President Joe Biden says that it could take time till Russia feels the impact of the strict sanctions he has imposed but feel it they will.
In a recent interview, Biden warned that there is “no sanction that is immediate,” just as the US and allies are using sanctions as their main tool to target Russia over its invasion of Ukraine.
“You have two options. Start a Third World War, go to war with Russia physically. Or two, make sure that a country that acts so contrary to international law ends up paying a price for having done it,” The President said in an interview discussing the options for dealing with the invasion by Moscow.
Biden has announced multiple waves of sanctions on Russia this week, including unprecedented sanctions that would target four more major Russian banks, including VTB, as well as placing limits on exports.
The sanctions also target Russian elites, including Sergei Ivanov and his son Sergei, Andrey Patrushev and his son Nikolai, Igor Sechin and his son Ivan, Andrey Puchkov, Yuriy Solviev, and two real estate companies he owns, Galina Ulyutina and Alexander Vedyakhin, the Administration said.
Other countries have also placed strong sanctions on Russia, aiming at banks, businesses, and oligarchs. But Biden felt the need to remind people sanctions by nature are not immediately effective, no matter how stiff, saying “no-one expected the sanctions to prevent anything from happening” – despite previous messaging from his White House that said the sanctions were designed to deter and prevent.
In the new interview, Biden said that people should not expect an immediate effect with the sanctions.
“…there’s no sanction that is immediate,” he said. It’s not like you can sanction someone and say ‘you’re no longer going to be able to be the president of Russia.'”
“But I think, I know these sanctions are the broadest sanctions in history, and economic sanctions and political sanctions,” he said.
He said that his goal had been to keep NATO and the Europeans all on the same page.
“Because the one thing I think that Putin thought he could do was split NATO, creating a great aperture for him to be able to walk through. And that hasn’t happened. If you notice. It’s been complete unanimity,” he said.
Earlier this week, the White House was criticized after Deputy National Security Advisor Daleep Singh said that the sanctions levied against Russia are “not designed to disrupt” Russia’s energy exports.
“Our sanctions are not designed to cause any disruption to the current flow of energy from Russia to the world,” Singh said.
Singh later reiterated the comment saying that “our measures were not designed to disrupt in any way the current flow of energy from Russia to the world.”
Singh added that the sanctions are meant to degrade Russia’s “long term” energy capacity but nothing in the “short term.”
However, as Putin presses further into Ukraine, that policy may change.