HOW SHOULD THE US RESHAPE ITS RUSSIA POLICY? - Ukrainian forces’ stunning ability to resist Russia’s full-scale invasion has transformed the potential future of both Ukraine and Russia itself. The Kremlin’s large invasion in February of 2022 has left Russia more diplomatically and economically isolated than ever before, while the failure of the invasion to achieve Putin’s maximalist objectives has led to tensions in Moscow.
Cracks in the once tightly controlled edifice of the Putin regime are growing. Wagner Group leader Yevgeny Prigozhin has stepped up rhetorical attacks on Kremlin leadership and Russian security services have struggled to repel a spate of recent attacks on Russian soil. Political repression at home forced Russian opposition groups abroad, reinvigorating initiatives that aim to shape a post-Putin Russia.
The West has adapted its approach to Russia’s naked imperial ambition, moving to strengthen NATO, wean itself off Russian oil and gas, and broaden sanctions against the Kremlin and its proxies. Rather than “parking Russia” to focus on China, the White House now more clearly understands the threat of Russian aggression today and possibly for the long term. The strength of American policy on Russia can help shape the outcome of the war and set the stage for postwar relations with Russia that better serve the interests of the US and its partners.
Has Putin’s regime been fundamentally weakened by Russia’s failures in Ukraine? What might happen in Russia if or when Ukraine wins this war? How should the West engage with Russia, given Moscow’s diplomatic and economic isolation? How should Washington construct a Russia policy that better suits American interests? What future scenarios are possible for Russia? The Atlantic Council’s Eurasia Center and the Open Minds Institute gather a panel of experts to discuss.
ORIGINAL AIRDATE: 6/28/23