NATO and Russia relations post-Cold War : the importance of the United States to NATO

A capstone project submitted to the faculty of the California Maritime Academy in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Bachelor of Arts in Global Studies and Maritime Affairs.

This paper will examine the relationship between Russia and NATO following the dissolution of the USSR and the end of the Cold War. There will be an overview of NATO actions in recent years and how those actions have impacted Russian relations and the stability of Europe. Russia has also had two major actions following the reform of their military and in response to NATO pressure. These actions in Ukraine and Georgia point towards a modern and more active Russian military. The paper will also inspect the value of the Arctic to both NATO and Russia, and the development of both party's Arctic capabilities. The difference in NATO and Russian military structure will be analyzed as well as their biggest advantages and weaknesses. Finally, the paper will discuss the relevance of the NATO alliance and the value that the United States brings to the organization.