The US and EU have imposed economic sanctions on Russia over its annexation of Crimea from Ukraine. The Russian stock market and rouble have fallen and two of the major ratings companies have downgraded Russia's credit outlook and growth forecasts for the year. Read more >>
The cartoon by Chappatte from The International New York Times shows US President Barack Obama aiming a harpoon with sanctions attached at Russian President Vladimir Putin, who is in a tank. An EU official tells Obama, "Aim at the wallet!"
If you aim (or take aim) at someone's wallet, you try to hurt them financially. • A state lawmaker wants to take aim at the wallets of people who buy gas-guzzling vehicles.
I'm not sure how to interpret the cartoon. The cartoonist seems to be suggesting that sanctions will have little effect because Putin is protected by the tank (a metaphor for military force) and Obama has only got a puny harpoon. On the other hand, it could be that the 'wallet' (i.e., finance) really is Putin's weak spot (just like the wheels are the weak spot on a tank). And why a harpoon? Perhaps a gun would have been too violent. What do you think?