Information operations · Information Warfare · Russia

The Evolving Nature of Russia’s Way of War

From the July/August Military Review

Lt. Col. Timothy Thomas, U.S. Army, Retired

This article discusses the three Russian military articles about which most Western military analysts specializing in Russia have focused their attention over the past four years. Unlike other analyses of those articles, this one offers a different perspective in that it compares them side by side, examining the text of the original versions and not merely the press reports about them. New graphs and tables included in the original versions are named, and a few are discussed further, and one is included here. This article is intended to do four things in particular. First, it demonstrates that five elements of Russian military thought continue to dominate the descriptions of conflict by military experts. Second, it demonstrates the Russian General Staff’s preference for the term “new-type” warfare over the term “new-generation warfare” (NGW) and the near total absence of the latter from Russian publications since 2013. Third, it highlights that there are also indications in the articles that Russia may have in mind yet another way to describe the contemporary way of war still in development. Lastly, the absence of the Russian military’s use of the term “hybrid” to describe its way of war is noteworthy.

Download remainder of article: THOMAS_Russias_Way_of_War.