As the Russian economy continues to buckle down amidst the barrage of economic sanctions from the West, Moscow attempts to shift the narrative and blame the West for declaring “total war” against Russia.

“A real hybrid war, total war was declared on us,” claimed Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov in a meeting last Friday.

After the start of Putin’s so-called “special military operation” in Ukraine last February, the West piled on stringent economic and fiscal sanctions on the Russian Federation to pressure the aggressor to pull out of the country.

The United States, the European Union, and other allies put together a package of sanctions designed to put a stranglehold on the Russian economy and its financial system. This included the following: (1) banning of key Russian imports, (2) abdication of some of the largest foreign investment holders from the country, (3) removal of specific Russian financial institutions from the SWIFT financial system, (4) and sanctions imposed on Putin himself and other Russian oligarchs.