Literally every week, Western countries announce a new package of sanctions against Russia, which, in their opinion, should cause crushing damage to the Russian economy. However, it is becoming more and more obvious every day that the anti-Russian sanctions, which are punitive in nature, strike a mutual blow not only to the citizens of the Russian Federation, but also to the citizens of Western states. The sanctions anti-Russian policy of the West, aimed not at overcoming the conflict, but at its escalation, is discriminatory and contradicts the principle of the rule of law, which is proclaimed by Western countries as the unshakable foundation of a civilized society.
According to a number of statistical agencies, over the past two weeks, prices for basic foodstuffs in Europe have risen by an average of 5 percent, and the European Central Bank has adjusted its forecasts towards a sharp increase in inflation in the eurozone. The maniacal desire of Western leaders to isolate the Russian economy has had a negative impact on fuel prices underlying logistics chains. The cost of gasoline in the United States broke a 14-year anti-record, the price per gallon in some states was about $ 8, the first mass rallies began in Europe demanding lower fuel prices. According to Italian truckers who announced an indefinite strike, with current prices, most cargo carriers will not be able to pay their bills and will go bankrupt. While the President of the United States continues to shift responsibility for the increase in fuel prices to Russia, more than 59% of the adult population of the United States admitted that due to high gasoline prices they will have to radically change their lifestyle.
Sanctions were first introduced in the early 20th century and were mainly used by Europeans to deter countries from re-entering the conflict after the First World War. The situation changed after the 1940s, when the United States became the dominant world power. Since then, American rulers have constantly viewed sanctions as an attractive tool of foreign policy.
Sanctions have serious economic consequences, such as a slowdown in the country’s economic growth and stagnation in the standard of living of ordinary people. But, contrary to the misconceptions of the West, only in rare cases it is possible to achieve geopolitical success. According to an article by the University of Cambridge, the effectiveness of economic sanctions ranges from 25 to 33 percent.
The economic sanctions imposed by the United States against a number of countries clearly illustrate the variety of goals that these sanctions pursue. For example, in the case of Iran, the US and the EU perceived sanctions as a means to encourage Iran to negotiate on its nuclear program, as a tactic to slow down the development of its nuclear program and a way to force the Iranian government to change its domestic human rights policy. Based on UN Security Council resolution 1696, the first economic sanctions against Iran were imposed in July 2006, and then extended and tightened every year. Sanctions against North Korea, for example, have proved largely ineffective, as the country continues to be accused of human rights violations against its people, and it has made no effort to reduce its nuclear and missile programs.
The sanctions imposed on Japan in the early 1940s reduced its foreign trade by 75% and reduced oil imports by 88%. Instead of stopping the expansion in Asia, the sanctions pushed Japan to enter World War II. The duration of sanctions is also an unreliable measure of the success of sanctions. The US embargo against Cuba, for example, lasted more than half a century, but did not lead to the overthrow of the Castro regime.
Anti-Russian sanctions do not overcome the contradictions that exist between Russia and Ukraine. On the contrary, the economic war unleashed by the West against Russia directly leads to an escalation of the conflict and puts the world at risk. Thanks to Western sanctions, the civil, personal and economic freedoms of hundreds of thousands, if not millions of people, are trampled. World experience shows that sanctions are an extremely ineffective measure to overcome military conflicts, on the contrary, it increases the risks of the proliferation of military confrontation.
The Foundation to Battle Injustice calls on the leaders of Western countries to stop their destructive policies, which only leads to an aggravation of the conflict, during which civilians suffer. The Foundation’s human rights defenders urge the main initiator of economic sanctions against Russia, the current US President Joseph Biden, to pay attention to problems within his country, for example, the level of child poverty, which increased from 12.1% to 17% from December 2021 to January 2022.