Can the U.S. punish Russia in any way if it chooses to fire artillery shells at Ukraine for the next 10 years?


Mersheimer predicted that Russia will seek to destroy Ukraine. I am wondering since this is likely the outcome if the United States can do anything against Russia without escalating the conflict. They already emitted a lot of sanctions, I don't think they can do anything; otherwise, Mersheimer would have said something about it.

  • 5
    Isn't that what they have tried to do with sanctions to get them to withdraw from Ukraine?
    – Joe W
    Sep 13 at 1:05
  • 4
    I'm not sure how you expect a seven years old video to discuss all the choices in the present circumstances. And what do you mean "without escalating"? The West sent various weapons to Ukraine which Russia certainly considers an escalation, even if they've put up a brave face about it as HIMARS blew up their ammo dumps.
    – Fizz
    Sep 13 at 6:41

2 Answers 2


Currently the sanctions on Russia are primarily upheld by 'the West', that is the EU, the US and their close allies. India, China, most of the Middle East, Africa and South America are all more or less neutral in the conflict. The West could try to make the rest of the world follow their sanctions against Russia. If successful that would make the economic consequences for Russia much harsher. No judgement on how difficult that would be to achieve and whether or not it is a good idea.

  • I would say less neutral, since a majority of the countries in each of those regions (except China and India, which are countries themselves) voted to condemn Russia's invasion. But don't trust me, trust Russia when they say that even abstaining from voting in their favor is the same as being against them.
    – Obie 2.0
    Sep 13 at 7:19
  • 2
    @Obie2.0 True. But Russia is selling at least some of the oil and gas that it can't sell to Europe due to sanctions to China, India and various other countries (at large discounts). If Russia couldn't sell at all, that would increase the economic pressure significantly.
    – quarague
    Sep 13 at 7:24
  • The US and the remainder of 'the West' could continue the current sanctions, which is arguably not an escalation. The effectiveness would change over time, it may decrease as Russia finds other customers and suppliers and increase as spares run out.
  • The US and the remainder of 'the West' could continue the supply of modern artillery, anti-tank missiles, etc. Again arguably not an escalation.
  • The ability to supply ex-Soviet equipment will dry up, and sending modern main battle tanks, etc., may be seen as an escalation even if legally, it is not.

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