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Russia and Eurasia

The end of the Cold war marked the beginning of a new paradigm in US-Russian relations, which is no longer based on ideological chasm, but on geopolitical rivalry. While the U.S. was willing to embrace Russia in a new partnership, Moscow’s support of Iran’s nuclear weapons program; Syria’s Assad regime; pursuit of a "privileged sphere of interests" in the former Soviet Union and Central Europe, vociferous opposition to NATO missile defense; and internal repression, make such a relationship difficult.

Our Research & Offerings on Russia and Eurasia
  • Backgrounder posted June 20, 2016 by Michaela Dodge New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty: Time to Stop the Damage to U.S. National Security

    In April 2010, U.S. President Barack Obama and Russian President Dmitry Medvedev signed the New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (New START). Six years later, an analysis of New START’s impact on U.S. national security is as timely as it is instructive. New START has not accomplished the Administration’s main goal of providing predictability and strategic stability between…

  • Commentary posted January 13, 2016 by Theodore R. Bromund, Ph.D. Russia’s Insecurity Strategy

    Russia’s new National Security Strategy, signed by Vladimir Putin as last year came to a close, isn’t shy about naming its enemies. From the U.S. to the European Union, from NATO to the varying-colored revolutions, Russia sees foes everywhere.   That’s understandable: the treacherous are always distrustful. But the strategy’s biggest surprise is that it shows Russia has…

  • Commentary posted December 11, 2015 by James Jay Carafano, Ph.D. Putin's Days Are Numbered

    The Administration seems to be of two minds regarding Vladimir Putin. One camp sees him as a Russian strongman we can work with. Another views him as a menace that, if ignored, will eventually fade away. Neither camp has been able to prevail, the result: policy paralysis, a stalemate unlikely to be broken until the next president moves into the Oval Office. The new…

  • Special Report posted December 9, 2015 by James Jay Carafano, Ph.D., Theodore R. Bromund, Ph.D., Dean Cheng, Luke Coffey, Lisa Curtis, Helle C. Dale, Michaela Dodge, David Inserra, Bruce Klingner, Daniel Kochis, Ryan Olson, James Phillips, Ana Quintana, Bryan Riley, Brian Slattery, William T. Wilson, Ph.D. U.S. Comprehensive Strategy Toward Russia

    Introduction Since the end of the Cold War, the U.S. has not had a coherent, comprehensive strategy toward Russia. As the Russian invasion of Ukraine demonstrates, the U.S. has paid a price for this failure and, of course, many of Russia’s neighbors have paid far higher prices. At the core of the U.S. failure has been an unwillingness to assess the nature of the Russian…

  • Backgrounder posted December 4, 2015 by Luke Coffey A Secure and Stable Caspian Sea Is in America’s Interest

    The Caspian Sea is an important, if often overlooked, region in regard to many of the challenges the U.S. faces around the world, such as a resurgent Russia, an emboldened Iran, wavering allies, growing China, and the rise of Islamic extremism. The Caspian Sea is at the heart of the Eurasian continent, and anything that is at the heart of something is, by definition,…

  • Issue Brief posted September 10, 2015 by Luke Coffey, Nile Gardiner, Ph.D. U.S. Should Condemn Spain’s Military Support to the Russian Navy

    As Russia continues its occupation of Crimea and sections of eastern Ukraine, some European countries continue to provide Russia with military support. Most notable among these is Spain, which allows the Russian Navy regular use of Spanish ports. In total, at least 20 Russian Navy vessels have visited Spain to refuel and resupply since Russia invaded and annexed Crimea in…

  • Issue Brief posted August 14, 2015 by Luke Coffey The Perfect Opportunity to Advance the U.S.–Georgian Defense Relationship

    U.S. Secretary of Defense Ashton Carter will meet with his Georgian counterpart, Tinatin Khidasheli, the week of August 17. Having recently been appointed as defense minister (and the first female defense minister in Georgia’s history), this will be Khidasheli’s first meeting at the Pentagon in her new role. Georgia has been a steadfast ally of the United States, and…

  • Testimony posted April 15, 2015 by Helle C. Dale Russia’s “Weaponization” of Information

    Testimony Presented to the House Foreign Affairs Committee April 15, 2015 Helle C. Dale My name is Helle Dale. I am Senior Fellow for Public Diplomacy in the Kathryn and Shelby Cullom Davis Institute for National Security and Foreign Policy at The Heritage Foundation. The views I express in this testimony are my own, and should not be construed as representing any…

  • Issue Brief posted February 12, 2015 by Luke Coffey, Nile Gardiner, Ph.D. The United States Must Be Ready to Send Weapons to Ukraine

    As Russian-backed forces make territorial gains in eastern Ukraine, and as a ceasefire agreement was reached in Minsk, Belarus, between Kyiv and Moscow, there is intense debate in Washington about whether to send weapons to the Ukrainian military. There is no reason to believe that the ceasefire agreement will last when many such agreements have failed in the past. At…

  • Issue Brief posted December 16, 2014 by Luke Coffey, Daniel Kochis Addressing Russia’s Continued Pernicious Actions Abroad

    Russia’s invasion and annexation of Crimea and its continued aggression against Ukraine are proof of what many already knew, the failed “Russian reset” policy is dead, and Russia’s actions continue to destabilize its neighborhood. In place of the reset, the U.S. needs to implement a comprehensive long-term strategy for addressing a revanchist Russia. To highlight the…

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  • Issue Brief posted May 19, 2014 by William T. Wilson, Ph.D. The Russian Economy Stares into the Abyss

    For the Russian economy, winter has come early this year. After cruising at a respectable 3–4 percent rate of growth earlier this decade, Russia’s pace of expansion sharply decelerated toward the middle of 2012. According to Alexei Ulyukayev, the minster of economic development, the economy contracted for the first time since the 2008 recession during the first quarter of…

  • Backgrounder posted March 25, 2014 by Nile Gardiner, Ph.D., Jack Spencer, Luke Coffey, Nicolas Loris Beyond the Crimea Crisis: Comprehensive Next Steps in U.S.–Russian Relations

    After three months of mass street demonstrations, the Ukrainian people succeeded in ousting their corrupt and incompetent president, the Kremlin-backed Viktor Yanukovych. On February 22, the Ukrainian parliament acted in favor of the people it represents by granting amnesty to all political prisoners, bringing back the constitution of 2004 (which reduces the powers of the…

  • Commentary posted November 10, 2009 by Edwin Meese III Reagan and the Fall of the Berlin Wall

    For years, it has been the fashion in many ideological precincts to argue the collapse of the Soviet Union -- at more or less the moment it disintegrated -- was due almost entirely to Communism's structural weaknesses, and not to anything the West may have done to hasten its demise. In this view, while the two factions may have been at war for decades, the final result…

  • Issue Brief posted May 12, 2014 by Luke Coffey Russian Aggression Prevention Act of 2014: Time for American Commitment to Transatlantic Security

    In light of Russia’s illegal annexation of Crimea and the Moscow-backed instability in eastern Ukraine, several U.S. Senators have introduced the Russian Aggression Prevention Act of 2014. The goal of the legislation is to advance a strategic U.S. response to deter Russian aggression toward Ukraine and other states in Europe and Eurasia. The bill focuses on what the U.S.…

  • Backgrounder posted November 15, 2006 by Ariel Cohen, Ph.D. U.S. Interests and Central Asia Energy Security

    In the past five years, real and present dangers to U.S. national security, especially Islamist terrorism and threats to the energy supply, have affected U.S. policy in Central Asia. The region has great energy potential and is strategically important, but it is land-locked, which complicates U.S. access and involvement there.[1] The United States has varied…

  • WebMemo posted December 14, 2006 by Daniella Markheim, Ariel Cohen, Ph.D. Permanent Normal Trade Relations for Russia Would Benefit the U.S. and Russia

    On November 19, 2006, America and Russia signed a bilateral market access agreement that details U.S. requirements for Russia's accession to the World Trade Organization (WTO). Russia will now work to combine the bilateral accession agreements into a formal multilateral draft Protocol of Accession that the WTO General Council must approve before Russia can become a…

  • WebMemo posted June 13, 2006 by Ariel Cohen, Ph.D. The U.S. Challenge at the Shanghai Summit

    On June 15 members of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) will gather for their annual meeting at the birthplace of this Eurasian bloc-Shanghai. Since its modest economic beginnings in 2001, when it facilitated China's return into its Central Asian backyard for the first time in almost 1,000 years, the SCO has become a Eurasian powerhouse with an…

  • Issue Brief posted May 16, 2014 by Nile Gardiner, Ph.D., Luke Coffey Realistic U.S.–German Cooperation over Russia

    The Russian Aggression Prevention Act of 2014 contains a number of effective proposals that advance transatlantic security cooperation while seeking to restrain Moscow’s imperial ambitions in Eastern Europe. However, one of the bill’s main proposals—enhancing U.S. ties with Germany to confront Russia—is a flawed idea. The Germans view the threat and challenges posed by…

  • Issue Brief posted February 12, 2015 by Luke Coffey, Nile Gardiner, Ph.D. The United States Must Be Ready to Send Weapons to Ukraine

    As Russian-backed forces make territorial gains in eastern Ukraine, and as a ceasefire agreement was reached in Minsk, Belarus, between Kyiv and Moscow, there is intense debate in Washington about whether to send weapons to the Ukrainian military. There is no reason to believe that the ceasefire agreement will last when many such agreements have failed in the past. At…

  • Commentary posted August 10, 2009 by Peter Brookes Warning Sign: Russian Subs No Threat

    The Pentagon says it's not worried about a couple of Russian Akula-class attack submarines patrolling some 200 miles off the US Eastern coast -- that it raises no "red" flags at the moment. Fair enough -- but the boats should still prompt long-term concern. Sure, the Russkies are free to exercise their rights in international waters that lie beyond the…

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  • Backgrounder posted June 20, 2016 by Michaela Dodge New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty: Time to Stop the Damage to U.S. National Security

    In April 2010, U.S. President Barack Obama and Russian President Dmitry Medvedev signed the New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (New START). Six years later, an analysis of New START’s impact on U.S. national security is as timely as it is instructive. New START has not accomplished the Administration’s main goal of providing predictability and strategic stability between…

  • Special Report posted December 9, 2015 by James Jay Carafano, Ph.D., Theodore R. Bromund, Ph.D., Dean Cheng, Luke Coffey, Lisa Curtis, Helle C. Dale, Michaela Dodge, David Inserra, Bruce Klingner, Daniel Kochis, Ryan Olson, James Phillips, Ana Quintana, Bryan Riley, Brian Slattery, William T. Wilson, Ph.D. U.S. Comprehensive Strategy Toward Russia

    Introduction Since the end of the Cold War, the U.S. has not had a coherent, comprehensive strategy toward Russia. As the Russian invasion of Ukraine demonstrates, the U.S. has paid a price for this failure and, of course, many of Russia’s neighbors have paid far higher prices. At the core of the U.S. failure has been an unwillingness to assess the nature of the Russian…

  • Backgrounder posted December 4, 2015 by Luke Coffey A Secure and Stable Caspian Sea Is in America’s Interest

    The Caspian Sea is an important, if often overlooked, region in regard to many of the challenges the U.S. faces around the world, such as a resurgent Russia, an emboldened Iran, wavering allies, growing China, and the rise of Islamic extremism. The Caspian Sea is at the heart of the Eurasian continent, and anything that is at the heart of something is, by definition,…

  • Issue Brief posted September 10, 2015 by Luke Coffey, Nile Gardiner, Ph.D. U.S. Should Condemn Spain’s Military Support to the Russian Navy

    As Russia continues its occupation of Crimea and sections of eastern Ukraine, some European countries continue to provide Russia with military support. Most notable among these is Spain, which allows the Russian Navy regular use of Spanish ports. In total, at least 20 Russian Navy vessels have visited Spain to refuel and resupply since Russia invaded and annexed Crimea in…

  • Issue Brief posted August 14, 2015 by Luke Coffey The Perfect Opportunity to Advance the U.S.–Georgian Defense Relationship

    U.S. Secretary of Defense Ashton Carter will meet with his Georgian counterpart, Tinatin Khidasheli, the week of August 17. Having recently been appointed as defense minister (and the first female defense minister in Georgia’s history), this will be Khidasheli’s first meeting at the Pentagon in her new role. Georgia has been a steadfast ally of the United States, and…

  • Testimony posted April 15, 2015 by Helle C. Dale Russia’s “Weaponization” of Information

    Testimony Presented to the House Foreign Affairs Committee April 15, 2015 Helle C. Dale My name is Helle Dale. I am Senior Fellow for Public Diplomacy in the Kathryn and Shelby Cullom Davis Institute for National Security and Foreign Policy at The Heritage Foundation. The views I express in this testimony are my own, and should not be construed as representing any…

  • Issue Brief posted February 12, 2015 by Luke Coffey, Nile Gardiner, Ph.D. The United States Must Be Ready to Send Weapons to Ukraine

    As Russian-backed forces make territorial gains in eastern Ukraine, and as a ceasefire agreement was reached in Minsk, Belarus, between Kyiv and Moscow, there is intense debate in Washington about whether to send weapons to the Ukrainian military. There is no reason to believe that the ceasefire agreement will last when many such agreements have failed in the past. At…

  • Issue Brief posted December 16, 2014 by Luke Coffey, Daniel Kochis Addressing Russia’s Continued Pernicious Actions Abroad

    Russia’s invasion and annexation of Crimea and its continued aggression against Ukraine are proof of what many already knew, the failed “Russian reset” policy is dead, and Russia’s actions continue to destabilize its neighborhood. In place of the reset, the U.S. needs to implement a comprehensive long-term strategy for addressing a revanchist Russia. To highlight the…

  • Issue Brief posted December 9, 2014 by Luke Coffey The U.S. Must Counter Russian Influence in the Balkans

    The Balkans region continues to be an area of instability in Europe. Although security in the region has improved dramatically since the 1990s, sectarian divisions remain and have been exacerbated by sluggish economies, high unemployment rates, and endemic political corruption. Moscow has exploited these tensions in an effort to advance a pro-Russia agenda with the goal…

  • Issue Brief posted December 2, 2014 by Luke Coffey, Daniel Kochis Russia’s Provocations in the Nordic-Baltic States: The U.S. Needs a Strategy to Support the Region

    Russia’s aggressive posture against its neighbors has a profound impact on U.S. allies in the Nordic and Baltic region. The Baltic states are on NATO’s front line, and view Russia as an existential threat. Nordic states, especially non-NATO members Finland and Sweden, have felt Russian pressure this year. Lately, three issues have kept tensions running high in the region:…

Find more work on Russia and Eurasia
Find more work on Russia and Eurasia