NewsPutin aims to "break" NATO. ISW publishes a new report

Putin aims to "break" NATO. ISW publishes a new report

Putin aims to "break" NATO. ISW publishes a new report
Images source: © GETTY | Contributor
ed. MCZ

10:22 AM EST, November 21, 2023

The Institute for the Study of War (ISW) implies in its report that Moscow's hybrid warfare tactics on the Finnish-Russian border may be part of a larger strategy. The think tank suggests that "the objective is to destabilize NATO member states near Russia's borders."

The ISW points out that present tensions between Russia and Finland are predominantly caused by an artificially created migration crisis, likely contrived by Russia at the Finnish border.

In retaliation, Finland chose to shut its border crossings on November 17. Two days later, on November 19, it announced plans to construct fences along its border with Russia. These measures came in response to information from Finnish authorities on November 12 regarding an influx of asylum seekers at the country's eastern border.

ISW Recalls Poland Situation

The Finnish government has accused Russia of engineering this migration crisis. Migrants and refugees reaching the Finnish border are from third countries like Iraq, Syria, Turkey, and Somalia, crossing over from Russia.

The ISW highlights the parallels between the situation at the Finnish-Russian border and the migration crisis at the Polish-Belarusian border in 2021.

In November 2021, thousands of migrants from Iraq, Syria, Afghanistan, and other countries flooded the Polish-Belarusian border, causing a significant humanitarian crisis. Many endured extreme cold weather conditions, living in makeshift camps in the Belarusian forests.

NATO Destabilization and Diversion from Ukraine

European Union officials have claimed that Russia and Belarus had orchestrated this crisis, using migrants as tools in their political pursuit against EU and NATO countries. The ISW underlined that the Kremlin took advantage of this fabricated crisis in 2021 to accuse NATO of aggression towards Belarus.

The think tank's report proposes that the current border dispute between Russia and Finland might be a "reflection of Moscow's strategy to destabilize NATO countries in the area and to "divert attention away from the conflict in Ukraine".

"Putin's intention of instigating a full-scale invasion of Ukraine in 2022 aimed to fracture NATO – a goal he persists," the ISW report states.

Russia Threatens Finland

Finland became a NATO member on April 4, 2023. On the same day, the Russian Foreign Ministry released a statement indicating that Russia would be "compelled to take retaliatory actions" against Finland.

The ISW report repeats, "The ISW consistently predicts that Putin's intent of instigating a full-scale invasion of Ukraine in 2022 was to fracture NATO – a target he persists".

Related content