Policy Memos | Аналитические записки

Policy Memo # 53
Douglas Blum 01 Nov 1998
This memo addresses the general prospects for Russia's policy in the Caspian Sea, particularly in light of the ongoing financial crisis and domestic political turmoil. After touching on uncertainties regarding the Caspian's significance as a source of hydrocarbon reserves, I will consider Russia's evolving policy preferences and diplomatic relations, environmental issues, and the broader political context. [...] Read full text (PDF)
Policy Memo # 52
Andrew Kuchins 01 Nov 1998
There is a sharp contrast between how Russia views NATO and issues of European security and how Russia views the US-led security alliances in Asia with Japan (JASA) and Korea (KASA). While NATO expansion has triggered a large Russian diplomatic counter-offensive and a gust of criticism in the Russian press and scholarly publications, efforts to maintain and even revitalize JASA and KASA have been ignored or treated neutrally--even sympathetically. Since...
Policy Memo # 51
James Richter 01 Nov 1998
Most scholars and development professionals agree that a stable democracy requires a strong civil society. For this reason, many assistance agencies rightfully have made promoting civil society a key objective in Russia and other post-communist countries. The task is a daunting one. The experience of enforced activism under the communist regime has left most Russians deeply suspicious of public organizations. The government has not made things easier with...
Policy Memo # 50
Preventing the theft of weapons-usable highly enriched uranium and plutonium in Russia is one of the central security concerns facing the US today. The dissolution of the highly centralized USSR and the resulting societal crisis has endangered Russia's ability to protect its more than 200 metric tons of plutonium and 1000 tons of highly enriched uranium (roughly 8 kg Pu or 25 kg HEU is sufficient to make a bomb). Producing this fissile material is the...
Policy Memo # 49
Kimberly Marten 01 Nov 1998
In recent years many American investors have targeted direct investments in Russia toward small start-up companies that are spin-offs from old Soviet enterprises. These investments have been encouraged by several US government programs, particularly the provision of political risk insurance by the US Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC), and the sharing of business advice and Russian company information by the US Commerce Department. The...
Policy Memo # 48
Celeste A. Wallander 01 Nov 1998
Traditional approaches to international relations lead us to expect that with the loss of the Cold War's stable bipolar system, insecurity and uncertainty will prompt the great powers--Russia among them--to rely on unilateral, competitive security policies which will have the effect of threatening others and increasing the likelihood of conflict. My research on Russian security strategies after the Cold War finds these dire predictions to be...
Policy Memo # 47
Sarah E. Mendelson 01 Nov 1998
While the collapse of Russia's market last summer did not destroy new, partially-formed, post-Soviet political and social institutions, their condition this winter is far from stable. The non-governmental organizations (NGOs) commonly associated with democratic development, such as political parties, independent media, unions, legal reform and civic advocacy groups, are increasingly fragile and potentially as hollow as those once associated with the...
Policy Memo # 46
Michael McFaul 01 Nov 1998
Since the Russian financial collapse in August 1998, critics of US policy toward Russia from both the right and the left have had a heyday asserting that the Clinton Administration got Russia wrong. The refrains are by now familiar: "Clinton became too close to Yeltsin," "The IMF was naive," "the West funded crony capitalism," "US-Russian strategic partnership has produced few tangible results," "Russians are...
Policy Memo # 45
Brian Taylor 01 Nov 1998
The conventional wisdom among both Russian and Western analysts is that the Internal Troops (VV) of the Russian Ministry of Internal Affairs (MVD) have been a bureaucratic Pac-Man since the collapse of the Soviet Union, eating up precious state resources. The MVD's voracious appetite is said to have had a particularly deleterious impact on the Russian Armed Forces, whose financial difficulties are considerable and well-known. Former Minister of...
Policy Memo # 44
Eva Busza 01 Nov 1998
This fall the Yeltsin administration announced a new military reform initiative: the transformation of existing military districts into operational strategic commands. While the proposed system has been adopted in order to strengthen the ability of the armed forces to maintain order on the territory and the borders of the Russian federation, the new system is likely to hinder state consolidation and undermine democratic governance. [...] Read full text (...