Thursday September 15, 2022
Outraged western leaders are threatening a price cap on imports of Russian natural gas after Moscow cut supplies to Europe this month, deepening an already dire energy and cost-of-living crisis. In response, Russian President Vladimir Putin has warned that Europe will “freeze” this winter unless there is a change of tack.
In this back-and-forth, the West keeps stepping up the rhetoric. Putin is accused of using a mix of blackmail and economic terror against Europe. His actions supposedly prove once more that he is a monster who cannot be negotiated with, and a threat to world peace.
Denying fuel to Europe as winter approaches, in a bid to weaken the resolve of European states to support Kyiv and alienate European publics from their leaders, is Putin’s opening gambit in a plot to expand his territorial ambitions from Ukraine to the rest of Europe.
Or so runs the all-too-familiar narrative shared by western politicians and media.
In fact, Europe’s arrogant, self-righteous posturing over Russian gas supplies, divorced from any discernible geopolitical reality, reflects precisely the same foolhardy mindset that helped provoke Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine in the first place.