The Russia of Vladimir Putin has launched a hybrid war against the West – a war against democracy, the rule of law and our way of life. While our governments have slowly grasped the scale and urgency of the threat, they have yet to form a clear and united response.
The enemy wants to disrupt our society, discredit our institutions and undermine our confidence so that we turn against ourselves. The return of illiberal, nativist and xenophobic politics – often funded by Moscow – suggests that we may be losing the battle. The ability of pro-Kremlin hackers, disinformation campaigns and unaccountable algorithms to corrupt our social media and search engines poisons the lifeblood of our democracy.
The war on the West is a war on truth. Everything we hold dear is at risk: our trust in the rule of law; our trust in public institutions and fair elections; our trust in knowledge and science; our trust in journalism and media; and perhaps most of all, our trust in a shared sense of decency and social cohesion. Our democracy is at stake, and we must defend it.
Defending Democracy is an independent, nonpartisan initiative. We work for a Transatlantic response to the Kremlin’s hybrid war on the West.
Defending Democracy focuses on the most urgent hybrid threats to democracy:
- political warfare
Defending Democracy does not have the answers – but we do ask the questions.
Alice Stollmeyer, Executive Director