Friday, April 13, 2018

US Won’t Notice Moscow’s Counter-Sanctions but Russian People Will – and That is Kremlin’s Intention

Paul Goble

            Staunton, April 14 – New legislation imposing counter-sanctions on American products and companies will have relatively little impact on the US given the small size of the Russian market compared to that of the American economy, but it will hurt Russians who won’t be able to get medicines and other things they need – and that is the Kremlin’s intention.

            Just as was the case with Moscow’s earlier counter-sanctions effort, this latest move is intended to hurt the Russian population more generally and thus generate support for the Kremlin’s opposition to the sanctions the US has imposed on oligarchs by spreading the pain more generally lest Russians decide that the US sanctions are directed only against the oligarchs.

            As Igor Eidman, a Russian commentator for Deutsche Welle points out, the new Russian counter-sanctions are rational from the Kremlin’s point of view even though they will hurt the people of the Russian Federation more than the companies of the United States (

            For a complete list of the proposed counter-sanctions including on medicines, alcohol, and cigarettes, see And for an assessment by a Russian analyst of how little these sanctions will affect the US, see

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