OPINION: This article may contain commentary which reflects the author's opinion.
The Russian government has some unwelcome news for President Joe Biden and his son Hunter.
Former President Donald Trump responded after the Kremlin sanctioned both the president and his son, along with Secretary of State Antony Blinken, other US officials, and “individuals associated with them,” CNN reported.
“In response to a series of unprecedented sanctions prohibiting, among other things, entry into the United States for top officials of the Russian Federation, from March 15 of this year, the Russian ‘stop list’ includes on the basis of reciprocity President J. Biden, Secretary of State A. Blinken, Secretary of Defense L. Austin and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff M. Milley, as well as a number of department heads and prominent US figures,” it said.
The Russian Foreign Ministry said that it was “an inevitable consequence of the extremely Russophobic course taken by the current US Administration, which, in a desperate attempt to maintain American hegemony, has relied, discarding all decency, on the frontal constricting of Russia.”
“At the same time, we do not refuse to maintain official relations if they meet our national interests, and, if necessary, we will solve problems arising from the status of persons who appear on the ‘black list’ in order to organize high-level contacts,” it said.
The list of those sanctioned includes US President Joe Biden, Secretary of State Antony Blinken, Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Mark Milley, National security adviser Jacob Sullivan, CIA Director William Burns, White House press secretary Jen Psaki, Daleep Singh, Biden’s deputy national security adviser for international economics, United States Agency for International Development Administrator Samantha Power, President Biden’s son Hunter Biden, Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Deputy Treasury Secretary Wally Adeyemo and Reta Jo Lewis, president and chairman of the board of directors of the Export-Import Bank
It said that more sanctions that will expand the list to include “top US officials, military officials, lawmakers, businessmen, experts, and media people who are Russophobic or contribute to inciting hatred towards Russia and the introduction of restrictive measures.”
In an email to his supporters, the 45th President of the United States responded to the sanctions from Russia.
“Breaking News: Russia just sanctioned Joe Biden. While that is a terrible thing, in so many ways, perhaps it will now be explained why the Biden family received 3.5 million dollars from the very wealthy former Mayor of Moscow’s wife. During our Presidential Debate, ‘moderator’ Chris Wallace, then of Fox, would not let me ask that question. He said it was inappropriate. Perhaps that’s why Biden has been so ‘slow on the draw’ with Russia. This is a really bad conflict of interest that will, perhaps now, be fully and finally revealed!” he said.
The move is largely symbolic as it seems unlikely that members of Biden’s administration would be traveling to Russia any time soon as the US and its allies move to punish Putin and members of Russia’s elites for invading Ukraine. Biden and his administration have ruled out potential meetings with Putin and have questioned whether he is seriously interested in a diplomatic solution to the war.
White House press secretary Jen Psaki suggested the restrictions will not have much of an impact on their intended targets, telling reporters during Tuesday’s press briefing, “It won’t surprise any of you that none of us are planning tourist trips to Russia, none of us have bank accounts that we won’t be able to access, so we will forge ahead.”
When Psaki was asked whether the new sanctions signal an escalation by Russia, Psaki said the US is “confident” US officials “will have the ability” to have continued direct and indirect conversations with Russia.