It’s now been over a month since a tsunami of Western sanctions hit Russia.
Their unprecedented scale is a notable characteristic. All key industries are under attack. Russia’s reserve assets abroad have been frozen. Tough control measures have been imposed on exports, especially when it comes to technology and industrial goods.
All of this happened within an extremely short period of time. Something like this has occurred in Russia’s history only once before – after the 1917 Bolshevik revolution. Even during the Cold War, the Iron Curtain was gradually eroding, but now it’s in the process of being actively rebuilt.
Another peculiarity is the zeal with which the Western business community is following through on the sanctions, often running ahead of the politicians. Companies tried to stay away from politics before, and now corporations boycott even those sectors that haven’t been officially sanctioned – from the fast-food industry and furniture retail to denying access to academic publications.
These boycotts are turning into the “cancel Russia” culture, when anything Russian is being restricted. Confiscating assets abroad without any legal proceedings falls in the same category.