No Sanctions Against These 5 Friends of Russia

Posted: October 27, 2014 in Econ 101, Sanctions on Russia Meaningless


SEE ALSO:  U.S. Business in Russia Willing to Weather Sanctions

SEE ALSO:  E.U. Eases Sanctions On Russia’s Top Banks, Oil Companies


No sanctions against these 5 friends of Russia
Mar 17, 2014
Washington Bureau Chief

Should U.S. businesses be worried about the sanctions imposed against Russia over its actions against Ukraine?

So far, no. President Barack Obama announced a new round of sanctions Monday, but these only target 11 individuals — seven Russian government officials and four other people, including Viktor Yanukovych, the Moscow-backed former president of Ukraine. The U.S. is freezing any U.S. assets these individuals may have and refusing to issue them visas.

Additional sanctions could be forthcoming, Obama warned.

“Going forward, we can calibrate our response on whether Russia chooses to escalate or deescalate the situation,” Obama said.

But for now at least, the U.S. is not pursuing anything close to a trade embargo against Russia, which was America’s 18th-largest trading partner in 2013.

Who are Russia’s biggest friends in the U.S. business community? Here are five comrades:


The public relations giant has been millions trying to boost the image of Russia with the American public. Russia has paid Ketchum more than $26 million since 2006, and the firm has no plans to stop cashing Vladimir Putin‘s checks just because he wants to take over Crimea.

“Our work continues to focus on supporting economic development and investment in the country and facilitating the relationship between representatives of the Russian Federation and the Western media,” a Ketchum spokeswoman told The Hill. “We are not advising the Russian Federation on foreign policy, including the current situation in Ukraine.”

Alston & Bird, a law and lobbying firm, also has benefited from Ketchum’s relationship with Russia — it’s earned around $1.4 million representing Russia through a subcontract with Ketchum, according to The Hill.

The Washington Post

Early this month, as Russia’s incursion into Crimea escalated, Washington Post readers woke up to find a special supplement extolling Russia’s virtues in that morning’s newspaper. The paid advertising supplement was produced by Rosslyskaya Gazette, the Russian government’s paper of record.

The New York Times

Ketchum scored a PR coup when it placed an op-ed column by Putin in “The Grey Lady” in September. The point of the piece was to urge caution against taking military action in Syria, but Putin also used the opportunity to take exception to the idea that America is exceptional.

“It is extremely dangerous to encourage people to see themselves as exceptional, whatever the motivation,” Putin wrote.

OK, Vlad, how about above average?


Aerospace products are America’s No. 1 export to Russia, so the tensions between the U.S. and Russia might be making Boeing a little nervous.

The aerospace giant has 100-aircraft backlog of orders from Russian airlines, according to the Puget Sound Business Journal. It also has an engineering center in Moscow, and a joint titanium manufacturing operation with a Russian company.

Exxon Mobil

The energy giant has extensive investments in Russia, and it put plans for natural gas exploration off Ukraine’s western Black Sea coast on hold because of the Russian crisis.

It’s still “drill, baby, drill” for its Russian projects, however.

  1. Igor says:

    Mr. chief Kent Hoover Washington Bureau Chief,
    you seem to be a nazi, they felt to be exceptional Uebermenschen, just above average.


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