Tuesday’s sanctions just a rehearsal

This week should mark a turning point in Western relations with Russia. Now is the time for Americans to grasp the magnitude of Vladimir Putin's lies.

By

Columnists

February 23, 2022 - 9:54 AM

U.S. President Joe Biden announces sanctions against Russia, Feb. 22, 2022, in Washington, DC. The White House called Russia's deployment of troops into two pro-Russian separatist regions of Ukraine the beginnings of an invasion. (Drew Angerer/Getty Images/TNS)

Any illusions about Vladimir Putin’s objectives should have vanished on Monday, when Russia invaded Ukraine for the second time in a decade.

The Russian leader made clear in a Monday speech that he believes Ukraine has no right to exist as an independent country and regards it as the rightful possession of Russia.

Call it Hitlerian, call it Stalinesque — the bottom line is that Putin, who rules a failing nation with nukes and considers America his prime enemy, believes he can take control of other countries by military means. Ensconced in his anti-COVID bunker, the Russian leader’s passion to restore Soviet-era power and territory now poses a threat that goes far beyond Ukraine.

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