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Damage is done, Russia must be punished effectively now

Vice President Biden stood firmly behind the Ukraine and some analysts interpret that weapons and arms are on the way to bolster the military against a strong Russian army. In the meantime, if you have been watching and listening, not much is coming from members of the EU. For instance, Russia’s number one EU trading partner is Germany. Has the German and Russian trading stopped? According to the Voice of America, Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev says sanctions are not a problem because Russia has other markets to serve. That begs the question, what are they? Meanwhile, President Obama and his proxy, Vice President Biden are pounding the table with their shoes exclaiming, if you think these are bad, just wait until you see the next round of really bad sanctions. To that Senator John McCain has removed his shoe and is banging on the table saying, don’t just wave that thing around, sop telling what you are going to do, and just do it.

Time to move the Patriot missiles closer to Russian targets
Time to move the Patriot missiles closer to Russian targets
Photo by Deutsche Bundeswehr/Getty Images)

“Unprecedented talks across the European Union on Tuesday showed it scrambling for solutions on the ground to break its dependence on Russian gas and help supply Ukraine.

The EU faces a daunting task in quickly overcoming a mountain of logistical challenges, avoiding breaking binding contracts and making sure Ukraine does pay up for gas.

Russia supplies 30 percent of Europe's gas needs. It has threatened to cut off supplies to Ukraine because of debts reviving fears of a repeat of supply crises across Europe of 2007 and 2009.”

http://www.voanews.com/content/reu-eu-struggles-to-unpick-knot-of-russia-ukraine-gas-logistics/1894248.html

“Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev has told lawmakers the country can weather the sanctions imposed by the West over the situation in Ukraine.

In a televised speech to the Russian parliament Tuesday, Medvedev said he will not let Russian citizens become hostage to political games and unfriendly actions.

The prime minister said he is confident his government will be able to minimize the consequences of sanctions and that it will act under what he calls new conditions. He assured lawmakers that Russian industries that rely on support from other markets would get it from the government.

He said Russia has no plans to ease trade with the European Union, but pointed out that thanks to cooperation with other markets, Russia can minimize its losses.

The United States has said it is prepared to impose more sanctions on Russia if Moscow does not take steps to ease tensions in eastern Ukraine.”

http://www.voanews.com/content/medvedev-says-russia-ready-to-withstand-new-sanctions/1898346.html

“As Prime Russian Trading Partner, Germany Appears Crucial to Ending Crisis

By LANDON THOMAS Jr.MARCH 3, 2014

In the face of the diplomatic maneuvering over how to confront a bellicose Russia in Ukraine, one country appears to hold the key to any long-lasting entente: Germany, Europe’s economic powerhouse and one of Russia’s primary trading partners.

Whether it is importing fuel from Gazprom or selling Mercedes-Benz to billionaire oligarchs, trade with Russia has played an important role in Germany’s emergence as an economic superpower over the last decade. Germany is now heavily reliant on Russia for its energy needs, importing more natural gas from Russia than any other country in Europe.

But Germany’s enhanced status on the world stage — combined with the end of the commodity boom and the onset of economic stagnation in Russia — has also shifted the balance of power. Some analysts argue that it is Russia that has the most to lose if economic sanctions are ever imposed.”

http://www.nytimes.com/2014/03/04/business/international/as-prime-russian-trading-partner-germany-appears-crucial-to-ending-crisis.html?_r=0