JRL NEWSWATCH: “Putin’s Folly; Pompeo may be in an uproar over Russia’s Nord Stream 2 pipeline, but it is hardly the geopolitical masterstroke he imagines.” – Foreign Policy/ Chris Miller

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“As the United States [adds] … pressure … against Nord Stream 2, friction with Germany, which would receive much of the pipeline’s gas, will intensify. …. Many countries in Central and Eastern Europe see the pipeline as a glaring example of German hypocrisy … Berlin lectures them about carbon neutrality and human rights while guzzling fossil fuels from one of the most authoritarian country on the continent. … Ukraine will make less money charging fees for gas transit, although Kyiv could find other sources of revenue if need be. At the same time, Nord Stream 2 may enhance Russia’s ability to threaten to cut gas supplies to Ukraine. * * * [But] [e]ven for Russia, ‘Putin’s pipeline’ is far from the geopolitical masterstroke some U.S. leaders imagine. Europe is awash with cheap and plentiful gas, much of it already purchased from Russia. … Gazprom’s pricing power in Europe has collapsed in the face of new competition. So is the Kremlin’s newest pipeline does a tool of malign influence? Malign, perhaps. But influential? Probably not. Whenever it finally comes online, Nord Stream 2 will change little.”

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