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The Daily Vertical: Putin's Next Target (Transcript)

  • Brian Whitmore

The views expressed in this commentary do not necessarily reflect the views of RFE/RL.

So intelligence officials recently announced that a Russian hacking group known as Fancy Bear launched a series of cyberattacks targeting political parties and government officials.

The attacks were aimed at manipulating an election, destabilizing a society, and damaging confidence in democratic institutions.

And if you think you know what I'm talking about, you're probably wrong.

Because I'm not talking about the CIA's allegations that Moscow attempted to influence the U.S. election through a series of hacks and leaks.

No, what I'm talking about is Germany, which will hold federal elections late next year and which is clearly Vladimir Putin's next target.

WATCH: Today's Daily Vertical

Germany, of course, knows what is coming.

It's watched Russia's non-kinetic guerrilla war on the West unfold over the past several years.

It's experienced disinformation campaigns like the fabricated allegations of sexual assault by migrants in the Lisa case earlier this year.

It's experienced hacking attacks on its government institutions and businesses.

Germany knows it is in the crosshairs.

Chancellor Angela Merkel has warned about it. The country's intelligence services have warned about it. And the German media has warned about it.

But the question remains: Will it matter?

Will a Kremlin attempt to meddle in an election succeed even when the target sees the attack coming a year in advance?

We'll soon see. And Germany is in for a wild ride in the coming year.

Keep telling me what you think on The Power Vertical's Twitter feed and on our Facebook page.

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