Date of Graduation

Spring 2012


Master of Science in Defense and Strategic Studies


Defense and Strategic Studies

Committee Chair

Robert Joseph


Venezuela, V.I.RUSS, Russia, Iran, Geopolitics

Subject Categories

Defense and Security Studies


For the first time since WWII the United States (U.S.) is facing a developing international alliance that could alter the strategic geopolitical landscape and threaten the security of the western hemisphere and the United States. This alliance is comprised of Venezuela, Iran, and Russia, which form the challenging and dangerous triad known as V.I.RUSS. Like any alliance, V.I.RUSS is driven by common shared ideologies. All three V.I.RUSS nations have similar geopolitical, monetary, military, nuclear, international and anti-American mentalities. V.I.RUSS has harnessed the ability to influence international markets, by taking advantage of each nation's own domestic and international infrastructure, military agreements, financial investments, and political forums. V.I.RUSS creates a very serious and current security problem for the United States and western hemisphere. With the increasing connections between Venezuela, Iran, and Russia there exists a pertinent need for the U.S. to address this triad with a serious and firm policy. Under Hugo Chavez, Venezuela has fully integrated Iran and Russia into its strategy and is leveraging V.I.RUSS to achieve many of its grand strategy goals. If the U.S. continues to ignore the growing threat of an Iranian and Russian presence within Latin America and the western hemisphere, the U.S. will no longer be a primary international partner in the region and could possibly put at risk its future military, political, and international superiority within its own backyard. Therefore, it is vital that the spreading epidemic of V.I.RUSS be contained.


© Cassandra Marie Lucaccioni

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