Download

Download eBook for Free

Full Document

FormatFile SizeNotes
PDF file 2.8 MB Best for desktop computers.

Use Adobe Acrobat Reader version 10 or higher for the best experience.

ePub file 3.5 MB Best for mobile devices.

On desktop computers and some mobile devices, you may need to download an eBook reader to view ePub files. Calibre is an example of a free and open source e-book library management application.

mobi file 8.7 MB Best for Kindle 1-3.

On desktop computers and some mobile devices, you may need to download an eBook reader to view mobi files. Amazon Kindle is the most popular reader for mobi files.

Research Synopsis

FormatFile SizeNotes
PDF file 0.2 MB

Use Adobe Acrobat Reader version 10 or higher for the best experience.

Purchase

Purchase Print Copy

 FormatList Price Price
Add to Cart Paperback354 pages $49.50 $39.60 20% Web Discount

Research Questions

  1. What are Russia's greatest anxieties and vulnerabilities?
  2. In what ways can these anxieties and vulnerabilities be exploited and extend Russia?
  3. What are the costs and risks associated with each option, and what are the prospects of success?

This report examines a range of possible means to extend Russia. As the 2018 National Defense Strategy recognized, the United States is currently locked in a great-power competition with Russia. This report seeks to define areas where the United States can compete to its own advantage. Drawing on quantitative and qualitative data from Western and Russian sources, this report examines Russia's economic, political, and military vulnerabilities and anxieties. It then analyzes potential policy options to exploit them — ideologically, economically, geopolitically, and militarily (including air and space, maritime, land, and multidomain options). After describing each measure, this report assesses the associated benefits, costs, and risks, as well as the likelihood that measure could be successfully implemented and actually extend Russia. Most of the steps covered in this report are in some sense escalatory, and most would likely prompt some Russian counter-escalation. Some of these policies, however, also might prompt adverse reactions from other U.S. adversaries — most notably, China — that could, in turn, stress the United States. Ultimately, this report concludes that the most attractive U.S. policy options to extend Russia — with the greatest benefits, highest likelihood of success, and least risk — are in the economic domain, featuring a combination of boosting U.S. energy production and sanctions, providing the latter are multilateral. In contrast, geopolitical measures to bait Russia into overextending itself and ideological measures to undermine the regime's stability carry significant risks. Finally, many military options — including force posture changes and development of new capabilities — could enhance U.S. deterrence and reassure U.S. allies, but only a few are likely to extend Russia, as Moscow is not seeking parity with the United States in most domains.

Key Findings

Russia's weaknesses lie in the economic domains

  • Russia's greatest vulnerability, in any competition with the United States, is its economy, which is comparatively small and highly dependent on energy exports.
  • The Russian leadership's greatest anxiety stems from the stability and durability of the regime.

The most promising measures to stress Russia are in the realms of energy production and international pressure

  • Continuing to expand U.S. energy production in all forms, including renewables, and encouraging other countries to do the same would maximize pressure on Russia's export receipts and thus on its national and defense budgets. Alone among the many measures looked at in this report, this one comes with the least cost or risk.
  • Sanctions can also limit Russia's economic potential. To be effective, however, these need to be multilateral, involving (at a minimum) the European Union, which is Russia's largest customer and greatest source of technology and capital, larger in all these respects than the United States.

Geopolitical measures to bait Russia into overextending itself are likely impractical, or they risk second-order consequences

  • Many geopolitical measures would force the United States to operate in areas that are closer to Russia and where it is thus cheaper and easier for Russia than the United States to exert influence.

Ideological measures to undermine the regime's stability carry significant risks of counter escalation

  • Many military options — including force posture changes and development of new capabilities — could enhance U.S. deterrence and reassure U.S. allies, but only a few are likely to extend Russia, as Moscow is not seeking parity with the United States in most domains.

Table of Contents

  • Chapter One

    Introduction

  • Chapter Two

    Russia's Anxieties and Vulnerabilities

  • Chapter Three

    Economic Measures

  • Chapter Four

    Geopolitical Measures

  • Chapter Five

    Ideological and Informational Measures

  • Chapter Six

    Air and Space Measures

  • Chapter Seven

    Maritime Measures

  • Chapter Eight

    Land and Multidomain Measures

  • Chapter Nine

    Conclusions

Research conducted by

The research described in this report was sponsored by the Army Quadrennial Defense Review Office, Office of the Deputy Chief of Staff G-8, Headquarters, Department of the Army and conducted by the Strategy, Doctrine, and Resources Program within the RAND Arroyo Center.

This report is part of the RAND Corporation research report series. RAND reports present research findings and objective analysis that address the challenges facing the public and private sectors. All RAND reports undergo rigorous peer review to ensure high standards for research quality and objectivity.

Permission is given to duplicate this electronic document for personal use only, as long as it is unaltered and complete. Copies may not be duplicated for commercial purposes. Unauthorized posting of RAND PDFs to a non-RAND Web site is prohibited. RAND PDFs are protected under copyright law. For information on reprint and linking permissions, please visit the RAND Permissions page.

The RAND Corporation is a nonprofit institution that helps improve policy and decisionmaking through research and analysis. RAND's publications do not necessarily reflect the opinions of its research clients and sponsors.