Hostage Taking and Consequences

Wall Street Journal reporter Evan Gershkovich was kidnapped a few days ago while on assignment in Russia by Russian President Vladimir Putin’s FSB, and Gershkovich now is being held for ransom of some sort.

Secretary of State Antony Blinken shook his finger very firmly at Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and expressed his grave concern over the seizure, and he pressed his Russian counterpart for [Gershkovich’s] release. Lavrov was left trembling in his shoes by Blinken’s firmness. Or not.

On the other hand, Blinken, surely a very honorable and a very smart man, knows that mere words of frustration have no meaning absent concrete action.

It follows, then, that he wouldn’t “press” for an action from another nation without having a plan of consequences ready to be applied should that nation not take that action. So: what is Blinken’s plan?

It’s not much of one.

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