89 Items

A Russian Air Force A-50 Mainstay aircraft (Alan Wilson/Creative Commons via Flickr).

Alan Wilson/Creative Commons via Flickr

Analysis & Opinions - Russia Matters

Russian Plane Draws Shots from South Korea in First Air Patrol with China: Belfer Experts Weigh In

| July 25, 2019

South Korean fighter jets fired over 300 warning shots at a Russian Air Force A-50 Mainstay Airborne Early Warning aircraft on July 23 after the Russian plane twice violated South Korea’s airspace above the East Sea, according to South Korean authorities cited by The Aviationist. Earlier that day, Russian and Chinese bombers had conducted their first long-range joint air patrol in the Asia-Pacific. Russia’s Defense Ministry said there had been “no violations of airspaces of foreign countries” in its joint patrol with China, according to the New York Times, and Russian diplomats in Seoul reportedly complained of inaccuracies in the official comments from South Korea.

Russia Matters asked some members of the Belfer Center’s Russia team for their take on the developments.

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?

Russian President Vladimir Putin, foreground, Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu, attend a meeting while visiting the Military Academy of Strategic Rocket Troops of the Peter the Great in Balashikha, outside Moscow on December 22, 2017.

Mikhail Klimentyev, Sputnik, Kremlin Pool Photo via AP

Analysis & Opinions - Moscow Times

Putin’s Missile Envy Doesn’t Bode Well for International Stability

| Mar. 02, 2018

Of all the annual addresses Vladimir Putin has delivered to Russia’s Federal Assembly since becoming president in 1999, Thursday’s speech was the most militarized. Although Putin began by talking about modernizing the Russian economy and reducing poverty, most of the speech — and accompanying videos — were devoted to guns rather than butter. While the parliamentarians clearly welcomed Putin’s military showcasing by offering frequent applause, the rest of the world felt a distinct Cold War chill.

Belarusian military jets fly during military exercises, Belarus, Tuesday, Sept. 19, 2017. The Zapad (West) 2017 military drills held jointly by Russian and Belarusian militaries at several firing ranges in both countries have rattled Russia's neighbors. (AP Photo/Sergei Grits, Pool)

AP Photo/Sergei Grits, Pool

Analysis & Opinions - The Washington Post

100,000 Troops Will Engage in Russia’s Zapad-2017 War Games

| Sep. 13, 2017

As Russia prepares for its annual strategic military exercises, speculation is mounting that the Zapad-2017 war games, set for Thursday through Sept. 20 in western Russia and Belarus, might be a prelude to war. Ukraine’s defense minister cautioned that Zapad could be a ruse to attack any European country “that shares a border with Russia,” while the New York Times proclaimed that the drills near NATO’s borders have raised “fears of aggression.” A CNN contributor wondered, “Could they turn into war?”

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.

The Royal Navy's 16,000 ton Trident-class nuclear submarine Vanguard, January 30, 2002

AP

Policy Brief - Stanley Foundation

Descending From the Summit: The Path Toward Nuclear Security 2010–2016 and Beyond

| September 2016

William H. Tobey reviews the motivations, strengths, and weaknesses of the nuclear security summits and provides recommendations for how governments can maintain momentum and awareness now that the summit process is over. He concludes that some of the innovations from the process will continue to be useful tools.

Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu, head of General Staff, and head of the main directorate of combat training head an operation during military drills in Crimea, Friday, Sept. 9, 2016

Pavel Golovkin/AP

Analysis & Opinions - The National Interest

Yes, Russia's Military Is Training for a 'Mega War.' That's What Militaries Do.

| August 30, 2016

The latest series of military exercises in Russia have unnerved its Western neighbors, who are concerned that Russia may be preparing for a military campaign. The Russian military is indeed preparing for war, but that does not mean the Kremlin actually plans to initiate one anytime soon.