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

The Russian Military is Facing a Looming Demography Crisis

Ethan Woolley February 01, 2021 Recommended Reads
When the Soviet Union collapsed in 1991, the newly formed Russian Federation’s demography essentially walked off a cliff.
article

Stay Out of the Regime Change Business

Benjamin Denison June 16, 2020 Recommended Reads
Pursuing short-term wins through covert regime change may ultimately undermine U.S. foreign policy.
article

Groupthink Resurgent

George Beebe December 22, 2019 Recommended Reads
As our debacles in Vietnam and Iraq demonstrate, expert consensus is not always a recipe for success. Perhaps it should come as no surprise that American policy toward Ukraine has also been steeped in illusions.
article

What Cheese can Tell us About US-Russia Relations

Stephen Kinzer September 19, 2019 Recommended Reads
While traveling across Russia, Kinzer noted that “[t]he quality of Russian life has risen along with the quality of its cheese. Russians have decided to go their own way and not worry too much about us. We should return the favor.”
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How to Enlarge NATO: The Debate Inside the Clinton Administration, 1993–95

Mary Elise Sarotte July 29, 2019 Recommended Reads
Pleas from Central and Eastern European leaders, missteps by Russian President Boris Yeltsin and victory by the pro-expansion Republican Party in the 1994 U.S. congressional election all helped advocates of full-membership enlargement to win.
research paper

Russia’s Military Posture in the Arctic: Managing Hard Power in a ‘Low Tension’ Environment

Mathieu Boulègue June 28, 2019 Recommended Reads
If Moscow is indeed militarizing the Russian Arctic, the military build-up and the Kremlin’s intentions are, at least for now, defensive in nature.
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Can Washington and Moscow Agree to Limit Political Interference?

Samuel Charap and Ivan Timofeev June 13, 2019 Recommended Reads
The concept of elaborating norms of non-interference on a mutual basis might be the best way to stabilize U.S.-Russian relations and prevent the damaging episodes of recent years from happening again.
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The Helsinki Summit: A Good Idea Turns Bad

George Beebe July 19, 2018 Recommended Reads
Expectations for the Helsinki summit were low, but the U.S. and Russia still managed to sail their listing bilateral ship directly into the rocks of the Russian cyber-meddling controversy.
issue brief

The Durability of Russian Military Power: Moscow’s Prospects for Sustaining Direct Competition

Michael Kofman May 25, 2018 Recommended Reads
Russia's success in restoring its military power gives it greater leverage on the international stage, and Moscow is increasingly using this threat of force to underwrite its foreign policy.
article

Yes, It Is a New Cold War. What Is To Be Done?

Raymond Smith April 25, 2018 Recommended Reads
Isolating Russia isn't the answer to avoiding the destabilizing effects of Russia turning to alternative alliances with countries like Syria and Iran.
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Competitive Strategies Against Russia Are Seductive, Dangerous and Unnecessary

Joshua Rovner April 16, 2018 Recommended Reads
The U.S. should resist the temptation to spook Russia into self-defeating policies that could just as easily result in unintended confrontation.
article

Has a New Cold War Really Begun? Why the Term Shouldn't Apply to Today's Great-Power Tensions

Odd Arne Westad March 27, 2018 Recommended Reads
The international affairs of today are no longer rooted in the absolutes of the Cold War. The world has moved beyond bipolarity and the centrality of ideology.