Monday’s Biden Bits

Biden Tweets Logo. Image by Lenny Ghoul.

It’s Monday.

When the Special Edition Sunday of Biden’s Bits was posted, President Biden had not tweeted. He ended up not tweeting for Sunday…

For Monday, February 28th, 2022 (it’s my moms birthday today) President Biden has left Delaware and arrived back at the White House.

I’m taking a pause here…

With all the time I’ve been spending on Twitter this week; Twitter shared this tweet with me…

As a recommendation.

So, cause I’m me, I had like several thoughts at once; yeah some included while Russia was taking over parts of Syria and we abandoned the Kurd’s, the Twice Impeached asshole was golfing on our dime at his business.

But I saw a lot of people in the replies saying that President Biden went to Delaware to attend a funeral for a family member. I had to Google as none of those replies had any links…

I found that on Friday during the daily press briefing White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki was asked about his trip to Delaware:

Q: And the President is obviously now going to be in Delaware this weekend.  Can you share what he will be doing there?  Will he be traveling with members of his national security team?  Will he be receiving regular updates on Ukraine?

Psaki: Sure.  He will have a meeting with members of his national security team tomorrow in Delaware.  I will note that, while every president can work from anywhere they are, because that is how presidencies are equipped, he is traveling to Delaware for the memorial service of a family member.  And he will be — that is why he’s traveling there this weekend. 

Q: Just to follow up on that question: Does the President have special secure facilities in Wilmington?  We know that, obviously, at Camp David that is something available.  Given the national security crisis, is that something that is also available?

Psaki: The President has the capacity to make a secure call from anywhere he is, yes.

From what I can find further it appears he traveled to Delaware on Saturday; but that’s not been verified by me…

Also, if anyone knows how I can tell Twitter to stop sharing with me as “recommends” pieces of shit I’d be much appreciative.

Onward with Monday’s Presidential schedule

After arriving back to the White House the President will receive his daily brief. This morning the President will hold a secure call with Allies and partners to discuss the latest developments regarding Russia’s attack on Ukraine and to coordinate our united response. This afternoon The President and First Lady will host a celebration to mark Black History Month.

President Biden as of 10:40 a.m. D.C., time has not tweeted…

Here are some things I saw on Twitter this morning:

From the Treasury Department:

In Coordination with Allies and Partners, Treasury Actions Restrict Access to Billions in Central Bank Assets and Sovereign Wealth Fund 
Treasury Sanctions Russian Direct Investment Fund – A Symbol of Russian Kleptocracy United States and its Partners and Allies Continue to Hold the Government of the Russian Federation Accountable for its Premeditated and Unprovoked Invasion of Ukraine

Today, the U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) prohibited United States persons from engaging in transactions with the Central Bank of the Russian Federation, the National Wealth Fund of the Russian Federation, and the Ministry of Finance of the Russian Federation. This action effectively immobilizes any assets of the Central Bank of the Russian Federation held in the United States or by U.S. persons, wherever located.

In addition, as directed by President Biden last week, OFAC sanctioned a key Russian sovereign wealth fund, the Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF), with exposure to the United States financial system and its Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Kirill Dmitriev – a known Putin ally. Recently designated Russian President Vladimir Putin and his inner circle of cronies have long relied on RDIF and Dmitriev to raise funds abroad, including in the United States. By further restricting these persons and entities from the U.S. financial system, the United States continues to demonstrate its unwavering commitment to support Ukraine, impose costs on Putin’s inner circle or those connected to Putin and his war of choice, and to prevent Putin’s regime from raising capital to fund its invasion of Ukraine and other priorities.

The United States has not taken this action alone. On February 26, 2022, partners and allies committed to imposing restrictive measures that will prevent the Central Bank of the Russian Federation from deploying its international reserves in ways that would undermine the impact of United States sanctions and the European Union followed up with their restrictions last night. Our actions demonstrate global support for Ukraine and the commitment to hold Russia’s threatening, authoritarian rulers responsible for their heinous actions.

“The unprecedented action we are taking today will significantly limit Russia’s ability to use assets to finance its destabilizing activities, and target the funds Putin and his inner circle depend on to enable his invasion of Ukraine,” said Secretary of the Treasury Janet L. Yellen.

“Today, in coordination with partners and allies, we are following through on key commitments to restrict Russia’s access to these valuable resources.”

Today’s actions were taken pursuant to Executive Order (E.O.) 14024, which authorizes sanctions against Russia for its harmful foreign activities, including violating well-established principles of international law, such as respect for the sovereignty and territorial integrity of other states.

Treasury.gov. 02/28/2022.

RESTRICTING RUSSIA’S ABILITY TO FINANCIALLY SUSTAIN ITS WAR 

Today, OFAC issued new Directive 4 under E.O. 14024, “Prohibitions Related to Transactions Involving the Central Bank of the Russian Federation, the National Wealth Fund of the Russian Federation, and the Ministry of Finance of the Russian Federation” (Russia-related Sovereign Transactions Directive).  Pursuant to the Russia-related Sovereign Transactions Directive, United States persons are prohibited from engaging in any transaction involving the Central Bank of the Russian Federation, the National Wealth Fund of the Russian Federation, or the Ministry of Finance of the Russian Federation.

This action follows through on partners’ and allies’ commitment made on February 26 to impose restrictive measures to prevent the Central Bank of the Russian Federation from deploying its international reserves in a way that would undermine the impact of U.S. sanctions.  

The Russia-related Sovereign Transactions Directive will disrupt Russia’s attempts to prop up its rapidly depreciating currency by restricting global supplies of the ruble and access to reserves that Russia may try to exchange to support the ruble.  

Contemporaneously with the issuance of this directive, OFAC is issuing a general license to authorize certain energy-related transactions with the Central Bank of the Russian Federation and will follow with other authorizations and guidance as needed.

Treasury.gov. 02/28/2022.

TARGETING RUSSIAN DIRECT INVESTMENT FUND

OFAC also designated three entities critical to managing one of Russia’s key sovereign wealth funds:  Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF), its management company, and one of the managing company’s subsidiaries.  By blocking these entities, OFAC is terminating yet another route through which Russia has benefitted from access to the U.S. financial system. 

The Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF) was created in 2011 by order of then-President of Russia, Dmitry Medvedev, and then Prime Minister of Russia, Vladimir Putin. RDIF operates in a number of industries, such as insurance and financial services. One of the purposes behind RDIF’s creation was to develop relationships with international investors for direct investment in Russia. While officially a sovereign wealth fund, RDIF is widely considered a slush fund for President Vladimir Putin and is emblematic of Russia’s broader kleptocracy.
OFAC designated RDIF pursuant to E.O. 14024 for being owned or controlled by, or for acting or purporting to act for or on behalf of, directly or indirectly, the Government of Russia (GoR). RDIF was also sanctioned by Canada on February 24, 2022. 

Joint Stock Company Management Company of the Russian Direct Investment Fund (JSC RDIF) is RDIF’s management company. In response to Russia’s 2014 unprovoked attack on Ukraine, OFAC issued debt and equity restrictions in 2015 on JSC RDIF’s predecessor, the Russian Direct Investment Fund Management Company, pursuant to Directive 1 under E.O. 13662. Today’s action expands the sanctions on this entity, which is now blocked.
OFAC designated JSC RDIF pursuant to E.O. 14024 for being owned or controlled by, or for acting or purporting to act for or on behalf of, directly or indirectly, the GoR, and for operating or having operated in the financial services sector of the Russian Federation economy. 

Limited Liability Company RVC Management Company (LLC RVC) is a subsidiary of JSC RDIF. LLC RVC is a company that operates in deposit banking, management of investment funds, unit investment trusts, insurance, and private pension funds.
OFAC designated LLC RVC RDIF pursuant to E.O. 14024 for being owned or controlled by, or for acting or purporting to act for or on behalf of, directly or indirectly, JSC RDIF, and for operating or having operated in the financial services sector of the Russian Federation economy. 

Treasury.gov. 02/28/2022.

KIRILL DMITRIEV 

Kirill Aleksandrovich Dmitriev (Dmitriev) is a close ally of Putin and the CEO of RDIF and JSC RDIF. Dmitriev is an alumnus of American universities and has links to American consulting and financial services firms. He has leveraged his ties to universities and organizations in the United States to serve as a representative for the Russian president to American institutions, thereby providing access to key economic opportunities in the United States.  

Among the Russian elite, Dmitriev is a close associate of Putin and he and his wife are also believed to be close to one of Putin’s daughters, Katerina Tikhonova, and her former husband, billionaire Kirill Shamalov. Shamalov was designated in April 2018 pursuant to E.O. 13662 for operating in the energy sector of the Russian Federation economy.

OFAC designated Dmitriev pursuant to E.O. 14024 for being or having been a leader, official, senior executive officer, or member of the board of directors of the GoR. Dmitriev was also sanctioned by Canada on February 24, 2022.

For identifying information on the individuals sanctioned today, click here

Treasury.gov. 02/28/2022.

The above NBC News tweet leads to their live update thread from there I found this tweet:

And then this:

A few hours ago…

I found this article posted today by Jan Strupczewski with Reuters.

Typically I would not copy and paste a whole article not government related but this article is so short that well it’s more of a blurb…

The European Union has asked its satellite centre in Madrid to provide intelligence to Ukraine about Russian troop movements and EU countries are determined to further increase their bilateral military support to Kiyv, the EU’s head diplomat said.

Josep Borrell told a news conference the EU sanctions imposed on Russia will have a cost for Europe.

“But we have to be ready to pay the price, or we will have to pay a much higher price in the future,” Borrell said.

“Relations with Russia will no longer be determined by trade,” he said.

Reuters. 02/28/2022.

I shouldn’t laugh, it’s more of a chuckle really at how calmly he says after he notices the grenade he was crouching next too; I didn’t see that so let’s move away from that.

Kudos to the on the ground reporter…

In not-Russia/Ukraine news:

The questionnaire linked by Steve Vladeck is in PDF form and is 36 pages long.

President Biden’s remarks on scheduled for 2:00 p.m. D.C., time.

The daily press briefing is scheduled for 3:00 p.m. D.C., time.

This is an Open Thread.

Authors note: It’s now 11:55 a.m. D.C., time; President Biden has not tweeted and the only thing new from White House.gov is President Joseph R. Biden, Jr. Approves Kentucky Disaster Declaration.

About the opinions in this article…

Any opinions expressed in this article are the opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of this website or of the other authors/contributors who write for it.

About Tiff 2046 Articles
Member of the Free Press who is politically homeless and a political junkie.