“It seems that Vladimir Putin was preparing for this war for a long time, preparing the Russian economy for a long and exhausting period of sanctions”

Andrei Korobkov, professor of political science and international relations at Middle Tennessee State University, speaks on the Russian economy and the economic sanctions imposed after the Ukraine invasion.

“In a sense, the war in Ukraine is entering the decisive stage – and its fate will be decided not on the battlefield. It seems that Vladimir Putin was preparing for this war for a long time, preparing the Russian economy for a long and exhausting period of sanctions, creating strategic reserves, and aiming at the economic war targeting Europe first of all.

Winter will show whether the European states and societies will be able to withstand both the gas price hikes and the plain energy shortages provoked by the Western sanctions and the Russian government’s actions. The logic of Putin’s actions reminds of that of the Japanese in December 1941 – the expectation that the democratic societies would not accept a long-term deterioration of living standards, supporting the political forces willing to compromise with an external opponent. The recent political trends in Hungary and Italy might make Mr. Putin think that he was right in his calculations. Still, only the coming winter will offer the final judgement on this matter.”     

 

Both international and domestic news outlets including the BBC, Ireland’s RTE Radio 1, How Stuff Works, and the Tennessee World Affairs Council have featured interviews with Korbokov. He is available to provide expertise and interviews by Zoom, phone or email.