US and German officials announced a deal on Wednesday that would allow the completion of a controversial natural gas pipeline between Russia and Germany, angering Republican lawmakers who denounced the deal by the Biden administration as Russian President Vladimir Putin. See it as another concession.
In a joint statement outlining the terms of the agreement, Washington and Berlin vowed to counter any attempt by Moscow to use the Nord Stream 2 pipeline for an “aggressive political end by using energy as a weapon”. the chasm.
The two governments also said they would support a $1 billion fund for alternative energy and development projects in Ukraine, which has been sidelined by the new pipeline, while Germany with a possible 10-year extension until 2024. Promised to reimburse Kiev for gas transit charges.
“The United States and Germany are united in their determination to hold Russia accountable for its aggression and malicious activities by imposing costs through sanctions and other means,” the statement read in part.
Senate Intelligence Committee member Sen. Tom Cotton (R-Ark.) on Wednesday dubbed the deal “a terrible mistake” and “another example of Joe Biden’s pathetic appeasement of Vladimir Putin.”
“First of all, it’s going to cost American jobs,” Cotton told LBL’s “The Faulkner Focus.” “We produce natural gas in this country in sufficient quantities that we can export. We can sell our gas to Germany and Western Europe. Now Vladimir Putin is going to sell it to Europe. Second, it would make Germany and other Western European countries lean on Russian gas even more deeply, meaning we wouldn’t have as much leverage over Russia in tough times. Third, it badly affects our allies and partners in Eastern Europe, such as Poland and Ukraine.
Cotton said, “Consider what might happen if it’s a cold winter this coming year, and Vladimir Putin threatens to shut off gas going into Germany, Ukraine or Poland.” Give…” said Cotton.
“Vladimir Putin now has a lot of advantage against our European partners, and it gives him a free hand in places like Ukraine or Central Asian countries. So Vladimir Putin has a lot of advantage and it also gives the rest of the world Sends the wrong signal, that Joe Biden is not tough enough to stand up for America’s interests and protect our allies.”
Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) described the agreement as “a generational geopolitical victory for Putin and a catastrophe for the United States and our allies. President Biden is defying US law and has completely Decades from now, Russian dictators will still be recovering billions from Biden’s gifts, and Europe will still be subject to Russian energy blackmail.
“We always knew Biden was in bed with Putin, now he’s spooning,” Cruz said.
Nikki Haley, former South Carolina governor and US ambassador to the United Nations, tweeted: “Responding to Russia’s growing influence in Europe should be done without hesitation, but Joe Biden gifted Putin the Nord Stream 2 pipeline.”
“Biden killed thousands of American jobs and hurt our energy independence by shutting down Keystone XL but now he is making Russia rich.”
Rep. Michael McCall (R-Texas), ranking member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, warned that Russia would “use the Nord Stream 2 pipeline as a weapon of coercion against Ukraine and transatlantic energy security, as soon as it becomes operational in the future.” The promise of investing in Ukrainian energy projects and the vague threat of consequences will not change that reality.”
Even some Democrats cast doubt on the deal.
Jean Shaheen of New Hampshire, a member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, said in a statement that she was “not yet convinced that this agreement – or any bilateral agreement – could provide sufficient reassurance to our European allies and significantly This could reduce the economic impact and safety implications of completion of this pipeline.”
Earlier on Wednesday, Victoria Nuland, the Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs, categorically denied reports that Ukraine had been warned against publicly complaining about the agreement. Meanwhile, the White House announced that Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelensky will meet Biden in Washington on August 30.
In May, the State Department announced that it was waiving sanctions against Russia-owned, Switzerland-based Nord Stream 2 AG and its CEO, Mathias Warnig, a former East German secret police officer with close ties to Putin.
As recently as March this year, Secretary of State Antony Blinken described the pipeline, which would run under the Baltic Sea, as “a Russian geopolitical project intended to divide Europe and undermine European energy security.” “
However, President Biden told reporters two months later that since the pipeline was “almost completely dismantled,” the sanctions “will now be counterproductive in terms of our European relations.”
Germany successfully resisted US pressure to move away from the pipeline, which is being built by the Russian state-owned energy company Gazprom, the parent company of Nord Stream 2 AG. Germany is the world’s sixth largest energy consumer and the largest consumer of natural gas.
post with wires