Samuel Bendett


Samuel Bendett is an Adviser with CNA Strategy, Policy, Plans and Programs Center (SP3), where he is a member of the Russia Studies Program. He is also an Adjunct Senior Fellow at the Center for a New American Security. His work involves research on the Russian defense and technology developments, unmanned and autonomous military systems and Artificial Intelligence, as well as Russian military capabilities and decision-making during crises. He is a Member of CNA's Center for Autonomy and Artificial Intelligence, and an honorary "Mad Scientist" with the USARMY TRADOC's Mad Scientist Initiative. He is also a Russian military autonomy and AI SME for the DOD's Defense Systems Information Analysis Center.

Prior to joining CNA, Mr. Bendett worked at the National Defense University on emerging and disruptive technologies for the Department of Defense response in domestic and international crisis situations. His previous experience includes working for US Congress, private sector and non-profit organizations on foreign policy, international conflict resolution, defense and security issues. Mr. Bendett's analyses, views and commentary on Russian military robotics, unmanned systems and Artificial Intelligence capabilities appear in the Forbes, C4ISRnet, DefenseOne, War on the Rocks, Breaking Defense, The National Interest and The Strategy Bridge. Between 2008 and 2016, he was a foreign policy and international affairs contributor to the blog.

Samuel 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 3, 2020

Samuel Bendett writes, Russian President Vladimir Putin and his government generally sound two themes when discussing AI: that it is absolutely essential to Russia's future, necessitating an extensive domestic research and development effort; and that it could be  dangerous, requiring an international approach to limiting it."

Defense One: "Putin Urges AI Limits — but for Thee, Not Me?"

November 10, 2020

Samuel Bendett says, "The threat of small armed drones is a persistent one, and will only grow as more nations may try to copy Azeri experience in acquiring a range of UAV assets to complement their own legacy systems."

Forbes: "The 'Magic Bullet' Drones Behind Azerbaijan's Victory Over Armenia"

November 10, 2020

Samuel Bendett says, "This conflict underscores the significance of unmanned aerial assets when matched very well with a ground force that is willing to take casualties to accomplish the objective."

Defense & Aerospace Report: "Ceasefire in Nagorno-Karabakh"

November 2, 2020

Samuel Bendett says, "Bottom line: militaries today are adopting new tech for even greater combat and logistics efficiency, which is where these exoskeletons will be used."

Task & Purpose: "China Appears to Be Testing a Brand New Military Exoskeleton"

October 28, 2020

Samuel Bendett says, "The key takeaway is if you're going to fight a war in 2020, you have to have unmanned systems."

Defense & Aerospace Report: "Sam Bendett on Game Changing UAV Use"

October 9, 2020

Samuel Bendett says, "In order for the high tech community to thrive, which in many ways is a very different goal than allowing for example, industries or agriculture to thrive, it must allow for their people's creative elements to flourish and function unimpeded."

Mind Matters: "AI Development in Russia — Part 1"