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Security Brief: EUCOM Week of April 3, 2022

April 3 - 6, 2022 | Issue 2

Benjamin Brooks, Martyna Dobrowolska, Pètra van de Gevel, EUCOM Team

Alessandra Ciffo, Editor; Demetrios Giannakaris, Senior Editor

Marine Le Pen[1]

Date: April 4, 2022

Location: France

Parties involved: French population; Candidate for French Presidency Marine Le Pen; French President Emmanuel Macron; French immigrant population; Muslim communities in France; French government; France; Far-right groups;

The event: Le Pen gained popularity amid this month’s French presidential election as she received 47% of the votes during the second-round final poll against Macron’s 53%. Le Pen’s campaign is focused on the growing insecurity and crime in France, which she links to immigration and Islamism. Despite increasing gas prices due to the Russia-Ukraine war, she assured more welfare benefits.[2]

Analysis & Implications:

  • Anti-immigration and islamophobia will very likely enter French mainstream political discourse if Le Pen wins the presidential election on April 10, 2022, likely increasing verbal and physical assaults against immigrants and Muslim communities. These communities and citizens with political beliefs different from the government will very likely protest against the ruling party, likely gathering in front of government buildings or police stations. This will very likely increase the levels of insecurity in France as demonstrations will very likely result in clashes between protesters and the police.

  • A far-right government will very likely increase the presence of far-right groups in France, likely spreading the belief that Muslim communities pose a threat to French security. Ethnic conflicts between Muslim communities and far-right groups will very likely develop. Increased nationalism in France will likely lead to increased terrorist activity, likely resulting in attacks against the government and civilians.

Date: April 4, 2022

Location: Ukraine

Parties involved: Russia; Russian prisoners of war (POW); Ukraine; Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky; Ukrainian government; Citizens of Bucha; British Military Intelligence; US officials; EU; NATO; Foreign and domestic fighters; The Mediterranean; UK; USA

The event: According to US and Ukrainian officials, and British military intelligence, the Ukrainian port city of Mariupol has been experiencing heavy fighting as Russia has shifted its military focus to the southern and eastern parts of Ukraine, closer to the Black Sea. Despite peace talks between Russia and Ukraine, Russia has allegedly committed war crimes in the Ukrainian town of Bucha, which has led to global outrage. Ukraine reported that after Russia retreated from Bucha, they found mass graves and 50 civilians dead.[3]

Analysis & Implications:

  • Russian military operations in eastern and southern Ukraine will very likely continue as Russia likely wants to build a land bridge from Russia to Crimea. Controlling Ukrainian port cities will likely allow Russia to build and deploy naval assets and undertake defensive military training operations against NATO. Russia likely has a strategic interest in gaining warm water ports in the Black Sea as it will very likely allow them to further expand their military and economic interests through access to the Mediterranean.

  • The peace talks are very likely to be unsuccessful due to the alleged violence in Bucha. The Ukrainian government will almost certainly call for further European sanctions against Russia for the civilian casualties. The alleged war crimes in Bucha will very likely increase domestic and foreign fighter support for the Ukrainian military. This will likely intensify resistance against Russian forces, with a roughly even chance of mistreatment of Russian POW.


The Counterterrorism Group (CTG)

[2] The rise and rise of France’s far-right Marine Le Pen, The Guardian, April 2022,

[3] Russia likely to shift tactics, send thousands of soldiers to eastern Ukraine, U.S. says, Reuters, April 2022,



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