Samuel Bendett

Tel: (703) 824-2631

Samuel Bendett

Associate Research Analyst

EXPERTISE: Defense Technology, Foreign Militaries, Foreign Policy, Russia, Autonomy, AI and Drones


Samuel Bendett is an Associate Research Analyst with the Center for Naval Analyses' International Affairs Group, where he is a member of the Russia Studies Program. His work involves Russian defense and security technology and developments, Russian geopolitical influence in the former Soviet states, as well as Russian unmanned systems development, Russian naval capabilities and Russian decision-making calculus during military crises.

Prior to joining CNA, he worked at the National Defense University on emerging and disruptive technologies for government response in crisis situation, where he conducted research on behalf of the Office of the Secretary of Defense for Policy (OSD-P) and Acquisition, Technology and Logistics (OSD-AT&L). His previous experience includes working for US Congress, private sector and non-profit organizations on foreign policy, international conflict resolution, defense and security issues.

Bendett was a foreign policy and international affairs contributor to the blog, writing on Russian military technology, including unmanned systems, and socio-cultural developments across Former Soviet Union. His analyses also appeared in The National Interest, where he wrote on Russian military robotics and unmanned systems capabilities.

Bendett received his M.A. in Law and Diplomacy from the Fletcher School, Tufts University and B.A. in Politics and English from Brandeis University. He has native fluency in Russian.


December 12, 2017

Samuel Bendett writes, “Over the last five years, the Russian Federation has made great strides in designing, testing, evaluating, and fielding a variety of unmanned military systems.”

The Strategy Bridge: “Red Robots Rising: Behind the Rapid Development of Russian Unmanned Military Systems”


December 1, 2017

Samuel Bendett says, "Russia taking a defensive stance against an international body seeking to regulate weapons other than destructive nuclear bombs should not have been such a surprise."

TechSpot: "Russia Says an International Ban Won't Prevent It Building Killer Robots"


November 28, 2017

Samuel Bendett says, "Russia has been increasing spending on both IT software and hardware for its military, creating domestic microchips, smart phones, notebooks and now closed Internet for the Armed Forces. These efforts were facilitated by the government and [Ministry of Defense] eager to wean themselves off the dependence on high-tech imports."

Defense One: "Russia Will Build Its Own Internet Directory, Citing U.S. Information Warfare"


November 28, 2017

Samuel Bendett says, "The growth in Russian unmanned military systems is going to be exponential."

Real Clear World: "The Next Step in Russia's Military Modernization? Robots"


November 21, 2017

Samuel Bendett says, "Russians are also unsure how exactly AI-driven military robotics systems would function given that artificial intelligence in a battlefield capacity is still an evolving concept."

Defense One: "Russia to the United Nations: Don't Try to Stop Us From Building Killer Robots"


November 17, 2017

Samuel Bendett says, "This particular UAV will enter service in 2018, just as the Russians will start fielding their own combat unmanned aerial vehicles - so the technology race is ongoing and Ukrainians need a truly organized public-private, interagency and whole of government effort to make their wishes for a combat long-range UAV a reality."

Defense One: "Ukraine Fields an Armed Drone for Use Against Pro-Russian Forces"