The Europeanization of foreign policy in the face of the Russian disinformation war
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Since 2014 a key development emerging from the crisis in Ukraine has been the extensive use of various disinformation and propaganda techniques used by Russia against not only Ukraine, but also against the European Union (EU) member states and the West in general. While such campaigns were gradually acknowledged in Berlin, Brussels, and Washington, the reactions of the EU and NATO came with a long delay. This article focuses on the institutional and political (re)actions of the EU to the Russian disinformation campaign against the European Union member states and Eastern neigh-borhood countries after the beginning of the Ukraine crisis in 2014. The key developments are the launch of a special Eastern StratCom Task Force within the EEAS as a completely new institutional formation, the adoption of the Action Plan for Strategic Communication, and the increased financial support for the European Endowment for Democracy. Tracing the EU collective response indicates that there was a decision of the member states to favor an EU-level solution over a solely national one in the foreign policy arena. This article argues that these developments are indicative of the Europeanization of the foreign policies of the member states, which is in itself a remarkable development given the altered European security environment.