Tilak Doshi Contributor
I analyze energy economics and related public policy issues.
We live in “interesting times” as the Chinese curse would have it:
“Russia’s war against Ukraine could spiral into the world’s worst energy crisis since the 1970s, a top economic historian says”, Business Insider, March 4th
“‘Worst crisis since the second world war’: Germany prepares for a Russian gas embargo”, Financial Times, April 21st
“‘Apocalyptic’ food shortage threatens, says Bank of England governor”: Sydney Morning Herald, May 17th
“Forty-Nine Million People in 43 Countries One Step Away from Famine, Secretary-General Warns in Briefing to Security Council on Conflict, Food Security”, United Nations, May 19th
In the aftermath of the Russia invasion of Ukraine on 24th February, the U.S., U.K. and the European Union along with their closest allies imposed the most comprehensive and unprecedented economic attack on a sovereign nation in recent history. The Western alliance expropriated half of the Russian Central Bank’s foreign exchange reserves held offshore – which had totalled some $650 billion — and blocked key Russian banks’ access to the SWIFT international payments system. The all-out economic warfare launched on Russia was meant to devastate the Russian economy, collapse the rouble and possibly lead to regime change with the ouster of President Vladimir Putin. President Joe Biden said “Putin must go” in off-script remarks, and not to be outdone, one U.S. senator even welcomed Putin’s assassination. This was instantly cheer-led by commentators in the media.
The financial sanctions had an immediate effect, and Russia’s rouble fell by almost half of its value, to 136 to the dollar from the pre-invasion levels of around 70. The Moscow stock market got shuttered. It would have seemed that the country’s economy faced ruin in short order. Remarkably, the rouble soon recovered sharply to beyond pre-invasion levels. On Friday, the rouble was trading at 61.5 to the dollar, making the rouble the world’s best performing currency against the dollar in 2022. The value of the rouble is hardly a comprehensive indicator of Russia’s economic performance but other indicators, such as the central bank’s recent cut in its interest rate from 17% to 14% and the continued health of retail spending at cafes, bars, and restaurants, suggest that Russia’s economy is holding up well despite the wide-ranging Western financial sanctions.
Russia is not Cuba, North Korea, Iran or Venezuela. “Experts” often cited in the media point out that Russia’s GDP is comparable to the EU’s economic laggard Spain, as if that explains the limits of Russia’s potential in geopolitical affairs. But Russia is geographically the largest nation on earth with 140 million citizens across 11 contiguous time zones. It has the world’s third most powerful military commanding the largest arsenal of nuclear warheads. Above all, it is a powerhouse for commodity exports. Ambrose Evans-Pritchard of The Daily Telegraph calls Russia “a full-spectrum commodity superpower, less vulnerable to sanctions than Europe itself”.
Russia is a major food producer, being the world’s third largest wheat producer and leading net exporter. It is also the world’s largest fertilizer exporter and ranks number three in aluminium exports and number four or five among the world’s largest iron and steel exporters (depending on whether EU as a whole is ranked in this list). It is also a leading exporter of key industrial metals such as palladium, platinum, nickel and copper which are critical to the West’s ambitions for the “energy transition” to renewables such as wind and solar power and electric vehicles. Most critically, Russia is a heavyweight fossil fuel exporter in world markets. Fossil fuels, it should be noted, still account for some 80% of global energy consumption. It is the world’s largest natural gas exporter, the 2nd largest oil exporter (after Saudi Arabia) and the third largest coal exporter (after Australia and Indonesia).
Russia Raises Its Rouble Defence…
In response to the “shock and awe” financial sanctions launched on Russia, President Putin signed a decree on March 31st requiring all “unfriendly” countries – that is, those countries that launched unilateral financial sanctions on Russia – to pay in roubles for its natural gas. EU leaders protested that the Kremlin’s “roubles for gas” demand was against “contract sanctity”. Presumably, in their view, the Western alliance’s unilateral expropriation of Russia’s sovereign wealth did not count as breach of contract. Nor did the U.S. administration hesitate to weaponize its dollar hegemony to ex-communicate Russia from the international financial system.
Two months after EU leaders rejected the Kremlin’s “roubles for gas” plan, at least twenty European natural gas importers including leading companies such as ENI, Uniper and OMV have opened accounts with Gazprombank to enable payments in roubles, with fourteen more importers requesting similar facilities from the bank. Russia halted gas supply to Poland and Bulgaria in April and to Finland on Friday for failing to pay for their gas supplies in roubles. After weeks of contradictory advice from Brussels, the EU just gave its assent to payment for Russian gas in roubles by its members.
On the more fungible oil trading front, the US, UK, Canada and Australia have banned crude oil and refined products from Russia. The EU, however, has yet to act given Europe’s much heavier dependence on Russian oil imports. About 27% of EU’s oil imports are sourced from Russia. On May 4, the EU proposed a ban on Russian oil imports by the end of the year but failed to get a consensus as Hungary vetoed the move. And while EU ports are effectively closed to Russian oil tankers, Greek shipowners tripled their share in transporting Russian oil in April compared to the 2021 average. The powerful Greek shipowners lobby pushed the EU to drop their sanctions on Russian oil exported to third countries.
Russia has so far deflected much of the impact of sanctions on its oil trade. India, and to a lesser degree China, have been snapping up cheap Russian crude oil cargoes shunned by the Western alliance. India now accounts for about 10% of Russian oil exports, from close to zero in early 2022. By the first week of April, Russian oil exports climbed back to their pre-invasion levels. As commodity prices for fuels, food and fertilizers have surged since the Russia sanctions, Russia’s current account surplus more than tripled in the first four months of the year to $95.8 billion.
…And Europe Goes For Economic Suicide
The EU depends on Russia for over 40% of its natural gas supply, while German dependence on Russia is even higher, at around 50 – 60%. In early March, on a proposal intended to undermine Russia’s financial ability to wage the Ukraine offensive by placing constraints on its key energy and primary commodity exports, the European Commission published plans to cut EU dependency on Russian gas by two-thirds this year and end its reliance on Russian supplies of the fuel “well before 2030”. This is a tall order by any measure. Like the EU’s aspirational German-driven Green Deal goal of “net zero by 2050”, it has little chance of coming anywhere close to being achieved if the laws of economics and physics have anything to do with it.
Europe has no alternative to spending billions of Euros every month on Russia’s piped natural gas in the short run (i.e. up to 3 to 5 years out). Supply side solutions will take years for the requisite LNG infrastructure and alternative suppliers with additional capacity to achieve EU’s diversification efforts. In the meantime, German leaders have only “demand side measures” to resort to. In normal parlance, this means “tighten your belts”. Sure enough, draft proposals from the European Commission seen by the Financial Times state that “[t]he EU will also have to cut energy consumption more than previously thought to meet ambitious net zero carbon emissions targets by 2050.” Not to be outdone in the energy-hairshirt stakes, the climate alarmist IEA – now known more for its unhinged advocacy for all things Green than as a credible energy research organization — duly came out with a 10-point plan to reduce fossil fuel use in Europe to “help Ukraine” on the back of European consumers.
Germany’s Bundesbank stated in late April that in a “severe crisis scenario, real GDP in the current year would fall by almost 2% compared to 2021,” and the “inflation rate would be significantly higher for a longer period of time” following an embargo. A more recent study of the impact of an immediate embargo on Russian gas exports to Germany estimated that it could reduce its 2022 GDP by up to 12%. Manfred Knof, CEO of Commerzbank – Germany’s second largest private bank – warned that a “tsunami of bankruptcies” could batter Europe’s largest manufacturing hub as stagflation risks mount due to Western sanctions on Russian energy exports.
The “global campaign” against Russia covered breathlessly by the mainstream media is nothing of the sort: the vast majority of nations outside of the transatlantic alliance of the US, EU and their closest allies, accounting for over 80% of the world’s population, have not participated in the anti-Russia sanctions. The “striking unity of purpose” in the US and Europe over the Russia sanctions has meant little for most governments in the Middle East, Asia, Africa and Latin America intent on navigating what looks like a rapidly bifurcating world economy. Nor is it very evident in the EU’s failed attempts to get consensus on plans for an embargo on Russia’s energy exports.
Dmitry Medvedev, the former President of Russia and current Deputy Chairman of the Security Council of the Russian Federation, wrote on Telegram: “Only a few weeks after the imposition of the ‘hellish’ sanctions against Russia, it turns out, as expected, that they will boomerang back on the West.” For leading developing countries such as Brazil, India, China and South Africa, protecting their freedom to trade with a commodity superpower such as Russia is as important as ensuring that they do not become the next victims of a globalizing West wielding its dominance in international financial institutions. While bureaucrats in Brussels and Washington DC push their wishful renewable energy dreams, the rest of the world has to get on with the ordinary business of making ends meet.
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The Germans have yet to admit the Energiewende was a failure.
They won’t admit to it being a mistake even after their poor and infirm die off.
It’s a feature, not a bug.
It’s a feature, not a bug.
Just added that to my file of factoids & smart remarks.
planned parenthood… parent/hood… personhood are historically features of great “resets”
Is it a failure? What were the real goals of Energiewende? Perhaps the effects are exactly what was desired.
That’s what we’re seeing in the US. FBJ’s energy policies are having the exact desired effect.
How about principle? How about imposing sanctions against Russia, and those overtly supporting them, like China, until they feel direct pain for their murderous attacks? How can any good person watch Russia systematically murder women and children?
Tibet was annexed in 1960, and its population and culture have been mercilessly suppressed and eradicated ever since. China has flourished. Does that answer your pressing question ?
Where’s the sanctions ?
Where’s the outrage ?
Where’s grand speeches ?
Funny how nobody discusses/remembers the US’ war(s)/interference in what they considered their “back yard” in Middle/South America ? Where were THOSE sanctions and righteous condemnations ?
And the list goes on …
Something about throwing stones and living in glass houses.
Ah yes, the old, unless you solve every problem in the world, you shouldn’t bother trying to solve any excuse.
Stand with Ukranians… North/West or South/East? The war has been in progress since the Biden/Maidan/Slavic Spring in 2014. Watch the Kiev regimes, military, paramilitary axis systemically disenfranchising, denying essential services, and aborting women and children. The operation of illicit Wuhan-style labs doesn’t help their transnational standing.
And the throwing of their political opponents in jail plus taking over all media close ing down opposition media , not the actions of a ” democracy “
While you might – just – accept closing down opposition in time of war, how does stealing all their assets not smack of complete dictatorship? And in the idiotic western countries – silence.
Although some point to the US being behind the coup in 2014 that started all of this, the EU was the real instigator having courted Ukraine as members and poured millions of Euro into the country’s pro-EU groups, when the democratically elected president decided not to sign the treaty on the first step to accession – left wing liars claim it was just a trade deal – the EU acted.
Sanctions don’t work. When do we realize this 🙁
The US has been sanctioning Cuba forever and the same people are in charge.
FJB said sanctions don’t work even as the US was threatening them. He was confused but at the same time correct.
The best part is the Germans shaking their heads.
The German public need to see this video. It will make them realise they have dingbats representing them.
Sanctions rarely affect those in power because they will also take what they want off the top. However, it’s arguable the Cuban communist government has only survived because of benefactor nations such as the former USSR and now Russia and China.
That maybe the case but they are still in power. Maybe the old CIA coup is what you are calling for 🙂
Just like Direct Taxation and Printing only is bad for the poor.
The US is the only country that ever sanctioned Cuba.
China is currently preparing for avoiding sanctions by divesting of foreign assets and passing laws to confiscate foreign assets in the country if China is sanctioned. This is a prelude to further aide to Russia and the leadup to invasion of Taiwan.
Anyone with assets in China is going to be hurt.
China is even a more complex situation than Russia when it comes to their geopolitical security and geopolitical influence expansions.
China under this new geopolitical situation has far better options than invading Taiwan.
China can do and gain far much more and easier without an invasion of Taiwan or any other war or invasions.
And they have a brilliant opportunity now…
which they had not before, especially, and completely out of question, during the Presidency of Donald J Trump.
Most probably, invasion of Taiwan a “mince meat” tactic.
We watch and see.
I think that Xi believes Taiwan is his for the taking and there isn’t a better time than later this year.
To oligarchs, the loss of a few million people is nothing to worry about.
Yes, of course, you could be right. Most probably that what will happen in the end of the day.
But still, I think China has a far better opportunity, which it had not before.
Easier, less costly, and far more promising and more effective than Taiwan invasion, in the consideration of China’s expansion of it’s geopolitical regional influence/domination.
Just saying, as I see it… maybe wrong, but for whatever it is worth.
already done/doing with belt n rd and so called development loans
the fools in the pacific solomons will find out the hard way
Perhaps there now is actually a little bit more added to the story than just;
“belt n rd and so called development loans”
Yes, but this is not sound economic policy. It’s likely to backfire on China.
Every western country on the planet has not been following sound economic policy for decades.
Most government leaders have given up to a group of elitist lunatics with god complexes. They aren’t even hiding it anymore. They are bragging about their takeover and how they are going to transform humanity.
Xi must feed his ego also. He is committed to the One China policy. The taking of Taiwan will put him in the history books even if the island is reduced to rubble and millions are dead.
well america just showed they can and will literally STEAL funds from sovreign nations who placed money in offshiore accounts as required for trade/banking. so no country in its right mind will leave much offshore or in bullion Iseem to remember reading how getting Germanys bullion returned from usa seemed to take a very long battle a few yrs ago
It took 3 years to repatriate most of the planned gold (674 tons of the 1500 tons stored) from USA and France (535 tons finally repatriated), which was still only a part of the reserves held overseas for Germany.
And now they got to pay for it too. 🙂
Of course the U.S. will steal assets. All governments steal assets from their own citizens as well as other nations. Governments are parasites on humanity.
Granted, the citizens gain some benefits like roads, bridges, and national defense but a huge amount of money goes to extraneous programs that benefit only a few well placed political cronies.
That’s why governments should be small and easily controlled by the citizenry rather than huge bureaucratic nightmares.
How about the principle of not harming innocent people? Because that is what economic sanctions do. People that boast about principle are people that least have it. The effect of these sanctions is going to be felt most by not only the weak and poor in Russia, but also by the weak and poor in Europe and in the least developed countries where they can’t afford the inflation in food and energy.
Apparently principle is the luxury of the rich that don’t care.
Right, let’s drop the sanctions that hurt innocent people. Instead let’s provide Ukraine every weapons system they want and need to throw the russians out, i mean EVERYTHING. How’s that? I’m ready.
What, then, do we do with Ukraine who has been using similar tactics against it’s own people in Donetsk and Luhansk? I’m all for punishing Russia but I have no desire to reward Ukraine for the same crimes.
Same crimes? Like raping children and executing civilians with shots to back of their heads. That’s news, tell us more!
I was thinking more along the lines of firing SS21’s into civilian areas but if you want to go there then, yes; there is mounting evidence that Kyiv backed forces have used sexualised violence and rape against the people of Donetsk and Luhansk – this goes back to reports that have been made to OSCE since 2016 and onwards. Both sides are using the same tactics and are guilty of the same crimes – I’m just not as comfortable as you seem to be to punish one and reward the other for doing this.
Timo they are both corrupt…now what was Obama doing in Ukraine back when he was President 😉
OSCE – I mentioned it in the post. I’ve no intention of spoonfeeding you every mouthful; if you can’t look it up then stop asking for sources.
I notice that the folks compiling the report are exclusively Russian. I’m sure their motives are as pure as the driven snow. Not.
I’m sure their motives are as pure as the motives of the Ukrainians also sending reports to OSCE. Try looking at the US department of state reports on the human rights abuses in Ukraine from 2016 and 2017 then.
What does that mean? You’ve been repeating it like a broken record.
Rhymes with Biden.
Good for you. Maybe you and the eager beavers in Biden’s DoS / DoD can reconstitute the Abraham Lincoln brigade.
I’m from Finland. Soviets tried to take us like Russia is trying to take Ukraine. They did not succeed, they left and leaved half a million of their dead behind. We would do it again, we are armed to the teeth and very capable. You have no idea what kind of nation Russia is.
‘I’m from Finland.‘
Some friendly advice then. Don’t let your country get sucked into stupid wars by my country’s Deep State.
That was 70 years ago. You country is cucked and weak.
good for Finland … don’t send weapons to Ukraine then … in case you need them …
Oh we know. Trump warned Europe but their leaders were too busy making deals and getting rich.
I’m from Vietnam, Iraq, Afghanistan Syria…………………. you have no idea what kind of nation the USA is.
It’s very important to look at sanctions from a wholistic world view, not a simple us vs them.
Yes we do. We also know what kind of nation Ukraine is – they learned every bad lesson that the Soviets/Russia had to teach. I will tar both countries with the same brush because the evidence is there that they are behaving the same.
you’re ready ? wait, you have a stockpile of Javlines in your garage ? Oh you mean spend someone else’s money to build those weapons and send them over to Ukraine … ready to virtue signal … but what if that won’t make a difference ? what if Russia keeps eastern Ukraine and you have spent other peoples money in vain ?
are you ready to commit like the chicken or the pig when it comes to breakfast ?
Despite your “credentials” being “A Fin”, you seem to have some serious gaps in your knowledge of a) history in general, both ancient and modern/recent, b) Russian history in particular and c) geopolitical reality. With respect, I suggest you should read more. Probably much more. You should perhaps also consider visiting and commenting on other blogs. I’m not sure WUWT is the right forum for reaching your “objectives”.
Every Russian and half of the native Ukrainian population. Sure, why not. Forward!
There are three options.
1) Do nothing and allow aggressor nations to kill more innocent people as they take over the countries around them.
What do you suggest?
There are three options.
1) Do nothing and allow climate change to kill more innocent people as it destroys the world around us.
2) Crater our economies
3) Give up our freedoms
What do you suggest?
Climate change is not killing anyone, but the russians are killing plenty.
I think you missed this > ‘/sarc’.
There’s a huge difference between the imaginary deaths that you sarcastically claim and the very real deaths caused by one nation invading another. That you are incapable of understanding the difference does not speaks highly of you.
So again the serious question that you attempted to dodge with nonsense: what is your suggestion for the VERY REAL situation going on in Ukraine.
‘So again the serious question that you attempted to dodge with nonsense: what is your suggestion for the VERY REAL situation going on in Ukraine.’
I’m sorry you missed the point of my post, where I sarcastically compared MarkW’s very limited set of alternatives to the similarly very limited set of alternatives we are often presented with by climate alarmists. But to answer your ‘serious’ question, I would propose a fourth alternative, namely:
4) Negotiate a ceasefire and Russian withdrawal in exchange for Ukraine’s neutrality and full autonomy for its ethnically Russian provinces.
Alternatively, we can continue with the’ VERY REAL situation going on in Ukraine’ that Biden, his Neo-Con friends and you clearly prefer, in which case the bloodshed will continue, in addition to many more millions dead due to famine.
In other words your solution is to appease Putin by rewarding his aggression via giving him a part of Ukraine. That worked out so well in the 1930s/1940s. Thanks Nevil. Those who don’t learn from history truly are doomed to repeat it.
‘How about principle?’
Here’s a principle: America’s Left loved Russia when it was the core of the Soviet Union but now hates Russia for having given up on Marxism.
And selling their natural resources on the open market. Selfish. There was a similar forcing in South Africa, and most recently in Libya in the world Spring series.
Yes. How dare they increase the supply of scarce resources!
“How can any good person watch Russia systematically murder women and children?”
Do not like my useless and counterproductive sanctions?
You want children to die!!!!
Do not like my solar panels?
You want children to die!!!!
Do not like my windmills?
You want children to die!!!!
Do not like my useless policies??
You want children to die!!!!
Do not like my stupid rhetoric??
You want children to die! You stupid RACIST!
We have heard it all before.
You forgot misogynist 🙂
Yes, I know.
Just enough with policies which do not have the intended effect.
You want to stop Russia, then do so. People keep saying to ship rockets to Ukraine. Wait a minute. Using large quantities of cheap, not very accurate rockets in barrage attack is Russian military doctrine. NATO doctrine is modeled after US practice. Accurate time-on-target artillery fire.
Sanctions do not work, timed artillery fire does.
Mosul and Falluja don’t look like they were subject to precision wespons
Dork! You can’t tell the difference between fantasy threats and real people dying. Look at the war crimes investigation reports, look at the videos, listen to the eyewitness accounts. Determining what to believe is a huge challenge. You are apparently using a formula that has complete disregard for evidence.
Dork off yourself, dorkface.
I looked at it all, it is easy to see what to believe. Both sides are guilty as sin of war crimes. I would say a pox on both their houses. Or as we used to say, too bad both sides cannot lose.
Take a view based on what Russia’s neighbors think, perhaps. They are informed by the reality of their situation.
The consensus seems to be the best course of action is to stop the Russians. Because at the end of the day, the Russians are acting like Russians. And they will continue to act like Russians unless and until stopped.
“Determining what to believe is a huge challenge.”
If you are still stuck on what to believe, you are way behind the curve.
I hear you. It is important to weigh the consequences of policy. It’s just as important we verify the sanctions are having the desired effect and aren’t just an expression of moral outrage.
everyone is watching Russia invade Ukraine … Good persons, bad persons, middle of the road persons … what principle are you referring too ? I assume you mean the same principles that watched as Ukranians killed ethnic Russians in eastern Ukraine … Or Americans kill Iraqi women and children …
what you seem to have is a level of empathy that can be poisonous … of course its normal to feel bad for someone being invaded/killed … thats normal empathy … and most of the time there is not a damn thing you can do about it … and most people accept that … but if you think you simply MUST do something about a situation you have absolutely no control over you invariably will feel worse and worse about the situation because you can’t do anything … (and demanding others do something so you feel better doesn’t make you a good person …)
In the situations where you have some control you of course balance how much pain you are willing to put up with to take that action … pain being loss of money/less food/less oil etc. … and often that balancing act leads you to not do anything … and that perfectly normal and does not make you a bad person …
The good persons, aka Ukraine army, on the line of separation in the Dombas, East Ukraine, killed thousands of east Ukrainians, from 2014 to 2022, because they refused to recognize the outcome of the US/EU-backed ousting of a democratically elected Ukraine government in Kiev in 2014.
Simple fact is I do watch it on the news and that’s all I’ll do unless I’m prepared to send my son and daughter and their peers to fight and die with Ukrainians. I know economic sanctions never work and no good cutting off your nose to spite your face. Use the benefits of trade to feed sophisticated arms to Ukranians in order to defend themselves and think about other rational alternatives dealing with rogue nuclear superpowers-
‘International coalition’ of warships needed to stop Russian blockade, says retired US general (msn.com)
The Ukrainians have already demonstrated how to stop a naval blockade. I don’t mind sending them more anti-ship missiles as long as our technology does not get “lost”.
yeah but until the UKRANIAN placed mines are removed then no ships are going anywhere. russia was quite happy to ship wheat etc to the poor nations but some morons embargoed the shipping.
and after what the “west” did cant say I blame russia for sanctioning them for fertiliser etc supply
Russia isn’t “systematically” murdering women and children.
curious that no one ever sanctioned usa after the thousands of deaths caused by their actions? or ever took private billionaires boats or homes all over the world.
albrights comment re even if 500k died in americas attacks in mid east it was worth it??
and the worlds media and twits stayed schtum
Why were there not sanctions against Ukraine for shelling the Don bas people before the invasion because it did not meet the western meeme of Russia bad , intafeared i n us elections , got trump elected , which is a busted idea as Bar thinks Hillary need s charging with sedition .
The question is what system is more corrupt. Just look how the West is using climate to take all your rights away. It should be We The People in the West fighting to get our freedom back.
Where were you when Ukrainian nazis were systematically shelling, raping, torturing and enslaving Eastern Russian speaking Ukrainians, including pregnant women whose babies were torn from their wombs? Some 10,000 or more people were killed?
James Baker gave security assurances to Gorbachev to get Germany reunified – assurances that were subsequently broken
What a mess
What was that treaty again? What, no treaty?
Unfortunately, a treaty is no guarantee the US will live up to its side of the bargain. However, American administrations are not bound by the policies of their predecessors.
The Stockholm Accords of 1993. The US was signatory along with NATO.
The Accords were duly ratified as an international treaty by the US Senate in it’s constitutional “Advise and Consent” role.
At that point, following administrations were bound.
The US did in fact break the treaty at it’s first chance and has ignored it ever since.
Er, wtf? The Oslo accord of 1993 was between Israel and the PLO. There are no Stockholm accords of 1993. Are you referring to the agreement of the Stockholm conferences in 1984-6?
No, following administrations are not bound. That would mean policy is set in stone. New administrations are often put in place to reverse bad policy.
It’s amazing what 81 million, most of which are phantom votes, can accomplish in a short time.
Yes, elections have consequences,
especially when stolen, or as more realistically put, possessed via daylight robbery, resulting with a President that no one believes or trusts,
not even his puppet masters.
Weakness, incompetence and wide spread failure, nationally and internationally, will be the ‘order’ of the day.
Biden was credited with 81 million ballots from various sources
Biden did not get 81 million votes, not by a long shot!!
Russias leaders want’s to keep writing european history with 1945 as a starting point.
European and US leaders want’s to write european history with 1989 as a starting point.
But it is 2022 guys – and we need to find a solution before the nukes starts to rain down upon us.
Very simple – do what (as I understand) The Orange Man wanted to do.
Putin repeatedly warned The West ever since NATO ‘invaded’ Georgia over 6 years ago – Don’t get any closer
or especially with Ukraine, don’t threaten my access for trade and military via The Black Sea
So what does NATO do – invade the Ukraine
Yet muppets in Finland and Sweden want to do exactly that while The West cheers them on
Ukraine On Fire
……and The Boomerang (Streisand) Effect comes on strong when the toob says… (oh sod it, just click the link)
PS In case anyone didn’t know, being a member of NATO allows the US to set up fully armed military bases on your soil.
Remember how the US took that sort of behaviour in 1963 Cuba?
Got us all 6 days away from a nuclear war, let alone 6 years as Mr Putin has put up with.
the double standards, the belligerence and the pig-headed stupidity are palpable.
just like climate science. and salt. and fat. and cholesterol. and Ozone Hole. and diabetes
Russia uncovered 26 bio labs in the Ukraine financed by the US Department of Defence. You don’t even need to be part of NATO for the bases to appear.
Timo you are going to have to try really hard to convince us Ukraine is not corrupt.
He’ll just call you “Ivan”
Nice lie you are peddling there. The “bio labs” are NOT biological WEAPONS labs no matter how much Putin pays you to pretend they are.
That’s not what Victoria Nuland admitted.
Impoverished Ukraine was eager to have these US bio-“research” labs, because it was a way for insiders in the US and in Ukraine to line their pockets. Kazakhstan has such labs as well
many nations do somewhere round 300+ of them all in places that do NOT adhere to GoF and other restrictions, have cheap labour/land and dont ask many questions and have leaders who like the handouts
You keep repeating propaganda. When are you going to catch on that Putin is manipulating you? Perhaps you are also one of the manipulators?
Ukraine is not controlled by a secret Nazi cabal. The people of Ukraine are not waiting to be liberated. The Russian-speaking population is not being suppressed by Ukraine. It’s all a lie.
These are the same lies told by Hitler and his (once) good buddy Stalin.
Exactly! And now wait for those downvotes from russian trollbots!
Ukraine troll bots 😉
well “The Russian-speaking population is not being suppressed by Ukraine” is a bald faced lie … doesn’t make the invasion right … but thats a lie … (and you know it is)
Hitler said Ukraine was controlled by a secret Nazi cabal?
As it happens, before “we” decided the neoNazis could be useful Allies to overextend Russia (like how “we” decided we could use Islamic extremists to help overextend the Soviets in Afghanistan, and overthrow Assad in Syria) it was well-recognised that Ukraine had a major neoNazi problem:
Neo-Nazi Azov Battalion is a threat from within
Nazi symbols, salutes on display at Ukrainian nationalist march
Ukraine And Its Nazi Collaborators
Western countries training far-right extremists in Ukraine – report
The reality of neo-Nazis in Ukraine is far from Kremlin propaganda:
German TV Shows Nazi Symbols on Helmets of Ukraine Soldiers:
Rein in Ukraine’s neo-fascists:
Analysis: U.S. Cozies Up to Kiev Government Including Far Right:
Is the US backing neo-Nazis in Ukraine?:
Commentary: Ukraine’s neo-Nazi problem:
Profile: Ukraine’s ultra-nationalist Right Sector:
The Neo-Nazi Question in Ukraine:
America’s Collusion With Neo-Nazis:
Neo-Nazis and the Far Right Are On the March in Ukraine:
Volunteer Ukrainian unit includes Nazis:
Is America Training Neonazis in Ukraine?:
It’s 2022… potentially giving real weapons of war to n@zi is: meh (not great but yeah ok).
Letting white people (so potential white suprsomething) have AR-15… no way.
That would be like n@azism.
Please explain what happened with the very first vote of the parliament after the Euromaidan coup!
What that meant for Russian speaking citizens.
“Remind Me Again— Which Country’s Economy Was Sanctions Going To Devastate?”
Prepare for the flood of pro-russian trolls, starting in 3, 2, 1…
Are there any Ukraine trolls? Chinese trolls?
And what is Simon? A super troll or Russia Colluuuusion troll 😉
There is our Russia Colluuuusion clown now…Simon to the rescue 😉
Some very credible actors in this saga.
Here’s that Aussie diplomat who had some info about Russian spying –
why do you care ? are you Ukrainian ? if so I feel for your country … otherwise why do you care ?
What? FFS. The world should care. This is a shocking attack on an independent nation.
Yes and Russia needs to be stopped but it doesn’t alter the fact that Ukraine has been trying to eliminate the defenders of Donbas for the last 8 years using the same tactics Russia is using. Both countries are bad actors in this.
Defenders of Donbas? Really?
Ukraine is no bastion of righteousness, I’ll give you that. Neck-and-neck with Russia on corruption.
It’s easier to say ‘defenders of donbas’ rather than the more correct ‘civilian international militia drawn from Ukraine, Germany, Spain, Russia, Georgia, Italy, Hungary, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Poland and Bosnia who are fighting for the Donetsk and Luhansk regions.’ Sorry for not being a bit more specific in my original post.
Oil sanctions are indeed pointless. Even if they worked and you took like 5% off the market, the price effect would rather be 50% or even a 100%. The sanctioned target would sell less oil, but get more money for it. In the real world however, the oil is just redirected, satasifying needs elsewhere, with little effect on the global market.
With Gas it is a different thing. Russia does not have the infrastructure to send much of it elsewhere than Europe. What is appalling is how much Merkel’s and Schroeder’s administration worked to maximize Germany’s dependency on Russia. You would need to be very good willed, or highly naive, to assume stupidity and not straight forward collusion.
they currently send 20% of Gas to China directly … but yes its much harder to send the Gas to other customers … but they don’t have to worry because as you pointed out, Germany et al wrapped their lips around the Russian pipes …
Merkel was born and raised an East German. I don’t think she ever changed her stripes
‘What is appalling is how much Merkel’s and Schroeder’s administration worked to maximize Germany’s dependency on Russia.‘
Actually, what’s appalling is Germany’s dependency on renewables while deep-sizing her nuclear and coal resources. The resulting dependency on Russian gas was therefore a feature not a bug of bad policy.
[Best Mr. Roger’s voice] “Can you say ‘fungible’? I knew you could.” 😉
Putting the ‘fun’ into fungible there!
sensible to rely on russian gas n oil when youve ruined your pwer supplies with renewable duds n shut nuke plants down.
russia put the work into the pipelines and supplied at acceptable prices and reliably
until ussa decided to push expensive shipped frakked gas and upset agreements to do so, it was all sweet.
no one would have suffered shortages until USSA led the sanctions crapola to help gain more sales, meanwhile putting YOUR own prices and supplies into jeopardy
not a bright move
The law of unintended consequences in action.
Unintended but not entirely unpredictable – they tried it one too many times.
Russia will be in default by mid to late June. At this point their land gains are rubble like the other territory they secured and “administered” earlier.
in default of what ?
Debt payments to other banks, corporations, people, etc. throughout the world. It would be like Europe not receiving principle and interest paid by the US on their US treasury bonds and notes. The rest of the world is reluctant to loan you money (perhaps they will at eye-watering interest rates) after that. At the very least you will pay higher interest rates on any new or rolled-over borrowing.
Looks like they will default tomorrow. Don’t know exactly how that will affect things.
default ONLY because of outright THEFT of their trade account funds
and the refusal to accept Rubles a legal tender as payment in spite of the theft. the funds are there, refusing to accept it isnt on Russia but outright a**holes in the bankster run world
of outright THEFTof unjustified and illegal war against Ukrainian people, you mean.
As is often stated on here with reference to Climate Change us humans are good at adapting to new conditions.
With that in mind there is nothing that comes from Russia or Ukraine that can’t come from somewhere else. The problem is that the Western Democracies are taking very careful aim and shooting themselves in both feet. By commiting to Net Zero by 2030 and sticking to that in the face of rapidly approaching energy armageddon means we’re pretty much buggered.
Arguing how we got to where we are and who’s to blame and you did so and so first doesn’t actually help.
I’d actually be tempted to vote for anyone, even Bunter, who scraps Net Zero, Renewable energy, rewilding and all the other “green” and “environmentally friendly” policies that are causing us to shoot ourselves in the feet. This can be done without going back to dead rivers and killer smogs.
History shows that your enemies enemy is not necessarily your best friend forever, being self reliant as much as possible has a lot going for it. We have to accept that any debts incurred in getting out of the hole we’ve dug ourselves will take decades if not centuries and the the sooner we stop digging the sooner we’ll get out of the hole.
I’m not optimistic, there are too many innumerate and scientifically illerate politicians in control.
You’re right – there is nothing that comes from Russia or Ukraine that can’t come from somewhere else – but the quantity of what comes from Russia or Ukraine will be very difficult , if not impossible, to replace from somewhere else.
They are here with their lies, obfuscation and whataboutism. Remember their names and nicks good people of WUWT!
ahh good people … vs bad people … virtue signaling at its finest …
I am, you are and your name and nick probably have been duly noted. The question is whether you can remember the lies, fake news and propaganda you’ve been peddling – if not then it will return to bite you.
” ….. third most powerful military ….. ”
Third biggest, maybe, but don’t seem to be as powerful as everybody, including themselves, thought.
No-one is these days. So far they’ve been attacking a dug in, prepared and determined defence armed with the best equipment that they could get. When the Russians have dug in and the Ukraine wants to attack, it might not be so easy.
They had a huge military during the Reagan years, too, and weren’t worth a hill of beans then, either.
They inherited Stalin’s idea; “Quantity has a quality all of it’s own.” Then they downsized and slowly began to improve their equipment. Now they’re showing the world just how far they still have to go to catch up to the sophisticated weapons from the West.
If president FBJ hadn’t turned off our domestic oil production, we’d be looking at a much different scenario.
I know, if, if, if. Let me remind you one reason the USSR fell is the USA worked with Saudi Arabia and other OPEC nations to flood the oil market and bankrupt the Soviet Union. Oil-producing Muslim nations hated the USSR because the Soviets, like all good communists (and other Marxists) were strident atheists.
I am amazed that Forbes allowed that to be posted there …
Why? Don’t understand free press?
Andrew Bailey, BoE governor , actually said – Now I don’t want to sound apocalyptic about food price rises but….
He did NOT say anything about apocalyptic food shortages.
Perhaps you should take it up with the editor of the Sydney Morning Herald…
This is about destroying the EU(Germany) and their economies…the American Empire must remain Supreme and Hegemonic Globally……biden is doing what obama was too scared to do….long live biden…..he’s making America Greater…..
So the US manipulated Russia into invading Ukraine, sacrificing thousands of their youth, so the US Empire can remain “Supreme and Hegemonic Globally?” I didn’t think Russians were that stupid, but you may be right.
So Putin is Biden’s puppet?
Ummm not like the last guy was no.
The USA is squandering its unique privilege of creating the world currency. Removing it as a means of international trade for Russia has backfired spectacularly.
The RUB has a rocket under it. It is backed by energy and an unmatched nuclear arsenal. The USD is a promise of ever diminishing value. And now a hollow promise for any Russians holding them.
the risk of the usd remaining the sole trade currency is dropping
wanting to trade in gold got gaddafi killed
this time round it may end differently
My Mother, who was born and raised in Ukraine during the bad years (1925-35), always told me that the Russians a no G-d***m good. I have no sympathy for the Russians and we should double our sanctions and we should send anti-aircraft, MLRS, and other advanced weapon systems to Ukraine. Beating the Russians will have two good effects. It will stop their adventurism for a while and China will understand it as killing the chicken to scare the monkey.
…this conflict bear great similarities to wars fought between Denmark and Germany between 1848 & 1864. The dispute only ended peacefully after elections held across the territory in question in 1920. And it ended up with Denmark loosing quite a bit good farming land north to what we ( some of us 🙂 ) still consider to be the “historical border”. However it remind us that nations and borders are build around the people living in the disputed areas – right now – not the historical maps. Both the Ukrainian and Russian leaders forget that – like the Danish and German leaders did back then.
The real problem now is that the international community don’t even listen to Russias arguments – everything Moscow has to say is discharged as ‘fake news’ or propaganda. In the Danish/German conflict there was actually quite a few international attempts to resolve the issues – and some of them would have been better for Denmark (territorial-wise better) to accept than the elections – but we didn’t of pride.
This conflict will only end peacefully when the international community starts to respect both parties and all the people living in Donbas and Crimea.
The people of Donetsk and Luhansk, just like the people of Abkhazia and South Ossetia, whilst exercising their rights of freedom and self determination have been shafted by the International community who, in both cases, backed an aggressor using military force. We lost an opportunity in each of those cases when we backed the wrong horse, driving the victims into Russia’s grip. We need to learn from the mistakes we’ve made, not keep repeating them.
Well maybe house prices will come down in London a little.
“While bureaucrats in Brussels and Washington DC push their wishful renewable energy dreams, the rest of the world has to get on with the ordinary business of making ends meet”
This is all you have to know, how stupid can our politicians, administrators and bureaucrats be. Sanction Russian energy and at the same time ban your own energy production. These people don’t belong in jail, they belong in a mental institution.
And what they want from the west they can probably buy via India or some other country on the side.
We need to get Putin out quick, this war is devestating to the west.
The West assumed the ‘military action’ by Russia would be all over bar the twitter posts by the end of the week. After all, Russia is a big country. Ukraine is a small country…
Having been convinced that upsetting Russia was ‘bad’ but not actually wanting to get involved too deeply, the West made all sorts of gestures against Russia both before and after the border was crossed.
It was more or less assumed that in less than a month they could all make some Fine Words about Russian aggression and the humanitarian crisis and hope the newly installed pro-Russian government would respect the pronouns and all that rubbish, and then, another month later, quietly start trading again.
Except Kiev didn’t fall within the week, leaving the West awkwardly stuck between being politically unable/unwilling to put boots on the ground and unable/unwilling to be able to roll back the sanctions that are cutting both ways and more than likely hurting the West more than Moscow.
That is what I think. The West utterly misread the situation and now have used up the attention span of the masses. Ukraine? Does Monkey Pox come from Kiev? Cause not interested otherwise. They are now stuck without an effective exit and Putin knows this and it is only the minor irritation of not having military control of the country and those pesky sinking major warships that totally were not hit by Ukraine missiles that is keeping him from teabagging the lot of us.
Chamberlain wouldn’t have farced this up this badly.
That is what I think. This is not why I think Ukraine should or should not have been invaded. It is opinion of the consicenses, not the motives.
I didnt create this but I like it a lot;-)
Russia’s best agent revealed!
Zelensky in just 3 months proved impossible:
1. Record-strengthened ruble
2. Actively robbed the West of money
3. In addition to Crimea, Donbas also dedicated to Russia
4. He switched off gas throughout Europe and, through coordinated action, forced himself to pay for gas in rubles
5. Since the start of the Special Operation, almost all major competitors have left Russia and vacated Russian entrepreneurs
6. He begged for so many weapons that Scholz also declared that “the Bundeswehr is running out of weapons.”
7. Gathered the whole bottom of the Nazi subculture – tattooed marginals, assassins from Europe and elsewhere in one place, where the Russians immediately eliminated them
8. He united the Russian people around Putin. Russia has not experienced such strong support for the actions of the president and his cabinet during his entire presidency.
9. Through its actions, it has provided a stable basis for Russia’s most powerful and stable alliance with China.
10. Disrupted the social and societal system of the EU from within through refugees from Ukraine
11. He almost demilitarized Europe
12 Pushed India into the Sino-Russo economic, and, perhaps, political, sphere.
India has been in the Russian sphere since the 70’s. I doubt they consider themselves within the Chinese economic and political sphere, despite both having Russia in common.
Boomerangs are hunting tools – if used correctly, they are not supposed to come back…
You assume that the West can use them correctly? On past and present performance, I really wouldn’t assume that – I wouldn’t like to assume most of the leaders can tie their own shoelaces.
If we were properly focused on energy security, greenhouse gas emissions would be a moot point. #AntiFragileEnergy #GreenNUCLEARDeal #HighlyFlexibleNaturalGas #IncineratePlasticPollution #WasteToEnergy #FissionFuture
The Northern Hemisphere climate was much more extreme in previous centuries. The past 150 years have been unusually kind. We are not prepared for reversion to the mean. #AntiFragileEnergy #GreenNuclearDeal #HighlyFlexibleNaturalGas #IncineratePlasticPollution #FissionFuture
Whenever people start talking about OPEC, like to point out this Paul Krugman paper from 2001, http://web.mit.edu/krugman/www/opec.html. When people say that the US cannot affect the price of oil, I like to point out several things: 1.) That’s a good thing because every bit we produce goes to our GDP. 2.) That’s a good thing because every bit we don’t import adds to our GDP. 3.) That’s a good thing because every bit we don’t import reduces our trade deficit. 4.) That’s a good thing because it means lots of tax revenue (see and 2). 5.) Don’t be so sure about that, a little competition could spur production in lots of other places. Many producers produce inefficiently (and messily) because they believe price rises will keep them wealthy. E.g. Venezuela, Russia in the 1990s… They don’t keep their equipment maintained and they waste/spill a lot. US hoarding sends a signal to oil producing nations with two implications: 1). Alternative Energy is nowhere near ready, otherwise the US would be extracting its oil before prices fall; the US likely doesn’t expect alternatives to ever be better than fossil fuels (I’d like to get into this, but I’ll save it for another time). 2). Current producers can make money by keeping production low. If the US told the world it believes alternative energy R&D would pay off within the next 50 it would mean nothing, unless they back it up with extraction for the medium term. I believe that if the US said that there was no future in oil, and backed it up by pumping full- tilt to take advantage of the current high prices, we’d see both alternative research take off as well as exploration, extraction, and productivity throughout the world. Reagan wasn’t the Great Communicator because of how he talked. Actions speak far louder than words.
Nothing would do more to reduce inflation and pressure Russia to end the war in ukraine than an #AntiFragileEnergy energy policy.
In the meantime, nothing would do more to reduce fuel consumption & traffic than to get people to accelerate faster, pay attention & avoid using brakes. After that, replace speed limits with adjustable Target Speeds. And, get rid of unnecessary stop signs.
‘It’s not commonly understood by people who drive,” Dr. Dougherty said. ”They think that the way to get best fuel economy is to accelerate very gently, but that proves not to be the case. The best thing is to accelerate briskly and shift.”
Up until about 60 mph, higher cruising speeds are more fuel efficient. Quick acceleration is more fuel efficient than slow. It also prevents congestion & helps it clear faster.
See this graph from popular mechanics on acceleration. Smooth and quick is the way to go.
It won’t be too much longer until Russia achieves what it really wanted in Ukraine and then fortifies along the new border. Then it will get interesting although if the UK legacy media is anything to go by, they have pretty much already lost interest. Given that their coverage was just based on personal sob stories and inaccurate input from so-called experts, it is no surprise that people are bored with it. The obvious solution is a negotiated peace deal but Zelensky talks of taking all the lost territory back. Attacking is much more difficult than defending and will consume a whole lot more men and equipment. Ukrainian losses have already been substantial and it would only take a couple of weeks before any assault eastwards would collapse. Will the warmongering west try to keep the war going to distract from all their domestic problems?
The humane market place way to deflate Putin’s plans is simple — bring back the Trump Energy First plans and grow from there. Prepare and initiate shipping natural gas to Europe to undercut Putin’s Natural Gas monopoly on Europe. Develop natural gas fertilizer to compete against Putin, etc, etc…
Drop the Cornahol Green New Deal nonsense that was paid in part by Russian donations to Green Think tanks that push the Green New Deal nonsense. Redirect corn land into food for the kitchen table around the world. Starve Putin’s war machine by flooding the global marketplace with less expensive energy of all sorts.
Cut out the CO2 global baloney religious nonsense. CO2 is not a poison — it is a minor gas of 4 molecules per 10,000 gas molecules. CO2 is one of the major ways that carbon is moved around the biosphere where it’s efficiently converted into O2 and plant material via photosynthesis. More CO2 entering the biosphere means more plant life in the biosphere, more food to eat, more diversity of life forms around the globe.
With the US so far in debt, the Federal Lands everywhere should be sold off to the various States for them to manage as they see best fit via State Rights. No more EOs from the White House that create huge swings in energy policy that basically have funded Putin’s war and is causing all sorts of strife around the world in energy and food.
Stupid policies lead to stupid results… Return to smart, America First energy policies…
Also, it’s time to recognize that the current EV movement is all about moving battery and EV jobs out of the US while also eliminating lots of energy jobs in the US. It’s time the EV marketplace started paying it’s own way without massive crony subsidies that move jobs and resources out of the USA. etc, etc…