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Vladimir Putin, 2008
Vladimir Putin may have investments in some companies newly targeted for economic sanctions.
President Barack Obama announced from the Philippines Monday that the United States is sanctioning seven high-level Russians, two with close ties to President Vladimir Putin because of the Kremlin's actions in Ukraine. Their assets overseas will be frozen and no travel visas will be permitted. In addition, the U.S. will freeze the assets of 17 Russian companies with links to Putin. It is the third round of sanctions issued by the United States, all of them so far targeting individuals and businesses but not entire industrial sectos.

Under Secretary for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence David S. Cohen released a statement, which said:

"The sanctions build on the ones that were already in place. We're moving forward with an expanded list of individuals," Obama told reporters at a press conference in the Philippines. He described the move as “the next stage in a calibrated effort to change Russia’s behavior.”
Obama said:
"The goal is not to go after Mr. Putin personally. The goal is to change his calculus with respect to how the current actions that he's engaging in Ukraine could have an adverse impact on the Russian economy over the long haul.

"To encourage him to actually walk the walk and not just talk the talk when it comes to diplomatically resolving the crisis in Ukraine."

Please read below the fold for more on this story.

Among the companies sanctioned is Transoil, one of the largest Russian railroad companies, and the Volga Group which finances infrastructure. Several banks and energy companies like the Stroytransgaz Group were also targeted in the sanctions. Stroytransgaz and related companies build pipelines for Gazprom, which runs the Russian domestic natural gas pipeline network. One of the targeted individuals is Igor I. Sechin, president of the state-owned Rosneft oil company, a business partner of ExxonMobil, which has numerous joint operations in Russia.

So far, the sanctions have not changed Putin's military moves in Ukraine. The Russian government has said that these moves have been in response to moves by the Ukrainian government. Pro-Russian rebels have seized several government buildings in eastern Ukraine, Ukraine has massed troops in the southeast in what is assumed to be preparations for taking the buildings and towns back. Meanwhile, Russia has massed troops on the frontier with Ukraine.

“We don’t expect there to be an immediate change in Russian policy,” said a senior administration official, briefing reporters under ground rules that did not permit him to be identified. But he said the latest actions would signal that “much more severe economic pain” could still be imposed if Moscow did not back down.
Newly sanctioned individuals:
• Oleg Belavantsev was appointed Russia's Presidential Envoy to Crimea on March 21, 2014, by President Putin.

• Sergei Chemezov was appointed by a presidential decree on November 26, 2007 as the Director General of the State Corporation for Promoting Development, Manufacturing and Export of Russian Technologies High-Tech Industrial Products, also known as Rostec. Chemezov is a trusted ally of President Putin.

• Dmitry Kozak is a Deputy Prime Minister of the Russian Federation, a position that he has held since October 2008, and to which he was reappointed by presidential decree in May 2012.

• Evgeniy Murov is the Director of Russia's Federal Protective Service and an Army General.

• Aleksei Pushkov has been a Deputy of the State Duma since December 4, 2011. He is also the Chairman of the State Duma Committee on International Affairs.

• Igor Sechin is the President and Chairman of the Management Board for Rosneft, Russia's leading petroleum company, and one of the world's largest publicly traded oil companies.

• Vyacheslav Volodin is the First Deputy Chief of Staff of the Presidential Executive Office. Russian President Vladimir Putin's decision to move into Crimea is believed to have been based on consultations with his closest advisors, including Volodin.

Originally posted to Meteor Blades on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 09:54 AM PDT.

Also republished by Daily Kos.

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Comment Preferences

  •  These sanctions are more than justified. (14+ / 0-)

    The Russians signed onto an agreement (with Kerry) which they turned around and ignored.
      But that agreement pales in comparison to the one they signed to guarantee Ukrainian sovereignty when the Ukrainians got rid of their nuclear arsenal. Our nation signed that agreement as well, and it's on us to honor our word.

    "We the People of the United States...." -U.S. Constitution

    by elwior on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 10:09:46 AM PDT

    •  The US agreed (0+ / 0-)

      that NATO would not move eastward if the Warsaw Pact were dissolved.  Who's going to impose sanctions for violation of that agreement?   I know we're not even supposed to mention it, because it exposes the fraudulence of much of US posyuring.  Much like having a chief diplomat lecturing the Russians that in the 21st century, nations don't invade other nations, when that great diplomat voted his approval of the "shock'n'awe" attack on Iraq.  But, that was "pragmatic", so it's OK, right?  Nothing more pragmatical dever than  that invasion of Iraq.  And hee's a stunner, it wasn't the evil commie Rooskies that did it.

      Pay no attention to the upward redistribution of wealth!

      by ActivistGuy on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 03:19:18 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Yes, you have a point. (0+ / 0-)

        But on the other hand, two wrongs don't make a right.
          I prefer that we agree to behave better rather than just throw up our hands and say it's okay because "everyone does it."

        "We the People of the United States...." -U.S. Constitution

        by elwior on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 04:08:56 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Warsaw Pact had nothing to do with that (0+ / 0-)

        It was about reunifiying Germany, and it's based entirely on stuff Mikhail Gorbachev has been saying post-1990s.

        Gorbachev and Baker agree that in a meeting about German unification Baker said NATO wouldn't expand "one inch east". Baker says that wasn't ambiguous at all, since they were negotiating about removing Soviet bases from East Germany, and promising they wouldn't just be immediately re-occupied with US troops.

        And Washington immediately qualified Baker's promises to just that the US wouldn't go into East Germany while it was East Germany, once they were legally one country the deal was concluded. And at the time Gorbachev accepted that.

        There was no indication in 1990 that Gorbachev believed he'd brokered some massive perpetual Russian sphere of influence in an off-the-record conversation with an unelected government minister from one member of NATO. He came up with this years later and Russian politicians cynically wave it around as a nationalist bloody shirt without actually believing it either.

      •  First of all, NATO has not moved eastward. (0+ / 0-)

        Ukraine has said repeatedly that it had no intentions of joining NATO. Years of corruption by Russian puppets like Yanukovich have both destroyed the economy and military in Ukraine. It poses no threat to Russia, which is why dictator putin considers it easy pickins. He keeps claiming that he can overrun Ukraine in 3-5 days, so how would they be a threat if they were in NATO? I think Russia will soon learn, however, that it is much harder to occupy a country than it is to conqueror it. There is also no way Russia could win an economic war against the West. So, maybe Russia will have to learn all this the hard way.

        And BTW, if Ukraine ever choses some day to join NATO, there was never any agreement that ever said countries east of a certain line were prohibited. That concept just exists in the paranoid fantasies of dictator putin and his defenders.

        Just doing my part to piss off right wing nuts, one smart ass comment at a time.

        by tekno2600 on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 09:40:43 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  So far Europe (9+ / 0-)

    is still pretty reluctant to climb on Obama's sanction bandwagon.

    •  Because it would kill them economically... (0+ / 0-)

      Putin just has to turn off the gas, and the EU doesn't have enough to make up for the loss of it, especially Germany.  Germany goes down, the EU goes down even harder.  And it is laughable that Germany and France et al., has people believing that they can offer their excess nat gas reserves to help out those nations entirely dependent on Russian nat gas.  Care to guess where that gas originally came from?.....LOL!

      •  They could live without Russia. Russia could not (0+ / 0-)

        live without them. It's simple math. They can get their gas somewhere else, even if it's a little more expensive. They can afford it. But, if Russia can sell its gas, its economy is trashed. Putin had better think [more] carefully.

        Just doing my part to piss off right wing nuts, one smart ass comment at a time.

        by tekno2600 on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 09:42:59 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  The question is how to enact sanctions to change (10+ / 0-)

    the calculus with respect to the current actions the U.S. and NATO are engaging in over Ukraine and Russia, not to mention Syria, Iran and Venezuela.  How can we sanction "our" oligarchs?   Talk about hypocrisy, Obama and the U.S. telling others if they're going to talk the talk they should walk the walk.  Wow.  Utter insanity.

    "Fragmented and confused, we have no plan to combat any of this, but are looking to be saved by the very architects of our ruination."

    by BigAlinWashSt on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 10:24:22 AM PDT

    •  You seem to forget (8+ / 0-)

      that we are exceptional.

      "The next time everyone will pay for it equally, and there won't be any more Chosen Nations, or any Others. Poor bastards all." ~The Boomer Bible

      by just another vet on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 10:47:24 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I'm still trying to figure out what this (9+ / 0-)

      …sentence means:

      So far, the sanctions have not changed Putin's military moves in Ukraine.
      What military moves?

      Also this is a head scratcher:

      Pro-Russian rebels have seized several government buildings in eastern Ukraine
      Is that a new term for ukraine citizens born and raised there for generations who happen to speak Russian?
      •  Or, perhaps they are mad, bro (10+ / 0-)

        …because the West sent in Blackwater to topple East Ukraine's democratically elected President:

        (Everything the West touches turns to shit.)

        •  Meh....don't think it was the US calling the shots (0+ / 0-)

          EU yes, but the US no....my view.  Maybe we were involved in some fashion, but for a coup that would benefit the EU/US/NATO, it backfired badly.  History is littered with coups that backfired badly on the instigators....

        •  That's a load of crap on every level. Blackwater (0+ / 0-)

          or Xi or whatever the hell they call themselves didn't overthrow Yanukovich. He was a sorry piece of human garbage and even members of his own party turned on him, threw him out, and voted in the new government. Please don't be another liberal spouting conspiracy theories like some right wing loon just so you can bash the US government. It may have a lot of flaws, but that doesn't make Putin or Yanukovich good guys. They're both sociopathic MFers.

          Just doing my part to piss off right wing nuts, one smart ass comment at a time.

          by tekno2600 on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 09:58:23 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  "Is that a new term for ukraine citizens born and (6+ / 0-)

        raised there for generations who happen to speak Russian? "
        ===========
        No. It's a term for Putin stalking horses following orders from Moscow.

          •  where are your links (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            klamothe, bear83, tekno2600

            for all your Russian propaganda?

            •  Look at the above map (4+ / 0-)

              Easterners don't like their elections CANCELLED via coup by Westerners. It's simple.

              They are people too, not "militants" (a term not used by the media for western parties that overthrew an elected government) and they are not "stalking horses"...

              It's unbelievable how even at Kos some will dehumanize and label this way without thinking.    

              •  Also, People seem to think Ukrainians are (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                fran1, Judgment at Nuremberg

                …supposed to be anti-Russian -- and anxious to stick some NATO missiles up Russia's ass, right along the border.

                "You're either with us, or you're a commie."

                It's a relatively open border and people have friends and loved ones on both sides. They are all Russians.

                •  they are NOT all Russians (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  tekno2600

                  I am Russian and Ukrainians are NOT Russians. Some people in Ukraine are Russian but they are a small minority (less than 20% - http://en.wikipedia.org/...)

                  Just because Ethnicities are similar doesn't mean they are the same People. They are not. And ethnic Ukrainians would never call themselves Russian.

                  Nor would Russians ever call Ukrainians - Russian. Unless it's for the purpose of taking over their land.

                  You really don't know much about Russia and Ukraine's history yet you talk like you know better than everyone - but it's pretty evident you do not. Ukrainians have a right to self determination that you are conveniently minimizing in favor of Russia. They do not want to become a part of Russia.

                  That's what I mean about you passing along the propaganda. You don't know enough so you have to generalize. Yes people have friends and loved ones on both sides, but also there is a deep historic mistrust. Also you previously generalized about Ukrainian's new government as Nazis. You are a subtle as a nuclear bomb on this topic, yet feel like you can educate others.

                  •  Russia doesn't want the Ukraine. (2+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    fran1, Judgment at Nuremberg

                    Or even Eastern Ukraine.

                    They want no part of it.

                    Self Determination is a human right. I strongly support that. If the people of East Ukraine wish to become independent, or a Republic of the Ukraine, I am all for their right to do so.

                    •  Russia wants to control Ukraine. They don't have (0+ / 0-)

                      annex it. Usually they just dominate it economically and politically. However, now that their puppet has fled, invasion may be their only way to maintain control. If you believe in self-determination, why not let the elections happen on May 30th? Putin will never allow that. He will invade before they happen. Mark my words.

                      Just doing my part to piss off right wing nuts, one smart ass comment at a time.

                      by tekno2600 on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 10:06:41 PM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                  •  Yes they are! and I can play that game too (0+ / 0-)

                    as I'm more Ukrainian than anything else with 2 grandparents born In Eastern Ukraine, with actual traditional "Ukrainian" surnames.

                    They considered themselves Russian and nothing else.  

                    Those from the west may differ, although I'm seeing a lot of noise from them on social media claiming that they are the true "Russians" and that the ones from "Muscovy" are somehow not as they have "Mongol" or "Finnish" "blood" in them.... I'm seeing a lot of stupid things out there.  

                    The Political (and later military) movement to make "Ukraine" into a state (never existed as such) arose in the extreme western areas long under Polish (or Lithuanian, Austrian) influence.

                    http://en.wikipedia.org/...

                    •  It's hard to imagine a Ukrainian saying (0+ / 0-)

                      "were all Russians." Maybe in the East. But, my grandmother was born in Kiev, and she certainly didn't consider herself Russian. People who speak Ukrainian certainly don't consider themselves Russian. Even in predominantly Russian speaking cities, like Luhansk, most people consider themselves Ukrainian, even though their first language is Russian.

                      Just doing my part to piss off right wing nuts, one smart ass comment at a time.

                      by tekno2600 on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 10:12:17 PM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  I don't imagine (0+ / 0-)

                        I base it on family because the previous poster did so; and it's based on objective data like clear voting patterns, political preferences, the history of the Bandura movement in the west (not east), the history of settlement and the current protesters who are called "militants" by the media.  I agree it's not just language though.

                        There is a fundamental historical difference between east (and south) and west and it has played out in all the Ukrainian political problems of the past 2 decades.  The idea that people in the east deserve to be dehumanized, labelled as "militants" and politically cancelled by west led coups offends me.

                        This may fester as a money pit and possibly a blood pit for a very long time to come.  It's very sad.

                        •  I'm still not buying your argument that Ukrainians (0+ / 0-)

                          are "all just Russians." It don't think that's really backed up by what you say.

                          I don't feel that anyone is dehumanizing protestors in the East. However, there is strong evidence, which got even stronger today after communications intercepts, that Russian commanders are coordinating much of the unrest. They speak with accents and use idioms that show they are quite different than those used by even the Russian speakers in Eastern Ukraine. Moscow's hand is clearly visible. Additional photo evidence and on the ground observation makes it pretty clear that Putin already has a shadow invasion under way. According to polls, 2/3rds of the people in the East and the South, and 77% of the population overall, does not want to be part of Russia. So, I don't think there is as much popular support for separatists as you make is sound like.

                          http://www.economist.com/...

                          Just doing my part to piss off right wing nuts, one smart ass comment at a time.

                          by tekno2600 on Tue Apr 29, 2014 at 12:33:13 PM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

              •  Actually, even the people in Yanukovich's home (0+ / 0-)

                town were threatening to put him in jail. His bodyguards abandoned him and he had to flee by himself in a car. If he is so popular, why hasn't he come back? He knows that even in his home town, people would kill him.

                Just doing my part to piss off right wing nuts, one smart ass comment at a time.

                by tekno2600 on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 10:02:04 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

            •  The information I used in this essay (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Judgment at Nuremberg

              …comes from the Washington Post.

              http://www.washingtonpost.com/...

              I don't trust the lying Anglo press, but I made an exception this time.

      •  I would say that "pro-Russian" is no stretch... (5+ / 0-)

        ...of description when a group of Ukrainians seize the Kiev television station at gunpoint and switch to Rossiya 24, a state-owned Russian channel.

        Don't tell me what you believe, show me what you do and I will tell you what you believe.

        by Meteor Blades on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 12:06:29 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I remind you that the blue states (5+ / 0-)

          …on the electoral map, above, is planning a referendum vote to become an independent state next month.

          And for a good damn reason.

          Also, I bet East Ukraine has more than one television station. They just kicked the compromised Kiev (and unrecognized) government off the cable line-up. Fifty bucks says Rossiya 24 was already there.

          More propaganda for USians to lap up..

          •  Hey, I hate Foxaganda, but I don't back... (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Pluto, bear83, northerntier

            ...seizing its studios at gunpoint and turning it over to Voice of America. Whence comes your doubt that the folks who seized the station are pro-Russian.

            I'm not arguing against people's exercising their right to choose whether to be part of Ukraine or separating themselves as an independent state. Let them choose and let there be peace after the results become known however they vote in what I hope are fair elections.

            Don't tell me what you believe, show me what you do and I will tell you what you believe.

            by Meteor Blades on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 12:36:54 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Point taken re seizing the TV station (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              protectspice, BigAlinWashSt

              …at gun point.

              I assumed that was hyperbole. The only people who have been shot in East Ukraine are ethnic Russians, including the mayor, who was shot in the back last night.

            •  I'm not finding anything about (0+ / 0-)

              …seizing the TV station at gunpoint, even in anglo news sources.

              More hysterical propaganda.

              In an UAE news source I trust, it is described this way:

              Dozens of pro-Kremlin militants seized the regional television station in Ukraine's eastern city of Donetsk on Sunday, an AFP journalist at the scene said.

              The insurgents, wearing camouflage uniforms and armed with baseball bats and knives, occupied the interior of the building, preventing anyone from entering.

              ::

              They were not carrying visible firearms, but militants carried several heavy bags inside the building and refused to answer reporters' questions.

              ::

              "The journalists will be allowed to continue to work but they will have to tell the truth," said one militant, who gave his name as Stanislav.

              "The Russian channels tell the truth. We demand to have channels in Donetsk that tell the truth," he added.

              ::

              The station's chief later spoke to the several international reporters gathered outside the building.

              "Our channels have not yet changed," Oleg Djolos said.

              "Our journalists and staff are of course worried but the men who have taken control of our station have pledged to guarantee our safety," he added.

              Nearby, six Ukrainian police officers, at least three of whom were armed with Kalashnikov rifles, watched the events unfold without intervening.

              Asked about this, Djolos said: "You will have to ask them. They are Ukrainian policemen."

              The officers declined to comment to reporters.

              "We will come to work at the normal time tomorrow," the director said.

              http://www.emirates247.com/...
              •  In the photo here, I took the ... (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                Pluto

                ...black object slung over the back of the guy on the left to be a firearm. (http://www.smh.com.au/...)

                I see from a larger close-up that it probably is not.

                Nonetheless, the folks who took over the state used force and were armed with knives, truncheons, bats, shields.

                Don't tell me what you believe, show me what you do and I will tell you what you believe.

                by Meteor Blades on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 04:34:12 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  Sheesh. station, not state. n/t (0+ / 0-)

                  Don't tell me what you believe, show me what you do and I will tell you what you believe.

                  by Meteor Blades on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 04:41:14 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                •  Yeah. I saw lots of photos. (0+ / 0-)

                  The shields were fun.

                  Definitely overkill and very amateurish. Reports say about a dozen armed Ukraine police were observing from across the street, but did not react.

                  And, I discovered that Kiev indeed bans Russian TV in the East. Don't know how long that has been going on. Little wonder they're ticked off.

                  Station is still operating with regular programming.

          •  2/3rds in East and South want to stay in Ukraine (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            cryonaut

            and not be annexed by Russia.

            http://www.economist.com/...

            Actual evidence of oppression by the government in Kiev seems to be hard to find. The "damn good reason" people are piling tires in the middle of the streets and declaring the government to be fascists seems to be Russian propaganda and, when that fails, Russian operatives themselves.

            Be very suspicious when they have to attack TV stations and force them to play Russian TV.

            Just doing my part to piss off right wing nuts, one smart ass comment at a time.

            by tekno2600 on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 10:23:37 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

      •  Oh how soon we forget (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        duhban
        What military moves?
        the Russian occupation of Crimea.

        Election Day is Nov 4th, 2014 It's time for the Undo button on the 2010 Election.

        by bear83 on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 01:14:57 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Those masked mystery men in Crimea, who Putin (0+ / 0-)

        said were totally not Russians...well, Putin admitted the other day that "of course" some of them were Russians. They drove Russian vehicles, flew Russian planes, spoke Russian instead of Ukrainian, etc. It's the same thing in Eastern Ukraine. The Russian invasion has already begun. It wasn't spontaneous unrest. It's many of the same people who were in Crimea orchestrating the attacks.

        Just doing my part to piss off right wing nuts, one smart ass comment at a time.

        by tekno2600 on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 09:50:26 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Explain to me how it isn't hypocritical (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      tekno2600

      to oppose US intervention across the globe but when Russia does it repeatedly in several neighboring countries to just yawn and say "the US is bad so it doesn't matter."

      You see this throughout the Glenn Greenwald Libertarian wing of the "left" and I don't understand it.

      Does this mean that the Iraq War would be perfectly fine and justified if we simply held a fake referendum where surprisingly 114% of Iraqi residents wanted their oil to be annexed by the US?

      If the US had invaded an annexed part of Canada or Mexico Greenwald would be writing about it 24/7. When Russia does it, nary a peep from GG except to handwave their atrocious anti-gay laws. After all Russia opposes US actions internationally so they get a pass.

      You're basically saying that Ukrainians don't deserve a government that doesn't steal tens of billions of dollars from the treasury. You're saying that Russians who peacefully advocate for democracy and openness that are beaten, arrested and murdered should just shut up and not expect any sympathy from progressives. After all they're not Americans, so who cares right?

      When we stop putting leaders from the past up on pedestals and ignoring their flaws, we can start seeing our present leaders for what they really are.

      by PhillyJeff on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 12:35:49 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  If you really don't think it's hypocritical for (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        ChuckChuckerson, swarf

        the government leader of this country to tell others they need to "walk the walk", I have no answer for ya.

        "Fragmented and confused, we have no plan to combat any of this, but are looking to be saved by the very architects of our ruination."

        by BigAlinWashSt on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 02:10:25 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  It's not hypocritical for Obama who opposed (0+ / 0-)

          the Iraq war, but it is hypocritical for progressives to oppose the Iraq War but either not care or tacitly support Russia's armed intervention against its neighbors.

          If the US was wrong when we did it then Russia is wrong when they're doing it now.

          If Russia isn't and wasn't wrong then you can't attack our adventure in Iraq without being hypocritical.

          When we stop putting leaders from the past up on pedestals and ignoring their flaws, we can start seeing our present leaders for what they really are.

          by PhillyJeff on Wed Apr 30, 2014 at 01:31:57 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  right hypocrisy (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      tekno2600

      never mind that Russia signed a treaty promising to respect Ukraine's sovereignty in exchange for nuclear disarmament.

      How 'bad' the US is is not relevant here. It's a shiny object thrown out to distract from the fact that Russia invaded Ukraine.

      Der Weg ist das Ziel

      by duhban on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 03:14:23 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Oh ya, we know all about the treaty. Again, (0+ / 0-)

        the King of treaty breaking is who?
        How "bad" the U.S. isn't really relevant, but how bad those making policy and agenda for the U.S. is relevant and what their role in all this is what some are refusing to see.  It's been explained on here many times what the U.S. and NATO are up to relative to lining the border of Russia with bases, missile systems and client states.  It takes two to tango.  
        And Russia did not invade Ukraine.  Prove that.  

        "Fragmented and confused, we have no plan to combat any of this, but are looking to be saved by the very architects of our ruination."

        by BigAlinWashSt on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 03:21:14 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I'm just curious (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          tekno2600

          you do realize your 'standard' is impossible? No nation has never done something nefarious or questionable thus your argument is 'no one can anything ever' which while very libertarian makes no sense.

          Russia has invaded another nation, end of story.

          Der Weg ist das Ziel

          by duhban on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 03:29:09 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  in Russia, wallets eye you! (9+ / 0-)

    Warning - some snark may be above‽ (-9.50; -7.03)‽ eState4Column5©2013 "I’m not the strapping young Muslim socialist that I used to be" - Barack Obama 04/27/2013 (@eState4Column5).

    by annieli on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 11:12:31 AM PDT

  •  Rachel Maddow has an article out today.. (12+ / 0-)

    Big Oil behind Putin - By: Rachel Maddow Posted: 04/28/2014 1:00 AM

    It probably wouldn't be fair to call it a moment of humility. It was more like a little hitch in the swagger. The man himself would never show he was awed or intimidated, but even he paused to appreciate the magnitude of what was being done. "The scale of the investment is large," said Russian President Vladimir Putin. "It is scary to utter such huge figures."

    That scary-large 2011 deal -- the mother of all oil deals -- was sealed in the living room of Putin's vacation home in Sochi. It knitted together Exxon Mobil, the most profitable U.S. corporation in the history of U.S. corporations, with the mostly state-owned Russian firm Rosneft, the largest oil company in the world.
    [...]
     In North America, Rosneft and its subsidiaries got big stakes in Exxon parcels in west Texas, the Alberta oilfields, deep-water drilling sites in the Gulf of Mexico and a huge stake in Alaskan natural gas.

     - emphasis added

    Rachel asks several excellent questions. This is one of them:
    Why would Putin fear U.S. threats of economic isolation while the biggest U.S. oil company is jumping into his lap?
    And as posted in this Diary..
    Sechin, president of the state-owned Rosneft oil company, a business partner of ExxonMobil, which has numerous joint operations in Russia.
    I have question too: Why don't we go after Exxon? Place moratorium on drilling here in the U.S.

    It seems completely disingenuous to allow Rosnft Oil Company to drill in the US, keeping that avenue of negotiation off the table.

    We ought to start here right at home; Take it to one of the worst polluters and most profitable outfits in history.

    I don't get it at all. There is out leverage right there. And it's time to rein in these Oil Giants anyway - imo

    Thx MB

    •  BP (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Eric Nelson

      as well. Interesting how nationalistic bad actors can operate under the protection of corporatist influence.

      "The 'Middle' is a crowded place - that is where the effective power is - the extreme right and left might annoy governments, but the middle terrifies them." Johnny Linehan

      by northsylvania on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 11:57:38 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  correx; disingenuous isn't quite the word for.. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      hawkseye

      ..what I meant to say.

      dis·in·gen·u·ous
      [ dìssin jénnyoo əss ]

      1.withholding information: withholding or not taking account of known information
      2.not genuinely sincere: giving a false impression of sincerity or simplicity

      shortsighted? or maybe ineffective strategy wise.

      The sanctions on the big money Oil interests people in Russia does seem like the right target as posted but why leave a Big Oil company like Exxon out of the regime of sanctions

    •  Today's sanctions targeted Rosneft. That is a (0+ / 0-)

      big deal. Putin had better fear this economic isolation, because Exxon won't be able to do business in Russia and Rosneft outside of Russia if sanctions are in effect.

      Just doing my part to piss off right wing nuts, one smart ass comment at a time.

      by tekno2600 on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 10:51:06 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  What's with the giant orange head? (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    GreatLakeSailor, elwior, sunbro, duhban

    Putin looks like the Great Pumpkin in that shot.

  •  Odds of success are between zero and zero. (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    DeeDee001, wader, duhban, Jabarten

    Why would Tsar Putin even care?

    He's trying to re-absorb everything he can outside of NATO (watch out Baltics!) and is perfectly willing to allow Russia's economy to suffer.  Consider it the ultimate Continental strategy (remember Napolean?).

    As long as he doesn't get into an actual hot war with the West, he wins, right?

    Happy little moron, Lucky little man.
    I wish I was a moron, MY GOD, Perhaps I am!
    —Spike Milligan

    by polecat on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 11:53:30 AM PDT

    •  I'm not so sure. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      northerntier, duhban

      A sanctions regimen may start to bite in ways that will do some real harm to the Russian economy, and begin to hurt Putin domestically.
        But also, Russia's standing in the world may begin to suffer as it takes on rogue nation status. I doubt Putin wants that, and what's more, I doubt most Russians want to pay a high price for bogus status gained by such adventurism.

      "We the People of the United States...." -U.S. Constitution

      by elwior on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 12:04:46 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  the Baltic States are in NATO (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      bear83, duhban

      ...FYI.

      "An inglorious peace is better than a dishonorable war." -Mark Twain

      by humanistique on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 12:12:01 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I know -- but they WERE under the Tsar's thumb (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        duhban

        and there are significant Russian-speaking populations.

        Hence the "Watch Out!" comment.

        Happy little moron, Lucky little man.
        I wish I was a moron, MY GOD, Perhaps I am!
        —Spike Milligan

        by polecat on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 01:18:10 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Sort of. I really don't believe that... (0+ / 0-)

        The larger nations of Europe in NATO would risk their troops (not to mention landmarks or industries) for a bunch of small, underdeveloped fishing nations, bereft of any resources.  If there is one big casualty I see once this situation begins to gear up, NATO is toast....

  •  thanks, mr. blades, for your timely diary. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    klamothe

    may we each reflect considerately before posting comments, as many have trouble keeping up, and jargon makes it harder. of course, snark makes it worse.

    i began, honestly to see a game-board, being used for strategy and tactics during a live situation, and wondered if guardian-uk makes its complex and vital graphics using, well, games -- but i'll just watch quietly now. it's a tense match, with a respectful crowd in the stadium, as it were.

    TRAILHEAD of accountability for Bush-2 Crimes? -- Addington's Perpwalk.

    by greenbird on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 12:03:45 PM PDT

  •  If Rest Of The World Put Sanctions On Haliburton (5+ / 0-)

    Maybe it would have kept President Cheney from going into Iraq.

    •  Too bad they didn't. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Leo Flinnwood

      It's also a shame that BP and Exxon have not been told to choose which country they wish to do business with:  the United States or Russia.  

      "Politics should be the part-time profession of every citizen who would protect the rights and privileges of free people and who would preserve what is good and fruitful in our national heritage." -- Lucille Ball

      by Yamaneko2 on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 06:39:38 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Putin Walking the Walk, Talking the Talk (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    greenbird

    Kazatskying the Kazatsky

    I want 1 less Tiny Coffin, Why Don't You? Support The President's Gun Violence Plan.

    by JML9999 on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 12:09:21 PM PDT

    •  What's funny is that a good proportion (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      JML9999, northerntier, Meteor Blades

      pf the "Red Army" would carry traditional "Ukrainian" surnames yet everything about the USSR is "Russian", even Stalin and Beria (Georgians) and Lazar Kaganovitch (the architect of Holodymor (The Great Hunger, he's from Kiev).

      A strange game played now is for all the former constituent republics to blame ethnic "Russians" for the USSR and particularly Stalinism while playing ethnic victims or saints.  

      It's both inaccurate and insane (like a type of racism, which has no logic or science)...  It's true more so eastern and central "Ukraine" than the extreme western parts, but many "Ukrainian" families have fairly recent "Russian" ancestors and vice versa - they always freely mixed.  In most European areas the freakin geneticists at the Max Plank Institute would have great trouble figuring out if an individual was "Russian" or "Ukrainian" so the entire subject is insane.

      The USSR was a collective enterprise and the "Red Army" belongs to the "Ukrainians" as well as the "Russians"...

      (Although I've seen this too, where some western Ukrainians will take credit for the Red Army destroying Nazi Germany but the negative parts are "Russians" fault)

               

  •  While the administration plays around with (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Pluto, fran1

    headline grabbing sanctions are they also making any plans for getting natural gas to Turkey if the sanctions continue to increase?

    After making it more and more difficult, and expensive, for Turkey to buy vital natural gas from Iran will the administration now do the same with also vital natural gas from Russia?

    Or does the administation just not care?

    Lamb chop, we can quibble what to call it, but I think we can both agree it's creepy.

    by InAntalya on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 12:17:11 PM PDT

  •  Not so sure this will work... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    fran1, klamothe

    This reminds me of back when they sanctioned North Korea by blocking the sale of DVDs, expensive cars, and iPods to members of the inner circle...

    It was funny to make jokes about an iPod sanction... but it didn't really work did it?

    So I wonder why we think this is going to work with Russia - which is a much saner country.

    Hurting the oligarchs there won't really hurt people who are a lot more savvy about moving things around and keeping their country going.

    Sometimes I think the only country you COULD hurt by going after the oligarch's pocket books is the USA... We're so obsessed with this tactic, it must be because its the only thing those in charge here actually fear... taking away their pink poodles and deluxe tanning booths...

    Just not sure this is going to work with the Russians...

    OMG, like, gag them with a multi-colored spoon. Like, ya know.

    by Jyotai on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 12:17:35 PM PDT

    •  The difference is North Korea (0+ / 0-)

      doesn't really have industry that trades with foreign countries.

      It's always possible for North Korean military officials to smuggle iPods or whatever into the country.

      It's not so easy for Russian oligarchs to sell their products internationally or import critical components for their companies on a commercial scale while facing sanctions.

      When we stop putting leaders from the past up on pedestals and ignoring their flaws, we can start seeing our present leaders for what they really are.

      by PhillyJeff on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 12:37:46 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Are the sanctions biting back? (0+ / 0-)

    Visa, MasterCard Required to Pay $3.8Bln Security Deposit to Work in Russia | Business | The Moscow Times

    The State Duma on Friday passed a law tightening requirements on embattled foreign payment systems Visa and MasterCard and giving them new competition in the form of a national payment system.

    Visa and MasterCard have been at the center of a political storm since U.S. sanctions forced them to cut services to two Russian banks in March. Faced with this demonstration of U.S. power, President Vladimir Putin led the charge to restrict their influence and turn the creation of a Russian payment system into a national security issue.

    The law passed on Friday will require payment systems to ensure uninterrupted service, and obliges them to pay a security deposit to the Central Bank to guarantee their good behavior.

    Foreign payment systems will have to leave a security deposit at the Central Bank equivalent to the value of two days of transactions processed in Russia. Visa and MasterCard together processed $1.9 billion per day last year, meaning that they will between them be obliged to relinquish about $3.8 billion to the Central Bank.

    Read the European view at the European Tribune

    by fran1 on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 12:41:40 PM PDT

    •  I think that's just more fascism from Putin (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      tekno2600

      along the lines of SORM than a tit for tat thing.

      Der Weg ist das Ziel

      by duhban on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 03:16:59 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  That will bite Russia harder. They desperately (0+ / 0-)

      need foreign investment, but for some reason no one want to come to Putin's Paradise...in fact, companies are fleeing at a record pace due to Putin's latest sabre rattling. Russia's credit rating just got downgraded to BB, one step above junk bonds. Russia's economy is circling the drain.

      Just doing my part to piss off right wing nuts, one smart ass comment at a time.

      by tekno2600 on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 10:57:25 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  I know it is RT (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    protectspice, BigAlinWashSt

    but as the Western media does not show this, at least I haven't seen it yet, I post this one.

    Two days ago

    Neo-Nazis march in Lvov 'in honor' of Ukrainian Waffen SS division (PHOTOS) — RT News

    Hundreds took part in a march to mark the anniversary of the formation of the Ukrainian SS division, which fought for the Nazi’s against the Soviet Union during World War II, in the city of Lvov in the western Ukraine.

    Around five hundred neo-Nazi supporters took to the streets in the center of the city on Sunday to celebrate the creation of the 14th SS-Volunteer Division ‘Galician’ on April 28, 1943.

    When you click on the link you find lots of pictures. I find it amazing that the West is supporting this.

    Read the European view at the European Tribune

    by fran1 on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 01:19:38 PM PDT

    •  C'mon is that the best RT has got? There are no (0+ / 0-)

      neo Nazi groups in the interim government. In fact, the police have been hunting down the leaders of Right Sektor and actually recently killed their leader in a gun fight. The idea that there is rampant Nazism in Kiev is absurd. The only dictator in the area who is emulating Hitler and threatening to invade to "protect" favored language or ethnic groups is Putin (ala the Sudenland) .

      Just doing my part to piss off right wing nuts, one smart ass comment at a time.

      by tekno2600 on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 10:40:14 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  There's one big problem (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Jabarten

    for Obama applying the pre-WWII FDR Japan policy to Russia; we're not the ones with the fossil fuel surplus anymore, and they don't need ours.  It may be that they can make the policy broad enough to force the Russians into a confrontation as FDR did the Japanese, but the oil weapon runs the other way this time.  

    Pay no attention to the upward redistribution of wealth!

    by ActivistGuy on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 03:23:57 PM PDT

    •  Not true. The Russian need to sell their gas to (0+ / 0-)

      Europe more than Europe needs to buy it from them. The Europeans have other options. The Russians do not. If necessary, some of the new gas supplies in the US and Canada may even end up being sent over to Europe. But, Russia is certain to lose any economic war with the West.

      Just doing my part to piss off right wing nuts, one smart ass comment at a time.

      by tekno2600 on Mon Apr 28, 2014 at 10:44:05 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

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