Samuel Bendett


Samuel Bendett is a 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, Bendett 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's analyses, views and commentary on Russian military robotics, unmanned systems and artificial intelligence capabilities appear regularly in the C4ISRnet, The National Interest, DefenseOne, Breaking Defense, War Is Boring, and The Strategy Bridge. He was also a foreign policy and international affairs contributor to the blog, writing on Russian military technology.

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.


June 30, 2020

Samuel Bendett says that a "UGV would be 'an assistant in all functions needed at the moment—combat, [surveillance], logistics, evac or other functions.'"

Forbes: "Don't Panic, but Russia Is Training Its Robot Tanks to Understand Human Speech"

June 30, 2020

Samuel Bendett says, "Russians have had issues with building domestic drone engines, microelectronics and sensor components that are part of today's modern military drone. This resulted in program delays and re-prioritizations."

Forbes: "Tupolev to Make First Drone in Decades"

June 24, 2020

Samuel Bendett says, "At this point, the MOD would like its Navy to be operating a full range of maritime autonomous systems - with every vessel eventually becoming a "carrier" of multiple unmanned platforms." 

Forbes: "New Russian Robot Will Shoot Naval Mines With a Gun"

June 24, 2020

Samuel Bendett says, "If you look at the Russian government reports, they are still recording infections. They're not recording and publicizing deaths as much as they did before."

Defense & Aerospace Report: "DEFAERO Report Daily Podcast [Jun 24, 2020]–Sam Bendett & Envistacom" [10:48]

June 22, 2020

Samuel Bendett says, "UAVs [Unmanned Aerial Vehicles – drones] are cheap mission multipliers, and small militaries like those in the Caucuses can amplify their footprint by acquiring unmanned systems."

Forbes: "The Weird and Worrying Drone War in the Caucasus"

June 21, 2020

Samuel Bendett says, "Presently and for the near future, Russia will be investing in its Arctic infrastructure, both to tap the natural resources and to secure the Northern Route for the impending rise of sea-based traffic."

Forbes: "The Arctic Eats Helicopters, So Russia Is Sending Drones Instead"