There is ample evidence that the hard-coated sanctions the Biden Administration has leveled against Russia will have an impact on the economy of its middle class. Suffice to say that the Russian stock market today is a shadow of what it was, and there is shared evidence that it will never again function as a healthy entity. Mainly due to valueless listed and sanctioned companies. Because of his war on the Ukraine, Putin is turning back the clock to the old USSR when deprivation ruled the lives of the majority of Russians. But unlike the Bolshevik Revolution, which ushered Russians into even worse poverty under communism, today’s Russians are accustomed to luxury and comfort.
How would the youthful Russians react to losing it all? Slowly and surely as sanctions take their toll on their lifestyles? Is Putin ready for this transformational societal order? Or will it eventually lead to his demise? Has he miscalculated, as he did in Ukraine, when it comes to his own people? Only time will tell as unemployment rises and poverty spreads to harm the new rising middle class.
I am afraid the former is the truth.
There is no way, if the west keeps on the avant-garde and remains absolutely resolute about curbing the rise of a new evil empire, that Putin’s economy might not suffer equal circumstances.
LIFE IN THE U.S.S.R.
For the younger American generations, unfamiliarity with the horrific life in the U.S.S.R. reminds me of this anecdotal history that our own CIA discovered after the break-up of the Soviet Union.
At the time, the Soviet Union printed two large newspapers, Pravda and Izvestia, that they relied upon to dish out their daily dose of lies and propaganda. From information the CIA gathered, the Izvestia newspaper seemed to sell more than Pravda. So, the agency ordered a study to know why. After spending a small fortune, the CIA concluded it had no consequential evidence as to the reason why.
Years later, after the breakup of the Soviet Union, the CIA found out why when one of their agents, or a reporter — cannot recall how — asked a factory worker why he read Izvestia rather than Pravda. His answer was because Izvestia was more voluminous, which provided him with more toilet paper.
I kid you not.
With the Ukraine invasion, Putin may have just started the process for the Russian people to use their newspapers as toilet paper. There is no way, if the west keeps the pressure up and remains absolutely resolute about curbing the rise of a new evil empire, that his economy might not suffer equal circumstances. Enough to take Russia back to the U.S.S.R. medieval era.
This is why the US, the EU, and NATO should consider more than sanctions to stop Putin.
SANCTIONS MAY FULFILL THE NEEDS OF PUTIN
There is evidence suggesting that dictators want their people to suffer economically. Why? Because a person has little time, during periods of total economic deprivation, to chase dreams of freedom and democracy. The people become consumed by survival on a daily basis. Venezuela, one of the richest countries in the world in terms of minerals, represents a great example of this model. Maduro wants his people to suffer so he can stay in power.
Maybe Putin’s ultimate goal is to rebuild the Russian empire while simultaneously depriving his people of the comforts they need to challenge his authority. It’s the evil narcissism we see in Donald Trump as well. It’s all about Putin and what Putin wants. Never about his people or country.
Maybe Putin is turning back the clock because he would rather conquer countries than provide for his people. Under that scenario, he could care less about the sanctions. In fact, they may fulfill his ultimate goals while simultaneously provide him with the opportunity to blame the evil west for the economic miseries of his people.
It’s two birds in one stone. It’s revisionism at its worst.
This is why the US, the EU, and NATO should consider more than sanctions to stop him. His danger will only increase if we don’t act decisively today and now.