Although the war on the Ukrainian front is at a standstill at the moment, in the hinterland the West has won a brilliant victory in the heroic fight against Russian culture.
‘We need the United States and NATO to say to Russia, “Okay, we get it. NATO will not enlarge to Ukraine and to Georgia.” In my view, that is not a defeat of NATO. That is just common sense.’
‘The Hungarian government has fulfilled its commitment: an agreement with Brussels has been reached, thus EU funds will be available to Hungary in 2023, and agriculture can also count on subsidies of an unprecedented scale.’
The concerns about financial security and the moderately enthusiastic assessment of overall life satisfaction by Hungarians in 2022 reflect the difficulties the country’s economy is facing, induced partly by the EU’s sanctions policy.
Budapest’s iconic Hauer cake shop announced this month that due to the negative impact of the economic environment on the catering industry they were forced to close.
Hungarian Foreign Minister Péter Szijjártó reaffirmed Hungary’s position that member states have a sovereign right to determine what energy carriers they acquire and in what quantities, from whom, and based on what price formula, following a summit of EU energy ministers at the end of October.
Sanctions that target a whole country instead of specific individuals always hurt the innocent, ordinary people the most. Be these people European citizens who cannot afford to pay their electricity bills, or Central Asians who now live in extreme poverty, generic sanctions punish those the most who are the least responsible.
The general switchover must be a deliberate and incremental process, mindful of the specific situation and the needs of each member state.
Ultimately, the fact that Belgium still allows Russian diamond imports means that they are more invested in supplying those living a life of luxury with rare precious stones than in letting people heat their homes in the winter.
The European Union seems determined to answer Russia’s annexation efforts by implementing more restrictive measures. But more and more EU member states are becoming doubtful about the benefits of the sanctions.
A large Prague demonstration this past Saturday sent a clear message to policymakers that the Czech people are fed up with the mistaken Russian sanctions and their devastating impact on the cost of living. Research indicates that citizens in other capitals across Europe might follow suit soon.
As the cost of living and energy prices skyrocket in Europe, resistance to EU sanctions on Russia is growing. On Saturday, 70 thousand Czechs took to the streets to demand that their government take a neutral stance in the conflict.
The UK economy is under great pressure from the sanctions imposed on Russia. Energy prices have soared, and inflation is sky high. putting a strain on the population’s wellbeing. Meanwhile. the government keeps funding Ukraine.
The economic sanctions against Russia seem to have hurt Europe more than the country stricken by them. Russian economy is not weakening as rapidly as those of some EU countries.
The EU Commission is considering sanctioning Turkey over its unwillingness to cut economic and political ties with Russia. But Ankara has one card up its sleeve that Brussels either forgets or simply ignores: the ability to open the migration floodgates to Europe.
According to the head of a Bavarian clinic, finding a hospital that can treat you quickly won’t be that easy in the future.
While the initial European position on the Russian energy threats seemed like a unanimous ‘No’, now – without no apparent short-term alternatives – more and more countries prepare to pay in roubles which will likely create tensions with those who still refuse.
While on the surface Putin’s responsibility for the crisis is apparent, the reality is that Putin was provoked by the West to invade Ukraine.