The moves taken in recent months but, with a broader spectrum of investigation, in recent years by the NATO military alliance, have created two main “problems” for Russia.
First, from the Russian point of view, NATO’s expansion into Eastern Europe is a violation of a “promise” made in the 1990s. Secondly, Russia sees this expansion as a threat to its territorial integrity and national security, so President Putin has continued to argue over the past decade that this could not be acceptable and that NATO was crossing the so-called red line. . Each country has its own red lines. For Russia, the red line was to have NATO on its borders.
Who really hurt the sanctions?
The ongoing conflict between Russia and Ukraine is, in a sense, a proxy war between Russia and the United States being fought in Europe. At this time, the cost to the United States is minimal. Sanctions are hurting Europeans, there is no incentive for the United States to end the conflict quickly, because Europeans are paying the highest price.
In the midst of the escalating conflict, the United States has fueled tensions in the region, sending weapons to Ukraine and prompting its allies to impose sweeping sanctions against Russia. The European Union doesn’t have a red line and a foreign policy and it is precisely this that puts us in a very weak position. Our concerns and interests are in conflict, because we are allies of the United States, but the economic interests and even the foreign policy of the EU are not always those of the United States. The Russia-Ukraine conflict could lead to a weaker Europe as the economy could suffer severe damage. In the medium and long term, if Europe loses Russia as a trading partner and reconciles after the end of the conflict, Europe will suffer. We are imposing sanctions on energy products thinking they would harm the Russian economy. However, they would damage the EU economy the most. We are all wrong, we are imposing export bans, which would only harm us.
Sanctions never work. To solve this problem, we need to use diplomacy with Russia. We don’t just have to go to Kiev. We must also go to Moscow.