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Russian President Vladimir Putin meets with President Joe Biden in Geneva Russian President Vladimir Putin meets with President Joe Biden at the Villa la Grange in Geneva, Switzerland, June 16, 2021 (AP photo by Patrick Semansky).

Russia’s Strategy of Disruption Goes Beyond the Ukraine Crisis

Friday, Feb. 4, 2022

In the weeks since Russia began its military buildup on Ukraine’s border, the U.S. and its allies have scrambled to respond quickly and forcefully. According to U.S. intelligence officials, the more than 100,000 Russian troops amassed so far would be capable of launching a full-scale invasion. And with NATO gathering troops of its own in Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia, it is clear that escalation is a real possibility. 

And yet, Russia’s strategic decisions from the past decade—in Ukraine but also worldwide—have made it very difficult to successfully respond to its aggression. The recent buildup is the clearest expression of Russian military ambitions in years, but in that time Russian-linked violent actors have continued to strategically engage in conflicts around the globe, allowing Russia to grow its influence—and hinder retaliation. ...

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