Democracy & War

So Nordstream 1 and Nordstream 2 natural gas pipelines from Russia to Germany through the Baltic Sea (Note to Elizabeth Truss, PM of UK – Baltic Sea, not Black Sea) were blown up. Cui bono?

The obvious nefarious actor would be the Biden* MalAdministration. Since Russia controls the inlet valves, it had no need to blow up the pipelines in order to stop any future flow of gas. Since Germany is falling off a cliff due to lack of natural gas, it had no interest in destroying essential infrastructure which could have been of future benefit. The Ukraine is presumably too corrupt & incompetent to have done this – except possibly at the direction of the Biden* MalAdministration. After all, Russia is still paying Zelensky the transit fee for Russian gas being shipped across the Ukraine to the EU.

So what is in this Act of War for the US – clearly directed against Germany? By damaging the pipelines, Biden* has prevented any backsliding by Germans who might decide that saving their own economy is more important than helping Zelensky take back by force territory he lost 8 years ago. Now the Germans cannot cut a separate deal with Russia to resume gas supplies; indeed, now Germany is even more dependent on the US for high-priced Liquified Natural Gas. In short, this incident seems likely to have been an Act of War by Biden* against Germany.

The interesting feature is that there will be elections in the US in about 6 weeks time. War with Germany, Russia, China might be expected to be a big item in those elections – certainly, most US citizens do not want war. But the slide towards global thermonuclear war does not figure at all in the run-up to those elections. Is “democracy” dysfunctional?

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The United States may have taken credit for the sabotage as recently as February 7, 2022 (via ABC News):

Pres. Biden: “If Russia invades…then there will be no longer a Nord Stream 2. We will bring an end to it.”

Reporter: “But how will you do that, exactly, since…the project is in Germany’s control?”

Biden: “I promise you, we will be able to do that.”

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This is just one of the issues with a potato that cannot read the teleprompter as President. Unfortunately this potato thinks he is a tough guy too.

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Could be CCP – to “firm up” gas contract with Russia, plus provide negative sentiment to U.S.

Could be E.U. to “unite” gang that just can’t seem to work together.

One thing is certain – peace and prosperity are less lilely after the bombing of pipelines. God help us.

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Gregory Cochran argues that it may have been the Ukranians. Steve Sailer explains:

They [the Ukranians] had the personal motivation to hurt the Russians plus the strategic motivation to keep the Germans from figuring they can end their upcoming cold winter with a stroke of a pen and have the Russian gas flowing tomorrow. I don’t know how long it will take to fix the pipeline, but it seems likely that the Germans couldn’t expect it to be back in operation before the worst of the coming winter is over. So the benefit to the Germans of defecting now from the anti-Russian coalition is reduced.

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Unlikely. The Zelensky regime is totally dependent on others (mainly the US) for the weapons it is using to kill mostly fellow Ukrainians in eastern Ukraine. The specialized weapons required to locate undersea pipelines and blow them up are definitely not something Zelensky has on the shelf.

Now, it is certainly possible that Ukrainians (or Poles – another possible set of hands) actually did the deed, using weapons & information provided by the Biden* MalAdministration. But only a DC Swamp Creature would imagine that that misdirection would excuse themselves from blame. In the meantime, as Sailer notes, it is the Germans who have been hurt by this Act of War.

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The big beneficiary is Norway.

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The environmentalists in the present administration would have a conniption over the release of all that greenhouse gas. So clearly we cannot choose the goblet in front of them.

Although the pipeline didn’t have gas flowing, it was under enough pressure for it to be forced out. Or would the pipeline have been so completely ruptured that what we are seeing is simply the gas being released as water fills the pipeline? I have wondered how much damage it will do to have the pipeline filled with sea water. Presumably the design would have taken this possibility into account, but with engineers these days… =)

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You make a lousy analyst, Longmuir.

The location of the pipeline is well known, as the Baltic is fairly shallow the pipe is as well (down to 210m [4]) and this kind of stuff is marked on navigational charts as a potential hazard. Also, blowing up a pipeline isn’t complex and everyone there has personnel and equipment to do regular de-mining (astonishing numbers of sea mines left over from the wars), I expect any of the countries bordering the Baltic could do this without assistance or detection.
Eg. In 2015, an undersea drone [1] was found drifting near the pipeline, which seems innocuous until you realize the drone was a de-miner [2], whose function was to drive up to a mine and detonate it with a shaped charge [3].

[1] Explosive-Laden Drone Found Near Nord Stream Pipeline | Pipeline Technology Journal
[2] Analysen av föremål vid gasledning klar - Försvarsmakten (in swedish)
[3] Seafox drone - Wikipedia
[4] Nord Stream 2 - Allseas

My personal first thought was it was the Poles, on their own hook. They have centuries old disputes with the Russians and Germans, and are currently annoyed at the Germans for their energy policy. The “coincidental” opening of the Norway/Poland pipeline is interesting and can be spun both ways. Either someone in Poland (or Norway) thought this would be a fine opportunity to cash in, OR you could see that as a little too “on the nose” and consider it part of someone’s deception plan. The Poles are like Germany, being located in indefensible central Europe, and have a history of believing the best defense is a good offence.

Once I got to thinking about it some more, as you would expect, the possibilities widened.

If you want to consider cui bono then, as @CTLaw noted, Norwegians have to be on the list. I expect they’re going to make a lot of money selling gas to Germany, and Poland will make some from transit payments.

It s possible the USG is involved somehow? Sure, the people actually running the administration are a fairly unimpressive lot, I could easily see them involved in some stupid way, but they aren’t necessary.

And of course, Russia could be involved. Remember, the pipeline doesn’t have to be working for the Germans to owe Russia payments. Russia had a ready online campaign to blame the US and vatniks (the presumed target) ate it up, the speed and intensity of that is interesting in itself, 2 weeks ago the Russians cut off supply to the pipelines for “unscheduled maintenance” and today Russia has taken action to cut off remaining gas to EU.

An important consideration in gauging Russian actions is understanding the separation of actions that are good for Russia vs. actions that are good for Putin (and possibly other leadership). A lot of westerners don’t really appreciate how in dictatorships and near-dictatorships, many ridiculous appearing actions (Putin’s pseudo-election campaign advertising, shirtless on a horse) can be quite effective at retaining power.

(A possibility I assign a low probability to is that the Russians intended to sabotage the new Baltic Pipeline, and got lost. The leaks are in the rough vicinity of where the pipes cross. OTOH, there are 2 pipe strings in each of the two Nord Stream pipelines, and only 3 explosions referred to in open sources.)

/r/NonCredibleDefence with a handy illustration:

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But at least I am polite, “jdougan”. :grinning:

People who are stuck in the 1950s “Russia Bad, Bad, Bad” are of course going to let their biases interfere with their judgement. But we have to look at the world the way it is today. Russia is not the USSR.

Planting multiple large explosives beside pipelines far below the water without anyone noticing is not something that is easy to do. Hence the likely suspect is the actor which has access to the military with the most capabilities – that is the Biden* MalAdministration. Of course, that does not prove Biden* did it, but it will take more than a “Trust Me” denial to establish his innocence.

Indeed, Russia also probably has the capability – although we are continuously informed by Western media that the progress of the war in eastern Ukraine shows that the Russian military is incompetent. But it is hard to explain why destroying their own pipelines through which they were not actually shipping gas benefits them.

So the “Cui Bono?” trail has to start with the obvious issue of who is hurt by the deliberate destruction of the pipelines? And that answer is clearly – the people of Germany, who now have no option to break with NATO and normalize relations with their former major gas supplier in order to get the adequate supplies of low-priced gas on which their economy depends.

Then who wants to hurt the people of Germany? It is indeed plausible that the Polish leadership hates Germany – Europeans have been at each others’ throats for all of history. However, it is more plausible that the Biden* crew are prepared to do whatever it takes to keep NATO on side to hurt Russia, and simply don’t care about those poor Germans. Mere collateral damage.

However, as you point out “jdougan”, I am a lousy analyst – paying too much attention to logic.

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Ol’ Jo[k]e is on tape bragging (“I promise you!”) that we would destroy the pipeline if Russia invaded Ukraine. Too obvious? (Just like that tape of him bragging he withheld military aid from Ukraine until they ceased investigating Hunter? ) It’s so simple it CAN’T be true…we the American public have been well and truly broken of our inconvenient habit of believing our own eyes and ears.

Seems to me, Russia would now have a plausible excuse for detonating an EMP in our airspace, wiping out our entire power grid. (people talked aLot about that a few years ago, but now, nobody mentions it. No point talking about it when ya can’t DO nuthin’ about it, I reckon….)

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Could be, but some have speculated that Russia would be more likely to destroy London first – Kill the chicken to scare the monkey. However, my guess is that we are still some way from that.

The areas of the Ukraine which tried to get self-rule from Kiev in 2014 are soon to be incorporated into Russia – following the UN principle of the right of peoples to self-determination (which conflicts with that other UN principle of the sanctity of 1945 borders). If Kiev continues military action against what would then be Russia, that will be “war”. This would probably be a very good time for residents of Kiev to head for the Polish border.

The big issue is what will the Biden* Mal-Administration do after Kiev gets the WWII Dresden treatment? Will Biden*'s handlers escalate their involvement, turning this from a proxy war between Biden/US and Russia in the Ukraine into a direct war between Our Betters and Russia, with all of us mere collateral damage? Or will they forget about the Ukraine and switch their attention to messing up Taiwan? Time will tell.

To return to my original concern, why is the perilous state of world peace a non-issue in the run-up to US elections? What has made “democracy” so frivolous?

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You need only take a look at the citizens who compose our polity and you will have your answer. Should we really be surprised when we allow literal teenagers (and adults who act like teenagers) to vote, that we get frivolous results? The average voter, regardless of age, appreciates only what is directly in front of him. His vote is influenced more greatly by The Current Thing™ than the relatively distant possibility of war. The absence of long-term considerations among voters and democratically elected officials is one of the reasons Hans-Hermann Hoppe argues that hereditary monarchy is preferable to democracy in his book, Democracy: The God That Failed.

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World peace is a non-issue in our election because its destruction is well underway; what matters to Dems and the international Left now is making sure the US is to fractured and emasculated to do anything about global war when it comes, even to save its own people from the poison tide. And they’re doing it. Send out the drag queens.

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Clearly we should not be surprised. Some time ago, I came to the conclusion that universal suffrage was one of those well-intended ideas which unfortunately has horrible consequences. The ideal should be something like Athenian democracy, where the voters were mostly fighting-age men; and when they voted to invade Sicily, the guys who voted for war went down to the docks, climbed onto the boats, and started rowing. (For anyone not up on Athenian history, those voters mostly died – but they had the satisfaction of dying in an action for which they had voted).

But what are we to make of the election of Elizabeth Truss to be Prime Minister of the UK? The franchise was very restricted. Elected MPs selected the final two candidates, and only Conservative Party members were allowed to vote – mostly older, better educated, propertied, and male. And yet they chose one of the stupidest women on the planet – stupider than Biden* without even the excuse of senility!

Even a highly restricted suffrage does not solve the failures of democracy. It is indeed a god that has failed.

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In its ideal form, Athenian democracy, as you note, was not averse to war. Whether war is necessary or not is a separate question, but at least in the Athenian system, the consequences of going to war were partially internalized by those voting for it. There was an element of personal responsibility attached to every vote that is not present in modern democracies.

Speaking of Athens, was it not expansionist conquest and empire-building under Pericles that provoked Sparta to war? If I recall correctly, Sparta felt that its national sovereignty was threatened by Athens’ growing sphere of influence. In the end, Sparta conquered Athens with the aid of Persia. Is history repeating itself?

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And Norway is worried:

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Well, Norway has lots of pipelines – and despite its high level of wokeness, Norway is economically critically dependent on exporting lots of hydrocarbons through those pipelines. Is Norway’s higher military alert aimed at Russians in the far-off Ukraine … or at their closer neighbors who seem to get a kick out of blowing up undersea pipelines?

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A small number of U.S. military forces inside Ukraine have recently begun doing onsite inspections to ensure that Ukrainian troops are properly accounting for the Western-provided weapons they receive, a senior U.S. defense official told Pentagon reporters Monday,” the AP/WaPo reporting revealed.

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