'Russian agent' Trump slaps more sanctions on Russia

In a move designed to throw the Mueller collusion investigation off balance, Russia's top secret agent in the United States, Donald Trump, has slapped severe sanctions on Moscow for its role in the poisoning of a former intelligence officer and his daughter.

I know: it's absurd.  But how else do you explain Trump's actions to sanction Russia if he's supposed to be under Putin's control?


Sergei Skripal, a former Russian spy, and his daughter Yulia Skripal were hospitalized and treated for a nerve-agent attack in March. Yulia Skripal was discharged from the hospital in April, and her father was discharged in May.

The State Department notified Congress on Wednesday of the first of two potential tranches of sanctions required under the 1991 law.  Unless Russia takes certain steps, a second set of penalties – more stringent than this first round – must follow, according to the law.

The first set of sanctions targets certain items the US exports to Russia that could have military uses – so-called dual use technologies.  These are sensitive goods that normally would go through a case-by-case review before they are exported. With these sanctions, the exports will be presumptively denied.

A senior State Department official said there would be carve-outs however.

The US would then require Russia to assure over the next 90 days that it is no longer using chemical or biological weapons and will not do so in the future.  Additionally, the criteria in the law call for Russia to allow on-site inspectors to ensure compliance.

The official said that if Russia did not meet the demands, the US "will have to consider whether to impose a second tranche of sanctions as specified by the statute."

Dmitry Polyanskiy, first deputy permanent representative of Russia to the UN, dismissed the sanctions in a tweet on Wednesday responding to the news.

"The theater of absurd continues . No proofs, no clues, no logic, no presumption of innocense [sic], just highly-liklies.  Only one rule: blame everything on Russia, no matter how absurd and fake it is.  Let us welcome the United Sanctions of America!" Polyanskiy tweeted.

The United Kingdom welcomed the move from the US on Wednesday.  In a short statement, a government spokesperson said, "The strong international response to the use of a chemical weapon on the streets of Salisbury sends an unequivocal message to Russia that its provocative, reckless behaviour will not go unchallenged."

Congress  is considering even more severe sanctions for Russian meddling in the 2016 election.  The president and the State Department have not signed off on new sanctions, however, citing the damage new sanctions would cause U.S.-Russia bilateral relations.

This proves, of course, that Trump is not Putin's "lap dog," nor is he being "run" by Russian intelligence.  Trump's mild reaction and expressed disbelief regarding Russia's clear interference in the 2016 election is troubling to many but hardly "proof" of collusion.

It's a shame that the left didn't display this kind of suspicion of President Obama, who enabled the terror state Iran to expand its influence in the region by lifting sanctions after negotiating a one sided, ineffective agreement on Tehran's nuclear program.

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