10 episodes

What do assassinations, cyber hacks and disinformation have in common? They’re all weapons used by states against each other in a grey zone of harm that sits - deliberately - under the threshold of war, but could be just as dangerous if ignored.

Sky News Foreign Affairs Editor Deborah Haynes explores this often invisible battlefield, where anything can be - and is - used as a weapon and anyone, anywhere can be a target.

Into The Grey Zon‪e‬ Sky News

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    • 3.7 • 12 Ratings

What do assassinations, cyber hacks and disinformation have in common? They’re all weapons used by states against each other in a grey zone of harm that sits - deliberately - under the threshold of war, but could be just as dangerous if ignored.

Sky News Foreign Affairs Editor Deborah Haynes explores this often invisible battlefield, where anything can be - and is - used as a weapon and anyone, anywhere can be a target.

    Episode Nine: Living in the Grey Zone - MI5 and the Russia threat

    Episode Nine: Living in the Grey Zone - MI5 and the Russia threat

    In this final episode, we have the first ever interview with serving MI5 officers who work in counter intelligence.

    Tom and Kate talk about the challenge of grey zone threats from Russia and reveal their shock at the Salisbury spy poisonings.

    They also reveal that the Security Service has bolstered protection for people in the UK deemed at risk from Russia and is doing “everything we can” to prevent another Salisbury-style attack, but there are no “absolute guarantees” – in the grey zone.

    Guests:
    Tom, senior MI5 intelligence officer working on Russia
    Kate, MI5 intelligence officer investigating the activities of Russia’s military intelligence agency, the GRU
    Lord Mark Sedwill, former UK national security adviser
    Dominic Grieve, former senior Conservative MP, former chair of Parliament’s Intelligence and Security Committee, former attorney general

    Credits:
    Written and narrated by Deborah Haynes
    Edited and produced by Chris Scott
    Production support from Sophia McBide and Michael Greenfield
    The Head of Sky News Radio is Dave Terris

    • 50 min
    Episode Eight: When The Grey Zone Becomes A War Zone

    Episode Eight: When The Grey Zone Becomes A War Zone

    What happens when the grey zone becomes a war zone and what might future wars look like, with hypersonic missiles, artificial intelligence and cyber changing calculations?

    These are questions Sky News journalist Deborah Haynes explores in this episode, in part, by looking at Russia’s annexation of Crimea and the conflict in eastern Ukraine.

    She also talks to General Sir Nick Carter, the head of Britain’s armed forces, about what he thinks is the gravest threat to the UK and about how the military is adapting to operate in the grey zone.

    Guests:
    General Sir Nick Carter, Chief of the Defence Staff
    General Sir Richard Barrons, former head of Joint Command, now Strategic Command
    Emine Dzhaparova , First Deputy Foreign Minister of Ukraine
    Sergei Markov, political scientist and former member of the Russian parliament
    Keir Giles, senior consulting fellow at Chatham House
    Orysia Lutsevych, head and research fellow, Ukraine Forum, Russia and Eurasia Programme, Chatham House

    Credits:
    Written and narrated by Deborah Haynes
    Edited and produced by Chris Scott
    Production support from Sophia McBide and Michael Greenfield
    The Head of Sky News Radio is Dave Terris

    • 43 min
    Episode Seven: A Battle of Values

    Episode Seven: A Battle of Values

    This episode explores a global battle of values between China and leading democracies over issues like Hong Kong, Taiwan and Xinjiang.

    It’s being fought with an array of covert weapons, from cyber attacks and information operations to economic coercion and even something called “lawfare”.

    Allegations of such behaviour are made and denied by both sides, which of course is to be expected - in the grey zone.

    Guests:
    Tom Tugendhat, Conservative MP, chair of the Foreign Affairs Committee
    Matthew Turpin, visiting fellow, Hoover Institution
    Charlie Parton, former British diplomat, senior fellow at the Royal United Services Institute
    Dr Shi Yinhong, Director of the Academic Committee of the School of International Studies and US Research Center of Renmin University in Beijing
    Nathan Law, pro-democracy activist from Hong Kong
    Julie Marionneau, research fellow, Policy Exchange
    Freddy Lim, Taiwanese politician, lead singer of heavy-metal band Chthonic
    Alexander Downer, former Australian foreign minister
    Puma Shen, assistant professor at National Taipei University
    Chinese embassy in London – via email statement

    Credits:
    Written and narrated by Deborah Haynes
    Edited and produced by Chris Scott
    Production support from Michael Greenfield
    The head of Sky News Radio is Dave Terris

    • 46 min
    Episode Six: The Hidden Hand

    Episode Six: The Hidden Hand

    On 3 January 2020, the United States killed Iran’s top spy master, Major General Qasem Soleimani, in a drone strike in Iraq.

    There was nothing grey or ambiguous about the assassination, but this episode explores the escalating grey zone hostilities between Iran and the United States in the preceding years and how they almost ignited a real war.

    Sky News journalist Deborah Haynes explores in particular how Iran allegedly uses proxy forces in the grey zone, under the threshold of war, to try to level the playing field when competing with a super power.

    Interviews:
    General David Petraeus, former director of the Central Intelligence Agency
    John Raine, Senior Adviser for Geopolitical Due Diligence, International Institute for Strategic Studies
    Anne-Marie Trevelyan, Conservative MP and former UK defence minister. She now serves as energy minister
    Fabian Picardo, Chief Minister of Gibraltar
    Anonymous Iraqi MP
    Seyed Mohammad Marandi, Professor of English Literature and Orientalism, University of Tehran
    Major General Amos Yadlin, a former chief of Israel’s Military Intelligence Directorate

    Credits:
    Written and narrated by Deborah Haynes
    Edited and produced by Chris Scott
    Production support from Michael Greenfield
    The head of Sky News Radio is Dave Terris

    • 40 min
    Episode Five: Cyber Power (Part II) - Hacking ISIS

    Episode Five: Cyber Power (Part II) - Hacking ISIS

    In their first joint interview, the director of the UK spy agency GCHQ and the top general in charge of cyber operations for the military talk about how the UK is using the power of cyber to push back against adversaries with the creation of a whole new National Cyber Force.

    Jeremy Fleming and General Sir Patrick Sanders also reveal new details about how the UK used offensive cyber in the fight against Islamic State, attacking the terrorist group’s ability to fly drones, use their mobile phones and spread online propaganda.

    We also hear from a woman who was once described as the UK’s best offensive cyber spy.

    Sally Walker has since left GCHQ and says she is choosing to speak out – now she’s once again a member of the public – to help generate a wider debate about the cyber grey zone.

    Interviews:
    Jeremy Fleming, director of GCHQ
    General Sir Patrick Sanders, commander of Strategic Command
    Sally Walker, cyber expert
    Tobias Elwood, Conservative MP, chair of the defence select committee and former foreign officer and defence minister

    Credits:
    Written and narrated by Deborah Haynes
    Edited and produced by Chris Scott
    Production support from Michael Greenfield
    The head of Sky News Radio is Dave Terris

    • 50 min
    Episode Four: Cyber Power (Part I) - Cyber Pearl Harbour

    Episode Four: Cyber Power (Part I) - Cyber Pearl Harbour

    States, criminals and terrorists all use cyber to attack each other in the grey zone. It puts anyone with a computer in the firing line, but also means that anyone who understands computers has the ability to fight back.

    This episode explores a range of cyber threats from espionage up to attacks that cause physical harm, such as by targeting hospitals or electricity supplies.

    Sky News journalist Deborah Haynes also speaks to a young computer expert called Marcus Hutchins who helped to stop one of the worst known cyber attacks to hit the UK.

    The National Health Service was one of the main victims of the May 2017 WannaCry attack, blamed on North Korea. Pyongyang has denied involvement.

    Interviews:
    Ciaran Martin, former chief executive of the National Cyber Security Centre
    Paul Chichester, director of operations at the National Cyber Security Centre
    Marietje Schaake, international director of policy at Stanford’s Cyber Policy Centre
    Harold Thimbleby, professor of computer science at Swansea University
    Marcus Hutchins, computer security expert

    Credits:
    Written and narrated by Deborah Haynes
    Edited and produced by Chris Scott
    Production support from Sophia McBride and Michael Greenfield
    The head of Sky News Radio is Dave Terris

    • 42 min

Customer Reviews

3.7 out of 5
12 Ratings

12 Ratings

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