Strategic Information Operations, an example

imageA friend sent an interesting book that I finally started: The Secret War Against Sweden: US and British Submarine Deception in the 1980s

From the introduction:

In modern democratic countries, political control is not easily achieved through military power or propaganda.  However, by the use of deception and psychological warfare, the public, political elite and local military forces may be deceived into supporting the policies of a major power.  Mass media is thus manipulated not by propaganda, but by deception.

...this book makes it clear that the United States and Britain ran a 'secret war' in Swedish waters to test Sweden's capability and will in the 1980s.  Within a couple of years, the number of Swedes perceiving the Soviet Union as a direct threat had increased from 5-10% in 1980 to 45% in 1983.  In the same period, the number of Swedes viewing the Soviets as unfriendly increased from 30% to more than 80%.

The primary purpose of the operations, the author argues, was not just to drive public opinion against the Soviet Union, but to discredit Swedish Prime Minister Olof Palme, a socialist who was already disliked by Swedish industrialists and military leaders when he was first prime minister in the 1970s, as well as the Reagan Administration.  The incidents began two weeks after Palme took office in 1982. 

Certainly an interesting read.

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