Russia’s Hybrid War against the Democratic World

The Institute for the Study of Totalitarian Regimes, The Office of the Government of the Czech Republic, the Platform of European Memory and Conscience and the XXth Century Memorial Museum are organizing a conference entitled Russia’s Hybrid War Against the Democratic World. A Challenge for European Remembrance Policy, which will be held in the Liechtenstein Palace in Prague on 16-18 November, on the 33rd anniversary of the Velvet Revolution in former Czechoslovakia.

The event will be attended by several dozen representatives of memory institutions and organizations from more than two dozen countries in Europe and North America associated in the Platform of European Memory and Conscience and a number of other invited speakers from the ranks of politicians, journalists, European institutions and activists. Those who do not know their own history are forced to repeat it. Today it is fully demonstrated that the so-called revisionism of totalitarian regimes can have tragic consequences, as confirmed by the Russian aggression against the sovereign Ukrainian nation, which was justified by a campaign against local ´fascism´, says Ladislav Kudrna, director of the Institute for the Study of Totalitarian Regimes. The conference will focus on contemporary Russian hybrid threats, with particular attention to the area of falsification of 20th century history, the creation of myths, etc. as a tool of disinformation warfare, their significance in light of the current military invasion of the Russian Federation in Ukraine and as a challenge to the international community in the field of memory policy.

The conference is held as an important accompanying event of the Czech Presidency of the Council of the European Union. It will be attended by the President of Lithuania, Mr. Gitanas Nausėda, the National Leader of Belarus, Ms. Sviatlana Tsikhanouska and the Prime Minister of the Czech Republic, Mr. Petr Fiala. He says: „Disinformation and hybrid threats are nothing new in history, but Europe and the whole world are facing them now more than ever in the light of Russia’s aggression in Ukraine. It is good that there are memory institutions that have mapped the history of these threats and that events like this are taking place. It is precisely the debate on the history of hybrid threats and their evolution that can help us to better find ways to effectively counter them. I am glad that the conference is being held under the Czech Presidency, in a country that has its own experience of totalitarian regimes”.

The opening of the conference will be accompanied by the launch of a Lithuanian exhibition entitled “Under the Alien Skies: Lithuanians in Soviet Forced Labour Camps and Exile 1940-1958”. The Prize of the Platform of European Memory and Conscience for teh year 2021 will be awarded at a gala evening on 16 November. On the occasion of the conference, member organisations will also decide on the readmission of the Institute for the Study of Totalitarian Regimes to the Platform of European Memory and Conscience, which the Institute helped to found and which it left under its previous leadership.