupting Multipolarism Through Provoked Conflict

Tyler Durden's picture

Submitted by Andrew Korybko via OrientalReview.org,

The Law Of Hybrid Warfare

Hybrid War is one of the most significant strategic developments that the US has ever spearheaded, and the transitioning of Color Revolutions to Unconventional Wars is expected to dominate the destabilizing trends of the coming decades. Those unaccustomed to approaching geopolitics from the Hybrid War perspective might struggle to understand where the next ones might occur, but it’s actually not that difficult to identify the regions and countries most at risk of falling victim to this new form of aggression. The key to the forecast is in accepting that Hybrid Wars are externally provoked asymmetrical conflicts predicated on sabotaging concrete geo-economic interests, and proceeding from this starting point, it’s relatively easy to pinpoint where they might strike next.

The series begins by explaining the patterns behind Hybrid War and deepening the reader’s comprehension of its strategic contours. Afterwards, we will prove how the previously elaborated framework has indeed been at play during the US’ Wars on Syria and Ukraine, its first two Hybrid War victims. Next part reviews all of the lessons that have been learned thus far and applies them in forecasting the next theaters of Hybrid War and the most vulnerable geopolitical triggers within them. Subsequent additions to the series will thenceforth focus on those regions and convey why they’re so strategically and socio-politically vulnerable to becoming the next victims of the US’ post-modern warfare.

Patterning The Hybrid War

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The first thing that one needs to know about Hybrid Wars is that they’re never unleashed against an American ally or anywhere that the US has premier preexisting infrastructural interests. The chaotic processes that are unleashed during the post-modern regime change ploy are impossible to fully control and could potentially engender the same type of geopolitical blowback against the US that Washington is trying to directly or indirectly channel towards its multipolar rivals. Correspondingly, this is why the US won’t ever attempt Hybrid War anywhere that it has interests which are “too big to fail”, although such an assessment is of course contemporaneously relative and could quickly change depending on the geopolitical circumstances. Nevertheless, it remains a general rule of thumb that the US won’t ever intentionally sabotage its own interests unless there’s a scorched-earth benefit in doing so during a theater-wide retreat, in this context conceivably in Saudi Arabia if the US is ever pushed out of the Mideast.

Geostrategic-Economic Determinants:

Before addressing the geo-economic underpinnings of Hybrid War, it’s important to state out that the US also has geostrategic ones as well, such as entrapping Russia in a predetermined quagmire. The “Reverse Brzezinski”, as the author has taken to calling it, is simultaneously applicable to Eastern Europe through Donbass, the Caucasus through Nagorno-Karabakh, and Central Asia through the Fergana Valley, and if synchronized through timed provocations, then this triad of traps could prove lethally efficient in permanently ensnaring the Russian bear. This Machiavellian scheme will always remain a risk because it’s premised on an irrefutable geopolitical reality, and the best that Moscow can do is try to preempt the concurrent conflagration of its post-Soviet periphery, or promptly and properly respond to American-provoked crises the moment they emerge. The geostrategic elements of Hybrid War are thus somewhat inexplicable from the geo-economic ones, especially in the case of Russia, but in making the examined pattern more broadly pertinent to other targets such as China and Iran, it’s necessary to omit the “Reverse Brzezinski” stratagem as a prerequisite and instead focus more on the economic motivations that the US has in each instance.

The grand objective behind every Hybrid War is to disrupt multipolar transnational connective projects through externally provoked identity conflicts (ethnic, religious, regional, political, etc.) within a targeted transit state.

This template can clearly be seen in Syria and Ukraine and is the Law of Hybrid Warfare. The specific tactics and political technologies utilized in each destabilization may differ, but the strategic concept remains true to this basic tenet. Taking this end goal into account, it’s now possible to move from the theoretical into the practical and begin tracing the geographic routes of various projects that the US wants to target. To qualify, the multipolar transnational connective projects being referred to could be either energy-based, institutional, or economic, and the more overlap that there is among these three categories, the more likely it is that a Hybrid War scenario is being planned for a given country.

Socio-Political Structural Vulnerabilities:

Once the US has identified its target, it begins searching for the structural vulnerabilities that it will exploit in the coming Hybrid War. Contextually, these aren’t physical objects to be sabotaged such as power plants and roads (although they too are noted, albeit by different destabilization teams), but socio-political characteristics that are meant to be manipulated in order to attractively emphasize a certain demographic’s “separateness” from the existing national fabric and thus ‘legitimize’ their forthcoming foreign-managed revolt against the authorities.

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The following are the most common socio-political structural vulnerabilities as they relate to the preparation for Hybrid War, and if each of them can be tied to a specific geographic location, then they become much more likely to be used as galvanizing magnets in the run-up to the Color Revolution and as preliminary territorial demarcations for the Unconventional Warfare aspect afterwards:

* ethnicity

* religion

* history

* administrative boundaries

* socio-economic disparity

* physical geography

The greater the overlap that can be achieved among each of these factors, the stronger the Hybrid War’s potential energy becomes, with each overlapping variable exponentially multiplying the coming campaign’s overall viability and ‘staying power’.

Preconditioning:

Hybrid Wars are always preceded by a period of societal and structural preconditioning. The first type deals with the informational and soft power aspects that maximize key demographics’ acceptance of the oncoming destabilization and guide them into believing that some type of action (or passive acceptance of others’ thereof) is required in order to change the present state of affairs. The second type concerns the various tricks that the US resorts to in order to have the target government unintentionally aggravate the various socio-political differences that have already been identified, with the goal of creating cleavages of identity resentment that are then more susceptible to societal preconditioning and subsequent NGO-directed political organizing (linked in most cases to the Soros Foundation and/or National Endowment for Democracy).

To expand on the tactics of structural preconditioning, the most commonly employed and globally recognized one is sanctions, the implicit goal of which (although not always successful) has always been to “make life more difficult” for the average citizen so that he or she becomes more amenable to the idea of regime change and is thus more easily shepherded into acting upon these externally instilled impulses. Less known, however, are the more oblique, yet presently and almost ubiquitously implemented, methods of achieving this goal, and this surrounds the power that the US has to affect certain budgetary functions of targeted states, namely the amount of revenue that they receive and what precisely they spend it on.

The global slump in energy and overall commodity prices has hit exporting states extraordinarily hard, many of which are disproportionately dependent on such selling such resources in order to satisfy their fiscal ends, and the decrease in revenue almost always leads to eventual cuts in social spending. Parallel with this, some states are facing American-manufactured security threats that they’re forced to urgently respond to, thus necessitating them to unexpectedly budget more money to their defense programs that could have otherwise been invested in social ones. On their own, each of these ‘tracks’ is designed to decrease the government’s social expenditure so as to incubate the medium-term conditions necessary for enhancing the prospects of a Color Revolution, the first stage of Hybrid Warfare. In the event that a state experiences both limited revenue intake and an unexpected need to hike its defense budget, then this would have a compound effect on cutting social services and might even push the Color Revolution timeframe forward from the medium- to short-term, depending on the severity of the resultant domestic crisis and the success that the American-influenced NGOs have in politically organizing the previously examined identity blocs against the government.

*  *  *

Andrew Korybko's book: "Hybrid Wars: The Indirect Approach To Regime Change" can be downloaded here.

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Duc888's picture

 

Hybrid War is one of the most significant strategic developments that the US has ever spearheaded, and the transitioning of Color Revolutions to Unconventional Wars is expected to dominate the destabilizing trends of the coming decades.

 

A better plan.  How about stop rolling other countries for natural resources.  Maybe give it a break for 50 years or so.  Stop killing people.

 

Yea, I know.... stupid idea.

hoyeru's picture

And watch USA collapse within a month because it cannot steal anymore?  Yes it is a stupid idea.

NoDebt's picture

That was a heluva article.  I feel like George Soros personally sat me down and explained how terribly simple it all is to start WWIII.

 

ebworthen's picture

I need a big bong hit right about now.

MalteseFalcon's picture

"The first thing that one needs to know about Hybrid Wars is that they’re never unleashed against an American ally or anywhere that the US has premier preexisting infrastructural interests."

Oh really?

Just what do you think is going on in Europe and the USA with immigration?

beemasters's picture

"The key to the forecast is in accepting that Hybrid Wars are externally provoked asymmetrical conflicts predicated on sabotaging concrete geo-economic interests, and proceeding from this starting point, it’s relatively easy to pinpoint where they might strike next."

If it's so easy, why won't the author list ALL countries where they will strike next, pleaseeeee!!!!

KesselRunin12Parsecs's picture

It pretty much takes a government apparatus run by xenophobic 'dual passporters' to concoct the strategy of hybrid wars.

pods's picture

Who knew the dept of War had ivory towers?

Of course the US goes around destabilizing other nations if it is for the benefit of the FRN.

Guy's probably a good scrabble player though.

pods

SWRichmond's picture

Who knew it's a lot easier to fuck shit up than it is to built it?  Who knew that societies are built on cooperation and trust, and that to break them down you have to break down cooperation and trust?  Let's get a couple tens $Billion, set up a think tank, hire our relatives, and do a study to show how we can "destabilize" a nation by making it hard for them to keep their population happy.

These guys are fucking geniuses!  Time to start a Bland Corporation and open a K Street office!

And now, let's think just a bit more...which is the most economically complex society on earth, the one deepest in debt, the one with fully half its people dependent on government largesse literally for their daily lives, the one with urban coasts contrasted with 'flyover country' which their leader demeans with cracks about "clinging"...which on is thus the easiest to destabilize?

Did someone actually write a book?

fleur de lis's picture

What ever happened to the Chinese factories that blew up one after the other? After a series they simply stopped. Was this part of the Hybrid War plan or just some screwball CIA project? Was it ever solved?

Citxmech's picture

We haven't had another fertilizer plant or train blow-up in a while.  Maybe somebody got the message.

Herd Redirection Committee's picture

Author made two mistakes.  Blaming the US for the American Empire (instead of blaming Zion, City of London, Washington DC, Wall St. Basel, Tel Aviv alliance).

And thinking this strategy won't be used on America, in the near-term future.

what's that smell's picture

wrong....

the article divides the world into the hybreeders and the hybreds....

the hybreeders are much higher up the food chain than the hybred US.

the same nlp techniques being used on the 4th world are being used on the 1st world, swedish gropegirls, etc.

think master/blaster from bartertown and you'll get a better picture of why master hybreeders are using the US military to blast the hybreds into smaller and smaller helpless chunks.

call them what you want: gray men, deep state, rabbii, illuminati, reptoids from the planet poptart, men in black.

if you wanna catch a jack-a-lope, you better follow his tracks.

more like full spectrum dominance hybreeding me thinks.

Mister Ponzi's picture

If you had read the article you would have known that this will be the subject of part II...

Smegley Wanxalot's picture

The author says he can't do that my country, but he can narrow it down to a few continents ... Africa, Asia, Europe, South America ... and maybe Australia, North America, and perhaps Antarctica

On the last one, the CIA is still working on the details of generating ethnic strife among the penguins, and is confident they'll have that strategy post haste.

pods's picture

They just need a couple more million in the budget.

trulz4lulz's picture

And in the red corner: Asia! 

Are you ready to RUMBLE!!!

Ps im a couple ahead.

Element's picture

 

 

"Hybrid War is one of the most significant strategic developments that the US has ever spearheaded, and the transitioning of Color Revolutions to Unconventional Wars is expected to dominate the destabilizing trends of the coming decades."

OK, this author is either an idiot, or a Putin regime sock-puppet, or both.

The term 'Hybrid War' was invented by NATO/USA, yes, but the author has the term deeply confused and has the topic completely back to front, and is just tossing it about as a trendy-sounding conceptual prop pretending to be an 'argument', or disinformation, or some sort of warm crap, rather than using it in it's original definition and context usage.

Or else hes misrepresenting the term and its usage, on purpose, to make out that it's a technique of war that was developed by the West.

No, he's just peddling a bunch of Moscow phoney baloney as part of its information warfare against Europe and the US.

The west/NATO has for the past 2 years been scrambling to construct forces and capabilities specifically to combat this Russian "Hybrid warfare" model of attack that it's been using. But don't let the basic known facts and history and the record of public debate, in numerous documents, on the topic, interfere with or distract from your salad of anti-western hate bile, and bullshit flinging sessions.

Hybrid war is a term created by western analysts that particularly well describes the novel features of the warfare Russia used against Ukraine to take and annex Crimea and Eastern Ukraine. And also the use of cyber attacks and threats against Baltic States, with similar threats that were directed at Scandinavian states.

That's it!

That's what this new western term called 'Hybrid Warfare' actually refers to. A completely new of attack style for domineering over neighboring states and taking territory (while pretending not to) within concerted and advanced simultaneous concepts of operations, that were developed and have been used by RUSSIA.

It was not used by the West you bloody dope!

It's a concerted mixture of scaled electronic warfare, cyber attack, precise artillery strike, and use of anonymous special forces pretending to not be Russian military forces, when they actually are, and actually are invading another country to take its territory, and intimidate the locals into acceptance cia a concerted deliberate military deception, and Moscow's artifices of parallel diplomatic lies, denials and misrepresentations of the facts even as they are occurring, in plain view.

Andrew Korybko of OrientalReview.org is clearly either a complete amateur and moron, or sock puppet psyop for Moscow. You chose which it is Andrew, I would suggest both (though it's 'still possible you just don't have a feckin' clue), but if you're going to write about a topic like this, at least get some clue regarding what it is about, first.

That's a pretty big one mate.

Otherwise you might come across as a complete bloody idiotic agitprop to shit-stir conflicts and hated under more false pretenses.

BobEore's picture

Well...

buried neath your somewhat over the top blustering lies more than a kernal of .... truth.

Moscow runs a propaganda machine. Similar in intent and execution to the western variety of same. They steal each other's stuff - all the time. Mostly, they play to different audiences. The western one wants to convince the "broad consensus" of opinion to get behind it's phony wars to rip off OPP; the eastern version targets the "rebellious" and "early adopter" group in the Occident which imagines itself fully informed, and 'ahead of the curve' on geopolitical events. Each target audience is constantly probed for it's gullibilities and weakness to 'this or that,' 'black or white' type narratives. Last couple of years we were besiedged with "BRICS" style 'east - good/west - bad/ memes.

Which faded kinda fast after all the predictions of GREXIT, SILKROADS, CHINESE GOLD RESET, etc., etc., run outta runway last summer. The penchant for buying into the classic Leninist program of 'control both sides of the debate' dissimulation is still amazingly strong in the self-styled "aware and active" portion of the reading public however. We get currently spoon fed the "Saker" style of Russia vs the Anti-christ storyline in the middle east and adjoining parts pretty much daily.

As for who is doing the spoon-feeding - MSM or "alternative media" varieties both, that's the real story here! One likely to stay buried unto a sufficient proportion of the more aware among us get tired of having to choose between limited hangouts and skewed analyses - and hold out instead for real data, from real sources, from which they can make up their own minds!

In a world of shadow-puppet theatre and punchnjudy disinfo sideshows, neither Moscow or the 'other team' are really in charge of either their agendas or informational warfare. They're all just there to add spice to a sordid deceit of the usual description. Count the Chinese x3 on that!

Element's picture

I mostly agree with your summation of the situation. If we're having a little 'Silent Night' moment, between the trenches in BS land, fine, except what I said was not lies at all, as you've claimed, there's more than sufficient facts behind it to verify, not that I think it would even help to post facts. As this is rarely a place for facts to be indulged, especially when it comes to this E vs W drivel.

And I can see you understand that.

But yes, I am not liking any of it, and don't agree with any side in it either, but I do see reason to counter the outrageous bullcrap being peddled by that author. What he is writing is a mischief-seeking gross perversion of the actual situation and is not to be let off the hook with smarmy one liners.

And I do not doubt both sides us aid and information to get their sympathy, and a leg in the door to conflict zones. I could say much more but I know how it'd be used and twisted and abused if I did (I'd rather be, "damned if I don't").

Clearly you can see that's the situation, also. Nevertheless, this author is cynically saying all he can to ensure actual aid will not get to millions of people, who despite motives of various powers, will in fact need that aid - for real. People should take note that US air drops of aid over the former Yugoslavia, in the mid to late 1990s, did save tens of thousands of people's lives.

That is not cynical mischief making, that mattered to many. It made all the difference to them.

And this author would have the situation be regarded with deep cynicism, and they perish as the war would be so worse than it had to be. And the people providing the aid turned into 'valid' targets.

No they're not.

So I don't sit on one side in this and pretend that, that bloody fool author is making some sort of superior point, as he isn't. In fact, he's grossly misrepresenting the actual situation that has taken place, to achieve that sort of end in the near and mid future. But also blatantly lies and attempt to concoct the bullshit that the West is doing this when frankly the west was startled by watching Russia doing it, and the West is learning fast how to counter it Moscow's Hybrid warfare example, and clearly on-going info-warfare campaigns.

If countering that crap triggers you to remark and open it up a bit to some broader reflection - good.

But as you mention the similarly perverse mischief-making Saker sock-puppetry, the counter view is hardly lacking substance and the western definition of Hybrid Warfare has very much crystallized from these events.

 

‘Hybrid War’ and ‘Little Green Men’: How It Works, and How It Doesn’t

- Mark Galeotti, Apr 16 2015

 

How NATO Can Disrupt Russia’s New Way of War

 - March 3, 2016 By Bret Perry

 

Crimea and Russia’s Strategic Overhaul

- 2014, Kristin Ven Bruusgaard

BobEore's picture

"except what I said was not lies at all, as you've claimed"

May I suggest you re-read my comment - in particular the part which has prompted you to mistakenly suppose the above?

"buried neath your somewhat over the top blustering lies more than a kernal of .... truth."

 

When we get that cleared up - I'll submit myself to the task of re-reading the rest of your response. I like a good dust-up as much as the next guy, but it has to be loosely based on fact. In the meanwhile... I'll stick with the description - over the top - as summing up your approach to dialogue. I've never really identified with "the Donald" before- but your vandalism of my meaning gives me an inside track to what it must have felt like to be run outta Chi-town by the Soros gang, and then accused of doing it to himself! Playing to win is cool - knocking over the chess board... not so much.

Element's picture

Maybe another word, such as 'lays' for example, would be a lot clearer.

BobEore's picture

If you can supply a good reason that I should torture the language in the same way that you tortured my meaning -

sure, I'll comply! Otherwise, please don't confuse your issues of reading/comphrension with a lack of clarity on my part. 'Lies' is the correct usage. Perhaps it struck a nerve. All the best.

Element's picture

 

 

Here's what you wrote, verbatim:

"Well...

buried neath your somewhat over the top blustering lies more than a kernal of .... truth.'..."

No capital B at the beginning of the sentence, beneath is spelt wrong, and you couldn't even manage an apostrophe there?

It's because you're so fucking sloppy and lazy, not respecting the reader, but demanding respect, and then no comma after "blustering"? The word is a slight,  which is followed by what reads like an insult.

But to top it off, you've even got incorrect spelling for "kernal"!

All that in just one of your lousy fucking sentences, you hopeless fucking clown.  lol

And you want to pretend its my fault that you can't be clearly understood on a first reading, retard boy?

And did it somehow escape your-precious, that everything about zero hedge is over-the-top? This is not hard to spot, in fact zh is notorious/infamous for it. We value that sort of frank speech around these parts, fuckhead. Pointed discussions, if not down right aggressive discussion at times, is what happens here, noob.

And if you can't deal with that, cupcake, and want to pout and snivel, do bugger-off as you seem have stumbled into the wrong blog and comments-section.

Is there a Guardian we can call, to come and pick you up?

 

[I won't go into your poor spelling and punctuation in your last comment, jackass! lol ]

BobEore's picture

Lame...

in every meaning of the word. You won't give it up huh? You fucked up on reading and now you think you can pull your ass outta the fire with witless retorts? You ... noob... were not around these parts when I was writing regularly here. And therefore you are not familiar with any of the stylistics which used to grace these pages...

back in the day, before commonplace and bluster replaced what used to be a pretty unique and interesting cast of commentators - who could express themselves without the rhetorical overkill which your type of  beta male relies upon in hopes of scaring off your critics.

I got the right blog - and the right bullseye on your bullshit bud. Like I said, I like nothin better than a good dust up, but the other guy needs have something in their glove. Lecturing us on what you think ZH is all about doesn't qualify lil guy.

Go back to bed and pull the covers o'er your head till the pain and humiliation wear off. A simple apology woulda saved your bacon. I guess you guessed that was 'neath you. You guessed wrong.

Element's picture

Oh, my hero, used to comment here huh? Really? What happened? Get banned? Get bored? Decide to ditch your prior ID so nobody realizes you're the very same hopelessly ignorant jackass?

Alternatively you're just a petty troll avoiding discussion of the topic, because you have no idea about it?

All you have to do is reply and stay on TOPIC.

Think you can manage that much?

Not obfuscate, not do an impression of a special agent for the society of morons.

I'm aware of prior commentary dipshit, but that doesn't mean you are. There is zero evidence you are, and if you think you're something in that regard there's zero evidence of that, either. Respond to topics, not to people, or to sidetracking about something unrelated, or to trolling to distract from the topic, as you waffle precious crap about nothings, instead.

Winch closed your dribbling bitch-hole, or just reply to the topic, otherwise head on back to the digital ghetto you've crawled out of to grace us with your unremarkable and clearly unnecessary presence.

However you are responding like a troll trying to disrupt a discussion topic instead.

11b40's picture

I have long enjoyed your thoughtful perspectives, Element, but it seems that with this you are asking me not to believe my lying eyes.

Element's picture

Really? I remember you having a real go at me a few years back, and a couple of times. You're apparently a bit more open than you seemed back then.

Well you don't need to agree, people often don't, I disagree with people I've come to respect, from time to time, but what I'm saying above is not wrong, and nor is it one-sided. So all the best.

Fractal Parasite's picture

<-- Hard facts.

<-- Baseless allegations.

Thomas Mead of US Army Special Operations command, speaking in Texas, March 10, 2015, about the Jade Helm training exercise.

7:17 “Since 1952 the Unites States Army Special Forces has had the charter to conduct Unconventional Warfare throughout the globe.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dLM4-aImMkY&t=7m17s

The full US Army document - “Special Forces Unconventional Warfare” manual TC 18 01.
http://nsnbc.wordpress.com/2012/02/15/us-military-logic-behind-syrian-in...

Element's picture

 

 

Sorry stupido, the concept under discussion is HYBRID WARFARE.

 

'Conventional warfare' is war with conventional weapons.

'Unconventional warfare' is war with unconventional weapons.

Otherwise known as NBC warfare.

Nuclear Biological Chemical

 

Getting it now dumb-dumb?

Here's a hint:

For 25 Years, U.S. Special Forces Carried Miniature Nukes on Their Backs

"The B-54 Special Atomic Demolition Munition was a nuclear bomb the size of a backpack"

damicol's picture

You fucking stupid neo con cock fuckung wanker.

You must be  some cunt licking fucking shitty ass holes in the same bath houses as Barry.

Your brains are fucked  raddled with fucking syphilis or AIDS

 

Any fucking dumb fuck that repeats the fucking lies that Crimea was annexed by Russia deserves a fucking bullet..

Cunt, They V>O>T>E>D RUSSIA OVER fucking whelmingly

Element's picture

And you're just a gibbering moron with mental issues. Pull your head out of your arse dream-boy, the world is not the version in your rancid little cerebral wet-patch.

stilletto's picture

Element - It was not used by the West you bloody dope!

So what was the $5 billion that the US State Dept witch Nuland admitted to spending in Ukraine used for??!!

Why do you think Newsweek, Time , the Economist spew garbage lies across the world every week for their CIA paymasters??

Ukraines coup was paid for by the USA which still funds its corrupt rulers. The division of Ukraine (and here the articles author is wrong) was the unintended blowback of a minority rejecting the USA coup. Crimea was another blowback against the USAs attempt to control it. Before Crimea voted to leave Ukraine the US Navy had issued invitations to tender for the new Naval facilities the USA were going to install in Crimea.  They lost that one, so now trhe USA and its western vassel states have vindictive sanctions against Russia and seek to provoke Russia at every opportunity. If you leave Russia alone, history shows, Russia leaves you alone!!

Element's picture

 

 

"It was not used by the West you bloody dope!"

 

I'm glad you see that and whole heatedly agree, though you seem to have misunderstood something critical to the concept of an "argument", namely the facts are not one sided, as you seem to think. Russia is most definitely the master of Hybrid Warfare, and NATO are very much still trying to digest it, diagnose it, and catch up.

Some in the Pentagon were thinking about it in about 2007 and began talking about the concept, but Russia actually fully developed it, implemented the concept, then used it for the first time in combat in Crimea to take territory.

See the links I posted above. They'll help with that habit you have of pissing into the wind and pretending it's raining.

Urban Redneck's picture

Whether he's misusing the term "Hybrid Warfare" on purpose, or as the result of different cultural/linguistic/geo-political perspective, I don't know. However, I blame Microsoft PowerPoint, Special Snowflakes, Edward Bernays, and the ADD/iCrap/Cliff's Notes generation for the confusion.

To me "Foreign Policy" is much simpler and more accurate moniker, but then I prefer "Security" to "Counter Terrorism"...

The methodology he is writing about has been a standard operating procedure in the US, UK and France for at least two decades that I've seen, and excepting color-coding the revolutions, it has been used at least since the early days of the Cold War from what I've read and been told. Although even back then the special snowflakes were masturbating with their thesauruses and coming up with new words like neo-colonialism and economic imperialism.

Element's picture

Yes, I agree in part UR, but that's because the author is not actually strictly discussing 'Hybrid Warfare'. It is not geopolitical business as usual, as in the prior cold war sense, its an actual concept of dynamic networked operations and tactics for emerging orchestrated effects in unexpected and possibly un-defendable ways, involving synchronous and digital network enabled 'ops' in a multitude of areas to put an opponent at sudden and hopefully unrecoverable strategic disadvantages, and unable to regain the initiative to fight back effectively against it.

It's methods and ways of achieving effects are new because the enabling technology and doctrinal implementation of it is new, and operates in ways not seen in prior war, and it does not necessarily involve combat even. It generally aims to minimize the kinetic side and use stealth, deception and calculated misinformation and confusion, as overt fighting tends to counterproductive intervention, weapon flows, sanctions and coalitions forming to resist, respond defend and organize aggressive options.

And the developers and practitioners in Moscow did not and still do not want that occurring, hence the info-warfare and dis-info and denial of what occurred, continues to roll on out.

This one of the reasons the US is now making clear they'll treat cyber attacks on the same level as kinetic attacks, from here on.

It has certainly had numerous less integrated forerunners that were heading in that direction.

It remains to be seen if it's effective, or like asymmetric warfare, also ultimately a strategic failure that backfires.

Urban Redneck's picture

Ever since the Bay of Pigs and the Cuban Missile Crisis both sides have sought to minimize overt confrontation and have only resorted to proxies when other methods have failed. But what actually distinguishes either "definition" of Hybrid Warfare from what came before? It cannot just be technology, because no one renamed the combat infantryman when his semi-automatic was upgraded to select fire.

In terms of the Russian "model" they still appear to be relying on their commercial presence, whereas the US expanded into NGO's while Russian foreign aid was financially hamstrung by collapse of the Soviet Union. Both sides' models involve (r)evolutionary use of media, but how is employing (or blocking) Twitter or VK different from seizing or infiltrating TV and Radio stations or printing presses in the Dark Ages. In terms of the US model, while Al Gore was busy claiming credit for inventing the internet, Wesley Clark was using foil strips to collapse the electrical grid in the Balkans (no Stuxnet necessary).

Adding "cyber" to "unconventional" just doesn't add up to "hybrid" in my mind. It seems more an evolutionary adaptation than a new species of war. War has always been coordinated, and perhaps the Russians displayed a tighter coordination than anticipated by desk jockeys fattened on a steady diet of propaganda about Politburo ineptitude, but adaption to that observation would reflect a change in perception, not a change in the underlying reality.

When the Russians can remove the humans and simply Corzine all the assets the FRBNY without firing a shot, or materially change the outcome a US election without firing a shot or revealing their intentions, then I'd fully agree that there is actually a new game afoot. But until then, I'm leaning same same, but different to both sides' fear mongering for MIC appropriations or sheeple corralling.

Element's picture

 

 

Ever since the Bay of Pigs and the Cuban Missile Crisis both sides have sought to minimize overt confrontation and have only resorted to proxies when other methods have failed. But what actually distinguishes either "definition" of Hybrid Warfare from what came before? It cannot just be technology, because no one renamed the combat infantryman when his semi-automatic was upgraded to select fire.

This is why I specified above that it isn't technology, it is a formal concept of networked effects operations (CONOPS), and the doctrine of its employment, the tech is just the enabler than make the concept operable. Otherwise it can't happen.

In terms of the Russian "model" they still appear to be relying on their commercial presence, whereas the US expanded into NGO's while Russian foreign aid was financially hamstrung by collapse of the Soviet Union. Both sides' models involve (r)evolutionary use of media, but how is employing (or blocking) Twitter or VK different from seizing or infiltrating TV and Radio stations or printing presses in the Dark Ages. In terms of the US model, while Al Gore was busy claiming credit for inventing the internet, Wesley Clark was using foil strips to collapse the electrical grid in the Balkans (no Stuxnet necessary). 

The Russian commercial approach to lever power over NATO and others has been a terrible failure, and massively backfiring on Moscow.

Where as NGO stands for Non-Government organizations, so I hardly see the US/NATO being responsible for that, as people are claiming, government may infiltrate the, but it does not control them, they are not combatants, they are not a part of a war machine. What else are they supposed to do but go where they can, when they can, to provide relief to people with none? Government may support it, but I fail to see how that is wrong. It is only wrong if they try to control and usurp it.

"(r)evolutionary use of media" is enormously different from the middle ages, it is not to mere blocking it is systematic creation of a global apparatus to deceive and misrepresent, in depth, and completely misinform (which can involve blocking, but if you do block your people will see the blocker as a major threat vector in its own right, PRC etal).

I see this as the most insidious of the features of what's occurring, and that we will confront, and its escalation from here. It is doing great harm to all people today and it will get much worse. That is probably the most objectionable and odious part of this whole sick game, as it is designed specifically to harm human thought processes, and disrupt them, globally.
 

Adding "cyber" to "unconventional" just doesn't add up to "hybrid" in my mind. It seems more an evolutionary adaptation than a new species of war. War has always been coordinated, and perhaps the Russians displayed a tighter coordination than anticipated by desk jockeys fattened on a steady diet of propaganda about Politburo ineptitude, but adaption to that observation would reflect a change in perception, not a change in the underlying reality.

I am skeptical of the cyber attack aspect. It's one of the reasons I question if it will be ultimately be successful as a concept or war.

However, its not about cyber, ór the technology of CPU and fiber, it is the leverage effect of information dominance combined with reliable uninterruptable data networks with unimaginably rapid information flows, and unrestricted geographic connection with systems hard to disrupt, in real time.

Some say this is massively important (my own country's military have no doubt at all about the ability of it to make a small force disproportionately effective, out of all expectation to prior methods of fighting). They give excellent examples of the potential damage and strategic effects and advantages that can be elicited in literally to minutes if you use it in anger. I could talk about this at length but wont, why give people ideas.

Suffice to say the potential is devastating and extremely rapid. All the Russians did was use a little of it in novel ways, and only in limited applications, but it was the first combat instance of such a coordinated attack being used. The west has equipped and trained for this for most of the past decade, (longer but not really integrated like now) but not used it beyond piecemeal. The Russian attack just bought the whole concept to the fore. it showed what even a very limited information and cyber war will become.

When the Russians can remove the humans and simply Corzine all the assets the FRBNY without firing a shot, or materially change the outcome a US election without firing a shot or revealing their intentions, then I'd fully agree that there is actually a new game afoot. But until then, I'm leaning same same, but different to both sides' fear mongering for MIC appropriations or sheeple corralling.

Well that's just it UR, you won't see it coming, it is outside your cultural reference point, it is innately about electronic stealth and deep deceptions, and 'info-noise' generation, and will be done on the sly so that you won't notice it as an actual attack, at first, but produces strategic advantage, and off-balancing.

I think it's bound to backfire on the user (as it is now for Russia, both financially, economically, kinetically and strategically ), its a can of worms that no one dares open, or open much, but it is usable, it is thinkable to use it, and it is going to work at a strategic level, and can easily generate the fastest escalation to kinetic war you've ever seen.

Russia may have used it first, in a limited way, but the West developed this capability many years ago, and have been working at extremely detailed levels of integration to do this form of attack far better than anyone. What Russia has done is ensure they will be faced with an overwhelming integrated Hybrid attack capability from here.

The problem with it is not just the potential for blink of an eye escalation to ful conventional conflict, it is also the boiling-frog effect of having no edge or bound to what war is, and not-war is. We can end up in a conflict without anyone intending it, or even realizing one is occurring.

The other things to consider, you can not determine capability of enemy software, transparency of capability is impossible to gauge, or prepare for.

Lastly, the effect of concerted global disinformation can and eventually ill produce the conditions of such conflict.

No UR, this is not like prior wars, or times, or weapons, or tech, this is a very different attack capability, that we all now face. And the information war that is on-going is an extremely dangerous feature of our near term decades.

Now, will it be a successful investment? Will it pay off, strategically for powers? I think it won't, but that doesn't mean it won't happen as a global conflict, I think it probably will happen, simply because its so easy to occur and trigger, and slips beyond our notice much too easily, for too long.

And then there are the non-state pricks who will do all they can to touch it off - and are working on it.

Now that being the case, maybe some of the more egregious .gov date spying moves make at least more sense.

Like it or not, .gov has an extremely solid rationale for what they're doing in the area of data logging and monitoring.

Which is another great danger from this development. Not to mention that information war is directed at citizens, as well.

 

Urban Redneck's picture

I took the time to actually read the first two of the three links from your second post (the 3rd wouldn't load for me). Unfortunately, it turned out to be one step forward, two steps back, and I now find myself not only concerned about "fear mongering for MIC appropriations", but also "my" side's basic competence to handle an adversary using some of the tools and techniques from "our" toolkit of 20 years ago.

The Russian focus on conventional electronic warfare was beyond well known. In fact, my suspicion is that some of the EW products the West obtains from the East are not simply sourced from the former USSR to provide deniability. The point being if the NATO war planners in Brussels couldn't imagine Spetsnatz showing up with fancy conventional EW equipment and knowing how to use it... then it's time to ditch Tyler's Long-Belgian-Caterers ETF and find a similar product that is highly levered, fully margined and double down making that one leg leg of a levered naked short NATO play.

Some things I perhaps could have made clearer in my previous post-

By Russia's "commercial approach" I am not talking about economic warfare, but rather using Russian commercial interests as an operational footprint, which the US also does (e.g. plants in Exxon and Bechtel, also like Siemens where EVERYBODY had people long before their spook jobs were outsourced to Stuxnet) but perhaps in the US case- not so close to home or on such a large scale as Russia in Ukraine.

As for US NGO's- if they're getting money from USAID and the State Department, they ARE on the field and playing the game. I'm not suggesting Vicki Nudelman was handing out brownie pans lined with semtex or that this about CONTROLLING the corporate entity, but rather ACCESS to local RESOURCES and intelligence. As for what I know and can write, in some backwater like Thailand from 2006-2008, the little guys were using NGOs, non-profit charities that weren't NGOs, the MSM/Official Press (both local and international), early "Social Media", Little Men Dressed in Green under their bright colored shirts using sniper rifles and fragmentation grenades against foe AND FRIEND alike, using corrupt foreign powers to create agitation and diversion and force division of forces and attention, using Multilateral (Public International Law) venues as a vehicle for REALLY LOW INTENSITY CONFLICT (not conflict resolution), and my personal favorite little green men in gay colored shirts carrying man purses containing ECMs through hostile crowds to disrupt voice/sms communications and facilitate tactical operations. So Breedlove's butt boys need some more Benjamins because they couldn't a thunk that the SPECIAL FORCES OF GREAT THE EVIL EMPIRE could have done the same shit the Banana Republic Boys were doing almost a decade later ...

As for seeing it coming, I'm retired (and about to retire again, for at least the third time) so that's someone else's job. As to why someone else isn't doing that job? Who know's but I think a pay cut and forcing better prioritization will actually yield superior results to MOAR MONEY and MOAR BODIES.

And on the Information Warfare side I probably should have included a snide reference to Operation Mockingbird and the KGB royally trolling the tinfoil hatters and playing them like two dollar whores in the wake of the Kennedy Assassination. But that aspect was ancillary and I'm already all over the place today.

Element's picture

Tranny war! ... with ecm ... and laser beams!  lol  Thanks for that one.

Point taken re commercial aspect of Russian strategy.

It's not even just 'hybrid war' that gets questioned on reality grounds or imaginary status, there are even people who seriously question if strategy really exists, in practice, if it can be used as supposed, or just the illusion of a strategy being used. There is plenty of counterpoint and example there, of course.

The point is though, has this integrated approach been used in actual armed conflict before?

Until Ukraine, it hadn't been.

And that is the respect in which it is a new way of armed conflict (I don't mean something else), which makes it a different fight to prior wars. And if you are not ready for it (and I don't know if you can be as you will not know the form it will take), you can not respond in kind, or deter it.

And Ukraine's chronic weakness and political disorder made a lower-intensity use of it viable, and disproportionately effective. It's not clear how that would scale in an intense fight.

  • [But on the sidelines of that, I don't know why people focused so much on Nuland's antics, it seems a fairly incidental aspect of the whole affair's dynamic, given what was going on months and years prior, namely being deeply broke and in debt, pissing-off Moscow in the process, but still taking loans off Moscow (which were bribes to stay in the fold, and they didn't) even while skimming gas of Russia and negotiating for EU special relationship to get absurd IMF loan on impossible terms and conditions (more gross stupidity), which was a political policy disaster after disaster, which then opened them up to not just a clear opportunity to manipulate by external powers with a vested strategic interest in managing the disastrous outcomes to inevitably follow, but it basically required and demanded that they intervene to shape the approaching mess - so they did. Hardly a surprise. That said, 20-20 hindsight is marvelous. But if involved at that level, NATO and Washington are always going to get involved in such a mess to manage the collapse to minimize the strategic damages. Not really surprising is it? But those "two-dollar-whores" you mentioned, and assorted RT fans etal, sure found it thoroughly fascinating as a narrative fodder in the info campaign to distract from what Russia was doing, which was far worse than anything the west was up to to shape outcomes. And those two dollar whores cheered Moscow's aggression and pretended it just wasn't happening. ... so I can see why governments want to meddle in what people think or perceive, as those two-dollar-whores (for dah truff!) are a liability, to everyone, and also need to be managed, manipulated and negated, with info ops. i.e. we still get the govt we deserve it seems.]

 

    "Who know's but I think a pay cut and forcing better prioritization will actually yield superior results to MOAR MONEY and MOAR BODIES."

That seems to be one of the effects sequestration is having, or has had, so maybe that alone will cut the fat, result in a much improved focus, less blurb about it. But then again, a real threat will do that even better and they now have one to focus on, so happy days are here again. In the end you can't just dismiss it as lobbying to obtain funds, as Crimea was actually invaded, and annexed, and the Donbass as well, and it was done with Russian soldiers and weapons sent by Moscow.

That may be used in lobbying, to obtain or maintain a budget, but there is an actual demonstrated aggressive threat there, so I doubt a cut will be on the agenda any times soon. Maybe in 5 years, depending on political cycles, as Washington will change, but Putin will be out of time then too.

Urban Redneck's picture

The fact US/NATO was (apparently) NOT prepared for what they witnessed first hand in Ukraine and Syria is alarming, particularly after what they observed (reportedly at a distance) in the Caucuses since W's second term.  I think the Nudelman thing gets attention because it helps the paranoia pimps eek out a click living, but there is a some "validity" (as opposed to truth) in highlighting it... if Lavrov and Zhirinovsky had showed up in Furgerson to commiserate with the Black Lives Matter protesters (instead of Nudelman & McCain in Kiev), we would never hear the end of it from the Puti trolls, and it would represent just the tip of the icberg or a horn of Leviathan visible through the waves.  I came across something this morning that humorously ties together a major shortcoming of both the followers of the Cookie-Monster-Cult and the Belgian catering addicts tasked with bungling America's Atlantic "defense" -

Yes, there is an enabling superpower that autists have through damage and accident, but non-autists like me have to cultivate: not giving a shit about monkey social rituals.  Neurotypicals spend most of their cognitive bandwidth on mutual grooming and status-maintainance activity. They have great difficulty sustaining interest in anything that won’t yield a near-immediate social reward.  

Element's picture

 

 

"... So, contra the authors, I don’t think there’s any actual mystery here – just the awesome power of not caring what the (other) monkeys think. ..."

Trying to tell me something? lol

Stuck on Zero's picture

The British practiced "hybrid war" everywhere. It ended in Ireland when the IRA brought a very large bomb to the Bishopsgat London financial district in 1993.

Fractal Parasite's picture

The “IRA” was an operation of MI5 (aka false flag), according to whistle-blowers Kevin Fulton & Martin Ingram.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ndYPp-3cvbk

Sandmann's picture

IRA was fully infiltrated by MI5 and "Forces Research Unit"

OverTheHedge's picture

My first thought was "....and this is how to apply these lessons to the CONUS".

As my grandfather used to say: "read,learn and inwardly digest".

Assuming, that is, you want a colour revolution. Looking in from the outside,it doesn't appear to be much fun.

Here's a thought - does Russia fund NGOs in the US? And if not, why not. Sauce for the goose, and all that.....

 

rwe2late's picture

The author Korybko appears to overlook that:

 Identity manipulations are also used to fragment and disrupt

opposition to favored governments (including in the USA),

as well as  to instigate resistance

against disfavored governments.

 

Media control allows divisions to be exaggerated and invented,

and incited by false flags.

Ralph Spoilsport's picture

Reads like a war college term paper.

guardyernuts's picture

* ethnicity                        CHECK

* religion                         CHECK

* history                                   CHECK

* administrative boundaries        CHECK

* socio-economic disparity          CHECK

* physical geography                 CHECK

It's a good thing the US is the only power with a war college, or we could be in real trouble.  Oh, wait...