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.


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"