Vilnius Security Forum 2019

(dedicated to NATO 70th anniversary)

Western Readiness to Answer Russia’s Hybrid Warfare

Hall of the Conferences (219 c) III palace

Parliament of Lithuania, III Palace, Gedimino Ave 53 Vilnius

22 March 2019




08:15 - 09:00 Registration

III Palace (ID required)

-Welcome coffee

09:00 – 09:05 Welcoming remarks


Mr. Vytautas BAKAS, Member of the Seimas, Chairman of the Committee on National Security and Defence (Lithuania)


09:05 – 09:45 Key note speakers


Mr. Linas LINKEVIČIUS Minister of Foreign Affairs (Lithuania)

09:45 - 10:45 Panel discussion


The Future of the NATO transatlantic relations


Dr. Margarita ŠEŠELGYTĖ, Institute of International Relations and Political Science, Studies Director (Lithuania)



Lieutenant General (Ret.) Ben HODGES, Center for European Policy Analysis (CEPA), Expert, Former Commander of United States Army Europe (USA)

Mr. Arnoldas PRANCKEVIČIUS, The European Commission Representative in Lithuania, Head of the Representative Office

Dr. Christian MÖLLING, German Council on Foreign Relations (DGAP)

Mr. Dmytro KHRYSTOFOROV, Ministry of Defence, Deputy Director of the Department of Military Policy, Strategic Planning and International Cooperation, Ukraine

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COL (ret) Vaidotas Malinionis


Benjamin Franklin’s admonition that “we must indeed all hang together, or most assuredly we shall all hang separately” was insightful during the American Revolution and is relevant today for Western democracies facing both Hybrid Threats* and the possibility of conventional military conflict. However, to mitigate future threats the Baltic States and Poland have to find agreement upon a regional common long term Defence Strategy. This would guaranty full utilization of NATO strategic depth via the establishment of long-term development goals, consistent budgeting, and regional interoperability of military and nonmilitary sectors at all levels.

It has already been fourteen years since the Baltic States joined NATO, but a difficult and challenging path for defence systems development in each state has complicated improvement of interoperability between even these closest of neighbors. This gap has frustrated efforts to leverage greater advantage of NATO membership for effective and efficient national self defence. This situation must be seriously evaluated and addressed for improved national and regional defence.

All young officers who are studying military tactics are familiar with the importance of identifying and mitigating the risks of “gaps” between units (platoons, companies, battalions). An adversary is always eager to identify these gaps and exploit them. Gaps are less protected, coordinated and defended areas – they can make the difference between defeat and victory on the battlefield. Gaps are always a potential weak point, especially if one is ill prepared for the fight. This principle works for units at every level and is equally valid for the national level of NATO countries.

Building the Defence System in Baltics

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