To Russia With Caution

Scott Stewart By Scott Stewart – Re-Blogged From Statfor

Highlights

  • Tensions between the West and Russia are ratcheting up in the wake of the nerve agent attack on Sergei Skripal.
  • The heightened hostilities will make day-to-day operations more challenging for foreign companies, nongovernmental organizations and journalists working in Russia.
  • In addition to the threat of government surveillance and harassment, foreigners will likely be the targets of increased violence from nationalists and nationalist gangs.

At a newsstand in Moscow, a paper announces Russian President Vladimir Putin's re-election.

(KIRILL KUDRYAVTSEV/AFP/Getty Images)

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Russia Won’t Sit Still for Additional U.S. Sanctions

Re-Blogged From Stratfor

Highlights

  • Washington will increase pressure on Moscow in 2018 through a series of expanded sanctions aimed at Russia’s financial stability, elites, reputation and defense industry.
  • Russia will weather the increased pressure by further insulating its economy, oligarchs and companies, placing additional responsibility for the country’s stability on the Kremlin.
  • The Russian government can maintain its position next year, though its resources are growing slim and the Kremlin faces a pivotal series of elections. 

Russia has begun insulating its economy from additional U.S. sanctions.

(MARK KOLBE/Getty Images)

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Russian Power Assets Attacked – How long will the Trans-Siberian Pipeline last?

By Eric Worrall – Re-Blogged From WattsUpWithThat

Power pylons supplying regions of the Crimean have been blown up, causing significant economic disruption to disputed territory currently occupied by Russian backed Ukrainian rebels.

According to Reuters;

Crimea was left without electricity supplies from Ukraine on Sunday after pylons carrying power lines to the Russia-annexed peninsula were blown up overnight.

It was not immediately clear who had damaged the pylons, but a Russian senator described the move as an “act of terrorism” and implied that Ukrainian nationalists were to blame.

Crimea receives the bulk of its electricity from the Ukrainian mainland and its seizure by Russia last year prompted fury in Kiev and the West, which then imposed economic sanctions on Russian companies and individuals.

Russia’s Energy Ministry said emergency electricity supplies had been turned on for critical needs in Crimea and that mobile gas turbine generators were being used, adding that around 1.6 million people out of a population of roughly 2 million remained without power as of 1000 GMT.

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