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Marek Menkiszak, OSW: we are in a state of war with Russia, it has been going on for years and is of a hybrid nature

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The goal of Russian imperialism is to dismantle the European security system and the political death of NATO, says Marek Menkiszak, a political scientist and analyst at the Center for Eastern Studies. The expert also estimates that Russia is “absolutely not ready for a massive invasion”, and Europe has a chance to end the war in Ukraine.

Marek Menkiszak was asked about the resurgent Russian imperialism and the goals that the Russian Federation wants to achieve, among others through war in Ukraine. As he stated, Russia’s constant goal is to dismantle the current security system in Europe and shape it in a way in which Russia will de facto dictate to the rest what it considers appropriate for itself and consistent with its interests.

– Political, actual death FOR THIS and dictating a system in which Russia will be a co-decision maker and dictate. If it is not achieved politically through concessions, it will try – this cannot be ruled out and this is the worst-case scenario – to use more radical methods – he said and noted that the escalation of the hybrid war is possible.

– Let us remember that we are at war with Russia, it has been going on for years and is of a hybrid nature. The Russians carry out cyberattacks, propaganda campaigns, and attempts to destabilize the internal situation in a number of important countries in Europe. They are currently attacking critical infrastructure. Such test attacks are carried out in various places, he said.

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Marek Menkiszak PAP/Tomasz Gzell

Intimidation and destabilization

The head of the team at the Russian Center for Eastern Studies explained that, among other things, attacks on submarine cables, gas pipelines, railway traffic management systems or viruses attacking, for example, energy systems. In this way, in his opinion, the Kremlin may use escalation as a way to intimidate and attempt to further destabilize the internal situation in the Baltic states and Poland.

– Finally, it cannot be completely ruled out, although it is still an unlikely variant, that they may lead to a limited military operation – he predicted.

– Everyone imagines that this is some gigantic invasion for which the Russians will spend years preparing and rebuilding their armed forces in order to carry out such a massive invasion. It doesn’t have to happen this way at all. It may be a limited military operation aimed at seizing some part of the territory, threatening to use nuclear weapons and demanding negotiations on political agreements – said the PAP interlocutor.

Former NATO chief Anders Fogh Rasmussen on the “reason” why “we are also part of the war” in UkraineTVN24

Russia is not prepared for a massive invasion

Menkiszak emphasized that Russia is absolutely not ready to implement the scenario of a massive invasion at this point unless it uses nuclear weapons immediately. He noted that these are not the only scenarios that Kremlin leaders can use.

– Let’s remember that perception is important. It doesn’t even matter what the actual situation is. Russians believe that victory in the war is not determined solely by military skills. What matters is psychological advantage and political will. They believe that they have this will, and the Western side does not have this will. That we are afraid of this conflict, we are not ready for it and if a credible threat of such a conflict arises, we will be afraid of it and seek an agreement rather than respond to aggressive Russian actions, he said.

The OSW expert assessed that the moment the Russians, for example, come to the conclusion that the American guarantees under Article 5 of NATO cease to function, because USA comes Donald Trumpwhich – according to the Russians – may have completely different views on this matter, and even if it is a false assessment of the Russian Federation, it already creates a high risk that it will decide to take more aggressive action.

The White House reacts to Donald Trump's words.  It ensures NATO's unity

The White House reacts to Donald Trump’s words. It ensures NATO’s unityAnna CzerwiƄska/Fakty TVN

The West still has an advantage over Russia

Menkiszak noted that the West as a whole is supportive Ukraine, still has a serious advantage over Russia, technologically, economically, financially and even militarily. Therefore, in his opinion, it depends on political will and whether we realize what is at stake in this conflict, which “is not about some piece of Ukraine, but about the security order in Europe and the global order.” – This is the stake of this conflict – he added.

– If we mobilize, we will overcome certain procedural restrictions, we will establish a coalition of the willing, we will provide quick and decisive support to Ukraine when it comes to arms supplies and we will remove the restrictions that Ukrainians have on the use of weapons on Russian territory, we will tighten sanctions against Russia in these key elements affecting the energy sector – then in the coming years we have a chance to ensure that not only does Russia not win, but it loses the war in Ukraine – the expert predicted.

– And above all, it will not actually be able to take more serious, aggressive actions against us – he concluded.

Main photo source: Andrey Kryuchenko/Shutterstock

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