Three people not credited on the front cover, but without whom this report would be a shadow of itself, merit a large and equal measure of the 17 authors’ gratitude:
Ľubica Polláková, as ever, used charm, humour and other skills to herd errant authors and keep the project going (under the difficult conditions of COVID-19). She also designed the structure common to all chapters, to try to ensure a degree of uniformity throughout.
Valeriy Akimenko enforced the uniformity of that structure and more, as he undertook the Herculean task of questioning, trimming and editing the initial drafts.
Chatham House editor Jake Statham, whose sound judgment and extraordinary eye save most authors from embarrassment at some stage, completed the process with his deft combination of sense-checking, ambiguity-spotting and overall script-tightening.
Inevitably in such exercises, some authors carry an extra burden. In this case it was Keir Giles, whose behind-the-scenes contribution as a reality checker throughout the lifespan of the project has been key to its overall cohesion.
Profound thanks are also due to former colleagues Quinton Scribner and Ekaterina Aleynikova for their early research assistance; to current colleagues Anna Morgan and Adam Kowalski in particular for reference tracking and planning; to the anonymous peer reviewers and other experts who were kind enough to offer constructive comments on individual sections or the whole report; and finally to Chatham House Deputy Director Renata Dwan and Alistair Burnett, Managing Director, Communications and Publishing, for fine-tuning the executive summary and other sections of the report.
James Nixey is especially grateful to John Gerson for the kernel of the idea for this report.
A final thank you is to the Russia Strategic Initiative of U.S. European Command, based in Stuttgart, whose support of this project – both financial and moral – has been invaluable.
One should own one’s mistakes, so – needless to say – the responsibility for any errors of fact or analysis is that of the authors alone. We do not claim infallibility, but we have approached this task in good faith.