Putin is less interested in President Nicolás Maduro and his regime than in using him as a thorn in Washington’s side. Venezuela’s crisis provides Putin with a like-minded collaborator eager to denounce the United States.
The Kerch Bridge is the conclusion of Crimea’s incorporation into Russia, both physically and politically. Any haggling over on what terms Russia might return Crimea to Ukraine is now definitively null and void.
As U.S. ambassador to Russia from 2012 to 2014, Michael McFaul had a front-row seat as the relationship began to unravel in the wake of Vladimir Putin’s return to the presidency six years ago. What went wrong? Could today’s tensions have been avoided?
While the proxy war in Syria does hold the potential for a clash between U.S. and Russian forces, it is only one of several theaters in which a larger conflict between the two countries is playing out.
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.
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.