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.
explainer

Who ‘Defeated’ ISIS? An Analysis of US and Russian Contributions

Domitilla Sagramoso May 06, 2020 RM Exclusives
There can be little doubt that the U.S. and its allies played a much bigger role in subduing the terror group than Russia. But ISIS has plenty of life in it yet and any alleged victory is fragile.
article

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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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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How Big Is Russia’s Win in Syria?

Michael Sharnoff November 06, 2019 RM Exclusives
While Russia has collected a number of short-term dividends from the U.S. troop withdrawal, this “victory” is far from winning Moscow the war in Syria.
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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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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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Trump-Putin G20 Summit: High Stakes and Strained Dialogue

Matthew Rojansky November 28, 2018 RM Exclusives
As high-level U.S.-Russian contacts are again plagued by deep disagreement, both sides face a list of urgent global security challenges that can be managed only through dialogue.
explainer

The ‘Who, What, When’ of Russia Sanctions: A Cheat Sheet for Laymen

Alexey Eremenko September 26, 2018 RM Exclusives
This explainer spells out the major sanctions imposed on Russia by the U.S. and EU since 2014: who has been targeted; what behaviors are to be punished or deterred; what activities have been restricted; and for how long.
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In Helsinki, Trump Takes ‘Do No Harm’ Approach to Russia on 2 Issues: Syria and Energy

Nikolas K. Gvosdev July 17, 2018 RM Exclusives
For now, at least, the U.S. will not help its Middle Eastern and European allies pursue their own engagement with Moscow, but will not interfere with it a great deal either.
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Putin's Pivot: 4 New Features of Russian Foreign Policy

Daniel Treisman March 14, 2018 RM Exclusives
The annexation of Crimea in 2014 signaled a new phase of Russian foreign policy, characterized by risk taking, neglect of exit strategies, outsourcing and saber rattling. But can the success of these tactics last?
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Latest US-Russian Effort on Syria: Good for Preventing Accidents, So-So for Everything Else

Nikolas K. Gvosdev November 15, 2017 RM Exclusives
Trump and Putin’s joint statement at the APEC summit masks deep divisions between Moscow and Washington over how to resolve the conflict.