US President Obama has not yet signed a bill clearing the way for more economic sanctions against Russia. The US State Department confirmed that Jen Psaki mis-spoke during her latest White House press briefing.
The bill was expected to be signed ‘by the end of the week,’ according to White House press secretary Josh Earnest’s statement on Tuesday. ‘He signed it yesterday,’ Psaki stated during her briefing.
Psaki cannot wait to step up the struggle for regime-change in Russia, a vital part of the US imperialist plan to resolve the capitalist crisis.
However, she was merely following the lead of the US’ chief ‘running dog’ PM Cameron of the UK.
On Wednesday, he said in the House of Commons that the combined effect produced by Western sanctions and low oil prices proves that there’s no place for Russia in the international financial system.
‘We should stand up very firmly against the Russian aggression that’s taking place,’ Cameron said before Parliament. He reminded MPs that it’s the UK, which ‘led the way in Europe in making sure there were sanctions’ imposed against Russia over its ‘annexation’ of Crimea in March and Moscow’s alleged involvement in the Ukrainian crisis.
‘And what the combination of the lower oil price and the sanctions are showing is that it isn’t possible for Russia to be part of the international financial system, but try and opt out of the rules-based international legal system,’ Cameron said.
‘We should keep up the pressure,’ the head of the British government added.
The EU was expected to announce a new round of sanctions against Russia yesterday, during the European Council’s meeting in Brussels.
Meanwhile in Moscow, President Putin said that the only contribution Russia made toward the current period of tension ‘is an increasingly strong stance in defending its national interests’.
‘We are not attacking anyone in the political sense,’ he said. ‘We are only defending our interests … The displeasure of our Western partners, particularly the Americans, comes from that.’
He added: ‘Russia in the 1990s completely stopped the long-range bomber flights that the Soviet Union used to carry out. But American strategic bombers with nuclear weapons still flew. Why? Against whom? Who was being threatened?’
Putin added: ‘Take the anti-ballistic missile system. Who unilaterally withdrew from the ABM Treaty, which was a cornerstone of the international security system? Was that us? No, the US did it. They unilaterally withdrew and are creating threats toward us.’
Putin added that Russia simply wants to be treated as equal partners by the West. ‘We want to develop normal relations on security, counterterrorism. We will work together on nuclear non-proliferation. We will work on threats like illegal drugs, organised crime, dangerous infectious diseases, including Ebola. We will do it all together as we will cooperate on the economy, as long as our partners want that,’ Putin said.
However, the fact of the matter is that the capitalist crisis is driving the US and the UK ruling classes into class war at home and regime change in Russia.
In the last seven days, the 20 richest billionaire Oligarchs who made their fortunes looting parts of the USSR, by kind permission of Gorbachev and Yeltsin, lost collectively $10bn. Since 2014, their aggregate losses have reached $64bn, with their total assets counting for $174bn.
The tactic of the imperialists is to show the Oligarchs that the only way that they can hang onto their vast stolen wealth is to bring down Putin from the right and turn Russia into a new Ukraine by organising mercenary militias to carve it up.
There is no doubt that the Russian workers will respond to this onslaught. They will fight for the expropriation of the banks and industries that were seized by the Oligarchs and the restoration of the USSR, and rule through workers soviets, as well as the restoration of the state monopoly of foreign trade.
Russian workers also understand that since capitalism is a world system, they will never be safe until the workers of the world remove world capitalism and imperialism and replace it with world socialism. The real defence of Russia depends on the victory of the world socialist revolution.