The expulsion of over 100 Russian diplomats by 20 countries is a show of strength and unity in the face of Russian posturing, suggests The Guardian in an editorial. It came in response to the nerve agent poisoning of a former Russian spy, Sergei Skripal, and his daughter on British soil. Most powerful is the participation of the US, whose president has refused to openly condemn Russia and is under investigation for collusion with the country. The Western allies are showing that they will no longer tolerate such provocations and are willing to push back. Their unity and firmness surprised most and sent a highly necessary message.
The UK and its allies expelling Russian diplomats for the poisoning of Sergei Skripal and his daughter in Britain isn’t consequential enough, asserts Yasmeen Serhan of The Atlantic. A stronger reaction, that goes after Russian oligarchs’ illicit funds, would properly punish the government’s misdeeds. The country doesn’t rely on diplomatic cover to spy on Western nations and will simply continue to do so under the radar. Russia uses the UK’s housing market to funnel dirty money, among other ways. Shutting this off and hurting the wallets of those close to Putin could be a meaningful step to punish Russian provocation abroad.