The World is changing and we need to follow
Due to the global changes and the increasing closeness it is needed with a strategy to understand the changes in the World. Often we find policies of intent, but no a real functional plan or strategy. The changes force us to pull political – and security decisions to an emergency strategy.
The time moves fast in security questions; what was before is different today and will never be like yesterday again. It is important to have a dynamic way of analysing security issues and never stop analysing issues. Changes like Donald Trump and Brexit might scare us, but these changes are not a real security threats. The most visible security threats today is Turkey (EU problem), Syria and Ukraine by Russia (International community), and the growth of extremism like ISIS and Al Qaeda (International community). In other words, the main problems today is terror from religious extremist groups and invasion from strong sovereign states.
We have three new forms for security problems to pay attention to: Hybrid warfare, Cyber warfare and Black operations. Hybrid warfare is a form of war where the enemy is unknown, the attack not that clear and purpose unknown (Sweden, May 2016). Cyber warfare is a form of war where the enemy attack computer based targets (Russia, Trump election 2016). Black operations are a covert/ clandestine operation (A obtain information from B) where nobody know who is doing the operation or making others look responsible (False flag operation). It confuses that the enemy/ attacker/ defender/ target/ purpose aren’t well defined. Organizations and Countries might be behind acts of individuals. This challenge our need for a good security plan. The fundament for security is to understand the situation and to act accordingly.
Of coures, not all security challenges are related to war. We also find the global changes related to mass migration; economical, ecological, climatically and security based aspects. We need to reconsider how to protect our self. The threats today are different than before, and both security politics and defence politics need to be adjusted accordingly.
We might say that we are in a war today. Not a conventional war, but an unconventional war where the enemy uses other weapons than before; a war where the enemy have diffuse goals. On the TV we see acts of terror and misery all the time, and some feel called to help. Normally we think about Red Cross or something humanity, but today people travel far to help other groups; the evil one. This creates a situation where segments from a population might travel to other country’s to fight for them or to involve themself in acts of terror against their own. Perhaps your nice neighbour for 15 years is planning a terror attack in the name of ISIS that will kill a familiar of you. Insecurity and fear is the weapon of terror, and this is a powerful weapon.
We have a war going on; at the same time as we have peace. Everything is closer, faster and more insecure. We don’t know who are the bad and the good; who to trust and who to defend against. Political documents is not sufficient during wars; we need Strategic – and Tactical documents to put a light on why, what and how. The political choices are important to come before strategic choices and tactical considerations. One of the greatest problems in these times is: Who is the enemy? Who can we trust? Who can we cooperate with? We don’t know the enemy or who is really manipulating us? We don’t know if it is a nation, a group or just a few individuals.
Today we have a GREY WAR. A grey war is a situation where we aren’t sure about what is going on, but we understand that something is threatening or fear creating. This isn’t only a psychological war, it is a real war where people is killed. The killed is often not considered as victims of war. Because who are we fighting – are we fighting? Remember that today territory is more important than before (geopolitics) and environment is becoming a point on the agenda. The consequence of global warming and religious extremism deserve our attention. The threat topography is changing from state actors to non-state actors, and the focus vary from pre-emption (to stop an action before the other start) to prevention (to stop a potential action from another).
As a conclusion we need to prepare and make strategic – and tactical plans for the grey war. We cannot wait for a disaster to act. We need to prepare.