It’s obvious economic sanctions [embargoes] are a colonial and imperial instrument of coercion and oppression. There’s no question or doubt about that. One simply has to look at who has or which countries have the power to institute such socially and economically devastating measures.
Economic sanctions are instituted, for the most part and in some parts of the world – on the surface – to alter undesirable political and/or military behaviour. But also with the underlying intention and objective – in case the undesirable behaviour is not altered – of stirring up internal social disharmony by causing economic disruption, resulting in shortages or lack of essentials of life, hence bringing pressure to bear on the masses to act in self-preservation.
When economic sanctions result in massive and widespread economic disruption, the ordinary masses, majority of whom – in many parts of the world – tend to be deliberately kept in the dark by the[ir] authorities [governments] on the state of national affairs, will blame those in authority/government for their predicament.
The wisdom – logic and motivation behind economic sanctions, and – of those with power and with instruments of power to institute them, is that, in their power powered powerful hope; when the masses have been pushed and finally shoved to the choice between death and destruction in self-preservation, they will turn their wrath on exactly those they blame for their predicament – the authorities/governments who are the indirect primary targets for economic sanctions.
But rarely do things work out that way and economic sanctions rarely bring about mass social protests against authorities/governments. They also rarely directly affect the authorities/governments. In fact, if anything, they tend to strengthen both their resolve and power to push back against the sanctions and those who institute them.
Economic sanctions severely punish the poor ordinary masses, and hardly punish, if at all, the economic and power elite who constitute the authority/government class who control economic activities and have unfettered access to national wealth and treasuries. They don’t starve to death. It’s the poor ordinary masses who go hungry and starve to death. It’s the poor ordinary masses who die from lack of basic health services while the economic and power elite who constitute the authorities/governments have options to travel abroad for medical care.
Economic sanctions tend to act as a godsend to those in power – the authorities/governments, to strengthen, consolidate their power grip under the pretext of dealing with the consequences of economic sanctions and the masses are too weak and gullible they believe whatever lies they are told by the authorities.
Economic sanctions, more often than not, strengthen and further empower the ruling economic and power elite and hardly achieve their intended objectives.
But economic sanctions have the destructive power to cause insurmountable mass suffering, deaths to poor ordinary people much to the delight and empowerment of the ruling elite.
Economic sanctions, if they have to be applied by those who use them as a weapon of colonial and imperial power and oppression, must be applied with precision to target the ruling elite, with whom they have issues, to the extent that they undermine their power grip; by denying them all their privileges that power accords them.
Economic sanctions must be systematically applied to the extent, such that they make the powerful – the ruling elite – as ordinary as the poor ordinary masses; without punishing (affecting) the poor ordinary masses.
While economic sanctions [embargoes] are a colonial and imperial instrument of coercion and oppression; they are or tend to be, more as an unintended consequence than otherwise, in most cases, an indirect power instrument to those – the ruling elite (authorities/governments) – on[to] whom they are applied.