October 5-6, 2022 -- Kremlin uses its willing propaganda dupes in the West to blame Ukraine and the CIA for Nordstream sabotage

publication date: Oct 5, 2022
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October 5-6, 2022 -- Kremlin uses its willing propaganda dupes in the West to blame Ukraine and the CIA for Nordstream sabotage

There really is no international whodunit involved in the blowing up of the Nordstream 1 and 2 gas pipelines in the Baltic Sea. Russia had both the motive and the means to sabotage the twin pipelines that transport natural gas from Russia to Germany. The September 26 explosion followed the imposition of European Union sanctions on Russia over its invasion of Ukraine. Therefore, Nordstream, which is majority owned by the Russian energy company Gazprom, was no longer providing a revenue stream for Moscow and that made it expendable for the Kremlin nomenklatura.

After having decided to sabotage Nordstream, the Kremlin wasted no time in maximizing the propaganda value of the attack. The natural gas leak in the Baltic Sea, which occurred within Denmark’s maritime economic zone off the island of Bornholm, resulted in Denmark imposing a five nautical mile danger zone around the leak for maritime and air traffic. Subsequently, the Swedish Coast Guard reported a second Nordstream leak within the Swedish maritime economic zone. It was later discovered that there were four separate leaks in the twin pipeline, two in the Danish zone and two in the Swedish zone.

The Danish Geological Survey had initially registered tremors in the area of the pipeline leaks. The seismograph readings were indicative of explosions. The Swedish National Seismic Network (SNSN) also recorded seismic explosions that were the equivalent of 100-kilograms of TNT. Seismograph stations in Germany and Finland also recorded explosions. Russian naval support vessels and submarines had been active in the area of the explosions a few days prior. In addition, the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency had warned Germany weeks before the explosions that Nordstream 1 and 2  were vulnerable to sabotage.

The Russians, and Soviets before them, have long employed autonomous underwater vehicles (AUVs) to carry out sabotage operations. In 1979, the Soviet Navy used a remotely-piloted underwater plowing device to cut the Sound Surveillance System (SOSUS) cable between Naval Facility Keflavik [right] and the Hofn Air Station in Iceland. A member of the Western Electric cable repair crew said that upon bringing the cable up to the deck it was clear that it had been cleanly cut “like a knife through butter.” The SOSUS cable sabotage severely impacted the U.S. Navy's ability to track Soviet submarines in the Norwegian and Barents Seas. This editor was a personal witness to the Soviet sabotage as I was the maintenance officer at the U.S. Naval Facility Keflavik and the proper functioning of the equipment, including the cable, was part of my area of responsibility.

Russia has deployed other underwater drones capable of destroying undersea pipelines and telecommunications cables. These include the nuclear-powered and nuclear-armed Poseidon AUV (NATO codename Kanyon), capable of operations at 1,000 meters; the Klavesin-2R-PM, capable of operations at 6000 meters; the “Yunona” AUV, capable of operations at 1,000 meters; and the Vityaz, capable of operations at 11,000 meters.  In addition, the nuclear-powered AS-12 Losharik deep-diving submarine, [right] which is deployed from converted Russian nuclear ballistic missile submarines, is designed to sabotage communications cables on the ocean floor either within international waters or within the maritime borders of other countries. The Losharik is operated by the Main Directorate of Deep-Sea Research (GUGI), a top secret special Russian unit separate from the Defense Ministry. The Losharik is the primary suspect In sabotaging the Nordstream pipelines.

The Russian propaganda network immediately sought to blame the United States and, specifically, the CIA for the sabotage. The notion was preposterous, particularly when considering that the natural gas emitted from the Nordstream leaks set a record for the single largest discharge of methane in recorded history. [left] For the environmentally-conscious Baltic nations – with the noted exception of Russia – such an environmental catastrophe carried out by the United States or NATO would be unthinkable. But for the Russians, it is highly plausible, especially since the Russian government has warned that everything, including the use of nuclear weapons, is on the table in its war against Ukraine. In addition, Russian special warfare teams stand accused of carrying out explosions at Czech and Bulgarian munitions factories -- deep within NATO territory -- supplying weapons to Ukraine.

However, common sense has never been a strong suit for such Kremlin propagandists as Fox's Tucker Carlson, Dan Bongino, Turning Point USA's Charlie Kirk, or Columbia University professor and noted conspiracy crackpot Jeffrey Sachs attest. All accused the United States of carrying out the Nordstream attack, a propaganda melody that was gladly replayed by Moscow's media outlets. The conspiratorial Sachs expanded his list of culprits to include Poland. Other Kremlin apologists, including those who claim to be on the "left," said Ukraine was also involved in taking out Nordstream.

n Foreign Affairs Minister Mélanie Joly said the world is “not naïve” about who may be responsible for the Nordstream sabotage. "The world," in this case, does not include the shameless Kremlin propagandists of the right and left, who continue to parrot Russian disinformatsiya trafficked by Fox News, the social media platform Telegram, and by certain grossly-uninformed tenured professors at a few misnamed "institutions of higher learning."


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