Most Russian citizens do not express a strong desire for sweeping change and do not have in mind a specific road map for reforms. And yet most Russians understand that the country cannot move forward, or even stay in place, without reforms.
Whatever changes 2018 and 2024 bring to Russia’s leadership, the broader political system will become increasingly depersonalized, making it—rather than the president—the source of stability.
In recent years, the Russian government has formulated a policy on the country’s history that aims to consolidate the nation around a single official version of the past. However, because this single version of official collective memory is not acceptable to all citizens, this policy is causing divisions in Russian society.
While Russia repositions itself as a stand-alone power in the north-central portion of the world’s largest continent, its leaders are seeking to create a distinct national entity amid a vast and highly diverse neighborhood.
In the absence of a real political contest, Russia’s 2018 presidential election will be more or less a referendum on public confidence in Putin.
A localized civil society movement in Moscow is pushing for the government to curb unfair urban development practices and give residents greater autonomy over their own neighborhoods.
The Reykjavik summit from thirty years ago shows what can be done when two leaders, whose states are supposedly implacable enemies, take responsibility and act to enhance the world’s strategic stability and safety.
The world reacts to the election of Donald Trump and its potential implications.
Despite Ramzan Kadyrov’s attempts to retain his special status, the old ways of doing business between Grozny and Moscow are over—and the new contract is here to stay.
The 2016 parliamentary campaign isn’t just a test run for the 2018 presidential race. Russia’s political regime is in search of a governing model that will help it sustain the status quo for the foreseeable future.
Moscow’s relations with Tehran are currently much more cooperative than competitive, although the two countries’ foreign policy goals don’t always align.
Against a backdrop of Russian, Chinese, and U.S. strides in science and technology, trilateral consultations could help address potential threats from new weapons.
War and terrorism have become increasingly routine facts of life in Russia. Since 2014, this reality has become an essential tool for stimulating popular support for Russian President Vladimir Putin.
The Iranian nuclear deal may have created a useful precedent for Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty member states to strengthen the global nuclear nonproliferation system.
Serious economic reforms cannot be implemented unless Russia’s political atmosphere and institutions grow more supportive of individual freedom.
The real cost of Russia’s current isolation will be felt in the long term: the country will miss opportunities for growth and will continue to stagnate.
The turmoil in eastern Ukraine has shaken the post–Cold War order. But there is reason to hope a more effective approach to building regional security might be possible.
The current nuclear hysteria resides first and foremost in the minds of Russian and U.S. government officials. Fears of a nonnuclear, armed confrontation between Russia, on the one hand, and the United States and NATO, on the other, are also unfounded.
While the Kremlin continues to score plenty of tactical victories in the political sphere, the regime has demonstrated no ability to think strategically. The lack of strategic thinking stems from the elites’ desire to preserve their own power and the whims of an authoritarian political system.
Russia is a superpower in decline, and the challenge it poses to the United States is very different from that posed by the Soviet Union.