14 photos that show how Finland is preparing for a Russian hybrid war

Finland is facing the possibility that Russia will eventually come for some of its territory like it seized South Ossetia from Georgia and Crimea and sections of Donbass from Ukraine.

To prepare for their own possible conflict, the Finnish armed forces and other agencies are holding exercises to prepare for Putin’s hybrid warfare.

Russia’s forays into Ukraine and, to a lesser extent, Georgia, relied on cyber warfare, special operations forces, and an aggressive information campaign.

But Europe has gotten to see Russia’s playbook in action, and Petri Mäkelä of Medium.com reports that Finland is preparing to counter it with everything from their own special operators to firefighters and airport administrators.

In 14 photos, here’s how Finland is doing it:

1. First, by looking cool as they run through smoke. (Ok, that’s probably not the training objective, but come on, this looks cool.)

Finnish-Army-finland-shadow-war-training-hybrid-war-russia

(Photo: FaceBook/The Finnish Army)

2. Finland held three major training events in March, each of which required that federal and local security forces worked together to counter specific threats.

Finnish-Army-finland-shadow-war-training-hybrid-war-russia

(Photo: FaceBook/The Finnish Army)

3. For instance, response teams converged on an airport that was under simulated attack, seeking to eliminate the threat as quickly and safely as possible.

Finnish-Army-finland-shadow-war-training-hybrid-war-russia

(Photo: FaceBook/The Finnish Army)

4. This allowed security forces to practice operating in the high-stress environment and also allowed administrators to see how they can best set up their operations to keep passengers safe in an attack.

Finnish-Army-finland-shadow-war-training-hybrid-war-russia

(Photo: FaceBook/The Finnish Army)

5. The exercises required soldiers and police to fight everything from angry individuals to enemy sniper and machine gun teams.

Finnish-Army-finland-shadow-war-training-hybrid-war-russia

(Photo: FaceBook/The Finnish Army)

6. Of course, no training exercise is complete without practicing how to treat the wounded.

Finnish-Army-finland-shadow-war-training-hybrid-war-russia

(Photo: FaceBook/The Finnish Army)

7. That’s where the firefighters and paramedics got involved.

Finnish-Army-finland-shadow-war-training-hybrid-war-russia

(Photo: FaceBook/The Finnish Army)

8. In field hospitals, medical professionals treated simulated injuries sustained in the fighting.

Finnish-Army-finland-shadow-war-training-hybrid-war-russia

(Photo: FaceBook/The Finnish Army)

9. Police forces assisted in re-establishing order and protecting the local populace.

Finnish-Army-finland-shadow-war-training-hybrid-war-russia

(Photo: FaceBook/The Finnish Army)

10. But the exercises also allowed the military to practice conventional operations.

Finnish-Army-finland-shadow-war-training-hybrid-war-russia

(Photo: FaceBook/The Finnish Army)

11. Finnish forces took on enemy elements in the woods and snow.

Finnish-Army-finland-shadow-war-training-hybrid-war-russia

(Photo: FaceBook/The Finnish Army)

12. Helicopters ferried troops to different areas. They also helped move reservists, police, and other first responders when necessary.

Finnish-Army-finland-shadow-war-training-hybrid-war-russia

(Photo: FaceBook/The Finnish Army)

13. The conventional exercises included some pretty awesome weaponry.

Finnish-Army-finland-shadow-war-training-hybrid-war-russia

(Photo: FaceBook/The Finnish Army)

14. Of course, even with increased conscription, new equipment, and tailored training, Finland would face a tough fight with Russia. The Russian military is one of the largest in the world and it has been training for this and other fights.

Finnish-Army-finland-shadow-war-training-hybrid-war-russia

(Photo: FaceBook/The Finnish Army)

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