Canada Hosting Cognitive Warfare Event for NATO
Throughout the month of November Canada’s Department of National Defence (DND) through its Special Operations Command is hosting a NATO Innovation Challenge called “The Invisible Threat: Countering Cognitive Warfare.” It is described as a pitch-style event aimed at “non-traditional innovative thinkers from across all 30 NATO member nations to showcase ways of securing the cognitive domain against attacks,” with international visibility and money prizes going to the winners.
DND’s ad for the NATO event says that “Cognitive warfare seeks to change not only what people think, but also how they act. Attacks against the cognitive domain involve the integration of cyber, disinformation/misinformation, psychological, and social-engineering capabilities…. Cognitive warfare positions the mind as a battle space and contested domain. Its objective is to sow dissonance, instigate conflicting narratives, polarize opinion, and radicalize groups. Cognitive warfare can motivate people to act in ways that can disrupt or fragment an otherwise cohesive society. Ensuing disorder can influence decision-making, change ideologies, and generate distrust among Allies.”
NATO’s claim that its interest in what it calls cognitive warfare is about defending against the evil things its enemies do to attack the minds of citizens of its member countries and allies should be viewed in the same vein as all the dishonest claims of the U.S. about its involvement with biological, chemical and other forms of warfare prohibited under international law being strictly defensive — to counter its enemies’ use of such weapons, not use them offensively itself.
The demand for Canada to get out of NATO and for NATO to be dismantled is just. This discussion cannot be banned from the political discourse in our country.