As had been reported earlier in the week, the US imposed a new round of sanctions against Russians today, targeting a number of “oligarchs” accused of supporting the Russian government. Some accused them of being Putin’s “inner circle.”
Russian officials say that rather than targeting a handful of people, they see the sanctions “aimed at the Russian people,” adding that it was a “new blow to Russo-American relations.” It’s just the latest in a long line of such blows over the past couple of years.
Russian officials have promised a “tough response” against the sanctions. This is likely to mean retaliatory sanctions against the US, much as US expulsion of Russian diplomats a couple of weeks ago led to an identical expulsion of American diplomats.
All of these measures have raised fears of a new Cold War, and indeed some officials have warned the situation is actually in some ways worse than the previous Cold War. The biggest problem is that no one seems to be engaging in talks to keep the situation from worsening, and new measures making the situation worse keep coming with alarming regularity.