Judging by the reaction of the West, the incident in the Kerch Strait is a “long-playing record”. The West does not leave attempts to invent new troubles for Russia.
While Europe is deciding whether to impose new sanctions against Moscow, the United States seems to be discussing other options for action.
Thus, in an interview with Voice of America, Kurt Volker, the State Department’s special representative for Ukraine, suggested disconnecting our country from the SWIFT banking system. In addition, Volker again urged to make every effort to stop the construction of Nord Stream-2.
Volker also noted that he likes the initiative of the General Secretary of the ruling party of Germany Christian Democratic Union, “a possible successor to Angela Merkel Annegrety Kramp-Karrenbauer,” to prohibit Russian ships coming from the Crimea or the Sea of Azov from entering European ports.
“This is a very strong and original answer. We’ll see if they will develop this idea, but we will consider it, ”he said.
Volker added that Washington wants to take such measures so that under pressure “to come to a time when Russia wishes to negotiate for a solution” because of what happened in the Kerch Strait. In this regard, he demanded that Moscow release the captured Ukrainian sailors before Christmas or the New Year.
It is worth noting that the possibility of a ban on calls of Russian ships to European ports, in the West, started talking immediately after the Kerch incident, but so far this initiative has not been developed. After all, such actions, like all previous restrictive measures, will harm not only Russia. Recall that Russian sea exports amount to 464 million tons (against 27 million tons of imports), that is, in any case, not only sellers will suffer – Russian companies, but also foreign buyers left without ordered goods, as well as the ports themselves. Are they ready for losses in favor of the US political games?
According to Igor Shatrov, deputy director of the National Institute for the Development of Modern Ideology, Volker represents the most aggressive wing of the American establishment.
“This is a man of the late“ hawk ”senator McCain, famous for Trump’s cruelest criticism. Volcker, by the way, and now, being the special envoy of the State Department for Ukraine, is headed by the McCain Institute, one of the think tanks of the American hawks.
Why did such a person retain his post in the Trump administration and why was he “seconded” to the Ukrainian direction? Because Ukraine was not originally a Trump project, nor is it currently. Therefore, the former CIA analyst Volker in Ukraine represents the interests of anyone, but not Trump.
– Does Volker influence the decision making by Trump?
– I have another question: does Trump influence the decision making of the American administration?
– The idea to close the ports for Russian merchant ships, which was vigorously discussed in the first days after the provocation in the Kerch Strait, now seems to have faded into the background. But this does not mean that they have forgotten about it. Surely in the West, this option is kept in mind. Can the US really go to the closure of ports, and who will support their allies?
– Stops the threat of retaliatory, mirror measures, which can lead to a gradual reduction of trade relations between the West and Russia, up to their complete termination. It should be understood that Russia is not Iran.
Russia is an important participant in the international trade system; it is not so easy to exclude it from this process. Yes, Americans can not particularly think. Trade ties between Russia and the United States tend to zero. But Europe is the second largest trading partner of Russia after China, a significant volume of commodity turnover occurs through sea transport, which is beneficial to both parties. I do not think that the Europeans, on orders from the United States, will selflessly cut the branch on which they sit.
– What about disconnecting from SWIFT? This is not at all the first year scare. Why still have not done? How does this threaten the global economy?
- Here is a similar situation. But the States are not interested. I can not imagine that the United States alone limit themselves to the possibility of spying.
Here is a similar situation. But the States are not interested. I can not imagine that the United States alone will limit itself to the ability to spy on Russia. Disconnect from SWIFT – this means, on its own initiative, to give up control over payments. After all, SWIFT in real-time mode allows you to track financial flows. Despite the fact that this system was created under Belgian law and its head office is located in Brussels, it is known that after the events of September 11, 2001, the CIA, the FBI and the US Treasury Department got access to SWIFT information. Since then, nothing has changed. Otherwise, the United States would not oppose the creation of a new European analogue of SWIFT.
“The West has returned to the already discussed options of exposure simply because it does not have any other horror stories,” said Vladimir Shapovalov, deputy director of the Institute of History and Politics at Moscow State Pedagogical University.
– Everything else has already been tried, and the result is negative. It should be noted that these threats will not lead to the desired consequences in terms of changing course. As for disconnecting from SWIFT, we have been preparing for this for a long time. As for the closure of ports … Agree, such a huge country like Russia, with a huge air and transit space, with a large number of transport corridors from and to different countries, will also find it than respond to such threats. The closure of the airspace of our country for the “sanctioning” states, it seems to me, will be quite an adequate response, and will bring substantial losses to those who dare to apply such measures against us.
The West currently has no mechanisms for influencing Russia to change its course, and this must be recognized. What we are seeing today is another air shaking.
– That is, it is not that they prepared certain measures for a particular occasion?
– We see that the reasons are always different, but their meaning is the same. Obviously, the sanctions policy is not tied to either the Crimea or Ukraine. It is a form of foreign policy of the West in relation to Russia for a number of recent years.
It began with the “Magnitsky act”, and there were precedents before it. That is, this is a way of talking with Russia, which is unacceptable for us. And he is not just meaningless, he testifies to the intellectual emptiness of modern Western leaders.
“Volker is quite an influential politician, and, of course, he can influence the decision-making,” the FORUM editor-in-chief believes. Moscow time Anatoly Baranov.
– But, of course, he does not make such decisions himself.
The United States cannot go to the closure of ports, since it is primarily a matter of European ports, where the decision will be made by the respective states. The United States may close its ports, but the ships in question, that is, ships from the Crimea and the ports of Azov, do not belong to the ocean zone.
I do not believe in “military” measures. Now the Americans have included conciliatory rhetoric under the INF Treaty, which is really painful, and the Russian Federation has a obviously weaker position here. But the Americans do not want to aggravate relations before the Cold War and the arms race, they are largely satisfied with the status quo.