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  • Commentary posted July 22, 2014 by James Jay Carafano, Ph.D. Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17: Shooting Down Peace in Ukraine

    Yesterday, hundreds of innocents from all over the world lost their lives in the skies over Ukraine.  This horrible tragedy is a clear reminder of how very far from peace this part of the world remains. Only one capital can end the needless conflict. It's not Washington. It's Moscow. Before the downing of flight MH-17, many in DC had relegated the ongoing struggle in…

  • Issue Brief posted July 22, 2014 by Nile Gardiner, Ph.D., James Jay Carafano, Ph.D., Dakota Wood, Luke Coffey After the Malaysian Airlines Atrocity: 10 Ways the U.S. Should Respond to Russia’s Role in Ukraine

    Evidence is mounting that Russian-backed insurgents in eastern Ukraine were responsible for the shooting down of a Malaysian Airlines plane, with the loss of 298 lives. This was an act of barbarism by separatists who are armed, funded, and trained by Moscow. It follows from Russia’s illegal invasion, occupation, and annexation of Crimea and its attempts to dismember…

  • Backgrounder posted May 29, 2014 by Ariel Cohen, Ph.D. A U.S. Response to Russia’s Military Modernization

    Twenty-two years after the collapse of the Soviet Union, Russia is rebuilding its strength and is once again rising in regional influence. In the military, economic, and political spheres, Russia is preparing to project its power across Eastern Europe, Central Asia, and the North Pacific. It is strengthening relationships in the Middle East, especially with Iran and…

  • Commentary posted May 22, 2014 by Stephen Moore The Russia–China Pipeline

    Is anyone else scared to death about this week’s announcement out of Beijing that China and Russia have agreed to a 30-year natural-gas deal? The agreement means the building of hundreds of miles of pipelines to feed cheap Siberian gas to China. President Xi Jinping of China and President Vladimir Putin of Russia met in Shanghai to ratify this treaty in person, thus…

  • Commentary posted May 21, 2014 by Ariel Cohen, Ph.D. Vladimir Putin's New Fifth International

    In the recent makeshift referenda in Donetsk and Luhansk unrecognized by the West, a small minority of eligible voters voted in favor of secession from Ukraine. Now, some Western politicians and analysts are wondering: If those people came out to vote for "independence," aren’t we obligated to consider their opinion when pondering the future of Ukraine? The Kremlin and…

  • Commentary posted May 21, 2014 by Ariel Cohen, Ph.D. Three Keys to European Energy Independence from Russia

    Vladimir Putin is the father of the most significant energy mix shift in Europe. Ukraine may be the straw that broke the back of the energy camel. As a result, Russia is about to lose a lot of revenue. Talk about the unintended consequences. Even before Putin occupied the Crimea and supported separatist insurgency in Eastern Ukraine, the EU Commission began to seek ways…

  • Issue Brief posted May 20, 2014 by Luke Coffey, Daniel Kochis U.S. Should Condemn Spain and France’s Military Support to the Russian Federation

    As Russia continues to occupy Crimea and back political instability in eastern Ukraine, there are some NATO members that continue to provide Russia with military support. Spain allows the Russian navy use of its ports, and France is selling two amphibious assault ships to Russia. This behavior is unbecoming of 21st-century NATO allies. The U.S. should work with…

  • 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…

  • 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…

  • Commentary posted May 12, 2014 by Edwin J. Feulner, Ph.D. How Reagan broke the ice at Reykjavik

    It is perhaps fitting that the Cold War finally began to crack apart in a place called Iceland. It was October 1986, and President Reagan flew to Reykjavik to meet Soviet Premier Mikhail Gorbachev. Our side didn’t expect much from the talks. They were intended to give the leaders a chance to get to know each other better and lay some groundwork for future talks, planned…

  • 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.…

  • Commentary posted May 11, 2014 by James Jay Carafano, Ph.D. Use the Cold War playbook to keep Russia in line

    George Kennan was the State Department's top hand on Moscow. As the U.S.-Soviet alliance unraveled after World War II, no one seemed to understand the Kremlin better than Kennan. One of his most insightful observations was cautionary: Do not think about the standoff with the Soviet Union as principally a military confrontation. "[Y]ou didn't always have to occupy…

  • 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…

  • Commentary posted May 5, 2014 by Kim R. Holmes, Ph.D. Putin's Asymmetrical War on the West

    By any reasonable measure, Russia is getting the best of the West in the showdown over Ukraine. President Vladimir Putin's destabilization of that country continues apace while the United States and the Europeans are powerless to stop him, and all of this is happening despite the fact that by any reasonable measure Russia is weaker than the West. Its economy is much less…

  • Commentary posted May 2, 2014 by Theodore R. Bromund, Ph.D. Obama's furious battle against straw men

    Earlier last week, White House correspondent Ed Henry of Fox News had the temerity to ask President Barack Obama if he could summarize his foreign policy for the benefit of his critics, who think it comes down to "weariness." The president's defensive reply showed, yet again, his love of fighting straw men. Obama answered that "most of the foreign policy commentators…