At their core, sanctions are a way for countries to say, “We don’t like what you’re doing, and we’re going to make your life harder for it.” When they’re at their best, sanctions can isolate corrupt financiers, stigmatize human rights violators and even get entire countries to change their behavior.
But they don’t always work that way.
Economic sanctions are really hard to do right. They have to be precisely gamed out, or they can backfire in any number of ways. They’re often hard to get rid of. And, more often than not, they hurt real people.
But the US likes sanctions. Congress likes sanctions.
On this episode of Things That Go Boom, what does all of this mean for some of our oldest sanctions? And some of our newest?
Guests: Jason Bartlett, Center for a New American Security; Ricardo Herrero, Cuba Study Group; Maria Magdalena Campos-Pons, Artist and Cornelius Vanderbilt Endowed Chair of Fine Arts, Vanderbilt University; Inna Melnykovska, Central European University; Paul Carroll, Charity & Security Network; Konrad Körding, University of Pennsylvania; Elnaz Alikarami, McGill University; and Nosratullah Mohammadi, University of Geneva (formerly Zanjan, Iran)
Can Sanctions Stop Russia?, Annie Lowrey, The Atlantic.
The Russian Sanctions Regime and the Risk of Catastrophic Success, Erik Sand and Suzanne Freeman, War on the Rocks.
The Impact of Western Sanctions on Russia and How They Can Be Made Even More Effective, Anders Åslund and Maria Snegovaya, Atlantic Council.
Boxing Cuba In Benefits No One, Christopher Sabatini and Lauren Cornwall, Foreign Policy.
Special thanks to Maria Snegovaya.