Will Russia Challenge the West at Last?
by Stephen Lendman (stephenlendman.org - Home - Stephen Lendman)
Confronting unacceptable US-dominated Western policies is long overdue by Russia and other countries free from its control.
Is Moscow ready to go where it hasn't gone before?
Will the Kremlin no longer tolerate being pushed around and otherwise mistreated by the West?
Will it finally step up to the plate and do the right thing?
The nation's sovereignty and future demand confronting what no nations should tolerate.
Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov's remarks this week were encouraging.
In response to unacceptable EU meddling in Russia's internal affairs and threat of sanctions over what the bloc wants reversed, Lavrov said the Kremlin is ready to cut ties with the EU if unlawful new sanctions harm Russia's economy.
Tough talk by Lavrov and other high-level Russian officials is long overdue and welcome.
"The assumption is that we are ready," said Lavrov, adding:
"If we see again that there are sanctions that may create risks for our economy, including its most sensitive sectors."
"We do not want to isolate from the world, but we have to be ready. If you want peace, prepare for war."
"These are sanctions for the sake of sanctions, for one's own pleasure to "punish.' "
"However, the sanctions do not bring fruit and cannot divert us from our policy of protecting the nation's interests."
Russia seeks cooperative relations with other nations, confrontation with none.
Lavrov called on EU nations to treat Russia the same way. His spokeswoman Maria Zakharova added the following:
"We would want to warn our EU partners against a new incautious step," adding:
If taken, a tit-for-tat response "will follow inevitably. It is absolutely unacceptable to use human rights and refer to democratic principles as a geopolitical instrument."
"Globally, this is fraught with growing arbitrariness in international relations and basically with an erosion of international law."
"Once again, we reaffirm our fundamental position that it is unlawful to impose unilateral restrictions in bypassing the UN Security Council."
"We urge the EU to return to equitable constructive dialogue and to look for workable compromises that would ensure the balance of interests through the existing diplomatic channels that always remain open."
Brussels reportedly may unlawfully sanction Russia over its legitimate sentencing of Navalny to 2.8 years imprisonment for multiple for multiple breaches of his suspended sentence for embezzling millions of dollars.
Along with grand theft, he's guilty of sedition and serving as an unregistered agent of a foreign government that's hostile to Russian sovereignty.
Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov warned against misinterpreting Lavrov's remarks, saying:
"Media outlets present this scandalous headline without any context, and this is a big mistake, as this mistake actually changes the meaning."
"The meaning is we do not want it. We want to develop relations with the EU, but if the EU chooses (unlawful sanctions). then we will be ready (to respond accordingly) as one should always be ready for the worst."
"Of course, if we face this extremely destructive policy that affects our infrastructure and our interests, Russia must certainly prepare in advance for such unfriendly steps."
Lavrov also explained that the EU is Russia's largest trade and investment partner.
Many Russian companies operate in bloc countries along with thousands of joint ventures.
"If business is mutually beneficial, we will continue" them, he said.
His remarks challenging the bloc came in response to EU foreign policy chief Borrell telling the European Parliament that he'll present "concrete proposals" for sanctions on Russia.
Time and again in recent years, Russia was unacceptably sanctioned by the US and EU — for its sovereign independence, its freedom from Western control.
The Security Council alone may legitimately impose sanctions on member states, not individual countries on others.
When the US and EU impose them on Russia and other countries unwilling to sacrifice their sovereign rights to Western interests, they're illegal and politicized.
Failure to strongly challenge this unlawful policy and other hostile actions encourages more of the same.
Hopefully Russia will translate Lavrov's warning into action if the EU or US unacceptably cross the line illegally again.
VISIT MY WEBSITE: stephenlendman.org (Home - Stephen Lendman). Contact at firstname.lastname@example.org.
My two Wall Street books are timely reading:
"How Wall Street Fleeces America: Privatized Banking, Government Collusion, and Class War"
"Banker Occupation: Waging Financial War on Humanity"