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playwithfire72116 karma

Hi Paul. Thanks for doing this!

  1. Many scholars in the past have denounced the effectiveness of pure economic sanctions in coercing countries to make a change. With the sanctions being placed on Russia by the United States being at least mildly effective (tanking the worth of the ruble, Treasury Department naming Russian entities as illegal to aid, blocking company contact with Russian industry, etc...), do you see them finally being an effective, viable way to coerce nations to make a change in their actions?

  2. How has the uprising of pro-Russian militias in places like Donetsk and Lugansk affected the relationship between the civilian government and military leadership in Ukraine?

  3. Do you see Putin backing down any time soon?

playwithfire7216 karma

Thank you so very much! I'm currently working on a senior thesis dealing with the effectiveness of these sanctions (political and economic) on Russia from the US and EU, and being able to ask questions to someone working in the field is amazing.

If you don't mind me asking another question, are these sanctions causing more of a panic, or worry, than the Russian government is letting on? Putin has been quoted as saying "Overall they are causing (damage)…But this is of no critical character", and Deputy Foreign Minister Ryabkov has said that the sanctions "will only intensify all the processes in Ukraine which it intends to change or stop". I'm sure they're not taking things lightly, but it seems like they are desperate to save face in the heat of a fairly drastic economic downturn. Is there truth to that?