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  • Special Report posted September 12, 2016 by Martin N Murphy, PhD Understanding Russia’s Concept for Total War in Europe

    In the night of February 26 to 27, 2014, small groups of armed men, who later acquired the labels “little green men,” and even “polite green men” (which were anything but), appeared across Crimea.[1] They corralled Ukrainian forces in their bases, making it plain that any attempt to leave would be met with violence; they took over communications masts and studios,…

  • Issue Brief posted July 7, 2016 by Luke Coffey, Daniel Kochis, Lisa Curtis Eight Essential Issues for the 2016 NATO Summit in Warsaw

    The 2016 NATO Summit will be held on July 8 and 9 in Warsaw. This is a critical time for the Alliance. In 2014, Russia invaded Ukraine, forcefully changing the borders of Europe for the first time since 1945. This invasion jarred many in Western Europe and the U.S. who had viewed Russia through rose-colored glasses even after the invasion of Georgia in 2008. Today,…

  • Issue Brief posted June 17, 2016 by Luke Coffey, Daniel Kochis NATO Summit 2016: NATO Must Reaffirm Its “Open Door” Policy

    NATO has underpinned Europe and North America’s security for more than 67 years, so it is no surprise that many countries in the transatlantic region that are not already members want to join the alliance. NATO’s “open door” policy is critical to mobilizing Europe and its allies around a collective transatlantic defense. The U.S. should use the 2016 Warsaw summit in early…

  • Issue Brief posted June 14, 2016 by Luke Coffey NATO Summit 2016: Keeping Georgia on the Membership Track

    The early July NATO summit in Warsaw, Poland, offers an opportunity for the alliance to thank Georgia for its contribution in Afghanistan, congratulate Georgia on its military reforms, and lay the groundwork for deeper cooperation paving the way to eventual membership. The U.S. should continue to support Georgia’s NATO aspirations and ensure that the summit delivers a…

  • 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…

  • Commentary posted September 8, 2014 by Luke Coffey Keep Georgia on the Path to NATO

    In 1738, the Persian ruler Nadir Shah captured Kandahar. He then prepared to march his vast army, including a contingent of Georgian warriors, deep into India to take on the Mughal Empire. On its way to Sindh, in modern day Pakistan, the army encountered a column bearing an inscription that foretold death to those who went beyond it. A young Georgian prince named Erekle…

  • Issue Brief posted May 5, 2014 by Luke Coffey Strengthen Bilateral Defense Cooperation with Georgia

    U.S. Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel will soon meet with his Georgian counterpart, Irakli Alasania. Georgia has been a steadfast ally of the United States. Thousands of Georgian troops have served alongside U.S. troops in Afghanistan and Iraq. Hundreds have been wounded, and dozens have been killed. This meeting offers an opportunity for Secretary Hagel to thank…

  • 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 10, 2012 by Luke Coffey Saakashvili Legacy – Founding Father of Democratic Georgia

    Georgia’s recent parliamentary elections proved surprising to many. The ruling United National Movement Party, led by President Mikhail Saakashvili, lost its majority. With a bronze bust of Ronald Reagan clearly visible in the background, Mr. Saakashvili graciously conceded defeat in a televised address to the nation. The newly formed Georgian Dream coalition, led by…

  • Commentary posted October 4, 2012 by Ariel Cohen, Ph.D. Georgia's Democratic Litmus Test

    Hours before Mikheil Saakashvili admitted defeat, a senior Azerbaijani official told me that the Georgian president had nothing to worry about. He wasn’t the only one miscalling the result: from Tbilisi to Washington, few expected the stunning victory by the opposition Georgian Dream movement, led by billionaire Bidzina Ivanishvili, who claimed victory in the country’s…

  • Testimony posted September 21, 2012 by Ariel Cohen, Ph.D. The Importance of the Upcoming Georgian Elections for the United States and the West

    Testimony before The Commission for Security and Cooperation in Europe (Helsinki Commission), U.S. Congress September 20, 2012 Mr. Chairman, Congressmen, Secretary Melia, Ladies and Gentlemen: My name is Ariel Cohen. I am Senior Research Fellow, Russian and Eurasian Studies and International Energy Policy at The Heritage Foundation. The…

  • Commentary posted August 30, 2012 by Luke Coffey Four Years Later - Seeking a Peaceful End to the Russian Occupation

    Four years ago this month, as many around the world were watching the summer Olympics in Beijing, Russia invaded the Republic of Georgia. At one point Russian tanks were on the outskirts of Georgia’s capital, Tbilisi. Russian planes dropped bombs on Tbilisi International Airport -- a civilian airport. Hostilities were quickly brought to an end by a French diplomatic…

  • Issue Brief posted July 27, 2012 by James M. Roberts, Ariel Cohen, Ph.D. U.S.–Georgia Free Trade Agreement: Time to Get Moving

    Journalist Michael Totten recently described Georgia as being at “the edge of the West” and recalled that U.S. ambassador to the Soviet Union George F. Kennan famously said that “Russia can have at its borders only enemies or vassals.”[1] Were he alive today, Kennan would have agreed that this is Georgia’s current predicament. In spite of sharp economic contraction…

  • Commentary posted June 5, 2012 by Ariel Cohen, Ph.D. The Secretary's Daunting Agenda

    Late last week, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton began her tour of Denmark, Norway, Sweden, Armenia, Georgia, Azerbaijan and Turkey. In Scandinavia, she was to address several forums on climate change and green energy. While in Sweden, she also planned to discuss Internet freedom, Afghanistan and the Middle East. But it is in the mountains of the Caucasus and Turkey…

  • Issue Brief posted May 31, 2012 by Ariel Cohen, Ph.D. To-Do List for Hillary Clinton’s Upcoming Trip to the Caucasus and Turkey

    On May 31, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton will begin her tour of Denmark, Norway, Sweden, Armenia, Georgia, Azerbaijan, and Turkey. In Scandinavia, she will address several forums on climate change and green energy. While in Sweden, she will also discuss Internet freedom, Afghanistan, and the Middle East. But it is in the Caucasus and Turkey that Clinton will…