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Biden Announces Waves of Sanctions on Russia, Still Room for Diplomacy

In an address to the nation, president Biden announces waves of sanctions on Russia.
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U.S. to Sanction Two Russian Financial Institutions

Following a Russian advance into Eastern Ukraine, U.S. to Sanction Two Russian Financial Institutions, Sovereign Debt, Elites and Family Members, Biden Says

President Biden said his administration would levy sanctions on two Russian financial institutions, its sovereign debt and elite individuals in response to Russian President Vladimir Putin’s movement of troops into the eastern Donbas region of Ukraine, warning of additional economic punishments if Moscow widened its incursion.

“This is the beginning of a Russian invasion of Ukraine,” Mr. Biden said on Tuesday afternoon at the White House.

“Let me be clear, these are totally defensive moves on our part,” he added. “We have no intention of fighting Russia.”

“Until the tanks are rolling and the planes are in the air, we’re going to try everything we possibly can to get President Putin to reverse the decision we believe he’s made and to dissuade him…As soon as you trigger the sanctions, any deterrent effect they may have is gone,” Secretary of State Antony Blinken said Sunday on NBC’s “Meet the Press.”

Need to Keep the Big Threat a Secret

As soon as you trigger the sanctions, any deterrent effect they may have is gone,” Secretary of State Antony Blinken said Sunday on NBC’s “Meet the Press.”

Mr. Biden had previously warned of a harsh response if Mr. Putin invaded Ukraine, and lesser action if the Russian president made what the U.S. leader called a “minor incursion.

Waves of Sanctions

Here's a paragraph from the WSJ that caught my eye.

Mr. Finer said Tuesday the administration is planning to implement “waves of sanctions” against Russia. If Mr. Putin takes additional steps, the U.S. could impose another round of measures after the ones that are expected to be announced Tuesday.

I had to look that one up because that is the only reference to "Mr. Finer" in the article. I had no idea who Finer is. 

Wikipedia notes Jonathan Finer (born 1976) is an American journalist and diplomat who serves as Deputy National Security Advisor under National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan, in the administration of U.S. President Joe Biden.

Reciprocal Cyber Attacks 

The “minor incursion” comment set off criticism from Republicans. The president also in that news conference said the U.S. would respond with reciprocal action if Russia launched a cyberattack or other nonmilitary effort. 

Is this an Invasion?

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During a call with reporters Monday night, a senior administration official declined to refer to Mr. Putin’s recent actions in Donetsk as an invasion. The official said the administration was assessing Russia’s actions and would respond accordingly, adding that Russia has had a presence in the Donbas region for eight years. The troop movements were described as part of Russian-backed pretexts for further invasion.

Ukraine Says Major Escalation Probability is Low, US Says Russia Will Attack

Please recall my February 19 post Ukraine Says Major Escalation Probability is Low, US Says Russia Will Attack.

Both Ukraine and now president Biden do no see what has happened as a major escalation.

Sanctions Don't Work

History shows sanctions do not work. And trade sanctions hurt innocent people in the process. 

Biden's Bluff

In December president Biden said that he told Putin that “there will be severe consequences” if Russia moves on Ukraine — “economic consequences like none he has ever seen.

Biden acted like a bear and today looks like a circus clown.  

I am not arguing for more sanctions. 

Rather, I am mocking Biden's big sanction bluff that should now be apparent to the entire world.

This post originated on MishTalk.Com.

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