NOW Can We Have Sanctions On Russia??

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Global Panorama / Flickr putin...
Global Panorama / Flickr

So, we learn that the Russians declared information warfare on our elections, attempting to get the candidate they believed best for Russia – Trump – elected president. President Obama levied heavy sanctions upon Russia back at the end of December 2016 for activities we had known already. We had a president who recognized an attack, and hit back with what he could at that early point.

President Obama took two beloved Russian diplomatic/spy properties near New York, Washington DC and a mission in San Francisco. He also immediately kicked out out many Russian diplomats and their families. Moreover, Obama had applied sanctions against Russia for Putin’s actions against the Ukraine years ago. Obama never liked Putin, had been equally tough to Putin as Putin had been to the United States. Obama was a real president.

Upon his inauguration, Trump immediately tried to rescind the sanctions:

“There was serious consideration by the White House to unilaterally rescind the sanctions,” according to Dan Fried, who retired in February as Coordinator for Sanctions Policy at the State Department.

Fried told veteran investigative journalist Michael Isikoff, a former national investigative correspondent for NBC News and Newsweek alumnus, that in the early weeks of the administration he got several “panicky” calls from U.S. officials. They asked: “Please, my God, can’t you stop this?”

Thankfully, Trump couldn’t get the sanctions rescinded in a way that wouldn’t look too obvious in those early weeks. However, he continued to drag his feet on enforcement, and Congressional Republicans likely worried that, left up to Trump, he would rescind the sanctions entirely. Thus Congress codified the sanctions into law, the Senate voting 97-2 in favor of the sanctions. Even then, Trump said he opposed the law, threatened to veto the law, signed it with a statement saying he opposed it. Trump surely signed it only because an easy veto by that margin would be ruinous for his presidency. Apparently, Trump didn’t find opposing the sanctions on a country that worked to get him elected ruinous.

Yet, as we all know, just weeks ago, the deadline came due for Trump to begin the enforcement actions, and the administration STILL did nothing to penalize Russia:

The US has released a sweeping list of prominent Russian business and political figures, in defiance of Moscow and implementing a Congressional law designed to punish Russia for election meddling.

The US Treasury report, published shortly before a midnight deadline, listed every senior member of the political administration at the Kremlin, and every Russian oligarch with a net worth of $1 billion or more.
Some of those named are already subject to US sanctions. But the administration stopped short of imposing any new punishments, saying the legislation was already doing its job. The report was “not a sanctions list,” it said.
Instead, the Treasury report resembled an exercise in naming and shaming — putting individuals on notice that they may be subject to sanctions in the future.
I don’t know if we’re supposed to point out that the sanctions were not about “deterrence” but about punishment, and that the law congress passed was supposed to be imposing sanctions now, not acting as deterrence and worry about sanctions in the future.
Is it not odd that the man whom the Russians worked so hard to instill into the oval office works so hard to keep Russia happy at every turn, almost as if Trump owes them a debt? Is it not odd that we can go back to the Republican platform and move up all the way to now and Trump continuously champions Russia? Is it not odd that upon Mueller filing indictments against Russian nationals, an indictment that sets out activities that clearly come directed by the Kremlin as an attack on the United States, Trump wings his way to Florida with no talk of what the United States will do to Russia? No meeting with the cabinet. No calling NATO leaders. He declares himself to be personally innocent, as if the investigation is over.
NOW is the time we need sanctions enforced. NOW we need to defend ourselves against another attack. NOW we need to counterattack, to ensure this doesn’t happen again. NOW we need a president who doesn’t have Russia as his first priority, his “boss,” his minder, his priority. NOW we need a conference among all western democratic nations, one concerning how to defend the idea of free and fair elections. We need action NOW, but we are not getting it.
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4 Comments on "NOW Can We Have Sanctions On Russia??"

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tom webster
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tom webster
THE CONGRESS IS AND HAS COMMITTED TREASON. THE PRESIDENT HAS AND IS CONTINUING TO COMMIT TREASON. THE PRESIDENT’S FAMILY HAS AND CONTINUES TO COMMIT TREASON. THERE IS NOTHING ELSE THAT HAS TO COME TO LIGHT THAT CAN FURTHER IDENTIFY AMERICA’S TRAITORS. THEY ARE KNOWN, AND THEY CONTINUE THEIR PLANS, SUPPORT THE PRESIDENT, DISRUPT OUR HEALTH PROGRAMS AND CRIMINALLY SPEND OUR TAX DOLLARS FOR PURPOSES WE NEVER VOTED ON. WHO WILL STEP UP AND DO WHAT NEEDS TO BE DONE? I THINK IT HAS TO BE THE MILITARY. OR ELSE WE WILL FILL THE STREETS AND FORCE A CONFRONTATION, I DON’T… Read more »
wendy
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wendy

former ambassador to Russia explains how Mueller Indictment makes it difficult for Russians charged to visit their mansions in the South of France; access $$w/US base Banks; visit London…Russia has not extradition treaty w/US but other nations do and they can be arrested and extradited…also by creating a “crime” Mueller has made any entity or person who consorts w/ them an accomplice https://www.msnbc.com/rachel-maddow/watch/russian-indictment-sends-message-on-future-interference-attempts-1163835971577?playlist=associated

dbesh2
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dbesh2
I hate to think of this ‘country’ going ‘military’ like some South American dictatorship on the skids. But when our justice system is under siege by a compromised administration, we have to seek other sources of security, law & order for our citizens. March out those guilty of engaging foreign governments that have every intention of disrupting our democracy, and changing our way of life. Stop going to rallies for those politicians who think first with their wallets and have no connection with their constituents except to take their hard earned money to help them keep empty promises. It was… Read more »
tom webster
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tom webster

WITH ALL DUE RESPECT, WHAT IS ” PULLING TOGETHER?” WE NEED SOLUTION-DISCUSSIONS. WE CAN NO LONGER WAIT FOR OUR GOVERNMENT TO COME TO OUR ASSISTANCE, THEY AREN’T DOING IT. WE THE CITIZENS OF AMERICA MUST ORGANIZE AND MAKE REAL SOLUTIONS HAPPEN. I DON ‘T SEE THAT HAVING ANY AFFECT WITHOUT THE MILITARY. WE ARE NOT “SOME SOUTH AMERICAN DICTATORSHIP” BUT WE MAY BE BECOMING JUST THAT. TRY TO IMAGINE WHAT WE DON’T KNOW, GIVEN WHAT WE DO KNOW.