23 Items

Russian President Vladimir Putin attends a news conference following a summit on Syria, in Istanbul on October 27, 2018.

AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis

Analysis & Opinions - Russia Matters

When Does Vladimir Putin’s Russia Send In Troops?

| Aug. 07, 2018

This month marks the tenth anniversary of Vladimir Putin’s first military intervention abroad, in Georgia. Since then there have been two more, continuing to this day, in Ukraine and Syria in 2014 and 2015, respectively. And still it’s worth asking: When does Putin authorize the use of military force, overtly or covertly, against other countries and why?

Wearing traditional Kazakh costumes on the shoulders, from left, U.S. astronaut Michael Hopkins and Russia's cosmonauts Oleg Kotov and Sergey Ryazansky attend a press conference in Karaganda, Kazakhstan, Tuesday, March 11, 2014, shortly after their landing aboard Soyuz TMA-10M capsule. Hopkins together with the two Russia's cosmonauts landed safely in the Kazakh steppe aboard a Russian Soyuz capsule after a stay of over five months aboard the International Space Station. (AP Photo/Vasily Maximov, pool)

AP Photo/Vasily Maximov, pool

Analysis & Opinions - Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists

US-Russian space cooperation: a model for nuclear security

| Mar. 07, 2017

This interdependence between the US and Russian space programs persists even though the two countries are now living through what some pundits describe as a new Cold War. There was a time not so long ago, however, when the two nations viewed space solely as an area of strategic competition. The steps that Washington and Moscow took to transform their space rivalry into cooperation can serve today as a model for working together to help prevent nuclear terrorism, no matter how strained relations may seem.

Donald Trump speaking with supporters at a campaign rally in Phoenix, Arizona, October 29, 2016.

Wikicommons photo by Gage Skidmore shared under a Creative Commons (CC BY-SA 2.0) license.

Analysis & Opinions - Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, Harvard Kennedy School Russia Matters

Trump’s Victory Bodes Well for US-Russia Ties, But Expect No Tectonic Shifts

| November 10, 2016

Proponents of improved U.S.-Russian relations might take heart in Donald Trump’s surprise victory in the U.S. presidential election. Tangible positive changes are certainly possible, but fundamental differences over issues such as U.S. missile defense, NATO expansion and Russia’s willingness to use force against its neighbors, as well as the absence of robust economic ties, make a qualitative breakthrough in the bilateral relationship unlikely.

Fighters of the Azov Battalion prepare to fire an anti-tank weapon in eastern Ukraine. Government and Russian-backed separatist forces face off against one another, taken Sunday, March 23, 2015.

Mstyslav Chernov/AP

Analysis & Opinions - The National Interest

Does Russia Want War With Ukraine? Not Really—Or Not Yet

| August 18, 2016

The disagreements between Moscow and Kiev on whether there were any armed skirmishes in Crimea at all and, if so, which side initiated them, did not stop international media from sounding alarms that a war may soon break out between Russia and Ukraine.

In this March 6, 2013 photo, a warning sign is shown attached to a fence at the 'C' Tank Farm at the Hanford Nuclear Reservation, near Richland, Wash.

(AP Photo)

News - Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, Harvard Kennedy School

Belfer Center Experts Provide Analysis and Commentary on 2016 Nuclear Security Summit

April 5, 2016

Leading up to and during the 2016 Nuclear Security Summit, Belfer Center experts released reports, published commentary, and provided insight and analysis into global nuclear security. In advance of the Summit, the Project on Managing the Atom set the stage for discussion with the report Preventing Nuclear Terrorism: Continuous Improvement or Dangerous Decline?

An in-progress compilation of the expert commentary and analysis is available here.

Could There Be a Terrorist Fukushima?

commons.wikimedia.org

Analysis & Opinions - The New York Times

Could There Be a Terrorist Fukushima?

| April 4, 2016

The attacks in Brussels last month were a stark reminder of the terrorists’ resolve, and of our continued vulnerabilities, including in an area of paramount concern: nuclear security.

The attackers struck an airport and the subway, but some Belgian investigators believe they seemed to have fallen back on those targets because they felt the authorities closing in on them, and that their original plan may have been to strike a nuclear plant. A few months ago, during a raid in the apartment of a suspect linked to the November attacks in Paris, investigators found surveillance footage of a senior Belgian nuclear official. Belgian police are said to have connected two of the Brussels terrorists to that footage.

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Testimony

U.S. and Russia Share a Vital Interest in Countering Terrorism

| September 30, 2015

Simon Saradzhyan testified before the U.S. House of Representatives' Europe, Eurasia, and Emerging Threats Subcommittee Hearing on "The Threat of Islamist Extremism in Russia," on September 30, 2015. 

In his testimony, Saradzhyan asked: "Can the United States and Russia cooperate against the threat posed by the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria and other international terrorist organizations, even though the bilateral relationship has deteriorated in the wake of the crisis in Ukraine? My answer is they can and they will if they act in their best interest."

Presentation - Carnegie Moscow Center

The Real Lessons from the Meeting on the Elbe

| April 23, 2015

In celebration of the 70th anniversary of victory over Nazi Germany and on the eve of the anniversary of the meeting of Soviet and American troops on the Elbe, the Carnegie Moscow Center organized a conference held April 23, 2015 in Moscow to discuss the experience of Russian-American alliance during the Second World War, as well as the experience of cooperation and rivalry after the end of the Cold War. The Elbe meeting took place on April 25, 1945.

Brigadier General (ret.) Kevin Ryan, director of the Belfer Center's Defense and Intelligence Projects and founder of The Elbe Group, spoke at the conference in Russian about the significance of the Elbe anniversary to U.S.-Russian relations today. His Russian remarks and English translation are available.

Under Secretary of State for Arms Control and International Security Rose Gottmoeller discusses the importance of cooperation on global security issues.

Belfer Center

- Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, Harvard Kennedy School Belfer Center Newsletter

U.S.-Russia Conference Aims to Reduce Tensions

Spring 2015

For two days in October, Russian and American experts met at the Belfer Center to discuss the state of U.S.-Russia relations and look for glimmers of hope.

Unfortunately, few were seen. The conflict in Eastern Ukraine is only the most urgent manifestation of a deeply troubled relationship between Russia and the West—in particular the United States. As one Russian participant stated, “We should deal first with the problems that existed even before Ukraine.”

Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko gestures during a press conference in Kiev, Ukraine, Dec 29, 2014. He on Monday signed a bill dropping his country's nonaligned status but signaled that he will hold a referendum before seeking NATO membership.

(AP Photo/Sergei Chuzavkov)

Analysis & Opinions - Moscow Times

NATO-Russian Relations Can Still Be Saved

| January 12, 2013

It is indisputable that the Ukraine crisis has dealt a serious blow to Russia's relations with core members of NATO. It would take many years for Moscow, Washington and Brussels to fully mend the fences even if the conflict in Ukraine were resolved tomorrow.

But as Russia's new military doctrine indicates, the Rubicon in NATO-Russian relations has not been crossed — at least not yet. While naming Russia's allies, the doctrine, which was published on Dec. 26, avoids designating either NATO as a whole or any of its specific members as adversaries.