What should we do in Europe when our neighbours are engaged in the following?
- When opposition leaders are murdered, tortured, and imprisoned…
- When opposition demonstrations are broken up by violent policemen and soldiers…
- When elections are fixed so the same old men in suits and their mates can steal money from companies and the ordinary people to buy luxuries for their families and friends…
- When their people are hacking our basic infrastructure networks and companies to steal our money and secrets.
Should we continue to rely on their raw materials that we need to run our economies or do we seek out other solutions as a top priority?
Should we increase our reliance on them as trading partners?
Should we engage them in telephone discussions and top-level summits in expensive locations with high security costs?
Or should we impose strong travel and trade sanctions on the politicians, oligarchs and on their businesses?
Just consider this:
We already know that the leaders of Russia and Belarus are involved in the above crimes against humanity; and we know that they are stopping demonstrations with cruel violence and fixing elections; and we already know that they and their mates are stealing the crown jewels from their respective countries; and we know that they are busy permitting and probably organising network hacking … so what should we be doing?
Continuing without change as if tomorrow will solve the problems is not really a very smart idea because we have already seen no improvement this last ten years – their behaviour has clearly got worse… on the other hand perhaps there will be a revolution and the people will rise up… but that is about as probable as aliens landing outside the Pentagon.
Fighting them is a waste of time because it is only the bosses that need treatment, not the ordinary people of these countries who have little power or choice to decide on change.
So we must go about our daily business to isolate these men and mates from travel and trade without cutting off our own noses. There is nothing wrong in talking with them but we should only use Teams or Zoom. Face to face meetings are too expensive when you need to pay millions for security… and such face to face meetings are a way for them to show off à la Kim…
Russia & friends are big so it will take time but the longer time goes by the older these men get and they become frail… tight sanctions on travel and trade will make probable successors more cautious… perhaps this is the only right path to follow?