Supporters of a free Russia have long dreamed of a day when the Orthodox Church is separate from the state and when elected officials are unafraid to oppose Kremlin ministers. The latter is certainly happening, but among those who are taking advantage of this new freedom first are zealots who speak in a language of aggressive and intimidating conservatism.
Time is on Navalny’s side. If he doesn’t commit a blunder that disenchants potential voters, and if the authorities don’t take the brute force approach of locking him away for a number of years, he could emerge as a key opposition figure between 2018 and 2024.
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.
Chinese and Russian leaders won’t always agree, but their deepening cooperation and mistrust of the U.S. is here to stay. Unfortunately, American leaders have shown few signs that they know how to navigate this new reality, let alone manage the competition among great powers as non-Western countries grown in stature.
Julia Gurganus is a visiting scholar with the Russia and Eurasia Program at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. Her research focus is on trends in Russian foreign policy and Russia-U.S. relations.
Lehne is a visiting scholar at Carnegie Europe in Brussels, where his research focuses on the post–Lisbon Treaty development of the European Union’s foreign policy, with a specific focus on relations between the EU and member states.
Nakhle is a nonresident scholar at Carnegie Middle East Center, specializing in international petroleum contracts and fiscal regimes for the oil and gas industry, world oil and gas market developments, energy policy, and oil and gas revenue management.
Paul Stronski is a senior fellow in Carnegie’s Russia and Eurasia Program, where his research focuses on the relationship between Russia and neighboring countries in Central Asia and the South Caucasus.