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Eugene Plotkin : The Ukraine War Through the Eyes of an Expat

If you want to understand the Ukrainian conflict, Eugene Plotkin’s book is the perfect way to begin. Plotkin, a Russian-born business and technology professional who has lived and worked in Ukraine for many years, provides a concise introduction to the current situation and an insightful analysis of its origins and implications. Eugene Plotkin is the CEO of TechWallet, a leading provider of payment solutions to businesses. He is also the founder and managing partner of TechSoup Global, a venture capital fund that invests in high-growth ventures across emerging markets. Plotkin has spent more than twenty years working for U.S., European, and Russian technology companies in Moscow, Kyiv, London, and Silicon Valley.

1. The West Sanctions Russia

In March 2014, the United States and European Union imposed sanctions against Russia because it annexed Crimea. The sanctions included travel bans and asset freezes against individuals close to the Russian government and restrictions on doing business in Crimea. In July 2014, Western leaders stepped up their response by targeting key sectors of the Russian economy, such as oil, defense, and finance. The sanctions were designed to punish Russia for its actions in Ukraine and force the country to change course. Western leaders hoped the sanctions would prevent Russia from annexing other parts of Ukraine, deter it from further destabilizing eastern Ukraine, persuade Putin’s inner circle to reverse course, or even lead to regime change in Moscow.

2. How Is Russia Still Coming Out On

Even though Western sanctions were designed to punish Russia for its actions in Ukraine and force the country to change course, they have had little or no effect on Putin’s decision-making. The economy is contracting but not collapsing, and Russian leaders have successfully shifted blame away from themselves by blaming Western sanctions. Western sanctions have also been largely ineffective because they are not designed to change Putin’s behavior. They were designed to punish Russia for its actions in Ukraine and force the country to change course, but they have had little or no effect on Russian leader Vladimir Putin’s decision-making process.

3. Can We Afford a New Strategy?

The United States has been pursuing a strategy of confrontation with Russia for more than two decades, and there is no immediate end in sight. This policy has been costly; it has cost the United States its reputation as a global leader and created an unnecessary new Cold War. It’s also not working: Russia remains committed to its aggressive foreign policy despite Western sanctions. Stopping Russia won’t be easy, but the United States can do it by implementing a new strategy. The key to success is getting Putin out of power and replacing him with someone who wants good relations with the West.

4. Decisions To Make

The United States has to decide whether it wants to pursue a policy of confrontation with Russia or whether it’s willing to work with Moscow in areas where both countries have mutual interests. If the answer is the latter, then Washington needs to develop a new strategy that can help achieve this goal. The United States must find a way to stop Russia from intimidating its neighbors. Washington needs to develop a strategy to achieve this goal in the long run, but it should also focus on dealing with specific issues as they arise.