RICHMOND, Va (WRIC) — An American ally is currently being invaded by a foreign adversary. Though the United States is thousands of miles away from Ukraine, what’s happening in the sovereign nation could potentially strain people’s wallets at home.
As Russia flexes its military muscles into their western neighbor, President Biden asked Tuesday, “Who in the Lord’s name does [President Vladimir] Putin think gives him the right to declare new ‘so called’ countries on territory that belongs to his neighbors?”
As Biden imposed financial and economic sanctions on Russia, the US economy will also likely be impacted during a time of inflation.
“This is something that should be of great importance,” said Dr. Edward Lynch said, chair of the political science department at Hollins University in Roanoke.
Lynch believes Russia’s control over a large amount of the world’s oil and gas supply will raise prices at the pump.
“It’s going to fuel inflation in other areas at a time when inflation doesn’t need any more fuel,” Lynch said.
The average price for gas in Virginia is $3.40 a gallon and is higher across the board for varying types of fuel, compared to one year ago, according to AAA.
“Defending freedom will have costs,” President Biden said.
An invasion could also spell trouble for American allies if Russia tries to regain other territories they lost 30 years ago when the Soviet Union fell.
“He [Putin] has made it very plain that he wants to put that union back together, even if it means those 15 independent Republics don’t want to be part of it anymore, he’s perfectly willing to bring them in or bring parts of them in by force,” explained Lynch.
Amid the rising tensions between western and eastern world nations, the White House signaled that American troops will not be deployed into Ukraine, as the conflict currently stands.
“The president has no intention of sending US troops into Ukraine to fight in Ukraine,” said White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki.
Contrary to Biden’s strict sanctions, Lynch believes the president could have gone further and cracked down on all available sanctions in order to pressure Putin.
“For the United States not to respond forcefully is to undercut the United States’ position around the world, and make all of our allies less safe…,” Lynch said. “Economic sanctions hardly ever work, they do not have a good track record over the last decade or so.”
Lynch also added that China’s offer to help Russia financially could undercut Biden’s sanctions that prevent them from borrowing from western banks.