The Russo-American relationship has oscillated since the Cold War’s end. Successive presidents, both Republican and Democratic, have sought to redefine the ties with Moscow at the start of their administrations, only to have points of contention emerge.
As the current administration develops a policy toward Russia, the Putin regime continues its record of antagonism abroad; Russia has taken military actions in Eastern Europe and the Middle East; and deployed cyber and informational operations to undermine the legitimacy of democracies. Coupled with a domestic U.S. call for European nations to share the global security burden, fundamental questions have surfaced around the future of U.S. strategy in Europe.
On April 6, Foreign Policy at Brookings hosted U.S. Senator Chris Coons, D-Del., for a discussion on the future of U.S.-Russia relations, the NATO alliance, and the trans-Atlantic relationship. Featured remarks by Senator Coons were followed by a conversation on these themes with Brookings President Strobe Talbott.
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With the downward trajectory in [U.S.-China] relations, the incoming ambassador ideally will need to have a visible connection to the president and his senior advisers, familiarity with the range of issues that comprise the relationship, and a future in American politics. The more the ambassador is seen as likely to wield influence in the future on issues affecting China, the higher the cost and risk for Beijing to mistreat him/her.