NATO strategic communications - An evolving battle of narratives

04-07-2016

NATO had for decades focused mainly on hard power while information aspects played a complementary but less visible role in its activity. However, the failure of the NATO forces to generate public support in Afghanistan highlighted the limitations of traditional military operations and set the Alliance on the road to developing a strategic communications (StratCom) concept. Russia's hybrid warfare against Ukraine and its illegal annexation of Crimea forced NATO to respond to a new reality and sparked a number of questions about its current approach, not least regarding StratCom's allegedly weak position within the Alliance. Meanwhile, the NATO-accredited Strategic Communications Centre of Excellence, established in 2014, contributes to the Alliance's communication efforts and works as a 'hub for debate' across various StratCom disciplines. In the face of increasingly aggressive propaganda campaigns from adversaries in the east (Russia) and the south (primarily ISIL/Da'esh), cooperation between NATO and the EU is set to increase.

NATO had for decades focused mainly on hard power while information aspects played a complementary but less visible role in its activity. However, the failure of the NATO forces to generate public support in Afghanistan highlighted the limitations of traditional military operations and set the Alliance on the road to developing a strategic communications (StratCom) concept. Russia's hybrid warfare against Ukraine and its illegal annexation of Crimea forced NATO to respond to a new reality and sparked a number of questions about its current approach, not least regarding StratCom's allegedly weak position within the Alliance. Meanwhile, the NATO-accredited Strategic Communications Centre of Excellence, established in 2014, contributes to the Alliance's communication efforts and works as a 'hub for debate' across various StratCom disciplines. In the face of increasingly aggressive propaganda campaigns from adversaries in the east (Russia) and the south (primarily ISIL/Da'esh), cooperation between NATO and the EU is set to increase.