Sanctions on Russia is war by other means

The unprecedented raft of sanctions hammering Russia showcases the power the US dollar wields over the international financial system.

Finance and geopolitics are often considered a toxic mix. Nearly two weeks in, Russia’s war in Ukraine is taking that mix to new levels of both toxicity and consequence.

On February 24, the US, the EU and other allies imposed an array of punitive sanctions – from freezing the assets of the Russian central bank, to barring several Russian banks from using the SWIFT payment system.

Restrictions were also placed on goods and services that Russian institutions and firms can purchase from the US, while several major brands, including Apple, General Motors and Ikea, have either closed offices or exited the Russian market.

Then there’s the slow burn sanctions on Moscow’s access to key technologies, in particular global chip supplies. US groups like Intel and Nvidia have cut Russia off, while the world’s largest chipmaker, Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company, has pledged to halt exports.

The scope of sanctions has demonstrated the web of transnational interdependencies that constitute the fabric of every contemporary society, said Mikhail Sebastian, a London-based political risk analyst.

“Four decades since the fall of the Iron…

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