Analysis

This listing contains all the analytical materials posted on the Russia Matters website. These include: RM Exclusives, commissioned by Russia Matters exclusively for this website; Recommended Reads, deemed particularly noteworthy by our editorial team; Partner Posts, originally published by our partners elsewhere; and Future Policy Leaders, pieces by promising young scholars and policy thinkers. Content can be filtered by genre and subject-specific criteria and is updated often. Gradually we will be adding older Recommended Reads and Partner Posts dating back as far as 2011.
article

Fact-Check: Is Russia's Economy 'Nuclear Weapons and Oil Wells and Nothing Else,' as Biden Claimed?

RM Staff December 28, 2021 RM Exclusives
The U.S. president’s July 2021 remarks about Russia’s economy may have been hyperbolic, but variations of the claim surface regularly and are not backed up by data.
article

Russia's Discouraging Demographics Shouldn't Change US Approach

Alexandra Vacroux December 21, 2021 RM Exclusives
The possibility that Russia might have fewer people and a smaller economy will not negate the fact that it is a nuclear superpower with unfriendly intent. What Russia becomes is less important than what Russia is willing to do.
article

Deeper US Engagement with Uzbekistan Stymied by Changing US Priorities, Russian Wariness

Scott Radnitz October 26, 2021 RM Exclusives
After a long hiatus, Uzbekistan is back on America's radar, but any U.S. reengagement with Uzbekistan is likely to be short-lived and superficial.
article

30 Years After End of Soviet Union, Its Main Lesson for Russia Remains ‘Reform or Else'

Sergei Guriev August 31, 2021 RM Exclusives
Rapid economic growth requires reforms; reforms frighten entrenched elites; lack of economic growth will eventually force the regime to change—though whether this means more democratization or more repressiveness remains to be seen.
article

Five Years After Russia Declared Victory in Syria: What Has Been Won?

Thomas Schaffner March 18, 2021 RM Exclusives
Has the intervention paid off or has Obama’s 2015 prediction that the operation would end in a “quagmire” for Russia come true? An assessment of some key costs and benefits generated by Russia’s intervention in Syria.
article

A Look at the Military Lessons of the Nagorno-Karabakh Conflict

Michael Kofman December 14, 2020 RM Exclusives
The implications of the conflict continue to reverberate well outside the region given its potential significance for regional and great powers alike, while further spurring debates on the character of modern warfare.
article

Opportunities in Ukraine Too Limited to Provide White Supremacists With Military Training

Huseyn Aliyev November 12, 2020 RM Exclusives
Ukraine is likely to serve as a hypothetical “dreamland” for foreign white supremacists. However, the likelihood of international far-right visitors acquiring actual military training or battlefield experience is minimal.  
article

Armenia-Azerbaijan War: Military Dimensions of the Conflict

Michael Kofman October 02, 2020 RM Exclusives
This large scale conventional war between the two countries is likely to upend the status quo of territorial control in the region.
article

US Should Keep an Eye on Rising Chinese Investment in the South Caucasus

Daniel Shapiro October 01, 2020 RM Exclusives
The recent flare-up of hostilities between Armenia and Azerbaijan has turned global attention to the South Caucasus, but increased Chinese presence in this strategically sensitive region means U.S. policymakers shouldn't look away when tensions ease.
article

How Improved US-Russian Relations Could Weaken Putin’s Case for Remaining in Kremlin Until 2036

Paul Saunders July 08, 2020 RM Exclusives
A more nuanced understanding of Putin’s possible motives for the amendments to Russia's constitution—and how the U.S. could shape them in its policy toward Russia—could facilitate Russia’s leadership transition rather than hinder it.
article

Unplugging the Baltic States: Why Russia’s Economic Approach May Be Shifting

Emily Ferris July 01, 2020 RM Exclusives
The probability of Russia resorting to a Crimea-style intervention in the Baltics remains low. As a key energy supplier and major trading partner for the region, Russia has more to gain by using economic levers as opposed to military ones to retain influence.
article

Russia’s Constitutional Amendments Keep Several Futures Open for Putin

Marlene Laruelle June 25, 2020 RM Exclusives
The aim of the amendments is to keep Putin’s—and Russia's—portfolio of possibilities as wide as possible while reinforcing Russia’s sovereignty from the international scene and the country’s self-reliance.