…“You always have these debates,” said Howard Mendelsohn, who served as the administration’s deputy assistant secretary for the Treasury Department’s Office of Intelligence and Analysis.
But even as the White House wants to be “very, very targeted and very, very nuanced in terms of rolling out these measures,” even limited sanctions on prominent individuals can trigger broader impacts on a national economy, Mendelsohn said.
“The reality of financial institutions is that they’re [already] very much in pause mode in terms of any Russia-related risk,” he said. Although “three months ago, no one really would have asked very much about Russia,” that situation has changed.
“Now the examiners, who are going to be the first ones whose heads are rolling if there’s a mistake,” are concerned not only about current sanctions, but also with the overall environment for Russia-related risks. “In the end, it creates a very sort of stifling environment” for doing business with Russia, Mendelsohn said.Read More