Skip to comments.Russia may cut off oil flow to the West (so much for freedom of Ossetia)
Posted on 08/28/2008 4:33:08 PM PDT by Fred
Fears are mounting that Russia may restrict oil deliveries to Western Europe over coming days, in response to the threat of EU sanctions and Nato naval actions in the Black Sea.
Any such move would be a dramatic escalation of the Georgia crisis and play havoc with the oil markets.
Reports have begun to circulate in Moscow that Russian oil companies are under orders from the Kremlin to prepare for a supply cut to Germany and Poland through the Druzhba (Friendship) pipeline. It is believed that executives from lead-producer LUKoil have been put on weekend alert.
"They have been told to be ready to cut off supplies as soon as Monday," claimed a high-level business source, speaking to The Daily Telegraph. Any move would be timed to coincide with an emergency EU summit in Brussels, where possible sanctions against Russia are on the agenda.
Any evidence that the Kremlin is planning to use the oil weapon to intimidate the West could inflame global energy markets. US crude prices jumped to $119 a barrel yesterday on reports of hurricane warnings in the Gulf of Mexico, before falling back slightly.
Global supplies remain tight despite the economic downturn engulfing North America, Europe and Japan. A supply cut at this delicate juncture could drive crude prices much higher, possibly to record levels of $150 or even $200 a barrel.
With US and European credit spreads already trading at levels of extreme stress, a fresh oil spike would rock financial markets. The Kremlin is undoubtedly aware that it exercises extraordinary leverage, if it strikes right now.
Such action would be seen as economic warfare but Russia has been infuriated by Nato meddling in its "backyard" and threats of punitive measures by the EU. Foreign minister Sergei Lavrov yesterday accused EU diplomats of a "sick
(Excerpt) Read more at telegraph.co.uk ...
the dim euros are starting to wake up.
Russia will help McCain win by wide margin.
What will the world’s plan of action be? If Russia can blackmail Europe with oil in order to expand their power, then we’ve already lost.
What reason is there to not stop them right now? It will only continue.
They’re not ticked at the Germans, its just Poland which the pipleline traverses. They’re still hopping mad over the ABM shield deal and mutual defense treaty. They’ve now threatened Poland about every way they possibly can.
P.S. I’m not a ‘strategerist’ and welcome any input.
Amen! The West should have seen this coming. Putin gets power through energy control. This may work better than the Russian Army.
“..the dim euros are starting to wake up.”
They may wake up to the reality of their precarious situation, but is there really anything they can and will do about it?
So we drill here, drill now, and WE sell to Poland, screw Russia!
How about we ask the new axis of evil Pelosi/Obama/Reid at the DNC convention tonight..They claim to have all the answers...
HEY RUSSIA! DICK CHENEY TO YOU!
We can pay $4 gas but we. i.e. The West, can crush you like a freaking ant if we band together and decide to.
Erm... the reality is that is very much impossible. Unless good chunk of western Europe wants to have its lights shut off. They import almost half of their natural gas and a big chunk of oil from Russia. The Russkies got them by the balls, *and*, we pissed them off royally lately. We completely told them to go pound sand over Kosovo. We have been pushing NATO forward. We have pushed ABM defense into Poland literally to their border. And, somehow, all this time, they were quiet - building up their strength and now time has come to assert to the west that things may not be quite what the west believes them to be. It’s a good wake up call to the Eurowheenies who couldn’t defend themselves now from the Islamist within their own borders, not to mention a resurgent Russia.
All the more important we get McCain elected, wrap up Iraq and start giving a bit more bandwidth to other areas of the world.
Which is why I don't understand why the US and the rest of the world didn't have a better handle on it.
yes, diplomatically, financially, and militarily.
but they have to have balls!
they call president bush “the cowboy president” because he has balls and they do not.
i read in the newspapers today that even the chinese are starting to wonder about russia’s grab of so ossetia and abkhazia.
Import oil from Norway. Rename the pipeline Puto.
well,this is a national security issue,,,when you cut off heating /electricity/transportation souces of energy for political reasons ,you are playing with fire
Yep. Putin made no big secret of his displeasure with European meddling. That was when we should have made sure he could do nothing about it.
Being unprepared is our own fault.
Our politicians failed to learn anything thirty years ago after the Arab Oil Embargo to punish those who supported Israel during the Yom Kippur War of 1973. Back then we still produced 70% of our crude oil needs. Now we produce about 30%.
Have they yet learned that we must develop our ability to produce a large percentage of our energy needs, or we will always be subject to supply manipulation by such as the Arabs or the Russians or Hugo Chavez?
Nothing new in this story. The danger of this sort of action has been known for 30+ years. It’s just playing “Russian” roulette, waiting until some oil producing thug nation decides to slip a bullet into the chamber.
McCain’s bold proposal is to drill more offshore, IF the state(s) involved agrees. But no drilling in ANWR.