What have we learnt from the war in Georgia? That is the question addressed in one of the first more comprehensive reports of the recent war between Russia and Georgia. As the war gives credibility to those claiming that we are on the verge of a New Cold War, there is also a time for analysis. The pursuit of knowledge is preferrable to a mere show of arms and empty rhetorics. The stakes may simply be too high to risk such a gamble at this point.
On Monday morning, the Swedish Defence Research Agency (FOI) will present one of the first more comprehensive analyses of the recent war in Georgia at a press seminar in Stockholm. With contributions from 14 analysts of different specialities, the report offers a variety of approaches to the conflict, and how it affects the European security order.
To what extent does the war set the framework for future security policy? What are the challenges for the EU? To what extent will it cause changes in the European security structure? What effects on world economy can we expect? Which are the lessons learnt from the Russian military offensive? These are but a few questions addressed by the study.
As a contributor myself, I deal with - what is loosely called - the information war or rather "cyberwar", viz. the alleged coincidence of an armed conflict with a massive attack over the Internet. Some of the views presented in this part, will hopefully be interesting to and put things in a wider perspective for prospective readers. I thus welcome any feedback, though access is limited to a Swedish readership.
The report in full will be accessible for purchase or download from the FOI website as of noon (GMT+1) on Monday. I hope it will contribute to a nuanced picture of the war and present perspectives that may guide political decision-makers, the media, and an interested general public in their views of the war and its real and potential consequences.