GANGSTER, DIRTY GAS: THE STORY OF NORTH STREAM 2

(Note: this is an overview for the issue of the pipeline North Stream 2. For an overview of the EU's Green Deal, see the article on the topic).


PACTA SUN SERVANDA, agreements must be kept, used to say the Romans; yet the West, who keeps on insisting their culture derives directly from the traditions of the ancient Romans, seems to systematically breach every agreement they sign. In the field of international law, this is outrageous, but in the field of business, it is just plain stupid. The EU’s envisages itself as this trade bloc whose whole standing in the world is based on planning and signing trade agreements with other countries / regions; yet, due to the political myopia and subservience of the usual inadequate German politicians who run the show, we’re losing our reputation as a responsible trade partner; as if every time the Superintendent orders us to stop trading with others we say “sure, Master”, eventually no one will trust us anymore as a trading partner. And there Europe will go, happily hopping towards the Middle Ages 2.0. Smart, very smart.

The Lisbon treaty stipulates that the Commission should take decisions independently and with the benefit of Europe in mind; yet if we look at the grand strategy in general, and at the Energy Union in particular, it is clear that the Commission would rather hit and bury European interests in favour of American interests. As with everything, there are two distinct point of views here; those who believe that the West will manage to retain and maintain hegemony over the rest of the world; and on the other side we have those who see new financial centres rising especially in the Asian side of the Eurasian super-continent, and know, that history will always repeat itself and that it cannot be stopped. Then we have the usual problems; Germany is still trying to be the undiscussed Leader of Europe; yet they can’t even do it properly apparently, because when Germany’s right to supremacy is granted by the Superintendent, and Germany is nothing more than a colony herself, it is clear that the right to lead will be granted and taken away at will. What a sad political game, Germany. Merkel has been nothing more than a parrot for one of the worst imperialist leaders the world has ever seen, Barack Obama (let’s recall here how he single handedly destroyed Libya, Syria, Ukraine, Yemen and Afghanistan; how he expanded the US Army control of Africa in 22 different nations in the continent). In 2016 they wrote a joint op-ed stating “we’re stronger together” meaning, Germany and the Very Good Vassals are stronger by obeying to the US’s diktats, and subjugating the rest of the world, together. Here we have it, inadequate, servile German politicians fucking up other countries and behaving like they’d be saving the world. This is Europe, proud province of the American Empire, after all, we’re in it together, seems to be saying Merkel.

To place the role of energy supply in the context of grand strategy, we need to backtrack a little moment and see how the practice of fracking has changed the global gas energy supply chain. Eurasia and specifically the middle east have been for decades strategically important under the energy perspective, especially for oil; governments have been overthrown, bribed and bullied in order for them to comply with American projected global energy dominance. America, however, eventually became energy independent first, and gained a production surplus then (it means that she was able to produce enough energy to cover her needs, and have something to sell after that). And of course, because the Superintendent would never, and I never, operate on the market without trying to screw over everyone else, they are now playing political games with Europe so that Europe would buy American gas instead of let’s say, cheaper Russian gas. The Superintendent's strategy in Europe right now, in fact, aims to stop the North Stream 2 pipeline; in primis, because it is a shared Russia-Europe project, hence a fully European project, and they're trying everything they can, to keep us apart (on our own continent), but they also want to stop it because this new pipeline would take away revenues from Poland and Ukraine (when you have a pipeline going through your national soil, you get revenues for every cubic tonne of LNG / oil going through it). The ramifications of this move, however, are not as much as to actually reduce the imports of energy from Russia (although Russia will lose money, as they have invested quite a bit in the project) - the main drawback for European obedience are in loss to their own industries first and foremost, and a loss in reputation in the second instance.

Let’s try to see the whole ordeal on a timeline. The first Russia - Europe pipeline should have been South Stream, which would have started from the Russian port of Beregovaja, then gone through the Black Sea to the Bulgarian port of Varna with two extensions towards Italy and Austria. According to the Italians, the EU closed down that project with the wilful intention of damaging the South in favour of Germany (and this shouldn’t surprise anyone; we recall how Germany grew economically disproportionately because of their exploitation of Eastern European countries). So in this sense, as we outlined before, the EU’s policies always aim at weakening the South in favour of the North, as Germany would have become the main sorting point of Russian gas in Europe (yet on the other hand, given how the project is currently proceeding, we need to wonder wether the EU got Germany to get NS2 because Germany is more easy to control, in the Superintendent’s view ). Moreover, the project was halted in part because of the EU, but also because of the US; as the US administration lobbied and bullied Bulgarian authorities in withdrawing their country from the project (I have already explained how propping up the Good Vassals is a way to maintain control of a conquered land). According to an analyst writing for Italian ENI:

It would not be by chance that, on September 5th 2018, Giuseppe Cucchi, former NATO General and chief of the Italian secret services during Massimo D’Alema’s and Romano Prodi’s governments stated: “As for Germany, it is enough to mention how in the energy sector with the right hand blocks the construction of the South Stream pipeline, which was supposed to pass through Italy, while with the left propitious the doubling of Nord Stream, in Germany”. With the understanding that the national security of any country depends also on energy policy, the concrete risk is that this EU instead of representing a barrier against the new re-emerging nationalism, could be the main cause of it. 

And in this sense we need to note how the last sentence of this quote resonates true today; as only the 44% of the Italian population, once one of the most pro-EU populations in the whole of Europe, has nowadays trust in the European institutions (it was 66% two years ago) - and 16% of those 44% who are in favour of the EU might switch to the other side if the response to the pandemic would not be satisfactory. In other words - if you keep on fucking the Italians over, they’ll rebel. Surprise surprise. Von Der Leyen said “l’Italia s’e’ desta” to the Italians (after having lied to us for like a good two months), but it seems like Rome rebutted with the classical “e ‘sti gran cazzi, Ursula”.

But in any case, South Stream was halted to cater to German, Scandinavian and EU interests (and again, I reiterate, how sad is that European interests always coincide with the subjugation of the South / East in favour of the North. You are not going to last long like this, mark my words), and the construction of North Stream 2 started. One interesting fact, is of course the fact that while Germany is participating into the anti-Russia crusade, given the relationship in between energy supply and national security we can postulate, that Germany doesn’t actually see Russia as a threat to her national security; if they would they wouldn’t have built NS2 in the first place. NS2’s costs are shared for a half by Gazprom (Russia), and for the other half by five companies, respectively from Germany (Wintershall and Uniper); France (Engie); the Netherlands/UK (Shell); and Austria (OMV). It is interesting to note that the countries who will benefit the most by this project being completed, besides Germany, are other Very Good Vassals; Finland, Sweden, and Denmark, in fact, will all be getting transit fees as the pipeline has been laid under their national waters (and once again, I need to point out the complete stupidity of the Finnish political class; with a soaring public debt, we’ll rather hit ourselves economically than disobeying to the US). But of course the Superintendent wasn't happy that Europe would use its freedom of choice on the market, no; hence they've been starting to impose sanctions over NS2, so that the pipeline would be prevented from being completed and the Europeans would have have to buy more expensive, fracked American LNG rather than Russian LNG.


North Stream 2. From Wikipedia.

Both the EU and the US are following the strategy of damaging Europe; the EU is trying to stop NS2 from completion by adding technical requirements for the pipeline (to provide third-party access and to unbundle transportation from supply), while the US is arrogantly passing defence bills where they state they’re blocking NS2 to “protect European energy security” - can you even believe the arrogance? The heroic Americans protecting us from doing business with other Europeans (because yes, half of Russia, about is European, as we are). Do they know we coped just fine a good couple of millennia without them telling us what to do? They have to protect us from Russia, can you even believe the arrogance? And to add another layer of ridiculous to these completely demented claims, the way in which they’re protecting us is by imposing sanctions on European companies which participate in the project (more than 100 European companies, most of which German, are taking part in the project; and an entire section of the pipeline, should be built entirely by German companies. It is possible to assume, that by trying to stop NS2, the EU is fostering disapproval inside Germany as well; as the Germans like business very much, and their economy is based on SMEs, Mittelstand, not big corporations). I don’t even know what to say to this. Anyone with half a functioning brain would understand that if they’re punishing European companies for doing business with Russia, they’re not “protecting” anyone - they’re dealing a hit to European economy during a global economic crisis. Exactly like NATO, the sanctions to NS2 are not a way to protect us - they’re a way to de-facto subjugate Europe. Ah, stronger together, wasn’t it, Angela. Tell it to the German business community, go, let's see how loud they'll all laugh. Are you really this stupid to believe the bullshit or do you actually know your pitiful leadership is driving Europe to disaster, but you’re happily doing it, because “I am just following orders”? Or is it so, that you don’t have any other option?


In any case, this reasoning is completely absurd; not only Europe doesn’t need protection from doing business with other Europeans, but given the fact that Russia’s economy relies (for now) heavily on energy export, it is very probable that they actually have interests to provide a reliable service. It is very unlikely that they would ever play stupid games and threaten the EU “we won’t give you any energy if you don’t behave like we want” because that would damage their reputation, and when they do business also with China in this sense, they don’t want the Chinese to think that they’re using energy export as a way to control other countries, for example. So the whole reasoning is jus not rooted in reality.


And in fact, we can hereby make an historical parallel; North Stream 2 VS the Urengoy–Pomary–Uzhhorod pipeline, which the Reagan administration tried to stop in every way back in the 80's. During the Cold War, however, the Western European leaders, who saw imports of energy from Russia as a way to diversify their energy suppliers, didn't back down; they sent a formal note of protest, and eventually Reagan had to concede defeat; he notoriously declared:

Well, they can have their damned pipeline. But not with American equipment and not with American technology.

And while he did follow up on not conceding technology, the pipeline was built, and it is still operational. So you see; we're back to the Cold War, but now we're not even making claver economic decisions anymore. It is just about the Germans and the other Good Vassals clinging to the collapsing American Empire in order to maintain political power in Europe. Cowards.


To add insult to injury, now the NS2 project is being tied to the Navalny scam (I wrote an entire piece on this dreadful fabrication). And in this regard I would like to ask the Finnish president and the Finnish political echelons, if they are trying to seriously sell me the idea that the halt of NS2 in favour of the usual subservience to Sweden, the Fabricator of American Lies (because the sad truth is that Finland is not even a first tier Vassal, we're the servants of the servants) would be convenient to the Finnish state. Because we have 300 + kilometers of pipeline going under our sea; and that would mean revenues for the Finnish state, which heaven knows we need, given the trajectory of public spending and public debt. Why is the Finnish state putting the American interests of fucking over Russia in favour of neo-Nazi Ukraine (come on, Niinistö, you've seen the flags they wave as well, haven't you?) over the interests of the Finnish people to see state revenues increase, especially during a time of global recession? Who are you working for, Niinistö? The Finnish people or the American foreign policy establishment?


There has been however some (feeble) pushback from the EU side. France's Engie has frozen couple of business deals with American (check the name). However, the actual turnover of the deals frozen doesn't seem as significant as to create a dent as big as the US managing to block NS2, to be honest. But let's give it to France, they at least are putting up some kind of protest (better than Merkel who offered to spend a billion to build a terminal for American LNG if they let her finish NS2, pure mafia behaviour).

But now that we have an idea of the timeline of the matter, we will now dive on the reason why this appeasing the Superintendent in this matter is damaging Europe first and foremost. When you do business, reliability is the first quality that potential business partners see as appealing. This is why we have reviews on sellers on amazon, for example; if a seller gets a bad reputation, people won’t buy from him / her - as nobody likes to be scammed; nobody likes to spend money and sign contracts if the money is going to be wasted and the contract is going to be ignored. Now, the EU has based its core existence over being a trade bloc; yet when third countries see, that if asked by the Superintendent, we’ll unilaterally rescind from our commitments with no second thought, they’ll start looking elsewhere for trade partners (ni-hao, China). The second issue in this sense is that 100 European SMEs have been taking part in the project; and they are all being damaged. As we mentioned SMEs are at the core of European economy, so screwing them over to please the Superintendent (in the middle of an economic crisis) it’s in primis, going to fuel anti-EU sentiments; and then of course why exactly does the EU think that it’s clever in any way, or under any circumstance, to damage European companies in favour of American interests? It’s just plain stupid. For Germany, this is even worse, because exactly as the Italians noticed the predatory nature of the EU leadership, so have third countries. If you think you can just go and dangle money over developing countries to get them doing what you want, think again - China’s reach is wide, China respects the agreements they sign, and China doesn’t even try to oblige anyone to change their government in order to do business with them.


And more than this; it is extremely, extremely important for Europe to have a multiplicity of energy suppliers; as there are few alternatives to expensive, dirty (fracked) American gas (Venezuela is under sanctions, Iran is under sanctions, it is difficult to get pipelines from Qatar because of the game of pipelines in the Caucasus; the only other alternative is Northern Africa, and yes we do already have pipelines from Algeria to Italy). Europe not only doesn't have enough natural resources (hydrocarbons) to cover their internal energy needs, but we don't even have the space to set up all these wind farms and photovoltaic fields which we are trying to convince everyone to build in their nations (notwithstanding the fact that green technology is not efficient and decarbonisation of the production chain seems to be the most environmentally friendly way we have to produce energy efficiently) . And in this sense, it is clear that we don't need the US to protect us from Russian gas - we need to protect ourselves from being exploited by the United States.

And there is another layer to this matter; with the EU claiming that they want to switch to green energy and green technology, then Russia (who according to world bank has a great potential for green energy / green economy but especially green / blue technology development) is definitely a better partner even for the long term (is water catching fire in Russia yet? This is what happens when your gas is extracted by using hydraulic fracturing, but we'll talk about that). I mean if your main partner is basically a corporate-state controlled by the fossil fuel industry (working jointly the military industrial complex) then you won’t get much cooperation in green energy development, isn’t this obvious? But we will talk about the EU's Gree(d)n Deal as well, wait for it.

So, in conclusion, this is a disaster. We’re mixing business with geopolitics, and the geopolitical alignment (as already outlined) was stupid in itself in the first place. The EU should not only get back into compliance in relation to NS2, they should also get back to compliance to the Lisbon Treaty itself, and they should stop doing the Superintendent’s interests instead of European interests.

Here I’ve outlined how in Russia - EU business dealings, Russia is the one committed to behave like an honest businessman, and we’re the scammers. In the second part of this mini-series, I’ll showcase how this mechanism reproduces itself also in relation to third-countries; and we will see how in relation to a contract both Russia and the EU (through the E3 countries) signed with Iran, Russia is keeping their commitments but we are not.


And I would like to close here by quoting Sergey Lavrov, who, when asked about the NS2 issue during a joint press conference, replied:

As for Nord Stream 2, I think we should simmer down regarding this. We are seeing how the US on a daily basis is trying to humiliate in public the EU, primarily Germany.

and I have to note, that he is fully correct. And personally, I am completely sick of it.


HOW WOULD AUTONOMOUS EUROPE BEHAVE?

Well, this is quite obvious isn’t it? We signed a contract, we should respect the contract. Is there here really anything more to say?