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  • Issue Brief posted March 28, 2014 by James Jay Carafano, Ph.D., Nile Gardiner, Ph.D., Luke Coffey, Dakota Wood If Russia Attacks: How the U.S. Should Respond to Further Aggression Against Ukraine

    After Russia’s illegal invasion, occupation, and subsequent annexation of Crimea, there is a concern that Moscow will not stop until all of Ukraine is under Russia’s control. By invading Crimea, the regime of President Vladimir Putin has made it impossible any longer to consider Russia a responsible nation or suitable partner for the United States in solving regional and…

  • 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…

  • Issue Brief posted March 21, 2014 by Michaela Dodge U.S. Missile Defense Policy After Russia’s Actions in Ukraine

    Russia has invaded Ukraine and annexed Crimea in blatant disregard of Ukraine’s territorial sovereignty and international law. Russia’s crude steps carry important implications for U.S. missile defense policy. Currently, the Administration’s policy is not to affect the “strategic balance” with Russia in terms of ballistic missiles.[1] In reality, there is no strategic…

  • Issue Brief posted March 13, 2014 by Nicolas Loris, Jack Spencer Free Ukraine by Freeing Energy Markets

    Whether military, diplomatic, economic, or otherwise, the U.S. government has an array of policy options to bring to bear in response to Russia’s unacceptable aggression against Ukraine. However, one must not discount the impact that free markets and free trade can ultimately have on the situation. Much of Russia’s power in the region is the result of its control over…

  • Issue Brief posted March 12, 2014 by Luke Coffey Obama’s Meeting with Ukrainian Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk

    On March 12, the new interim Prime Minister of Ukraine, Arseniy Yatsenyuk, will meet with President Barack Obama at the White House. This will be the first such visit since the removal of Viktor Yanukovych’s government. In what is best described as a blatant disregard of Ukraine’s national sovereignty, Russian troops continue to occupy key sites across the Crimean…

  • Issue Brief posted March 7, 2014 by James M. Roberts Aid to Ukraine Should Not Be Held Hostage by IMF Politics

    The Obama Administration is insisting that before Congress can support courageous, Westward-looking Ukrainians, it must first reduce the power of the United States at the International Monetary Fund (IMF).[1] The White House wants Congress to attach its approval of an IMF governance “reform package” that has been pending for three years to any legislation providing…

  • Issue Brief posted March 4, 2014 by Steven P. Bucci, Ph.D., Nile Gardiner, Ph.D., Luke Coffey Russia, the West, and Ukraine: Time for a Strategy—Not Hope

    On February 28, Russian troops, aided by pro-Russian local militia, began violating Ukraine’s territorial integrity by occupying important sites across the Crimean Peninsula. Under the pretext of “protecting Russian people,” the deployment of Russian troops into Crimea demonstrates a blatant disregard of Ukraine’s national sovereignty. Russia’s anachronistic irredentist…

  • Issue Brief posted January 24, 2014 by Ariel Cohen, Ph.D. Ukraine’s Anti-Protest Laws: A Step Backwards in Time

    Violent clashes between police and demonstrators erupted in Kyiv, Ukraine, last weekend in the wake of new legislation effectively banning public protest. If the two sides do not take a step back from the brink, the confrontation may lead to chaos, when neither the government nor the opposition have control. The legislation, passed on January 16 by President Victor…

  • Issue Brief posted January 6, 2014 by Cassandra Lucaccioni , Ariel Cohen, Ph.D. Sochi: Security and Counterterrorism at the 2014 Winter Olympics

    Two bomb attacks, carried out by suicide bombers at a railway station and a bus in Volgograd (formerly Stalingrad), 500 miles southeast of Moscow, shattered the pre-holiday spirit as Russians prepared to celebrate the New Year. Up to 45 people, including children, were killed, and over 100 were injured, many of them severely; the death count is sure to climb. The Olympic…

  • Commentary posted December 31, 2013 by Ariel Cohen, Ph.D. What Russian terrorists hope to accomplish ahead of Sochi Olympics

    As Russians prepared to celebrate the New Year, two horrendous explosions shook the city of Volgograd. Monday’s terrorist attacks -- both carried out by suicide bombers -- killed more than 30 people and injured more than 60 others.   Given the severity of the injuries, the death count will surely climb. And new attacks are possible. The bombings came just five weeks…

  • Issue Brief posted December 13, 2013 by Ariel Cohen, Ph.D. The U.S. Should Lead on Ukraine

    U.S. policy toward Ukraine suffered a significant self-inflicted injury early Thursday morning when President Viktor Yanukovich dispatched riot-control teams to disperse peaceful demonstrators in the center of Kyiv, the ancient capital of Ukraine. So far, the White House and the State Department have been behind the curve on one of the most important geopolitical crises…

  • Special Report posted November 26, 2013 by James M. Roberts, Ariel Cohen, Ph.D., Jonathan Blaisdell The Eurasian Union: Undermining Economic Freedom and Prosperity in the South Caucasus

    The Southern Caucasus—Armenia, Azerbaijan, and Georgia—is in Russia’s geopolitical crosshairs. Russian President Vladimir Putin, who once called the demise of the Soviet Union “the greatest geopolitical catastrophe of the [20th] century,”[1] is seeking economic and political alliances to restore Russia’s power in what then-President Dmitry Medvedev called its traditional…

  • Commentary posted October 25, 2013 by Ariel Cohen, Ph.D. Russia's Khodorkovsky Mistake

    On October 25, it will be ten years since a Russian SWAT team arrested oil tycoon Mikhail Khodorkovsky in a Siberian airport. It was a watershed moment for Russia, defining the Putin era as one in which the Russian oligarchs were subjugated to the Kremlin. Prior to Khodorkovsky’s arrest, the Kremlin had limited itself to deposing media oligarchs. It had, for example,…

  • Backgrounder posted June 14, 2013 by Ariel Cohen, Ph.D. Russia’s Eurasian Union Could Endanger the Neighborhood and U.S. Interests

    In the fall of 2011, Russian President Vladimir Putin proposed forming a Eurasian Union (EAU) with Kazakhstan and Belarus. In November 2011, the presidents of these three countries signed an agreement to launch the Eurasian Union and make it fully operational by 2015. Stretching from the Polish border to the Pacific, the length of the former Soviet Union, the new Eurasian…

  • Issue Brief posted February 20, 2013 by Ariel Cohen, Ph.D. U.S. Policy on Russia for Obama’s Second Term

    Since Vladimir Putin’s third inauguration as Russian president last May, U.S.–Russian relations have deteriorated sharply. Officials on both sides have moved past the “reset” honeymoon as disagreements over geopolitics and human rights abound. Spanning two continents and with a veto on the United Nations Security Council (UNSC), Russia is uniquely positioned to play a…