Date of Graduation

Fall 2010


Master of Science in Defense and Strategic Studies


Defense and Strategic Studies

Committee Chair

Ilan Berman


Russia, demographics, Islam, civilization, defense

Subject Categories

Defense and Security Studies


I originally developed the idea for this thesis thanks to an off-hand remark made in one of my classes at Missouri State University's Department of Defense and Strategic Studies by Dr. Berman, who said that the Russian Federation would have a majority Muslim military by 2025 and become an Islamic state by 2050. Over the next two and a half years at the DSS program, I began researching Russia's demographic problem. The hypothesis of this work is that Russia will be a Muslim country in the near future and that the United States must significantly engage in defense build-ups to counter this threat. My hypothesis that Russia is falling demographically was supported. Not only are high death rates and low birth rates plaguing the country, but Muslim populations are producing between six and 10 children per adult woman for every one Slavic child. My conclusion is that Russia will be an Islamic state well before the end of this century unless Moscow decides on highly xenophobic and/or territorially aggressive actions – both quite possible given Russia's historic animosity with its minority groups and external neighbors. Russia will become an Islamic state unless it goes on a hostile internal rampage or throws the international system into chaos by annexing willing (or unwilling) Slavic neighbors. All three options are plausible, given the poor demographic situations of nearby Slavic countries. Thus, the United States must prepare itself – first and foremost by reinvesting in missile defenses – for Russia, which holds the world's largest nuclear stockpile, to enter into a state of unpredictability in the near future, no matter how, or if, it deals with its demographic crisis.


© Zachary Samuel Simms

Campus Only