Sanctions Set on Russia as Moves Are Made to Invade Ukraine

Russia stationed up to 150,000 troops on the Ukraine border but has denied claims that it is planning to invade.

The United States put sanctions on Russia in response to the active troops of Russian President Vladimir Putin at the border of Russia and Ukraine. U.S. President Joe Biden announced his plans to put sanctions on a company building Nord Stream 2, a gas pipeline between Russia and Germany. This is one of the many repercussions the U.S. is hitting Russia with in response to their aggression at the Ukrainian border.

Biden has threatened to impose more sanctions and bans on Russian products if the aggressions do not stop. 

“These steps are another piece of our initial tranche of sanctions in response to Russia’s actions in Ukraine,” Biden said. “As I have made clear, we will not hesitate to take further steps if Russia continues to escalate. Through his actions, President Putin has provided the world with an overwhelming incentive to move away from Russian gas and to other forms of energy.”

This notion of sanctions and the idea of a Russian retaliation has already driven up gas prices and pushed down stock returns

“Russia is incredibly unimportant in the global economy except for oil and gas,” said Jason Furman, a Harvard economist who was an adviser to President Barack Obama. “It’s basically a big gas station.”

Experts say European nations will feel the impacts of the potential invasion much more than what the U.S. will experience. Europe gets nearly 40% of its natural gas and 25% of its oil from Russia. With weeks of winter ahead, natural gas reserves in Europe are at about one third capacity, causing prices of these materials to soar

Some European leaders are claiming President Vladimir Putin purposely kept the reserves low as a way to gain a political edge.

In addition to oil and gas, Russia is the largest global supplier of wheat, with most of those exports going to the Middle East. Around 70% of grain imported in Turkey comes from Russia — Turkey is also in the middle of an economic crisis and could be devastated by an invasion.

Ukraine sends more than 40% of its wheat and corn to Africa or the Middle East, where there are worries that a food shortage and price increases would cause great social unrest.

The history of conflict between Russia and Ukraine dates back thousands of years. However, in the past 150 years the two have undergone serious changes. After the Communist Revolution in Ukraine in 1917, Ukraine fought in a bloody civil war before being taken over by the Soviet Union.

“Because eastern Ukraine came under Russian rule much earlier than western Ukraine, people in the east have stronger ties to Russia and have been more likely to support Russian-leaning leaders,” reads the National Geographic website. “Western Ukraine, by contrast, spent centuries under the shifting control of European powers such as Poland and the Austro-Hungarian Empire—one reason Ukrainians in the west have tended to support more Western-leaning politicians.”

After the Soviet Union was dissolved and Ukraine was made an independent nation, one of the greatest divides between the two sides was the way they felt about Ukraine as a nation and its relationship with Russia.

“The biggest divide after all these factors is between those who view the Russian imperial and Soviet rule more sympathetically versus those who see them as a tragedy,” said Adrian Karatnycky, a Ukraine expert and former fellow at the Atlantic Council of the United States.

One piece of land that has sparked further conflict is the Crimea Peninsula. The area was previously controlled by Russia, although it was annexed and given to Ukraine as territory in 2014 after the Revolution of Dignity during the Russo-Ukrainian conflict.

This region, amongst others, were recognized as independent nations by Russia. Shortly after, President Vladimir Putin ordered troops to invade and station in those areas. Reports on the situation are posted daily — at time of writing, a report in the New York Times states that Russia is fully prepared to invade Ukraine.

The United States put sanctions on Russia in response to the active troops of Russian President Vladimir Putin at the border of Russia and Ukraine. U.S. President Joe Biden announced his plans to put sanctions on a company building Nord Stream 2, a gas pipeline between Russia and Germany. This is one of the many repercussions the U.S. is hitting Russia with in response to their aggression at the Ukrainian border.

Biden has threatened to impose more sanctions and bans on Russian products if the aggressions do not stop. 

“These steps are another piece of our initial tranche of sanctions in response to Russia’s actions in Ukraine,” Biden said. “As I have made clear, we will not hesitate to take further steps if Russia continues to escalate. Through his actions, President Putin has provided the world with an overwhelming incentive to move away from Russian gas and to other forms of energy.”

This notion of sanctions and the idea of a Russian retaliation has already driven up gas prices and pushed down stock returns

“Russia is incredibly unimportant in the global economy except for oil and gas,” said Jason Furman, a Harvard economist who was an adviser to President Barack Obama. “It’s basically a big gas station.”

Experts say European nations will feel the impacts of the potential invasion much more than what the U.S. will experience. Europe gets nearly 40% of its natural gas and 25% of its oil from Russia. With weeks of winter ahead, natural gas reserves in Europe are at about one third capacity, causing prices of these materials to soar

Some European leaders are claiming President Vladimir Putin purposely kept the reserves low as a way to gain a political edge.

In addition to oil and gas, Russia is the largest global supplier of wheat, with most of those exports going to the Middle East. Around 70% of grain imported in Turkey comes from Russia — Turkey is also in the middle of an economic crisis and could be devastated by an invasion.

Ukraine sends more than 40% of its wheat and corn to Africa or the Middle East, where there are worries that a food shortage and price increases would cause great social unrest.

The history of conflict between Russia and Ukraine dates back thousands of years. However, in the past 150 years the two have undergone serious changes. After the Communist Revolution in Ukraine in 1917, Ukraine fought in a bloody civil war before being taken over by the Soviet Union.

“Because eastern Ukraine came under Russian rule much earlier than western Ukraine, people in the east have stronger ties to Russia and have been more likely to support Russian-leaning leaders,” reads the National Geographic website. “Western Ukraine, by contrast, spent centuries under the shifting control of European powers such as Poland and the Austro-Hungarian Empire—one reason Ukrainians in the west have tended to support more Western-leaning politicians.”

After the Soviet Union was dissolved and Ukraine was made an independent nation, one of the greatest divides between the two sides was the way they felt about Ukraine as a nation and its relationship with Russia.

“The biggest divide after all these factors is between those who view the Russian imperial and Soviet rule more sympathetically versus those who see them as a tragedy,” said Adrian Karatnycky, a Ukraine expert and former fellow at the Atlantic Council of the United States.

One piece of land that has sparked further conflict is the Crimea Peninsula. The area was previously controlled by Russia, although it was annexed and given to Ukraine as territory in 2014 after the Revolution of Dignity during the Russo-Ukrainian conflict.

This region, amongst others, were recognized as independent nations by Russia. Shortly after, President Vladimir Putin ordered troops to invade and station in those areas. Reports on the situation are posted daily — at time of writing, a report in the New York Times states that Russia is fully prepared to invade Ukraine.

“The Ukrainian people want peace,” President Volodymyr Zelensky said after midnight on Thursday morning in Kyiv. “The government in Ukraine wants peace and is doing everything it can to build it.”

Live updates can be found on the New York Times website. All information in the article was written on Wednesday Feb. 23 by 7:55 p.m.

“The Ukrainian people want peace,” President Volodymyr Zelensky said after midnight on Thursday morning in Kyiv. “The government in Ukraine wants peace and is doing everything it can to build it.”

Live updates can be found on the New York Times website. All information in the article was written on Wednesday Feb. 23 by 7:55 p.m.

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About Kyra Russo 43 Articles
Kyra Russo (she/her) is a third-year journalism major from East Greenbush, New York. She spent two and a half semesters as a Copy Editor and is now the Managing Editor. Besides the newspaper, she is on the women’s soccer team at SUNY New Paltz and participates in the Rising Hawks leadership program. You can reach her by emailing russok5@newpaltz.edu.