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The Russia Trap

How Our Shadow War with Russia Could Spiral into Nuclear Catastrophe

George S. Beebe

Thomas Dunne Books

The Russia Trap Download image

ISBN10: 1250316626
ISBN13: 9781250316622


240 Pages



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Every American president since the end of the Cold War has called for better relations with Russia. But each has seen relations get worse by the time he left office. Now the two countries are facing off in a virtual war being fought without clear goals or boundaries.

Why? Many say it is because Washington has been slow to wake up to Russian efforts to destroy democracy in America and the world.

But a former head of Russia analysis at the CIA says that this misunderstands the problem. George Beebe argues that new game-changing technologies, disappearing rules of the game, and distorted perceptions on both sides are combining to lock Washington and Moscow into an escalatory spiral that they do not recognize. All the pieces are in place for a World War I-type tragedy that could be triggered by a small, unpredictable event. The Russia Trap shows that anticipating this danger is the most important step in preventing it.


Praise for The Russia Trap

“A must read for anyone who cares about our nation's security in these cyber-serious, hair-trigger times.”—Susan Eisenhower

"At a time when Russia is politically radioactive, George Beebe has the courage to dive deep into the complexity of factors driving U.S.-Russian relations to explain why the two countries need not and should not be enemies."—Graham Allision, author of the bestselling Destined for War: Can America and China Escape Thucydide's Trap?

"In a time when thoughtful argument on the U.S.-Russia relationship is sorely needed, George Beebe has made an insightful and well-written contributing to our national discourse on this fateful subject."—Henry A. Kissinger

Reviews from Goodreads


Read an Excerpt


War by Other Means

The United States and Russia are fighting an undeclared virtual war. It is not a hot war, as between Japan and the United States in World War II. And it is not a cold war, driven by two...

About the author

George S. Beebe

GEORGE S. BEEBE is the Vice President and Director of Studies at the Center for the National Interest, a non-partisan thinktank in Washington, D.C. He served in the US government for nearly twenty-five years, including as director of Russia analysis at CIA and as a White House adviser on Russia matters for Vice President Dick Cheney. He lives in northern Virginia.

Tim Coburn Photography

George Beebe