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.
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The Shanghai Cooperation Organization: Development Hampered by Internal Conflicts

Lucie Messy October 29, 2020 RM Exclusives
While the capabilities of individual SCO members, such as China and Russia, pose a challenge to Western countries’ interests, due to internal challenges and a loose organizational structure, the organization itself does not.
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Why Russia’s Alliance With China is Improbable, But Not Impossible

Simon Saradzhyan September 21, 2020 Partner Posts
The relationship between China and Russia is getting stronger by the hour. While some might say that Russia and China are in a de facto non-aggression pact, a deeper alliance is still unlikely, though not impossible.
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In Russia’s Shadow: China’s Rising Security Presence in Central Asia

Bradley Jardine and Edward Lemon May 01, 2020 Recommended Reads
Both Russia and China seek to expand their influence in Central Asia. Russia may have a strategic edge in the region for now, but the gap is closing.
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The Paradox of American Russophobia

Sean Guillory July 03, 2019 Recommended Reads
The Russian government’s use of Russophobia to chastise critics is nothing new, but this doesn’t mean Russophobia doesn’t exist. It’s a way of “displacing an internal conflict to an external object symbolically related to the conflict.”
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The US, Not Russia Is the New Spoiler in the Arctic

Elizabeth Buchanan May 15, 2019 Recommended Reads
While Pompeo delivered a doomsday sermon on the region becoming an "arena for power and for competition," Lavrov articulated the need for "deeper state-to-state cooperation."
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Not All Is Quiet On the Arctic Front

Elizabeth Buchanan March 25, 2019 Recommended Reads
2019 presents four clear windows for increased competition in the Arctic.
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How Not to Compete in the Arctic: The Blurry Lines Between Friend and Foe

Stephanie Pezard February 27, 2019 Recommended Reads
Recent U.S. strategic documents portray Russia as a competitor of the United States and an unambiguous rival. Yet in the Arctic, Russia is also a neighbor with whom trivial matters need to be discussed and de-conflicted before they become nontrivial.
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A Sino-Russian Entente Again Threatens America

Graham Allison and Dimitri Simes January 29, 2019 Recommended Reads
U.S. policy could soon make a 'grand coalition' of China and Russia a geostrategic reality.
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Russian Nuclear Forces: Buildup or Modernization?

Hans M. Kristensen September 14, 2017 RM Exclusives
Russia is not increasing its nuclear arsenal, though some commentators keep saying it is. What's important, however, is to monitor how Russia is modernizing its strategic nuclear forces.
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Russian Military Buildup in the West: Fact Versus Fiction

Michael Kofman September 07, 2017 RM Exclusives
Until 2014 Russia was largely cutting the number of troops on NATO's borders to move them elsewhere. The war with Ukraine changed that, reawakening Moscow to the possibility of a large-scale war on its western front.
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The Russian Defense Budget and You

Michael Kofman March 17, 2017 Recommended Reads
Russia's 2017 defense budget is smaller than last year's, but the reduction is not quite as drastic as some interpretations indicate.
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Russia, Trump and a New Détente: Fixing US-Russian Relations

Robert David English March 10, 2017 Recommended Reads
Demonizing Russia only widens the gulf of U.S.-Russian misunderstanding and encourages dangerous misconceptions.