|Abstract: ||In 2016, the world was shocked to hear that Russia meddled in American politics. The media raised fears of a new kind of information war. But those who have previously observed Russia’s behavior know that its use of information as a weapon is not new. Russia has been conducting information operations in Ukraine since the Euromaidan protests. The roots of these operations reach back to the Soviet times. However, the Kremlin has recently adapted and expanded them for contemporary use. Nowadays, Russia spreads misinformation using a large number of tools to various audiences: domestic (in Russia), Russian speakers in Ukraine and other post-Soviet countries, and international. In some cases, Russia’s goals are to advance its geopolitical agenda. In other cases, it aims to undermine the liberal order, subvert democracy and polarize Western societies.
This research paper explains the concept of Russia’s information warfare, identifies the main narratives and tools used by Russia’s information operations in Ukraine and discusses information war within the broader concept of hybrid war. It then looks at how Ukraine responded to Russia’s activities through a number of government and non-government initiatives. The paper also discusses the challenges Russia’s information poses for the international community and provides a list of feasible recommendations that could help Western countries counter this form of warfare.|