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.
Competing Views on Russia

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

Daniel Shapiro and Thomas Schaffner November 21, 2019 RM Exclusives
Most candidates overwhelmingly agree that while Russia is a key adversary of the U.S., the two countries should work to preserve bilateral arms control treaties like New START.
article

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.
article

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.
research paper

Jihadists from Ex-Soviet Central Asia: Where Are They? Why Did They Radicalize? What Next?

Edward Lemon, Vera Mironova and William Tobey December 07, 2018 RM Exclusives
Three authors draw on field work and other research to assess the motives, prospects and threats linked to Central Asian jihadists, including the thousands who joined Islamic State and other violent extremists in the Middle East.
article

Terror Threat from Russian-Speaking Jihadists Won’t End with World Cup, and the West Should Care

Jean-François Ratelle June 13, 2018 RM Exclusives
The war in Syria has greatly expanded Russian-speaking extremist groups’ transnational networks in Europe and beyond, posing an international counterterrorism challenge for years to come.
article

Snapshot Analysis: Was Chemical Attack in Syria Meant to Drive Wedge Between US and Russia?

Simon Saradzhyan April 07, 2017 RM Exclusives
The U.S. strikes against Syria have sharply escalated tensions between Moscow and Washington, but the two can still mend fences and work toward peace in Syria.
article

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.
article

Trump Deserves a Chance to Deal with Russia over Syria

Nikolas K. Gvosdev March 15, 2017
U.S. President Donald Trump has expressed a desire to work with Russia to combat Islamic extremist movements in the Middle East. Despite the potential complications, such cooperation should be explored.
article

The Coming of the Russian Jihad: Part II

Leon Aron December 19, 2016
Lack of security in the North Caucasus region, the return home of Russian Islamic State fighters and increasing numbers of Russians joining ISIL all indicate that the Russian jihad continues to remain alive and dangerous.
issue brief

Islamic State and the Bolsheviks: Plenty in Common and Lessons to Heed

Simon Saradzhyan and Monica Duffy Toft December 16, 2016 RM Exclusives
Some scholars say if IS is recognized or contained its “state” will “normalize” like the Bolsheviks’. But IS will not abandon its expansionist agenda or stop mass killings unless it is defeated outright.