Photo: EPA

Washington, angered by Russia, has decided to punish it and has made Brussels act likewise. Barack Obama has created a precedent by personally reading out the names of those on the anti-Russian sanctions list. Washington has been angered by Russia’s reunification with Crimea. It is actually reunification, rather than annexation, as Washington and Brussels claim, for Russia can’t annex what had been part of it for centuries.

The UN Charter, – the cornerstone of and the basis for the modern-day international code of laws, does not provide for the right of one state to punish another. It is only the UN Security Council that has the right to slap sanctions in emergency situations that the UN Charter offers a detailed description of. Any actions violating that extremely important provision of the Charter are seen – from the international law perspective – as illegitimate and void (using a legal term).

Barack Obama himself has recently offered a frank explanation (untypical of a diplomatic address) of what actually caused Washington to flagrantly violate the UN Charter, which the US signed back in 1945. Obama said the US is exceptional. And someone who is exceptional is certainly a law unto themselves.

A second-rate country prior to the Second World War, the US, which was undamaged by Hitler’s hordes and had immensely enriched itself by thriving on the war, emerged at the forefront of the global stage in the middle of the 20th century. Europe was in ruins, Germany and Japan had been defeated, so Washington made it clear it was looking for world domination. Those in the way were to suffered punishment. Back then, the word “sanctions” was not in common parlance, so those resisting the US efforts to ensure its world domination were punished, like Vietnam, when its towns and villages were burnt with napalm, like Yugoslavia, when Belgrade came under bombing attacks. The US then invaded Iraq, brought Libya under missile fire, acted militarily against the lawful President of Syria and openly supported the recent state coup in Ukraine. All these moves are also sanctions of sorts against the regimes and governments that have fallen out of favour with Washington.

But these kinds of sanctions against Russia are beyond the US “hawks” capacity. Moscow sees the US being exceptional as a piece of imagination of Washington-based officials who are out of touch with reality. That is why the man in the White House has decided to slap economic sanctions and make his European partners follow suit.

But it would stand to reason to sum up the results of military, political and economic sanctions that Washington has imposed in recent years. These sanctions, if analyzed impartially, will show one and all that Washington has stood to gain nothing, to say the least. What result the sanctions in questions have achieved may well be compared to a boomerang that has blown up the US much-desired leadership in today’s world.

Now, a policy of sanctions against Russia is devoid of any prospects at all. So, it’s either the incumbent US President Barack Obama, pretty much of a lame duck, or the one who will take over from him in about two and a half years, will have to realize that.