Michael MacKay, Radio Lemberg, 01.11.2018
The Russian Federation invaded Ukraine on 20 February 2014. Dmitry Rogozin was listed as a sanctioned individual under Executive Order 13661 for threatening the “peace, security, stability, sovereignty, and territorial integrity” of Ukraine on 17 March 2014.
The Russian Federation is still waging war against Ukraine. The Russians attack every day. The Russian Federation still illegally occupies the Ukrainian territory of Crimea and part of the Ukrainian territory of Donbas. The Russians commit crimes against humanity against the captive population of Ukrainians every day.
Despite this – and with no explanation to Ukraine – Trump is ‘temporarily’ lifting sanctions on Dmitry Rogozin to allow him to visit the United States.
In 2014, Dmitry Rogozin was Deputy Prime Minister of the Russian Federation and overseer of Russia’s defence sector. He was instrumental in the Putin regime’s war preparations against Ukraine, starting at least from his time as the Russian Federation’s ambassador to NATO. In 2008, he was a major contributor to the massive Kremlin disinformation campaign which tricked NATO into dropping Georgia and Ukraine from the Membership Action Plan. Putin’s invasion of Georgia in 2008 and his invasion of Ukraine in 2014 were a consequence of this incredible failure of Western wisdom and will.
As a leading war criminal in the Russian Federation’s invasion of Ukraine, Dmitry Rogozin was one of the first seven individuals sanctioned by President Barack Obama under Executive Order 13661. His assets were frozen in the US, and he was barred from travel to the US. Canada and the European Union also sanctioned Dmitry Rogozin. After Rogozin made repeated attempts to interfere in the politics of Moldova in 2017, his aircraft was barred from Romanian airspace and the Government of Moldova declared him persona non grata.
Rogozin is a hard Russian imperialist, and has stated publicly that the sale of Alaska in 1867 was a “betrayal of Russian power status” and that there exists a “right to reclaim our lost colonies.” He is not only a threat to the “peace, security, stability, sovereignty, and territorial integrity” of Ukraine, but of the United States as well.
Putin made Rogozin the head of Roscosmos, the Russian Federation’s space agency, on 24 May 2018. Rogozin has no expertise, talent, or interest in space exploration. But because the US is obliged to use Russian Soyuz rockets to send astronauts to the International Space Station, making Rogozin the head of Roscosmos is actually an attempt to weaken the Americans’s sanctions regime and thus weaken Ukrainians’s defence from Russian aggression.
It worked. Trump easily fell for the trick, and ‘temporarily’ lifted the travel ban on war criminal Dmitry Rogozin in October. Working by stealth, the announcement was made by NASA Adminstrator Jim Bridenstine to Russian propaganda outlets in Moscow, and not to US news media in Washington. Even though Rogozin can contribute nothing personally to any technical discussion about US-Russian Federation co-operation concerning Soyuz or the International Space Station, and even though his physical presence in the US is not a requirement, Brindenstine brought the message to the drivers of events in Moscow that sanctions would be lifted on Rogozin.
Lifting sanctions on war criminal Dmitry Rogozin is an unfriendly action by Trump against the Ukrainian people. The United States is doing harm to Ukraine’s defence against Russian aggression by weakening the sanctions regime. Sanctions were placed on Dmitry Rogozin because he is a part of the Russian Federation’s war against Ukraine. Sanctions should only be lifted when Putin’s War stops and Crimea and Donbas are liberated.