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Analysis & Commentary - Boris Zilberman

Boris Zilberman's Latest Articles

31st January 2018 – The American Interest

How to Make Russia Sanctions Bite

Boris Zilberman

On Monday night, the U.S. Treasury Department issued its long-awaited report on Russian oligarchs and Vladimir Putin’s inner circle. The report, issued in time for the Russian markets to absorb it before trading began on Tuesday, was required by Section 241 of the Countering America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act of 2017 (CAATSA). Meanwhile, the State Department chose not to designate any individuals or companies pursuant to Section 231 of CAATSA, which authorizes sanctions on those who do business with the Russian defense and intelligence sectors. That decision is consistent with the letter of the law, but designations under Section 231 should come soon if State is serious about turning up the heat on Russia. more...

18th January 2018 – FDD Policy Brief

President Trump Calls Out Russia for Helping North Korean Sanctions Evasion

Mathew Ha, Boris Zilberman

“Russia is not helping us at all with North Korea,” President Trump said yesterday in an Oval Office interview with Reuters. “What China is helping us with, Russia is denting,” the president added. Trump is correct when he accuses Moscow of being complicit in the Kim regime’s efforts to evade sanctions. more...

22nd December 2017 – FDD Policy Brief

The Kremlin’s Bad Week

Boris Zilberman

This week, the Kremlin found itself facing American pressure on multiple new fronts, in domains ranging from national strategy to military assistance and human rights. On Monday, the Trump administration released its new National Security Strategy, which asserts unequivocally that Russia challenges “American power, influence, and interests, attempting to erode American security and prosperity.” National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster assailed Russia for “engag[ing] in a very sophisticated campaign of subversion to affect our confidence in democratic institutions, in democratic processes - including elections.” more...

22nd December 2017 – FDD Policy Brief

This Christmas, Remember Imprisoned Pastor Andrew Brunson

Boris Zilberman

Pastor Andrew Brunson will be spending his second Christmas in a Turkish jail, unfairly held by the Erdogan government on manufactured charges. This past October, a delegation from the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) visited Pastor Brunson. Brunson, who has lost considerable weight from the stress of constant confinement, had a clear message to the delegation: do not forget me. more...

3rd November 2017 – FDD Policy Brief

The S-400: Erdogan’s Fail-safe

Boris Zilberman

Moscow and Ankara continue to signal that the $2.5-billion sale of four S-400 anti-aircraft batteries will proceed. While questions remain about when delivery will occur and under what conditions, both sides have an overriding interest in seeing the deal through. President Vladimir Putin wants the deal not only for monetary reasons, but also to chip away at NATO unity and to validate such sales to other nations traditionally aligned with the West. For President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, the acquisition of the system enhances both Turkey’s military capabilities and Erdogan’s security in office. more...

14th August 2017 – The Hill

Blockchain technology may give Russia its next Sputnik moment

Yaya J. Fanusie, Boris Zilberman

Using blockchain technology, Russia may have just taken a massive leap forward in cryptography that needs more attention. more...

3rd April 2017 – Foreign Affairs

Russia’s Charm Offensive in North Africa

Boris Zilberman

With the world’s attention focused on the question of Russian influence in the United States and the European Union, the Kremlin is quietly making inroads in another region critical to both the United States and Europe: the five North African states of the southern Mediterranean shore. more...

7th February 2017 – The Hill

Ukraine needs to enforce US sanctions on Iran

Emanuele Ottolenghi, Boris Zilberman

The Ukrainian State Border Guard seized anti-tank missile components, reportedly the AT-4 Spigot, destined for Iran on Jan. 19. The weapons were concealed in the cargo section of a UM Airlines flight from Kiev to Tehran. more...

10th August 2016 – Politico Europe

The Turkey-Russia reset

Aykan Erdemir, Boris Zilberman

The failed coup in Turkey pushed Recep Tayyip Erdoğan into the arms of a man he now hails as a “valuable friend” but who was until recently a bitter enemy. more...

5th August 2016 – Quartz

Putin is jeopardizing his relationship with the West by allegedly trying to influence US elections

Boris Zilberman, Pasi Eronen

In the wake of WikiLeaks’ release of some 20,000 Democratic National Committee emails, US president Barack Obama faces three questions of some urgency. Did Russia hack and hand over the emails? If so, is the country trying to sway the US presidential election? And, if the answer is yes to both, how should Obama respond? more...

29th March 2016 – FDD Policy Brief

Russia Flexes its Muscle in Dispute with Japan

Boris Zilberman

Russia’s defense minister announced last week that Russia would deploy an advanced coastal-defense missile system and unmanned aerial vehicles to the far-eastern Kuril Islands, the southernmost of which are claimed by Japan. more...

3rd February 2016 – FDD Policy Brief

Nuclear Deal Paves Way for Iran-Russia Ballistic Missile Cooperation

Boris Zilberman

Since the start of talks over Iran’s nuclear program over two years ago, Russia and Iran have moved towards deepening economic and strategic ties in anticipation of Tehran’s reintegration into the global economy. more...

13th October 2015 – The National Interest

Blowback: Saudi Arabia vs. Russia in Syria

Jonathan Schanzer, Boris Zilberman

After deploying its ground and air assets across Syria, Russia entered into an agreement with the Shiite leaders of Iran and Iraq to coordinate military efforts. At the podium of the United Nations, Russian President Vladimir Putin looked as if he had pulled off a masterful power play in the Middle East. more...

18th May 2015 – FDD Policy Brief

Russia and the Illusion of “Snapback” Iran Sanctions

Boris Zilberman

President Obama insists that international sanctions, soon to be removed, can be “snapped back” should Iran violate the terms of a potentially impending nuclear deal. more...

31st March 2015 – FDD Policy Brief

Nuclear Deal with Jordan is Russia’s Latest Attempt to Woo U.S. Allies

Grant Rumley, Boris Zilberman

Russia’s state-run nuclear-energy company last week signed a $10-billion agreement to build the first two nuclear power plants in Jordan’s history. more...

12th February 2015 – FDD Policy Brief

‘Minsk 2.0’ Provides Shaky Ukraine Ceasefire

Boris Zilberman

After 16 hours of negotiations in the Belarusian capital, the leaders of Ukraine, Russia, France, and Germany ironed out a shaky short-term solution to the Ukraine crisis. The agreement was announced at three separate news conferences, suggesting the deal’s durability and longevity may be in doubt. more...

30th December 2014 – FDD Policy Brief

Putin’s Lower Vodka Prices Won’t Offset Russian Economic Woes in 2015

Boris Zilberman

Russian President Vladimir Putin lowered vodka prices last week for the first time since the Kremlin adopted pricing standards in 2010 that nearly doubled the price of a half-liter bottle. While the discount may allow Russians a more raucous New Year’s celebration, the morning after is bound to be painful. Russia’s economy is set to begin 2015 with greater uncertainty than at any time during Putin’s reign. more...

23rd July 2014 – Forbes

Vladimir Erdoğan: How The Turkish Premier Is Consolidating Power, Russia-Style

Merve Tahiroglu, Boris Zilberman

Turkey’s ruling Justice and Development party (AKP) has its candidate for Turkey’s presidency. To no one’s surprise, it’s Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan. more...

26th March 2014 – FDD Policy Brief

The Ukrainian Crisis and the Northern Distribution Network

Boris Zilberman

The U.S. Treasury Department levied more sanctions last week against key Russian officials close to President Putin, as well as Bank Rossiya. The Russian Federation... more...

14th March 2014 – FDD Policy Brief

Why Russia Won’t Let Crimea Go

Boris Zilberman

Last week, as Russian forces tightened their grip on the Crimean peninsula, the Russian Navy scuttled one of its old ships at the mouth of the Crimean bay to block the Ukrainian Navy in their... more...