Outsider arts: how Russia might adapt to sanctions

The history of the USSR and actions by other sanctioned countries may give clues to Russia’s next moves

Vladimir Putin
Vladimir Putin
Photo: World Economic Forum

At one level, the past week has been a complete rupture with the normal. Never in the post-Cold War era has an economy as large as Russia – a G20 country – faced such thoroughgoing isolation from the global economy. The US and its allies have banned transactions with the central bank, cut much of the financial system off from the Swift payments network and barred commerce in Russian bonds.

At another level, nothing unprecedented has happened. In the past 30 years, several countries have

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