Students are Political Pawns

Publication Date: 
February 2015
Moscow Times
Collaborative Education and Cooperative Security
The Advanced Methods of Cooperative Security Program
U.S.-Russian Security Relations
Document Type: 
Articles and Op-Eds

Student exchange programs between Russia and the United States are in grave danger. This crisis peaked in October 2014 when Russia pulled out of the Future Leaders Exchange Program (FLEX), which brought more than 8,000 Russian high school students to stay with American families.

Russia's exit from this program can be seen as collateral damage of poor U.S.-Russia relations stemming from the Ukraine crisis. But, in truth, this trend — which has been in the making for years as Russia has chased out organizations supporting these exchanges — threatens to undermine the security of both countries in the long term.