(Newsweek) Congress and millions across the country have called for punishing Russia over its meddling and interference in the 2016 election that saw President Donald Trump rise to the nation’s highest political office.
Days before the Treasury and State Departments must file congressionally mandated reports detailing potential new sanctions, a closer look at the issues involved shows that the undertaking goes far deeper than simply punishing Russia’s economy, or payback for election interference.
Experts explained to Newsweek the impact current sanctions have already had on Russia’s economy, particularly in the energy sector, while the Treasury and State Departments detailed the agencies involved and how U.S. policy would be applied. [...]
Russia used the sanctions as a sort of public relations tool, to make it appear as if the U.S. and the West were hindering Russians from purchasing European goods. The effort is for Putin to retain power or save face, and for his backers to maintain their support, Columbia University political science professor and Russia expert Elise Giuliano said.
“This has negatively impacted many Russian citizens who consume European goods,” explained Giuliano. “Many Russian citizens don’t even realize that they can’t buy these goods anymore because of Russia’s decision to impose sanctions on trade with Europe. They think these are part of the West's sanctions on Russia. ” [...]
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