Leverage of stakeholders vis-à-vis each other:
- WSJ: “The U.S. and European Union imposed more sanctions on Russia Monday, and both the ruble and Moscow stock index rallied, the latter up 1.5%. The markets didn't take this response to the Kremlin's war on Ukraine seriously, and neither will Putin.” (WSJ, 04.29.14).
- WSJ: Export credit guarantees, often provided by the U.S. and European governments to help underpin exports, are effectively suspended in the case of Russia, said Bertrand Grabowski, managing director of aviation finance at DVB Bank. (WSJ, 04.10.14).
- Thomas L. Friedman “Your rivals crumbling can be as dangerous as your rivals rising (see Russia or China)… Russia still has thousands of nuclear warheads that need to be controlled, and hundreds of nuclear bomb-designers. We need Russia’s help to control mafia crime, drug trafficking and cybercrime. And we need a stable Russia to serve as a counterbalance to China, to be a global energy supplier.” (NYT, 04.29.14).
- George Friedman: Placing effective sanctions on a country such as Russia is much more complicated than placing them on countries like Iran because the Russians have potential military responses. They also have the ability to retaliate by seizing Western assets in Russia. (Stratfor, 04.29.14).
- Gideon Rachman: “What accounts for Germany’s soft spot towards Russia? Economic interests undoubtedly play a role. So does the ingrained pacifism of post-war Germany. And then there is history. Hitler’s invasion of the Soviet Union still hangs over the relationship and has infused a mixture of fear and guilt into Germany’s relationship with Russia.” (FT, 04.30.14).
- FT: Germany’s “government is divided, with the chancellery tougher on Russia than the foreign ministry. Business leaders make no bones about opposing sanctions, but according to an ARD television poll this week, support for economic sanctions has grown in Germany, from 38% a month ago to 50%. (FT, 05.01.14).
What can provoke intervention:
- Edward P. Joseph: “So sensitive is Russia to its imperial prerogatives (in FSU) that it was the prospect of mere EU partnership—far from EU membership and disconnected from NATO membership—that sparked the entire Ukraine crisis.” (National Interest, 05.01.14).
- Samuel Charap: An intra-Ukrainian conflict could easily precipitate a Russian invasion as could Kiev’s decision to cut off Crimea from supplies. Barring such contingencies, however, Moscow has little incentive to launch an overt invasion because Russia has demonstrated it can effectively intervene in the bordering regions without a fully fledged invasion. (IISS, 04.24.14)
- Konstantin Simonov: Putin won't be able to respond to sanctions economically, so he'll retaliate politically. There will be escalation in the east of Ukraine. (Bloomberg, 04.29.14).
- Edward Luttwak: U.S. should punish Putin’s Russia over Ukraine by weakening it through braindrain. Obama should issue an executive order to grant O-1A’s, which are special visa for individuals of "extraordinary ability" in the sciences, education and business, to Russian PhD holders and green cards to those Russians who have a clean criminal record and deposit $5 million in U.S. (WSJ, 05.01.14).
- Jan Joel Andersson: “For Russia, the loss of Sweden and Finland to NATO would represent a serious geostrategic blow, one that would outweigh any gains made from the annexation of the Crimea. Sweden and Finland would add technologically sophisticated and well-equipped armed forces to the alliance.” (FA, 04.30.14).
- Philipp Bleek: “Even if Ukraine had somehow managed to hold onto nuclear weapons, it’s far from clear they would have helped during the political instability. After Yanukovych fled to Russia in February, command and control of those weapons would presumably have been uncertain—much as it was in the Soviet Union during the 1991 coup against Gorbachev.” (Arms Control Wong, 04.29.15).
- Alan Beattie: “Ukraine’s problem since independence has been a chronic reliance on commodity exports and failure to go up the value chain into manufactures. It’s evident from the performance of Russia’s vassal states like Belarus that coming under the Moscow umbrella is likely to keep Ukraine dependent on commodities indefinitely.” (FT, 05.01.14).
Impact on other players:
- WSJ: Some of Washington’s closest military allies, including Japan, Egypt and Israel, are cautioning the Obama administration against taking steps that could permanently Putin‘s ties to the West.(WSJ, 04.30.14).
 Mr. Luttwak is the author, most recently, of "The Rise of China vs. the Logic of Strategy"
 George Friedman is the Chairman of Stratfor.
 Edward P. Joseph is a senior fellow and lecturer at Johns Hopkins University: SAIS.
 IISS senior fellow.
 President of Russia's National Energy Security Foundation
 Senior Research Fellow and head of the North America Program at the Swedish Institute of International Affairs
 Philipp C. Bleek is an Assistant Professor in the Graduate School of International Policy and Management and Fellow at the James Martin Center for Nonproliferation Studies at the Monterey Institute of International Studies
 Alan Beattie is FT columnist.