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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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.
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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.
Competing Views on Russia

2020 US Presidential Candidates on Russia: What Have They Said So Far?

Daniel Shapiro, Thomas Schaffner and Angelina Flood March 17, 2020 RM Exclusives
Updated! With the primaries underway, it is worth remembering what the candidates have said about their would-be Russia policies if elected. (Originally published May 23, 2019.)
Competing Views on Russia

John Mearsheimer on Russia: Insights and Recommendations

Thomas Schaffner September 26, 2019 RM Exclusives
When Americans find their domestic politics the target of foreign interference, "they become deeply committed to the principle of self-determination." Not surprisingly, writes leading American international relations scholar John Mearsheimer, "so do the Russians."
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Russia and China Are Outwitting America

Vance Serchuk April 10, 2019 Recommended Reads
American politicians frame the current world order as China, Russia, and the United States locked in a 'great-power competition.' However, by restricting their definition of this rivalry to a race for technological prowess, U.S. national security experts increase the possibility of an inadvertent escalation to war.
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A Brotherly Takeover: Could Russia Annex Belarus?

Artyom Shraibman January 29, 2019 Recommended Reads
As the Kremlin pushes for closer ties to Belarus, outside observers fear annexation. However, the process of unification between Russia and Belarus would be incredibly risky for Russia and is based on myths about modern Belarus.
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In Search of Light at the End of the Tunnel for US-Russian Relations

Alexey Arbatov June 26, 2018 Recommended Reads
Even if the situation in Ukraine is resolved peacefully, and if an armed clash between Russia and the United States is avoided in Syria, it will not be possible to overcome this wide-reaching crisis with a single package of agreements.
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Bigger, Not Better: Russia Makes the SCO a Useless Club

Alexander Gabuev June 23, 2017 Recommended Reads
Moscow's fears over Beijing’s rise have led it to cripple the Eurasian organization.
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25 Years of Nuclear Security Cooperation by the US, Russia and Other Newly Independent States: A Timeline

Mariana Budjeryn, Simon Saradzhyan and William Tobey June 16, 2017 RM Exclusives
At a time when the U.S. and the newly independent states of the former Soviet Union still saw each other as mortal enemies, they found the courage, creativity and capacity for trust to work together in the name of preventing nuclear catastrophe.
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Tom Friedman Is Calling for a Partition of Syria: Trump Should Run the Other Way

Stephen M. Walt April 07, 2017 Recommended Reads
Sending U.S. troops into Syria is not a solution. After all, the U.S. does not have the best track record when it comes to intervention in the Middle East.
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Syria and the Call of the Quagmire

Paul R. Pillar April 06, 2017 Recommended Reads
America's immersion into the Syrian civil war carries with it the risk of widespread warfare.
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False Alert: Is Russia Beefing Up Forces on NATO’s Border?

Ulrich Kühn July 08, 2016 Recommended Reads
While Russia has done an about-face on military reforms meant to switch from large divisions to smaller, more mobile brigades, Moscow is not (yet) creating additional armed forces.