Obama Pushes Strong Sanctions; Putin Laughs

Crimea "We Are Together" Rally
Participants in the “We Are Together” rally and concert to support the residents of the Crimea, at Vasilyevsky Slope, Moscow.(RIA Novosti / Mikhail Voskresenskiy)

If you’ve been following what has been happening in Russia, you already know that Crimea has overwhelmingly voted to break away from Ukraine and become part of Russia by a 97% majority. On a world stage, Putin has said that they should be viewed as an ‘independent nation.’

You may have even noticed that Obama has been drawing red lines in the sand with his box of crayons in the form of sanctions.

But what does Vladimir Putin think of all of this? Have you seen the meme? If not, it features Obama and Putin on the phone with eachother and the conversation goies a little like this:

Putin – ‘Knock Knock’

Obama – ‘Who’s there?’

Putin – ‘Crimea’

Obama – ‘Crimea who?’

Putin – ‘Crimea river!’

That pretty much sums up all of the going on right now. Obama draws a red line while Putin sits back and lets everyone mock Obama.

Putin doesn’t care. He’s got bigger plans and Crimea is just a stepping stone. Putin is an old-school KGB dude that looks far more forward than Obama who thinks in the now.

Let’s just look at one aspect: economic sanctions. Obama talks a lot of hype about these. But, have you ever heard of the BRIC and their purpose?

Before we get to that, let’s first take a look at who makes up the BRIC. Brazil, Russia, India and China. Those are some pretty big names, and when you know what one of their main purposes is the names are even bigger. That main mission: to move the world away from the dollar. They’ve been working toward this for quite some time now.

So for strong economic sanctions to be placed on a country like Russia who already wants to move away from the dollar, it brings into question what effect this would have. And to be honest, these super awesomely strong sanctions that Obama is touting only affect a handful of people surrounding Putin.

“There is already a tense situation in the world in relation to the dollar. We all know it very well. The dollar is not a very stable currency. In the absence of other factors, the dollar is declining, and the transition to the gold standard has been mentioned many times, and other currencies were proposed,” said Rustam Tankanov. “In this situation, taking any country out of the dollar zone would simply mean bringing the dollar down. Quite a significant number of commitments in our foreign reserves are in dollars. If they are dumped in the market, the U.S. dollar will significantly suffer.”

“Naturally, the use of the dollar, including as the nominal currency, adds additional branding points to this currency, encourages a more active use of the dollar in transactions. This is an additional argument in favor of the importance of the currency in the global market. IF the dollar is not used in contractual documents, it means less significance for the currency that is not used, that’s all. In this regard, I believe, there will be displacement of the dollar, including from the consciousness, from business turnover, and hence, weakening of the dollar, weakening of the prestige of the dollar as the leading global currency,” said deputy chairman of the Duma Committee on Financial Markets Anatoly Aksakov.

Wow! When you put it that way, it looks like the one to really be hurt by the sanctions would be America. After all, some would argue that that’s exactly what Obama wants to do. Weaken America’s stance and create a level playing field for all countries.

Diplomacy through weakness doesn’t work. It only invites aggression. Which, Russia welcomes. They don’t mind being aggressive with American leadership. The KGB of old wanted nothing more than to see an American collapse.

Dmitry Kiselyov said on his weekly current affairs show: “Russia is the only country in the world that is realistically capable of turning the United States into radioactive ash.”

That is what’s on the flip side of this show. While the White House would lead you into thinking Russia would be hurt by all this red line talk, Russia tells their people that in an effort to ramp up the propaganda war. One way of doing that is egging on a response because you’ve just ordered thousands of troops to the border.

One other thing to think about is the people of Crimea. They are saying that this brings hope for a better life. They say that this would mean more protection from a global player. But in the end one thing remains: Do you really want to lay down with that old Russian bear?

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