International Security | Wilson Center

International Security

Entry Is One Ruble, Exit Is Two

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The troika gathered at a polished table surrounded by the insignia of the Russian state and made their pronouncements reluctantly, as if caught in the middle of an absorbing card game. All three looked baffled at themselves during the entire 10-minute news segment devoted to Moscow’s surprise move to withdraw the bulk of Russian forces from Syria.

Unpredictability: Tactical Virtue Turned Strategy

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The Spy Who Couldn't Spell: A Dyslexic Traitor, an Unbreakable Code, and the FBI's Hunt for America's Stolen Secrets

The thrilling, true-life account of the FBI’s hunt for the ingenious traitor Brian Regan—known as the Spy Who Couldn’t Spell.
Before Edward Snowden’s infamous data breach, the largest theft of government secrets was committed by an ingenious traitor whose intricate espionage scheme and complex system of coded messages were made even more baffling by his dyslexia. His name is Brian Regan, but he came to be known as The Spy Who Couldn’t Spell.

War Fever

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Recently, I grabbed a taxi in Moscow. When the driver asked me where I was from, I told him the United States.  “I went there once,” he said, “to Chicago. I really liked it.”

“But tell me something,” he added. “When are we going to war?”

The question, put so starkly, so honestly, shocked me. “Well, I hope never,” I replied. “No one wants war.”

Making Peace with the West, One Country at a Time

Russia has taken a number of cautious steps aimed at normalizing its relationship with the West; both Moscow and Washington seem to be ready for  military cooperation in Syria; Moscow and Ankara are busy patching up their relationship; and Moscow and Helsinki have just discussed mutual security. One important feature of these recent hints at normalization in Russia-West relations is that Russia is emphasizing its dialogue with specific countries, not with blocs like the European Union or NATO.

Transatlantic Perspectives in Fighting Violent Extremism: Challenges and Strategies

The 3rd Annual Swiss Day marks the ongoing collaboration between the Wilson Center and the Europa Institut at the University of Zurich.

Preventing violent extremism is one of the key challenges facing today’s policymakers. The Global Community Engagement and Resilience Fund (GCERF), founded in Geneva, Switzerland, in 2014, represents an innovative public-private partnership approach aimed at strengthening the resilience of local communities against violent extremist agendas.

It’s the Security, Stupid

Vladimir Putin is both feared and admired for his signature move of creating suspense that keeps everybody on their toes. He knows how to make sure his next move is unpredictable. And yet, he is one of the most consistent political actors we know.

Whenever he feels things are not going his way, he jumps at the security issue closest at hand and makes it his next showstopper.

8 Misguided Arguments on Refugees and Terrorism

Refugee resettlement in the United States is as politicized as it has been in generations. That is a shame, because our current dumbed-down debate distracts us from reforms that could attract consensus support, decreasing security risks while ensuring the program’s viability.

Middle East Leaders at UN on Extremism

Top leaders from across the Middle East expressed their support for efforts to confront terrorism, in their addresses to the 71st session of the U.N. General Assembly. They emphasized the need for international cooperation and partnerships to defeat the urgent threat to international peace and security. Some called for addressing the roots of terrorism and circumstances that contribute to the promotion of radical ideologies. But the leaders also stressed that terrorism is not associated with any religion, highlighting Islam’s tolerance and moderation.

Election 2016: Russia and Putin

Can you remember a time when a foreign leader was talked about as frequently as Vladimir Putin has been during election 2016? Kennan Institute Director, Matt Rojansky says that you’d have to go back to the Cold War to find anything close. With Russia and Putin casting long shadows over the presidential race, we asked Matt to provide analysis of implications for US-Russia relations and to offer advice to the next president on the best way to address the challenges presented by Russia. That’s the focus of this edition of  Wilson Center NOW.