MOSCOW—Grim predictions for the future of Russia’s economy swept over Moscow this week like shock waves.
The announcement by the U.S. State Department on Wednesday that it would impose new sanctions because of Moscow’s alleged attempt to murder an ex-spy in Britain with the chemical weapon novichok is only the latest trauma.
Russian papers, talk shows, and officials already were obsessing over the “Defending American Security from Kremlin Aggression Act” proposed in the U.S. Senate by Republicans as well as Democrats. Aiming to punish Russia for alleged meddling in U.S. elections and deter it in the future, the bill promised to ban major Russian banks, freeze operations by Russian gas and oil companies, shut down Russian botnets, and investigate President Vladimir Putin’s personal wealth, among other measures.
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