By Banning Russian Oil, Europe Forgot How It Won the Cold War, by Bas Spliet

There have been times since World War II when Europe has refused to be America’s stooge. Unfortunately, now is not one of them. From Bas Spliet at

The European Union is close to reaching an agreement on banning the import of Russian oil. Some Eastern-European member states, particularly Hungary, are trying to obtain exemptions or delays on the implementation of the ban. All in all, however, it seems likely that many if not all EU members will soon agree to ban Russian crude oil completely within the next six months, while refined oil would be phased out by the end of 2022.

The ban is only the latest EU disciplinary economic measure which the bloc has levelled against Russia. On February 24, the starting day of the Russian invasion of Ukraine, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyden announced “massive” sanctions beyond those already implemented after the Russian seizure of Crimea in 2014. If the EU were to reach an agreement on the latest addition, these sanctions will come to target the Russian petroleum industry next to technological transfers, Russian banks, and Russian assets.

The expansion of the EU sanctions follow on the heels of Germany’s surprise move to freeze the approval process of Nord Stream 2 on February 22. This announcement, made even before the invasion had started, further jeopardized the operationalization of the natural gas pipeline between Russia and Germany, construction on which was already finished in the summer of 2021.

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