West Must Do More To Counter Non-Military Threats, Experts Say

Experts say societies must be smarter in tackling cyber and non-traditional attacks.

Experts say western nations are not going far enough in resisting non-military threats.

A panel from the Royal United Services Institute (RUSI) says, with cyber and non-traditional attacks on the increase, societies must become more resilient.

RUSI held a one-day conference on deterrence and hopes to push for cooperation from the private sector.

Non-traditional, or 'grey zone' attacks refer to those which exist in the middle ground between war and peace.

The Sergei Skripal poisoning, allegedly by Russian agents, in Salisbury was an example of such threats.

Cyber attacks are among the threats on the increase (Picture: MOD).

Identifying these may be one thing, but taking steps to prevent or reduce their likelihood is another challenge.

Elisabeth Braw, Lead, RUSI Deterrence Project, said: "NATO and its allies rely very much on military deterrence, but when it comes to these other forms of aggression, our deterrence hasn't changed very much and that's what needs to happen, or otherwise they'll keep growing."

"With these forms of attacks, it's easier to bring in the rest of society because it's not some abstract concept of a military invasion, it's about power going down, it's about the internet not being available and I think we would all want to limit such situations," Elisabeth Braw added.

The conference brings into sharp focus the challenge posed by grey-zone conflicts.

Its conclusion is that no single nation is equipped to counter this threat on its own - going forward, international cooperation will be key, experts said.