Alexandra Sukalo is an Assistant Professor of National Security Affairs at the Naval Postgraduate School. She is a historian of Russia and Eastern Europe specializing in the Soviet Union.
Alexandra was a 2021–2022 Postdoctoral Fellow at the Clements Center for National Security at the University of Texas at Austin. She received her Ph.D. in History at Stanford University in 2021. Her dissertation, “Surveillance’s Double-Edged Sword: Intelligence and Identities in the Soviet Union, 1918–1953,” compares how the Soviet Union’s domestic intelligence service, or political police, functioned across the Soviet Republics. It traces the establishment and evolution of the Soviet political police in the non-Russian republics and explains how the political elite in Moscow endeavored to employ the political police to transform multiple insubordinate populations into loyal Soviet citizens. Prior to matriculating at Stanford, Alexandra worked for the Department of Defense. She holds a B.A. in Political Science from Barnard College of Columbia University, an M.A. in European and Russian Studies from Yale University, and an M.A. in History from Stanford University.
Broadly speaking, Alexandra’s research focuses on the Soviet’s attempts to maintain domestic control and project power at home and abroad through the use of institutions as well as the impact ordinary citizens had on how these institutions functioned. She is currently working on a book manuscript based on her dissertation research as well as a second project, which explores the evolution of the Soviet Military-Industrial Complex from Stalin to Gorbachev and analyzes the impact this inherited system continues to have on the Russian Federation.