Tipp Insights: Punish Russia, not Russians

Screengrab President Putin

By tippinsights Editorial Board, Tipp Insights

As the world watches President Putin’s brutal military advances in Ukraine in horror, Western governments have promptly responded with a tranche of sanctions. In a policy reversal, Germany announced $113 billion in funds one-time to spend on defense and a commitment to spend more than 2% of its annual GDP on defense. This is the same country whose diplomats had mocked President Trump when he demanded that wealthy European nations do more and adequately foot NATO’s bill. Crises sure have a strange way to prompt action.

Government responses to a bully, who placed his nuclear forces on high alert on Sunday to further add to global anxiety, are one thing. But, private Western sanctions mushrooming rapidly across sports, music, and culture to ensnare innocent Russian civilians are another.

For months, Russia had been preparing to host the UEFA Champions League contested by top-division European soccer clubs. Although the event was scheduled in St. Petersburg on May 28, three months away, UEFA organizers quickly punished ordinary Russians by moving it to a grateful Paris that was ever ready to play as a backup host. Although they had nothing to do with the conflict, millions of Russian fans, hundreds of thousands of vendors, businesses, and employees were forced to suffer. In truth, many Russians have vociferously protested the invasion, and over 3,000 have even risked arrest by Russian security forces.

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