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Tipsheet

Biden's 'Unprecedented' Sanctions Against Russian Oil Completely Backfired

Denis Balibouse/Pool Photo via AP

President Joe Biden, not known for his efficiency or successes since becoming president less than two years ago, has another stunning backfire under his belt when it comes to his much-hyped sanctions against Russia for Putin's invasion of Ukraine more than six months ago. 

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"We have levied unprecedented sanctions against Russia just unilaterally from the United States," said the White House's John Kirby on August 4. 

A White House fact sheet released by the White House on June 2 claimed that the "Russian economy is staggering under the weight of financial and trade sanctions."

On July 12, National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan said American "sanctions have made Russia pay a dear price" for invading Ukraine. 

"We will not let Russia intimidate or blackmail their way out of these sanctions," Biden said on April 28. "We will not allow them to use their oil and gas to avoid consequences for their aggression."

Well, rather than crushing the Russian economy and kneecapping its ability to fight in Ukraine, Russia's oil output has now rebounded to its pre-sanction level and Putin's profits are soaring. "Russia has earned $20 billion in average monthly sales this year compared with a $14.6 billion monthly average in 2021, when economies were recovering from the pandemic crash," The Wall Street Journal reported this week. "Shipments were rising again in August, data from ship-tracking firm Vortexa show."

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All that means that Biden, who was heralded by weak-kneed mainstream pundits and his fellow Democrats for uniting the world against Putin and inflicting punishing sanctions has made it so "Moscow is raking in more revenue than ever."

Again, via WSJ:

Demand from some of the world’s largest economies has given Russian President Vladimir Putin the upper hand in the energy battle that shadows the war in Ukraine, and has confounded the West’s bid to cripple Russia’s economy with sanctions.

Sales are booming in Russia’s export market, the world’s largest in crude and refined fuels. And new trade arrangements have given Mr. Putin cover to use natural-gas exports as an economic weapon against Ukraine’s European allies. Before the war, Russia supplied Europe with 40% of its gas. It has since throttled flows through the Nord Stream pipeline to Germany and other conduits, driving prices higher and putting pressure on European households and businesses.

Oil revenue more than makes up the difference. “Russia is swimming in cash,” said Elina Ribakova, deputy chief economist at the Institute of International Finance. Moscow earned $97 billion from oil and gas sales through July this year, about $74 billion of that from oil, she said.

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So all that pain for Americans at gas pumps that Biden tried to blame on "Putin's Price Hike" was all for naught, under the White House's justification and because America could have been energy independent if not for Biden. Record-setting gas prices in the U.S. over the summer were the fault of Biden's energy "transition" that killed off America's energy independence. Now, the administration's excuse to cover for its flawed policy has been invalidated, too. 

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