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The Pipeline Pitting Politics Against Business

Putin

NordStream Will Move Ahead, With or Without Poisonings

Germany’s Merkel wants nothing more than Russia’s NordStream2 pipeline, which will deliver Russian gas directly to Germany, bypassing the two key opposing countries, Ukraine and Poland. Nothing has forced her to waiver from her dedication to NordStream and ensuring the Russian gas noose tightens around Europe’s neck, including U.S. sanctions threats. 

Russia has seemingly had carte blanche to do whatever it wishes, either at home or on German territory, without getting any sense that Merkel would respond by pulling out of the pipeline. The assassination of a Georgian, which was likely a Russian state-ordered hit, on the streets of Berlin last summer did not make her flinch. Neither, it would seem, will the confirmed poisoning of Russia’s opposition leader, Alexei Navalny, who is now in a coma in a hospital in Berlin. While the media like to say that Merkel is being “pressured” into rethinking NordStream, she is still unlikely to give in readily - even under mounting domestic pressure. 

The pipeline is a done deal. It only has some 160 kilometers left to build out of 1220 kilometers. U.S. sanctions have already been doing their best to delay the inevitable, but Merkel isn’t going to be the one to pull the plug on a project that is 90 percent complete - and one that is vital to her constituency in Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania, near the coastal area where the pipeline will run. Instead, Merkel would like…





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