South Stream discontinued. Economic warfare in full progress

The decision of the Russian government to redirect the gas pipeline under the Black Sea to Turkey has caused some consternation. The pipeline, ‘South Stream’, was meant to cross to Bulgaria and then supply gas to southeast Europe (Serbia, Hungary, Austria). But Bulgaria was put under pressure to stop work on it; by NATO for military-strategic reasons and the EU, obedient as always, for juridical reasons. All a consequence of the sanctions policy of the West against Russia.

This is preparation for war, because make no mistake: ‘sanctions’ are economic warfare.
The sanctions against Iraq were the stepping stone for the invasion of 2003.
The sanctions against Russia are intended, following the success in Kiev, to bring about regime change also in Moscow.

But Russia is able to strike back, even though it is currently paying a heavy price and is losing this particular phase of the economic war.

However, there is another loser and that is Europe, the EU.
The argument of the EU that Russia must conform to the European competition rules is a joke. These rules, supposedly guaranteeing the ‘free market’ (but which do not apply to Microsoft, Google, etc.) and which in the Netherlands have caused the debacle of the FYRA high speed rail link, apply to the internal market and to associated countries. But Russia is not part of either, it has a different economic system, state capitalism. Just like, for all the further differences, China, Japan, Iran, and a number of other countries, in Russia the state has the final say when it comes to large economic projects.

That is why Mikhail Khodorkovsky, the owner of the Yukos oil company, was dealt a 10 year prison sentence after he started negotiations with Exxon and other American companies about pipeline projects of his own. You are allowed to steal but the state has the final say and tolerates no private diplomacy. Therefore Yukos was handed back to state-owned Rosneft and whilst Khodorkovsky has meanwhile be released, he is also in exile. There he has founded ‘Open Russia’, an organisation that must assist regime change.

The Netherlands has joined Germany in making the first 1000 troops available to stop the Russian ‘advance’ (from Berlin in 1991 to the Russian border today), but apparently there is little communication between Defence and the ministry of economic affairs. For the preparation for a military conflict may be directed against Russia, but the economic warfare also targets us.

South Stream is officially registered in Amsterdam and is being financed among others by a bank consortium led by ING. These financiers will have to figure out what to do now, just like the large European companies involved in the project such as ENI-Saipem and Salzgitter, two companies which saw their stock market rate drop 8 percent yesterday. The Dutch (Swiss-based) company, AllSeas, misses the order to lay the actual pipes.

Just count your chickens.

Therefore, the economic warfare against Russia to achieve regime change there (and then on to China) is also economic warfare by the US against the EU.

In Bulgaria people are in no doubt about this in the meantime and the message must have arrived in Germany too. One of these days the simmering conflict between the EU and the US will erupt with full force, unless policy-makers in the European capitals are already resigned to an impending military conflict with Russia, which is being pursued by important forces within NATO.

Kees van der Pijl

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