Reportedly, the administration of Old Uncle Joe has removed the most severe sanctions from its toolkit that it could target Russia with “off the table” if Russia goes through with its plan to invade Ukraine.
In a report directly from Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Mark Milley on Friday, a Russian invasion into Ukraine would cause “horrific” repercussions as members of the administration think that Russia has gathered around 100,000 troops to station along the Ukrainian border.
“While final decisions haven’t been made, the officials said, the potential targets include several of Russia’s largest government-owned banks, such as VTB Bank, the banning of all trade in new issues of Russian sovereign debt and the application of export controls across key sectors such as advanced microelectronics,” stated The Wall Street Journal in a report. “Off the table, for now, are sanctions on oil and natural-gas exports or disconnecting Russia from SWIFT, the basic infrastructure that facilitates financial transactions between banks across the world, the U.S. officials said, but that could change depending on Russian actions.”
The piece stated that Russia is far more prepared to handle any sanctions from the U.S. than it was in 2014 as it now has “deeper foreign-currency reserves, less reliance on foreign debt, faster economic growth and rising prices for oil—the country’s primary revenue source.”
The report received severe backlash on the web by groups who stated that the administration was being too light-handed with Russian President Vladimir Putin.
“Wow. Biden admin takes the toughest sanctions off the table: oil and natural gas exports, disconnecting Russia from SWIFT, and Putin/inner circle. What are we doing? This will not deter Moscow,” wrote Noah Rothman, a contributor with MSNBC. “If you’re in the Kremlin surveying the confusion within the admin and obvious disunity of purpose within the Atlantic Alliance, what would you be thinking?”
The former aide to Margaret Thatcher, Nile Gardiner, issued a response: “Unbelievable. The Biden administration bowing to Moscow, and the demands of the appeasers in Berlin.”
In a warning issued this week, Milley and Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin stated that a conflict between Ukraine and Russia would end up causing “significant” casualties and that said conflict was still not “inevitable.”
“Given the type of forces that are arrayed … if that was unleashed on Ukraine, it would be significant, very significant, and it would result in a significant amount of casualties,” stated Milley as part of a press briefing at the Pentagon. “You can imagine what that might look like in dense urban areas, along roads, and so on and so forth. It would be horrific. It would be terrible. And it’s not necessary. And we think a diplomatic outcome is the way to go here.”
“There’s no reason that this situation has to devolve into conflict,” stated Austin. “He can choose to de-escalate. He can order his troops away. He can choose dialogue and diplomacy.”
One senior official from Ukraine stated to CNN that a phone call this past week between Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky and Old Uncle Joe “did not go well” as Ukraine has thrown accusations at the U.S. of blowing the threat level that Russia poses out of proportion.