"It's Time To Retaliate": Putin Expels 755 U.S. Diplomats

Tyler Durden's picture

When Russia warned on Friday that it would retaliate proportionately after it announced it would seize two diplomatic compounds used by the US in Russia and added that it would reduce the number of US diplomatic service staff in the country to equal the number of Russian diplomats in the US by September 1, calculated by the local press at 455, it wasn't joking.

Moments ago, speaking in an interview on the Rossiya 1 TV channel, Vladimir Putin said that 755 American diplomats will be expelled, or as he phrased it "will have to leave Russia as a result of Washington's own policies", a move which as we previewed on Friday will make the diplomatic missions of Russia and the United States of equal staffing.

Speaking late on Sunday, the Russian president said that the time for retaliation has come: "we've been waiting for quite a long time that maybe something would change for the better, we had hopes that the situation would change. But it looks like, it's not going to change in the near future... I decided that it is time for us to show that we will not leave anything unanswered."

Putin added that "the personnel of the US diplomatic missions in Russia will be cut by 755 people and will now equal the number of the Russian diplomatic personnel in the United States, 455 people on each side" Putin said, adding that "because over a thousand employees, diplomats and technical personnel have been working and are still working in Russia, and 755 of them will have to cease their work in the Russian Federation. It’s considerable."

Putin also told the Russian audience that "the American side has made a move which, it is important to note, hasn't been provoked by anything, to worsen Russian-US relations. [It includes] unlawful restrictions, attempts to influence other states of the world, including our allies, who are interested in developing and keeping relations with Russia,"

According to Reuters, Putin also said that Russia is able to impose additional measures against U.S. but he is against such steps for now.

"We could imagine, theoretically, that one day a moment would come when the damage of attempts to put pressure on Russia will be comparable to the negative consequences of certain limitations of our cooperation. Well, if that moment ever comes, we could discuss other response options. But I hope it will not come to that. As of today, I am against it."

As we reported late last week, following the House's approval of new sanctions against Russia, Iran and North Korea, the Russian foreign ministry told Washington to reduce the number of its diplomatic staff in Russia, which currently includes more than 1,200 personnel, to 455 people as of September 1.

The Russian order is likely to mean consular services in Russia will be “very hard hit,” Michael McFaul, a former U.S. ambassador to Moscow told Bloomberg. “Russians will have to wait much longer to get a visa,” he said by email. Furthermore, according to Bloomberg, Russia’s reaction was harsher than many officials had signaled, "and threatens to cast the two nuclear-armed powers into a fresh spiral of tensions, even as relations are already at their lowest since the Cold War." For Trump, the worsening conflict poses a dilemma between his oft-stated desire to build ties with Russia and mounting political opposition to that effort in Washington, amid congressional inquiries and an FBI investigation into interference in the elections and the Trump campaign’s possible ties with Russia.

“Totally unwarranted, disproportionate move by the Kremlin,” Andrew Weiss, a former top Russia expert on the National Security Council and now vice-president for studies at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, said on Twitter.

* * *

Today's expulsion comes one day after a bizarre statement by US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, who tried to to portray the latest round of Russian sanctions legislation as a sign Americans want Russia to improve relations with the US; it was promptly mocked by Moscow.  On Saturday, Tillerson said the overwhelming House and Senate votes in favor of the sanctions “represent the strong will of the American people to see Russia take steps to improve relations with the United States.” He added that he hoped potential future U.S.-Russia cooperation would make the sanctions unnecessary at some point.

“We will work closely with our friends and allies to ensure our messages to Russia, Iran, and North Korea are clearly understood,” Tillerson’s statement concluded.

Moscow, however, was less than thrilled with Tillerson's attempt to mitigate the latest round of anti-Russian sanctions, as the Russian Embassy in Washington said in a series of tweets that it was bewildered.

“The statement made by the @StateDept on July 29 regarding a new sanctions legislation approved by Congress cannot but raise eyebrows,” it said. “Washington still doesn’t get the fact that pressure never works against @Russia, bilateral relations can hardly be improved by sanctions.”

And now we await the US re-retaliation in what is once again the same tit-for-tat escalation that marked the latter years of the Obama regime, as the US Military Industrial Complex breathes out a sigh of relief that for all the posturing by Trump, things between Russia and the US are back on autopilot.

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.
NugginFuts's picture

So we've pissed off the Chinese and the Russians. I guess we're still friends with Saudi Arabia and Israel, though, so all's well in the world, right?

Arnold's picture

When I cash in the IOU for my winnings in the Illinois Lottery......

Looney's picture

... The personnel of the US diplomatic missions in Russia will be cut by 755 people

755 is the total number. The number of Americans being expelled is 575. The rest are the locals – translators, visa-clerks, janitors. Those are just being fired.


BaBaBouy's picture

Ridiculous Spat... For What?

Thump is now officially a Part of the Deep State Club...

earleflorida's picture

the deep state [DOES] the Internationalist dirty laundry... its symbiotic

BaBaBouy's picture

The real Shitstorm may now actually start in international banking.

Russia will be pissed with new sanctions, and may now boost their alternate Banking with Asia et al...

Watch the Banks, watch GOLD, watch the Blockchains, watch various "Flash Crashes"...

Handful of Dust's picture

Starbucks is hiring.


So there's that.

Mr 9x19's picture

starbuck..... the guy who  jacked off to get 577 kids ?


jeff montanye's picture

maybe trump has to prioritize and busting the dnc and some of the deep state apparatus attached thereto is more important.  but there had better be some progress and fairly soon or this trump voter is sending money to tulsi gabbard or some such alternative in the years to come.

it's not trump that's the point; it's what he can do to improve things.  the relationship with russia is among the most important.  but not the most important barring hot war.

let's get nooses around cankles and her cronies and start reinstating the rule of law.

Stuck on Zero's picture

755 diplomats? Holy heck. At about $500K/yr each that a savings of $350 million a year at least. We should start pissing off everyone.

waspwench's picture

Precisely!   What do all these people do?   Why do we need to have such a huge staff at any of our embassies?   There are way too many boondoggle jobs in our government - patronage jobs for the boys and a massive waste of taxpayers money.

Manthong's picture


Loaded cost… per overseas maggot… probably around $300 K

x 755

Vlad just reduced our deficit by about a quarter billion dollars.

MAGA.. thanks Vlad.

Manthong's picture


..     just figured it out…….

Vlad is cleaning out the CIA tripe.


he vanquished the NGO's a few months ago...


..if we could only do that here


Manthong's picture


A Pulitzer goes to the MSM snowflake or shill who decides to out the deep state in a cogent print form.

Slack Jack's picture

I wrote this a couple of days ago: I am actually surprised at how correct it is.

The Orange Jew actually wants to enact sanctions against Russia.

However, he wants to do this while still pretending to represent those that voted for him.

That is why the House voted 419-3 for sanctions.

That is why the press screams that the sanctions deal is veto-proof.

All to give him a plausible excuse to sign the bill, to do what he wants, but not what his support base wants.

As many Trump supporters now suspect, Trump has actually been their enemy from the beginning.

If the Orange Jew is the real deal then he will veto this sanctions legislation.

But, Trump is not the real deal. So, he will sign it into law.

Trump is no different from Obama, Bush and Clinton.


Oh regional Indian's picture

Bingo! All from the same satanist flock of pretenders, fakers and frauds, funded by the tribe...

Conscious Reviver's picture

He was a game show host. What could go wrong?

He owed the Tribe a ton of money... over and over again. What could go wrong?

His AIPAC speech.  What could possibly go wrong for the average American who supported him?


Another regional indian.'s picture

Did you not read my previous reply to you on another thread, about the tribe. It was the tribe that kept the british on a leash when brits ruled india. Other wise india's fate would have been much more horrible. So stop banging on about the tribe.


Or are you not really an indian but just claiming yourself to be one?

Another regional indian.'s picture

I get why you are upset at the tribe. After what the IMF and the world bank (indirectly) did to indian farmers i would have been upset too. But they dont represent all of them. Hnce i made my earlier comment...... in order to make you 'aware' that it was the tribe that put brits on a leash. Heck even i wasnt aware of it even until a month back. They  'saved' india from total destruction by the brits. Also IMF and world bank is mostly controlled by WASP's not the tribe as commonly assumed, something which i found recently. Even i thought it was the tribe that controlled those organisations.  Its the Wasps running the show.

Conscious Reviver's picture

Bullshit.....period???? What kind of knuckledragger response is that?

Nobody counts the votes. Get over it.

Slack Jack - kudos for finally getting something right. AGW is right up there with the Moon Landings. No thread jack intended.

espirit's picture

Meh. More Kabuki.

Let me know when Nasa can no longer buy rides to the ISS.

Then, only then will we know it's 'game on'.

Mentaliusanything's picture

Its a big Club and I'm not swinging it. Tic tic Tic to destruction.

He was read the JFK riot act and realized the swamp can swallow him whole. 

Are you saying you would not comply with "house orders"

Geez Louise.. get with the program.

DJ Happy Ending's picture

you guys actually think they will be cut from the payroll?

they will be reassigned but never fired.

espirit's picture

The 'lowest unemployment' evah thingy from Trump leaves me confounded.

Tis but another strike out.

Perhaps I'm taking it out of context, refering to .gov workerbees?  

armada's picture

They're spying for IsraHell and fomenting trouble. Nothing will change with Trump on Russia. He's being wagged like all the others.


sincerely_yours's picture

Trump's doping the bidding of Kushner's AIPAC for Israel. It'll be like that with all Potuses until Israel's gone.

HowdyDoody's picture

Some of the diplomats are actually 'diplomats' ie CIA officers.


Creative_Destruct's picture

"Precisely!   What do all these people do?"

They dress up nicely, live on generous per diem, and write memos to each other....


The Blank Stare's picture


"Russia’s other move was to deny access to two diplomatic compounds in Moscow. One is a warehouse in the southern part of the city used by U.S. diplomats. The other is a kind of vacation home that the Times describes as “a bucolic site along the Moscow River where staff members walk their dogs and hold barbecues.”

BBQ's and dog walking, Hookers and blow. C'mon! Trump. Stop wasting so much money and get to work stopping the bleeding. You're a bidness man right?

Oracle 911's picture

I heard from russians it is around 1250 "diplomats" aka CIA agents.

A_Huxley's picture

What do all these people do? They spread democracy and drive around Russia a lot. Spreading funds for democracy and supporting spies. Looking at different parts of Russia. SUV and other cars. A quick change of hair style and jacket to blend into the local community. Finding dissidents and new people who could spy for the USA. Going to parties and events so people who want to spy can make contact.

SoDamnMad's picture

Re-assign those Embassy people to other sites like Nigeria, Eritrea, Cambodia, and Liberia. Their huge salaries will go far in places like that (unless the Nigerian princes get to them).

monk27's picture

Most of them are CIA people anyway...

yarpos's picture

gather and process intelligence,  isnt that what most embassies do?

Grumbleduke's picture

they're spooks for the most part anyway! And hey - a NGO doesn't run itself, yaknow!

Offthebeach's picture

If Trump can't fire them, then post them to our "friends" in Syria,  or Zimbabwe,  Antarctica,  or Chicago.

Manthong's picture


"Mars first.... then Chicago"


geez... on second thought..  Chicago, then Mars


Chicago is a more desolate place.


Thank you Rahm and your government unions.

Dugald's picture



YOU ALREADY HAVE NUMBNUTS.........time to wake up...!!

Manthong's picture

I did not see your post, but we are on the same page.

Give Me Some Truth's picture

It would be a win if we could save their salaries. They'll be shipped to some other countries where it probably costs more to house them.

Lore's picture

Trump seems to have very poor advisors, handicapped by their own corruption, baggage and muddles.  The POTUS urgently needs to do exactly what Putin just did.  DRAIN THE SWAMP.

"So long, assholes.  Don't let the door hit ya on the way out." 

fockewulf190's picture

Can't do shit when almost the entire Congress votes for sanctions. A veto just buys yourself a defeat for nothing.

Watch the DEFCON level. It may be the final warning. Korea may blow at any time.

BarkingCat's picture


A president signing a bill indicates his approval of the bill.

Any real man would veto a bill that he disagrees with, no matter what the odds of an override.

It's in the future this bill causes huge problems in the future,  it is all on Trump for signing into law.

It's like Bill Clinton with NAFTA. No one remembers who voted for it or how many. However history remembers that Bill Clinton signed it.

Trump will have zero cover deniability.


fockewulf190's picture

There would be nothing sweeter for the hated MSM and the obstructionist dems than to trade their nothing burger Russian conspiracy farce, which is falling apart at the seams, for a Trump self inflicted political foot shot. Trump is smart enough to avoid feeding the jackles, so give him some fucking credit.

Freedom Lover's picture

 I think you are right. Trump is taking a calculated risk and as much as I hated to see this abomination sanctions bill pass an override of a Trump veto at this point would irrevocably damage his presidency. I only hope that Trump forces through an investigation of the Comey/Loretta lynch/John Brennan nexis based on the letter/memo he recieved form the VIPS (Veteran Intelligence professionals for Sanity). They provided Trump concrete proof that the DNC e-mails were leaked from an insider not hacked and that their was a cover-up using the NSA program (revealed in the Vault 7 revalations) to make it look like Russia hacked the DNC. Comey ,Brennan and Clapper could all go down.

FreedomWriter's picture

I don't really see how Trump's advisors could have kept the DS from banging out the Russia sanctions, creating Peegate dossiers, and trumping up these blatantly false charges of Russki collusion. The rot is too deep and the criminality is rampant. This is a political war. It won't be pretty. The voters'  last Trump card is to run them all out of office in 2018. I don't like to think about the alternatives.

Manthong's picture


“rot is too deep and the criminality is rampant”

..the next 180 days will be the tell… if we live through it.