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Countering Putin's Grand Strategy

Russia is playing a global game, and the US and Europe are so busy protecting their corners that they are leaving the goals wide open. Only with a global counter-strategy, including a model for a more inclusive international system, do the US and Europe have a chance of regaining control of the field.

WASHINGTON, DC – In 1965, at the height of the Cold War, the comedy series Get Smart premiered on US television. The popular show featured the bumbling secret agent Maxwell Smart, who represented the American counterespionage agency CONTROL in its fight against its archenemy, an organization called KAOS – one of whose agents was virtually always Russian.

Today, as a recent RAND study put it, Russia is “a well-armed rogue state that seeks to subvert an international order it can no longer hope to dominate.” In other words, having lost control, it is seeking to sow chaos.

US President Joe Biden’s administration is aware of the Russia threat. But, as the recent G7 and NATO communiqués show, it is focused primarily on Russian cyberattacks on American and European targets. As Russia pursues a global grand strategy to expand its influence and undermine the liberal world order, this is not enough.

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