2011 Dr. Berj. H. Haidostian Annual Distinguished Lecture

Looking Beyond the “Reset”: U.S.-Russian Relations and Their Implications for the Caucasus


Dr. Hill’s point of departure was the Obama administration’s effort to reframe or ‘reset’ relations with Russia. Hill’s analysis granted a global perspective by laying out several current issues: trends within Russia’s domestic policies, China’s increasing strength, and the unraveling regimes in the Middle East, among others. Further the analysis included the Russian perception that the US has a more amicable foreign policy because of the turbulence and instability in various regions but that once these issues are resolved the US tendency would be to return to a more antagonistic approach. With regard to the South Caucasus region and Armenia, Dr. Hill argued that it is no longer possible to argue that the US had a policy in the region; there is no imminent issue, such as the oil pipeline was in the 1990s, that compels Washington to focus on the region, she argued, and experts on the region within the government have been moved to work on other issues and more imminent crises.

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Dr. Fiona Hill, a frequent commentator on Russian and Eurasian affairs, has published extensively on issues related to Russia, relations among the states of the former Soviet Union, the Caucasus region, Central Asia, ethno-political conflicts in Eurasia, and energy and strategic issues. Her book with Brookings Senior Fellow Clifford Gaddy, The Siberian Curse. How Communist Planners Left Russia Out in the Cold, was published by Brookings Press in December 2003; and her monograph Energy Empire: Oil, Gas and Russia’s Revival was published in London by the Foreign Policy Centre in 2004. She served for three years on the National Intelligence Council in Washington, DC.