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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Joe Biden’s Risky Russia Sanctions Game

Nikolas K. Gvosdev March 03, 2021 Recommended Reads
How will U.S. action towards Moscow affect two more critical relationships for Washington: the ones with Berlin and Beijing?
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Beyond Arms Embargo, Obstacles Remain to Iran’s Acquisition of Russian Weapons

Nicole Grajewski October 15, 2020 RM Exclusives
On Oct. 18, the U.N. conventional arms embargo on Iran will expire despite Washington’s attempts to extend it. However, Russia's opposition to the extension should not be mistaken as an indication that Moscow will rush to sell weapons to Tehran.
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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.
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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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Russia-China Bomber Patrol Shows Stronger Alignment Between the Two

Michael Kofman July 26, 2019 RM Exclusives
This week’s unprecedented Russian-Chinese patrol, including Russia’s run-in with South Korean jets, signals both growing bilateral military cooperation and Moscow’s willingness to take on geopolitical risks for the sake of its relationship with Beijing.
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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.
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Five Nations Bicker Over Whether the Caspian Is Lake or Sea

Rahim Rahimov September 05, 2018 Partner Posts
While the countries' leaders hailed the summit as a historic success, experts noted that the convention failed to resolve any disputes and instead merely formalized the existing status quo.
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Opposition to Nord Stream 2 Makes No Sense for America or Europe

Eugene Rumer August 12, 2018 Recommended Reads
U.S. President Donald Trump and his critics at home and in Europe have found common ground in opposing the Nord Stream 2 pipeline.
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Can Moscow Mediate Between Israel and Iran in Syria?

Mark N. Katz May 18, 2018 RM Exclusives
As tensions between Iran and Israel rise to new heights, Russia finds itself in a tricky position—trying to balance between two states that are friendly with Moscow but mortal enemies to each other.
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Who Can Prevent a War Between Israel and Iran? Russia

Joost Hiltermann May 03, 2018 Recommended Reads
Russia is uniquely suited to mediating between Israel and Iran, but the West may not support its efforts.  
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Russian-Saudi Rapprochement? Iran and Economic Strain Will Make It Tough

Mark N. Katz September 28, 2017 RM Exclusives
Ties between Moscow and Riyadh remain fragile. Saudi Arabia’s main concern is Iran, while Russia wants both investment and sway in the Middle East. Balancing their geopolitical and economic interests will not be easy.
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Russia’s Plan B: Divide and Conquer?

Nikolas Gvosdev July 28, 2017 RM Exclusives
At the start of 2017, Putin’s election-related gambles appeared to be paying off. By summer, the apparent wins had all gone bust. Moscow’s next step? Probably trying to split the U.S. and its Western partners on questions of Russia policy.