Raphael S. Cohen

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Raphael S. Cohen is a political scientist and the associate director of Project Air Force’s Strategy and Doctrine Program at the nonprofit, nonpartisan RAND Corporation. He and Ambassador James Dobbins are the lead authors of the newly released report Extending Russia: Competing from Advantageous Ground, from which this essay is partially adapted.

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Foreign Policy Essay

What Ronald Reagan Can Teach Us About Dealing With Contemporary Russia

Editor’s Note: The U.S. victory in the Cold War and the collapse of the Soviet Union is often laid at the feet of Ronald Reagan. As Russia again emerges as an adversary, the question “what would Reagan do?” is increasingly being asked. Raphael S. Cohen and James Dobbins of the RAND Corporation argue that circumstances today differ considerably from the Reagan-era standoff during the Cold War. However, Reagan’s strong rhetorical stance, use of economic pressure and other means still could be applied to better oppose Moscow.

Daniel Byman

Foreign Policy Essay

Minding the Gap: The Military, Politics and American Democracy

Editor’s Note: The relationship between soldiers and civilians is a fundamental question for any democracy. In the United States, the military has long been respected, but only recently has it been idolized—far more so than any other American institution today. Not surprisingly, politicians increasingly bring military officers into their administrations. Raphael Cohen of RAND finds that the civil-military gap is growing, in large part due to the shift toward an all-volunteer force and the decline in the percentage of Americans with military experience.

Foreign Policy Essay

Understanding the U.S. Military’s Morale “Crisis”

Editor’s Note: The U.S. Army and the military as a whole seem to have fallen on hard times: polls, studies, and tragedies like suicides and drug abuse all suggest an institution in crisis. Raphael Cohen of RAND questions this picture, pointing out that while the military has real problems, some are exaggerated and a few are even improving. Rather than focusing on benefits or other issues, Cohen argues the morale problems stem in part from concerns over the military’s accomplishments.