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US sanctions are not new and have been applied by the US in both recent history (Venezuela, Iran) and well prior (Japan 1937-45, Latin America, Africa). However, the scope & magnitude of US sanctions against Russia today represent a quantitative, as well as qualitative, higher stage and escalation of sanctions as a tool of US imperialism. The presentation will describe what’s in the US six packages of sanctions announced to date, distinguish between financial sanctions from goods & trade sanctions and individuals’ sanctions, and estimate their current stage of implementation of each. How US capitalists are enormously benefiting from the Russian sanctions. Thereafter, the discussion focuses on what’s been the impact of sanctions on Russia’s economy to date, as well as the growing consequence for Europe, US, and emerging markets economies–in terms of inflation, recession, and growing global financial markets’ fragility and potential instability. The presentation concludes with an assessment of the contradictions of sanctions for US imperialism and why sanctions on Russia represent a de facto declaration of economic war on Russia by the US as US imperialism comes under increasing challenge in the 21st century, becomes more aggressive in decline, and seeks to restore its prior hegemony, first in Europe and soon therefore in Asia.
Dr. Jack Rasmus, Ph.D Political Economy, teaches economics at St. Mary’s College in California. He is the author and producer of the various nonfiction and fictional works, including the books The Scourge of Neoliberalism: US Economic Policy From Reagan to Bush, Clarity Press, October 2019; Alexander Hamilton & The Origins of the Fed, Lexington books, March 2019; Central Bankers at the End of Their Ropes: Monetary Policy and the Coming Depression, Clarity Press, August 2018; Looting Greece: A New Financial Imperialism Emerges, Clarity Press, Sept. 2016.