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Palgrave Macmillan

Politics of Hybrid Warfare

The Remaking of Security in Czechia after 2014

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  • © 2023

Overview

  • Highlights how crisis, geopolitics, uncertainty and expertise are intertwined in the social construction of threats
  • Argues that the warification of social issues under the banner of fighting hybrid warfare is a self-defeating strategy
  • Presents an alternative strategy of democratic repoliticisation that strives to challenge the war-like mobilisation

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About this book

This is a first book-long analysis showing how the notion of ‘hybrid warfare’ was used to transform security policies and discourses in an EU/NATO country. Building on current debates in International Political Sociology, Critical Security Studies, and Critical Geopolitics, it provides a novel account of how crisis, geopolitics, uncertainty, and expertise are intertwined in the social construction of threats. Based on extensive and original empirical research of large textual archive and elite interviews in the Czech Republic and Brussels, the book shows how officials, bureaucrats, journalists, activists, and experts all participate in the reshaping of security in a new geopolitical environment. Zooming on the case of Czechia and its specific Central European context, it complements the predominantly Western-centric studies of insecurity with an account of how the liminal position on an East/West boundary influences security politics. As a first study of its kind and scope, it will be of interest to academics and students interested in Central European politics, practices and discourses of hybrid warfare, as well as critical approaches to security and geopolitics.

Keywords

Table of contents (7 chapters)

Reviews

This book offers a timely and trenchant addition to the vanguard of critical political thought in Central Europe. Reclaiming politics from the logic of war, the book provides a sobering cut into the political work of hybrid warfare discourse. With its theoretical sophistication and thick empirical embeddedness in the stories from the ‘in-between zone’ of Czechia, this is a must-read for untangling the lazy causality between the problems with Western democracies and Russian subversive actions.-Maria Mälksoo, University of Copenhagen

This book offers a much needed critical perspective on the discourses and practices of ‘hybrid warfare’ by innovatively mobilizing approaches from critical security studies and International Political Sociology. By centering the manifold societal processes and actors that are involved in constructing ‘hybrid’ threats, the authors re-politicize allegedly neutral and objective security debates and show how they can promote a war-mindset with far-reaching sociopolitical consequences. Moreover, through careful contextualization within distinct Central European (dis-)continuities, this important analysis furthers the agenda of de-centering security studies from a unique and hitherto underexplored positionality.

-Saskia Stachowitsch, Central European University


In Politics of Hybrid Warfare, Jakub Eberle and Jan Daniel confront the pressing questions of geopolitics and hybrid warfare in the 21st Century. Eberle and Daniel carefully unpick the politics of ‘hybrid warfare’ discourse, the positioning of its advocates, and the assemblages through which this notion has come to dominate our understandings of democracy, peace and war in modern Europe. They uncover how politics has been performed through discourses of hybrid warfare, in the Central European state of Czechia. This book is a must-read for any scholar set upon tackling the ambiguities of hybrid warfare, or understanding how international discourses permeate the domestic politics of European states.

-Charlotte Heath-Kelly, University of Warwick



Authors and Affiliations

  • Institute of International Relations, Prague, Czech Republic

    Jakub Eberle, Jan Daniel

About the authors

Jakub Eberle is Research Director and Senior Researcher at the Institute of International Relations Prague. He works on IR theory, Czech and German foreign policy, and politics of Central Europe. He is the author of Discourse and Affect in Foreign Policy: Germany and the Iraq War (2019).

 

Jan Daniel is Senior Researcher at the Institute of International Relations Prague. His research mostly draws on International Political Sociology and Critical Security and Peace Studies and focuses on politics of (in)security in Central Europe and the Middle East.

Bibliographic Information

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