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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It’s Time to Rethink Our Russia Policy

Rose Gottemoeller, Thomas Graham, Fiona Hill, Jon Huntsman Jr., Robert Legvold and Thomas R. Pickering August 05, 2020 Recommended Reads
An open letter signed by 103 foreign-policy experts on how to reconsider America's approach to Putin—and whoever comes next.
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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.
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Russian Moves in Afghanistan Are About Regional Stability, Not Revenge on US

Artemy M. Kalinovsky July 22, 2020 RM Exclusives
U.S. politicians may feel betrayed by Russia’s engagement with the Taliban, but to understand what Russia is up to, they need to stop imagining that Moscow’s every move is somehow intended to undermine the U.S.
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New Sanctions Challenge the Tenuous Ties Between America and Russia

Thomas Graham and Matthew Rojansky July 13, 2020 Recommended Reads
Rather than knee-jerk calls for more sanctions, restoring channels of communication with Russia may be a prudent step to protect U.S. interests and avoid continuing miscommunication. Russia may be suffering from severe economic and demographic constraints, calcified authoritarian politics, and hostile geopolitical surroundings, but the country is not going away.
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Do Black Lives Matter in Russia?

Peter Rutland and Andrei Kazantsev July 13, 2020 Partner Posts
Studying the reactions to Black Lives Matter in Russia can teach us a lot about Russian society—just as Russians and others have learned a great deal about American society as the movement has unfolded.
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How Improved US-Russian Relations Could Weaken Putin’s Case for Remaining in Kremlin Until 2036

Paul Saunders July 08, 2020 RM Exclusives
A more nuanced understanding of Putin’s possible motives for the amendments to Russia's constitution—and how the U.S. could shape them in its policy toward Russia—could facilitate Russia’s leadership transition rather than hinder it.
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The Oil Price Crash: Will the Kremlin’s Policies Change?

Tatiana Mitrova July 08, 2020 Partner Posts
The coronavirus pandemic and the steep drop of oil and gas prices may pose a serious challenge to Russia’s economic model. Mitrova argues that current shocks to the Russian energy market could pale in comparison to long-term consequences.
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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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Russia’s Constitutional Amendments Keep Several Futures Open for Putin

Marlene Laruelle June 25, 2020 RM Exclusives
The aim of the amendments is to keep Putin’s—and Russia's—portfolio of possibilities as wide as possible while reinforcing Russia’s sovereignty from the international scene and the country’s self-reliance.
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The State Department’s Compliance Report Plays the Blame Game, Despite Offering Little Evidence

Matt Korda and Hans M. Kristensen June 24, 2020 Recommended Reads
The report’s publication comes at a critical time, as the Trump administration has spent the past few years—and the past three months in particular—dismantling the last vestiges of U.S. commitments to the international arms control regime.
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Stay Out of the Regime Change Business

Benjamin Denison June 16, 2020 Recommended Reads
Pursuing short-term wins through covert regime change may ultimately undermine U.S. foreign policy.
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A Farewell to the Open Skies Treaty, and an Era of Imaginative Thinking

Bonnie Jenkins June 16, 2020 Partner Posts
President Trump announced that the United States would withdraw from the 1992 Open Skies Treaty (OST). The OST allows for members to conduct unarmed surveillance flights in each others’ air space. The treaty was designed to enhance mutual understanding, build confidence and promote openness and transparency of military forces and activities.