Zapad 2017 NATO Russia

Who's Afraid of Big, Bad Zapad?

Zapad 2017, a massive joint Russia-Belarus military exercise, begins Thursday. The exercise will take place in Belarus and Kaliningrad, near the borders of Poland and the Baltic states. Many NATO members are concerned. Yet, Predata signals show interest in the exercise varies by country.... Continue Reading

Russia Zapad Lithuania

As Zapad Looms, Lithuania Faces Russian Meddling Risk

With Zapad 2017, Russia's massive quadrennial military exercise, set to begin in Belarus September 14, a Predata anticipatory signal for Russian civil interference in Lithuania has spiked to its highest level in over a year. This means that during the exercise there is high risk of Russian non-military aggression against the Baltic nation -- such as fake news campaigns, website defacement, or other cyber operations. With NATO battlegroups deployed throughout the Baltic states to keep an eye on Z... Continue Reading

German Election Russia Russian Meddling Germany

Will Russian Meddling Affect the Outcome of the German Election?

A month before German federal elections scheduled for September 24, Predata noted that German interest in the election, as measured by engagement with election-related social and collaborative media sources, had been relatively muted throughout the summer. Not so in Russia. Heightened interest in the Russian-language versions of the same German election-related sources indicates that the Russian government, media and society have been closely following Europe's next big election for the past sev... Continue Reading

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Elections Russia Europe

Leçons du Passé: Understanding Russian Interference in the French Election

It would have been difficult to fault France watchers in the Kremlin for overconfidence in January 2017. François Fillon, the leading candidate in the polls at the time, was a long-time contact of Vladimir Putin. Polling second was the far-right candidate Marine Le Pen, whose National Front party ran on a platform of economic nationalism, repatriating power from Brussels, rapprochement with Moscow on Ukraine and Syria and rejecting immigration –all wish list items for Moscow. Trailing far behin... Continue Reading

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Russia New Zealand Election

The Global Macro Scoreboard: Under Jacinda, Labour Kiwis Can Fly

Under Jacinda, Labour Kiwis Can FlyInterest in New Zealand's general election, scheduled for September 23, topped the Scoreboard this week. The lead story continues to be Labour's comeback since Jacinda Ardern became party leader on July 31. The charismatic 37-year-old MP has electrified what was a predictable race expected to keep the National Party in government. Since Ardern took over, Labour has sustained a commanding lead over National in our digital campaign scores, suggesting the Jacinda ... Continue Reading

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Estonia Russia

With Estonian Local Elections Approaching, Russian Meddling May Intensify

Predata signals that anticipate non-military Russian interference in Estonia have risen to their highest levels since February, indicating heightened risk of Russian meddling in its Baltic neighbor in July. Interference operations may involve the lead-up to municipal elections in October or target Estonia's large ethnic Russian population, which has taken to the streets in the past to protest issues of Soviet historical memory, such as the relocation of a war memorial in the Bronze Night riots.... Continue Reading