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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Acknowledging Policy Shortcomings Is First Step to Solving America’s Russia Problem

Paul Saunders March 12, 2020 RM Exclusives
America’s government and its foreign policy elites need to make a greater effort to develop effective policies toward countries in regions where rival great powers—China and Russia—have greater capabilities and/or resolve to advance their goals.
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Contending With—Not Accepting—Spheres of Influence

Steven Pifer March 05, 2020 RM Exclusives
While Washington does have to deal with Russia's efforts to establish a sphere of influence in its neighborhood, that doesn't mean the U.S. should accept the legitimacy of those efforts.
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US Embrace of Great Power Competition Also Means Contending With Spheres of Influence

Paul Saunders February 13, 2020 RM Exclusives
Failing to discuss and develop strategies and policies that accept and manage spheres of influence could prove quite costly for the U.S.—indeed, it already has.
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Pompeo’s Visit Lets Post-Soviet States Leverage US Backing Against Russia, China, But Real Support Remains Limited

Nikolas Gvosdev February 07, 2020 RM Exclusives
American policies designed to challenge Russian dominance in Eurasia have either proceeded as a result of autopilot within the bureaucracy or because Congress has imposed them via veto-proof majorities.
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Alternative History: Would Russia in NATO and EU Be Game Changer in West’s Rivalry With China?

Simon Saradzhyan November 20, 2019 RM Exclusives
Quantitative measurements show that while Russia’s decision to align with the West rather than with China might not have been a game changer, it would have diminished the latter’s might vis-à-vis the West.
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Expert Round-Up: How Likely Is a China-Russia Military Alliance?

Simon Saradzhyan and Angelina Flood June 14, 2019 RM Exclusives
Dozens of scholars, analysts and officials assess the strengths and weaknesses of the Sino-Russian "comprehensive partnership and strategic interaction."
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Leveraging Venezuela: How Russia Sees Its Interests in US Backyard

Paul Saunders June 03, 2019 RM Exclusives
Americans should not overestimate either Russia’s interests in Venezuela or its capabilities there. Some see the country as a new Ukraine or Syria. It isn’t.
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Ukraine and NATO: Disconnect Between State Policy and Public Opinion Is Less Dangerous Than Russia

Daniel Shapiro May 09, 2019 RM Exclusives
Governments in plenty of countries have pushed through major foreign policy initiatives such as NATO entry despite formidable opposition among their citizens. This doesn’t necessarily mean Ukraine should do the same.
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Ukraine Election Bodes Ill for Corruption Fight, and for Kiev’s Ties to West

Tony Barber March 26, 2019 RM Exclusives
As Ukrainians prepare to vote for a president March 31, none of the top three candidates boasts solid pro-reform credentials. That poses big challenges for the country’s future stability and its pro-Western stance.
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5 Years Since Russia’s Intervention in Ukraine: Has Putin’s Gamble Paid Off?

Simon Saradzhyan March 14, 2019 RM Exclusives
The author analyzes the costs and benefits for Russia, finding that the intervention advanced one vital national interest and damaged several others. The costs have been manageable so far, but may eventually become prohibitive.
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Russia and China Beyond Realpolitik: The Bond of Respect and Values

Jeanne L. Wilson February 04, 2019 RM Exclusives
Converging and diverging interests play a big role in shaping Chinese-Russian relations, but so do “status granting” and shared political values.
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Gangster Geopolitics: The Kremlin’s Use of Criminals as Assets Abroad

Mark Galeotti January 17, 2019 RM Exclusives
Since the worsening of relations with the West in 2014, the Kremlin has increasingly adopted a “mobilization state” approach, turning to any available foreign-policy levers. Gangsters are no exception.