“The Surkov Leaks: The inner workings of Russia’s hybrid war in Ukraine” is a report on how Russia pursues hybrid war to destabilize Ukraine published on 16 July 2019 at the UK-based RUSI – Royal United Services Institute for Defence and Security Studies, the world’s oldest independent defense and security think tank (http://bit.ly/SurkovLeaks).
It is the first major study of the Surkov Leaks, three tranches of hacked emails belonging to top Putin advisor Vladislav Surkov and figures around him, which were obtained by Ukrainian cyberactivists in 2016-2017.
Written by Alya Shandra editor-in-chief of the Euromaidan Press, and Bob Seely, Member of Parliament for the Isle of Wight who is also a member of the House of Commons Foreign Affairs Select Committee, the report demonstrates how the Kremlin is re-inventing Soviet-era tactics to exert power and destabilize neighboring countries and provides a detailed insiders’ view of Russia’s strategy and tactics for destabilizing Ukraine.
Vladislav Surkov, termed “Putin’s Rasputin” and the “Grey Cardinal of the Kremlin,” has been known as the man informally in charge of Russia’s puppet republics in Donbas, although periodically rumors emerge that he will be removed from his position. The RUSI report shows his influence extending way beyond that, with Surkov curating networks of activists and politicians to implement Russia’s goals in Ukraine – to prevent the country’s movement westward.
The activities revealed in the leaked emails describe how Russia re-invents active measures and uses reflexive control, a Soviet top-secret technique to manipulate an opponent into making decisions leading to his own defeat.
Using these approaches, in Ukraine, Russia interfered in elections, establishes alternative centers of power, and encouraged separatism. The report provides a tactical snapshot of subversion, from the costs of demonstrations to messaging lines, to the tactics of violent destabilization.
Join us for a presentation & discussion of the report at the European Parliament in Brussels on 3 September at 12:30!