Russian Hybrid War, Ukraine, and US policy



Liam Collins, West Point

Date and Time

February 21, 2019 1:30 PM - 3:00 PM


Open to the public.

No RSVP required


William J. Perry Conference Room
Encina Hall, Second Floor, Central, C231
616 Jane Stanford Way, Stanford, CA 94305

Abstract: This talk will discuss the evolution of Russian hybrid war and how the Russians executed it to perfection to seize Crimea. At the same time, it is important to understand some of the peculiarities of Ukraine to understand why the Russians are unlikely to have the same success elsewhere. The talk will describe internal balancing options that bordering nations can take to deter Russian aggression. Finally, the talk will also discuss the fits and formulation of U.S. policymaking with regards to Ukraine.


Speaker Bio: COL Liam Collins is the Director of the Modern War Institute and the Director of the Department Instruction at the United States Military Academy (USMA) at West Point. From 2016-2018, he also served Gen (ret.) Abizaid’s executive officer for his Secretary of Defense appointment as the Senior Defense Advisor to Ukraine, planning and executing meetings with senior Ukrainian and international officials to help reform Ukraine's defense establishment, and meetings with DoS, DoD, NSC, and HASC officials to inform and shape U.S. policy.

Previously, he served as the director of the Combating Terrorism Center (CTC) at West Point where he authored “The Abbottabad Documents: Bin Ladin’s Security Measures” and co-authored Letters from Abbottabad: Bin Ladin Sidelined?  both of which studied documents captured during the Abbottabad raid and released to the CTC. His work has been cited by the Assistant to the President for Homeland Security and Counterterrorism, the White House Press Secretary, The New York Times, the Associated Press, CNN, ABC News, Fox News, NPR, The Wall Street Journal and USA Today.

COL Collins is a career Special Forces officer, who has served in a variety of special operations assignments. He has conducted multiple operational deployments including Operational Nobile Anvil (Kosovo ’99), Operation Joint Forge (Bosnia ’00, ’02), Operation Enduring Freedom (Afghanistan ’01,’02,’11), Operation Iraqi Freedom (’03,’04) as well as operational deployments to South America and the Horn of Africa.

He holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering (Aerospace) from the United States Military Academy (1992), and a Master in Public Affairs and a PhD from Princeton University’s Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs.  He is also a graduate of the Army Command and General Staff College, the Special Forces Qualification Course, the Infantry Officer Advanced Course, and the Engineer Officer Basic Course.

COL Collins’ military awards and decorations include: Bronze Star Medal (with “V” device for valor and two oak leaf clusters), Defense Meritorious Service Medal (with oak leaf cluster), Meritorious Service Medal (with two oak leaf clusters), Joint Service Commendation Medal, Army Commendation Medal (with “V” device for valor and three oak leaf clusters), Army Achievement Medal (with four oak leaf clusters), Combat Infantryman’s Badge, Special Forces Tab, Ranger Tab, Sapper Tab, Military Free Fall Badge with Bronze Star (for combat jump), Master Parachutist Badge, and Air Assault Badge. He won the Army’s Best Ranger Competition in 2007 and was selected as the Army’s Coach of the Year in 2011.


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