Michael A. McFaul, Stanford University professor of political science; director and senior fellow, Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies; Peter and Helen Bing Senior Fellow, Hoover Institution; Stanford University, former ambassador to Russia (2012 – 2014).
Here is what I see as the big picture:
- The current confrontation is more about the actors than about long-term strategy or geopolitical conflict
- Russia is part of Europe, culturally and economically, and its destiny lies in the West
- A strong Russia is in the West’s interest — a weak Russia invites encroachment from China in the East
- The West has to build a strong deterrent to aggression from the current regime
- While leaving the door open to long-term participation in European democratic structures, scientific cooperation and trade.