Western states have been notoriously bad and unwilling in countering Russian strategy after its reassertion in the 2000s. Today, the US has acknowledged in their military doctrine that long-term strategic competition against Russia and China is their key priority. Likewise, Western states are starting to come to terms with that the Russian challenge is not going to disappear by itself.
Russian leaders may not have something that would satisfy the Western academic strategy community as a deliberate “grand strategy,” but they nonetheless possess a strategic outlook and a theory of victory for this competition. That theory is based less on direct competition and more on raiding, a stratagem that holds promise for revisionist ambitions and the weaker side in the conflict. Understanding Russian strategic drivers is a precondition for successfully managing the long-term strategic competition with Russia.
These are some of the issues was discussed in the Stockholm Free World Forum brief Drivers of Russian Grand Strategy, written by Michael Kofman, senior research scientist at CNA Corporation and fellow at the Wilson Center’s Kennan Institute. The brief was launched at a seminar on Tuesday April 23 at SFWF in Stockholm, where the author Michael Kofman was present, along with Oscar Jonsson, director of SFWF.