My fellow expert-guest, in Moscow, Dr. Stanislav Mitrakhovich, was notably frank.
He did not insist, as have various Russian Federation officials lately, that Nord Stream 1 gas flow has been cut for technical reasons to do with the lack of a Siemens compressor.
The compressor in question was sent to Canada for repairs, but its return has been waived from sanctions restrictions. As Chancellor Scholz rightly said, the lack of a compressor is clearly not what cutting gas to Europe is about. It is political.
Nor did the expert in Moscow claim it was due to bureaucratic German-Russian difficulties with paperwork, as Putin and others have claimed..
He instead pointed out that the EU has said it will stop by year’s end the import of Russian oil, and Germany has said it will not use Russian gas in two years, and, without this and some sort of “political compromise,” gas could undoubtedly be fully flowing again from Russian into the EU.
So, I asked – rhetorically – just what possible sort of “compromise” might Putin be angling for? The Donbas for gas? Odessa for gas?
I asserted my opinion that “Europeans have their sense of dignity” and would never agree to such a “compromise.” Put that way, they will prefer to be cold this winter and to have industries and businesses have to shut for lack of gas.
We also discussed a few details of what sort of suffering – rationing of energy, low temperature heating and closing of businesses – Germany and the EU can expect to have to endure this winter.
I asserted, also, that the escalation of the gas crisis by Putin is part of a larger economic war in support of his war against Ukraine. It is likely the case that Putin, unable to now advance farther in the West and South of Ukraine, is pushing harder on his economic and energy war against the EU and other Ukrainian allies. The effects will certainly be serious for Germans and all Europeans; but in perhaps two years or so, they will no longer ever need Russian energy.Read more: On Al Jazeera with expert in Moscow | Putin wants a “compromise” for gas. Like what, Donbas? Odessa?- In my view, EU citizens will choose the cold … & their dignity.
This is what we were asked to discuss beforehand. However, the quesions went in a different, though useful too, direction:
Germany puts coal power plant back on network after gas supply cut | Germany | The Guardian | 1 August 2022