I found The Kremlin Playbook on the CSIS web site. This is the Center for Strategic & International Studies, an entity that is highly regarded in all quarters. The paper is divided into six sections and then five case studies.
- Introduction: A Model of Russian Influence in Central and Eastern Europe
- Russian Political Influence: Eroding Democratic Institutions
- Russian Economic Influence: Exploiting Capitalism’s Weaknesses
- The Unvirtuous Cycle of Corruption
- Russian Influence: Intentional or Opportunistic
- Resisting Russian Influence and Policy Recommendations
- Hungary: Early Illiberalism Adopter
- Bulgaria: What State Capture Looks Like
- Latvia: How to Break the Unvirtuous Cycle
- Slovakia: Political Capture in Action
- Serbia: Preview of Coming Attractions
Slowly awakening to the impact of Russian influence is a far cry from understanding the depth of the policy challenge and implementing policy responses, however. Although Russia’s military activism has received significant policy attention by the United States and NATO, transatlantic understanding of Europe’s susceptibility to and complicity with Russian influence—which constitutes an equally serious threat to European security—is completely lacking. A disunited, politically paralyzed, and antidemocratic Europe would erode the ability of NATO to defend and uphold transatlantic norms, values, and institutions, seriously undermining and ultimately questioning the future of the alliance. The stakes are enormous.
Starting on page XV of the executive summary there are a page and a half of high level prescriptions for European governments and the United States. The Kremlin Playbook is useless without the ability to move illicit funds around. This is the first prescription they offered:
Elevate and design a special, high-level task force within the U.S. Treasury Department’s Office of Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCen) that focuses solely on tracing and prosecuting illicit Russian-linked financial flows if they interact with the U.S. financial system.
There is much more but this is the crux – Russia arrives, starts purchasing influence until it’s in a position to change things, then it slowly takes control. The only positive thing I see in all this is that Citizens United Killed The GOP, and Russian money certainly played a role in that. The Putin/Trump connection has been good for the U.S. in this regard – the GOP may never recover from the blow, and perhaps D.C. will be a little less dysfunctional starting in early 2017.