Russian ultra-nationalists wave Russian Empire’s black-yellow-white flags in Moscow in 2012.
KIRILL KUDRYAVTSEV/AFP via Getty Images
As Russia’s Ukraine invasion stalls, the Kremlin could call on militant groups to foment violence in the West, experts warn.
A former US intelligence official warned of a likely bid by Russia to stir “political violence.”
Two Russian groups currently fighting in Ukraine have ties to far-right groups in the US and Western Europe.
A steady supply of Western weapons has enabled Ukraine’s outnumbered military to hold back Russian forces and inflict thousands of casualties during the ongoing war.
But experts are increasingly concerned that as Russia’s invasion stalls, the Kremlin could choose to retaliate against the West not just through economic and diplomatic means, but also by inciting violent attacks at the heart of the NATO alliance.
The tool it could seek to exploit is a network of neo-Nazi and white supremacist groups in Russia, Western Europe, and the US with which it has cultivated ties for decades.
“They’ve done that before in much of Europe and I would not be surprised if they are doing that today — trying to get their intelligence services at the right moment to get these groups agitated,” Chris Chivvis, who served as the National Security Council’s intelligence officer for Europe from 2018 to 2021, told Insider.
He warned of a likely effort to stir “political unrest, political violence” and “get these groups agitated to achieve political effects in countries in Europe, and possibly the United States.”
Russia’s embassies in London and Washington, DC, did not reply to Insider’s request for comment. Insider was unable to contact the groups mentioned in this story due to the secretive nature of their operations.
Neo-Nazi militants fight alongside Russian forces in Ukraine
The Kremlin has sought to portray its Ukraine invasion as a bid to “denazify” the country. But analysts …read more
Source:: Business Insider