Rick Spencer

Analysis

My analytical writing spans defense and economic statecraft, Russian politics, nuclear weapons and any other varieties of commentary on current events. 

National Security

How do the Russian Armed Forces express jointness?

The Army’s Foreign Military Service Office (FMSO) produced an e-book in 2017 called The Russian Way of War, which is one of the only documents I’ve found that explores Russian inter-service cooperation thoroughly. According to the authors Dr. Lester Grau and Charles Bartles, Russian command and control has jointness baked-in.

2022-05-29

Nuclear Weapons Strategy & Policy

Introduction to the Источники project

What are the sources of nuclear deterrence strategy for the Russian Federation national security enterprise?

It is not sufficient to argue that we cannot know because it is all a secret held in the impenetrable, red-walled castle of Putin’s mind. Nor that it is spelled out unambiguously in declaratory statements from the ministry of defense. Counting RT-2PM Topols will only lull you to sleep and get you no closer to why they deploy what they deploy.

Comprehensive interdisciplinary study will generate a wider variety of explanations or predictions of behavior. We can capture viewpoints through different disciplinary lenses, include the overlapping and non-overlapping domains each discipline privileges in its research, and most importantly consider intersections or interactions between systems.

2022-05-29

Foreign Policy and International Relations

Korean Think Tanks you ask?

In recent discussion about the world of think tanks, a question was raised about the think tank culture in Korea. …There are at least two places that I’ve found where one can go and learn more about the think tank sector as a whole.

2022-05-29

Russia: Political Analysis

Introduction to the Источники project

What are the sources of nuclear deterrence strategy for the Russian Federation national security enterprise?

It is not sufficient to argue that we cannot know because it is all a secret held in the impenetrable, red-walled castle of Putin’s mind. Nor that it is spelled out unambiguously in declaratory statements from the ministry of defense. Counting RT-2PM Topols will only lull you to sleep and get you no closer to why they deploy what they deploy.

Comprehensive interdisciplinary study will generate a wider variety of explanations or predictions of behavior. We can capture viewpoints through different disciplinary lenses, include the overlapping and non-overlapping domains each discipline privileges in its research, and most importantly consider intersections or interactions between systems.

2022-05-29

International Organizations

Evaluating The International Atomic Energy Agency

If you had walked out of the signing of the United Nations Charter on June 26th, 1945 and taken a bicycle ride south and then east along US40 for roughly six hours per day, in three weeks you could have shown up in Socorro, New Mexico on July 16th to witness the first ever detonation of a nuclear weapon.

2022-05-29

Economic Statecraft

Topics of Analysis