- Oct 05 2022
- 15:00 - 16:00
Disinformation and manipulation – impact on security and regional cooperation
Jakub Olchowski PhD – Institute of Central Europe in Lublin, Faculty of Political Science and Journalism, Maria Curie-Skłodowska University (Poland)
Prof. Agnieszka Legucka – Polish Institute of International Affairs /PISM/, Vistula Academy of Finance and Business, Warsaw (Poland)
Martyna Bildziukiewicz PhD – East StratCom Task Force, Brussels (Belgium) [on-line]
Yevhen Mahda PhD – Institute of World Policy (Kyiv), International Strategic Action Network for Security (Ukraine)
Information, including disinformation and manipulation, is now deliberately used for various purposes. It concerns not only political rivalry, economic and media competition, etc., but also conflicts and wars that affect their nature and become one of the foundations of the so-called hybrid activity. Information has been “militarized” (or “armed”) and used to influence, shape the attitudes and behaviors of both society and decision-making elites. This is not a new phenomenon, but in the conditions of rapid development of communication techniques, social media, etc. it has a qualitatively new character.
A special example of consistent and effective use of this type of tools is the actions of the Russian Federation. From the Polish point of view, this is one of the key challenges, as Russian disinformation and propaganda activities are largely directed against Poland: their goal is to destabilize Polish-Ukrainian relations (using, in particular, historical insults); they must increase anti-western sentiment in Poland, undermine trust in Western institutions (EU, NATO) and allies (especially the United States); contribute to the destabilization of the internal situation in Poland by strengthening the radical and polarizing sentiments of society (an example is the activities of anti-vaccine communities); and, finally, they must also discredit Poland, build its image as a xenophobic, Russophobic state, and, more broadly, irresponsible and unreliable.
In view of this, it is necessary to take measures at the level of the state, media, local self-government and civil society to build and strengthen the resilience of the state to disinformation, propaganda and manipulative attacks. A broad information campaign is also needed to expose the manipulation and disinformation coming from Russia and to raise public awareness about it (this applies not only to Polish society, but also to other Central European nations).
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