That’s the headline of a Thursday Wall Street Journal piece about Russian President Vladimir Putin continuing his dudgeon over Turkey’s having shot down one of his fighter-bombers for violating Turkish airspace.
For instance, Putin said this in his State of the Nation speech:
If anyone thinks that—after having committing such a heinous war crime of killing one of our people—[the consequences] will be limited to tomatoes or other restrictions in construction and other sectors, they are deeply mistaken[.]
It’s a pressure game I don’t think Putin can win, unless he’s prepared to go to a shooting war with Turkey. Russia isn’t the one who controls the egress route from the Black Sea, for instance. This is the route a significant amount of Russian trade must take to get into the Mediterranean and points beyond. This is the route significant fractions of reinforcements and resupply for Russian forces in Syria and of aid for Bashar al Assad’s rump Syria must take.
Turkey controls that egress route.