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 HMS Defender Incident: What happened and What Are the Political Ramifications?

Dmitry Gorenburg July 01, 2021 RM Exclusives
Inadvertent escalation poses the greatest risk of a political confrontation between Russia and NATO resulting in armed conflict, and as long as one or both sides believe that it is beneficial to use their military forces to make political points, we should expect more incidents of this type to take place.
article

Macron’s Dialogue With Russia: A French Attempt to Fix the European Security Architecture

Juliette Faure May 12, 2021 RM Exclusives
While Macron has attempted to shape Europe’s strategic autonomy in the management of its eastern neighborhood, lack of support from the EU has impeded the success of this policy, as has Russian behavior throughout 2020.
article

Displaced Conflict: Russia’s Qualified Success in Combatting Insurgency

Mark Youngman and Cerwyn Moore April 29, 2021 RM Exclusives
In both Syria and the North Caucasus, Russia claims success in fighting insurgency and terrorism. Closer examination, however, shows this “success” carries major caveats and is more illusory than it first appears.
primer

Russia’s Impact on US National Interests: Preventing Terrorist Attacks on US Homeland and Assets Abroad

George Beebe April 13, 2021 RM Exclusives
Russia has shown it can help the U.S. on counterterrorism a great deal. Adversarial relations notwithstanding, there is more the two sides can do in terms of sharing both intelligence and expertise.
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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.
article

Where US Sees Democracy Promotion, Russia Sees Regime Change

Benjamin Denison July 29, 2020 RM Exclusives
If U.S. officials were to critically assess the track record of American regime change, they might see that Russian statements against U.S. democracy promotion reflect genuine anxiety about regime security.
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.
issue brief

Maintaining Nuclear Safety and Security During the COVID-19 Crisis

William Tobey, Simon Saradzhyan and Nickolas Roth April 16, 2020 RM Exclusives
How are nuclear organizations coping with COVID-19 and what strategies seem to best ensure the safety and security of their operations? Responses have varied around the world, but already some lessons may be inferred.
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.
issue brief

When Does Vladimir Putin’s Russia Send In Troops?

Simon Saradzhyan August 07, 2018 RM Exclusives
Examining Putin’s three military interventions abroad, the author sees a pattern in which two conditions must be present for Russia to intervene with force: a threat to its vital interests and a reasonable chance of success.
column

Yes, Russian Generals Are Preparing for War. That Doesn’t Necessarily Mean the Kremlin Wants to Start One

Simon Saradzhyan August 30, 2017 RM Exclusives
Past experience suggests that two conditions must exist for Russia to use military exercises as a cover for foreign military interventions and neither one is in place today.
explainer

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.