You Look for the Person Who Will Benefit: ‘Obvious’ US Blew Up Nord Stream
16:11 GMT 14.12.2023 (Updated: 16:12 GMT 14.12.2023)
© Photo : Nord Stream 2 AGNord stream 2 route map
© Photo : Nord Stream 2 AG
Russian President Vladimir Putin offered his take on the Nord Stream gas pipeline explosion at his year-end presser Thursday, saying the US was either directly or indirectly responsible. This is obvious, based on a geopolitical and economic analysis of the terror attack, veteran geopolitical commentator and author Thomas W. Pauken II tells Sputnik.
Vladimir Putin addressed the Nord Stream network sabotage attack while answering a question about the energy crisis facing the European Union.
“The fact that Europe is not getting enough [gas] is its problem. Oddly enough, they’ve tried to blame us for not selling them something. This is complete nonsense, because we weren’t the ones to close the Yamal-Europe gas pipeline in Poland, we weren’t the ones to close the second line of the gas pipeline running through the territory of Ukraine, Ukraine did so. It wasn’t us that blew up the Nord Stream 1 and partially the Nord Stream 2 pipeline. It was most likely the US that did so, or someone at their suggestion,” the Russian president said.
Putin’s comments come amid more than a year of speculation in US and European media about who was responsible for the September 26, 2022 Nord Stream sabotage attack, which damaged three of the network’s four gas pipelines along the bottom of the Baltic Sea off the Danish island of Bornholm, undermined Germany’s energy security, and deprived Russia of a major energy export artery.
US officials and media initially suggested that Moscow blew up its own pipelines, ignoring threats by President Biden publicly in early February 2022 to “end” Nord Stream if the Donbass crisis escalated into a wider Ukrainian proxy war between NATO and Russia. Earlier this year, Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Seymour Hersh reported that US Navy divers acting in coordination with the Norwegian Navy were responsible for plotting and carrying out the Nord Stream attacks.
Hersh’s story prompted US and German intelligence to hastily come up with their own cover story, at first accusing shadowy amateur Ukrainian operatives without any connections to any governments of carrying out the crime using a rented yacht. The story was changed last month, with Western media reporting that the pipeline attack was coordinated by Roman Chervinsky, a Ukrainian special operations forces colonel currently rotting in a Kiev jail on abuse of power charges, and saying Chervinsky “took orders from more senior Ukrainian officials” who reported to Armed Forces Commander-in-Chief Valery Zaluzhny.
14 November 2023, 17:21 GMT
But speculation and CIA mind games aside, an elementary analysis of who stands to win or lose from the Nord Stream’s destruction points the finger squarely at the United States, says veteran geopolitical commentator, trade expert and author Thomas W. Pauken II.
“Another obvious logical game is who would benefit from this pipeline explosion? Well, obviously the US would, because if they want Ukraine to keep fighting and if they want to keep Europe motivated to fight Russia, then bombing this pipeline would give them further motivation because they can no longer count on Russian gas being exported to EU member states after the Ukraine conflict ended,” Pauken told Sputnik.
“At the same time, the US is a major exporter of oil and gas. And they can charge full price… So now that the pipeline is no longer effective or working and there is no way to get around that, the oil and gas from the Russian side become more expensive. So the US financially benefit by being able to sell oil and gas at a much higher price,” the observer explained.
Built between 2010-2012 (Nord Stream 1) and 2018-2021 (Nord Stream 2), the Nord Stream network was designed to deliver up to 110 billion cubic meters of natural gas per year from Russia to Europe via four pipelines along the bottom of the Baltic Sea – enough to satiate up to one third of the energy hungry region’s natural gas needs. While the September 2022 sabotage attack robbed Russia of tens of billions of dollars in potential lost revenues, it also stripped Europe of energy security, with the attack, combined with Brussels’ self-defeating sanctions on Russian energy, resulting in the EU overpaying some €185 billion ($203 billion US) on gas imports, and prompting hundreds of European industrial enterprises to leave the region, many of them poached by the US.
6 December 2023, 06:44 GMT