Date of Original Version
Abstract or Table of Contents
This paper will analyze U.S.–Russian bilateral relations from 2000–2008. It will give an overview of the foreign policy objectives of both nations followed by an examination of the bilateral relationship in areas such as arms reduction, nonproliferation, missile defense, terrorism, the Iraq war, U.S. involvement in former Soviet states, Russia’s relations with critical nations, and the Georgia–Russia conflict of August 2008. Each of these subsections will show that there are points of contention, but also opportunities to work cooperatively. The objective of this paper is to illustrate that U.S.–Russian relations have deteriorated significantly since their relatively high point in 2001, and although there were opportunities for collaboration on areas of common interests, they were not fully exploited because U.S. foreign policy was focused on the war in Iraq. Though U.S. foreign policy has been largely unresponsive to the resurgence of Russia, relations are not yet damaged beyond repair. The U.S. can begin to forge a new relationship with Russia by collaborating on nonproliferation issues, renewing bilateral negotiations on arms control such as the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty, and utilizing international organizations to which Russia is a party whenever it is in the U.S.’ interest. Consistent with neorealist expectations, cooperation on common security interests is a definitive way to better the bilateral relationship between these two nations.