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Why are the World's Biggest Bullies all Vying for Influence
over Ukraine and over Access to the European Energy Market?

Little Pawns for "Big Oil"

By Scott Rohter, April 2014

"At the core of the power struggle going on in Ukraine is a very ruthless oil diplomacy that is being conducted by our own government and the European Union with shortsighted callousness on an international scale. It involves a collaborative effort between the United States and the European Union to end the Russian monopoly of natural gas to Europe and at the same time keep American domestic energy prices artificially high in order to promote the development of renewable forms of energy." - Scott Rohter

The clueless Ukrainian politicians who seized power in Kiev after mobs of unruly street demonstrators overthrew their country's legally elected government are now upset that the Russian communities of the strategically important Crimean peninsula and in the "coal rich" eastern Ukraine bordering Russia want nothing further to do with the illegitimate government being propped up in Kiev by the United States and the European Union. Of course you won't ever hear the news about Ukraine reported like this in the American mainstream media.

The residents of Crimea recently held a referendum which was guaranteed by the presence of Russian soldiers on the streets. The presence of these Russian soldiers on the ground was the fact that allowed the referendum to occur. If they had not been present the illegitimate authorities in Kiev had no intention of allowing the referendum to proceed. If the current authorities in Kiev had their way the people of Crimea would not have been allowed to express their right to self determination. The one question on the ballot was whether Crimea should remain a part of Ukraine or become a part of the Russian Federation. The result of the vote was overwhelming support for political re-unification with Russia. After the referendum the Russian Duma formally re-annexed their former territory, but Europe and the United States still refuse to accept the result of the referendum or recognize the annexation by Russia.

The referendum and the vote for re-unification were a direct result of the ouster of Ukraine's legitimately elected President Viktor Yanukovich by unruly mobs of American supported street demonstrators in the capitol city, Kiev. At least the people of Crimea had a chance to vote on their future which is a lot more than I can say for many hapless Europeans who never got the same opportunity to vote on joining the European Union or not. I am not sure what is worse.... the old Soviet Union or the present European Union. If all the people of Europe had been allowed to vote on their country's participation in the E.U. there might not even be a European Union today.

Now the people in eastern Ukraine are demanding a right to vote on their future too. They want the right to political self-determination just like the people in Crimea had, and just like the people in Europe did not have when they were un-enthusiastically assimilated into the European Union. Is that really so hard for our American government to understand? The people in Donetsk and Slovyansk want to hold their own referendums on the question of whether they will remain a part of the new Ukraine or become a separate and independent country aligned with Russia. Meanwhile the illegitimate authorities in Kiev have begun to reveal the true nature of their racist identities.

The new government in Kiev has sent out notices requiring all Jews in eastern Ukraine to identify themselves and register as Jews. This is the same tactic that Hitler's Nazis used in Germany to round up all German Jews and send them to concentration camps. It is no coincidence that two Ukrainian Nazi like paramilitary groups one called Svoboda and the other calling itself Right Sector were instrumental in overthrowing Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovich. They were on the streets during the anti Yanukovich demonstrations distributing their anti-Semitic and anti-Russian propaganda extoling the virtues of Ukrainian racial superiority. They are now an instrumental part of the new government in Kiev. That's the kind of people that the United States government is supporting in Ukraine.

What is currently playing out on the streets of this strategically important Black Sea nation is not just their own brand of domestic politics. It is not simply a power struggle between pro-Russian and pro-European elements of Ukrainian society. Their political confrontation concerns the rest of the world too. At the core of the power struggle lies a rather diabolical oil diplomacy that is being facilitated by government leaders in Europe and America and is being executed with such shortsighted callousness that it is hardly paralleled on the world stage. It involves a collaborative effort by Europe and America to break the Russian natural gas monopoly to Europe while at the same time keeping American domestic energy prices artificially high in order to promote the development of renewable forms of energy. If you follow the money and the direction of the Russian natural gas pipeline through Ukraine you will wind up in London, Paris, Berlin, Brussels, and Washington D.C.

Ukraine is strategically important not only because Crimea is the home of the Russian navy and the city of Sebastopol on the Black Sea is Russia’s only direct access to the Mediterranean. The Russian natural gas pipeline which supplies Europeans with most of the energy they use to heat their homes runs right through Ukraine. Furthermore one of the world’s biggest deposits of coal is located in eastern Ukraine right near the town of Donetsk where local residents seized a police station and declared themselves to be the “free and independent republic of Donetsk”. They are demanding their right to political self determination. They also demanded that the illegitimate government in Kiev resign before they agree to lay down their weapons and relinquish control of the police station. That will probably prevent any diplomatic solution to the crisis agreed upon in Geneva from taking place which means that our State Department under the inept leadership of John Kerry will probably try to put tougher sanctions on Russia.

If sanctions really worked then they would have long ago prevented North Korea from ever developing a nuclear bomb. Despite all the support for sanctions that we are hearing about in the media the fact remains that sanctions don't really work. They didn't work when we used them against third world countries like Iran and North Korea, and they certainly won't work if we try to use them against a first class world power like Russia. They will backfire on us so we better start looking for another country from whom to hitch a ride up to our International Space Station because right now we have no other way of getting there besides the Russians.

Ukraine’s future and its domestic political struggles are all tied up in a worldwide battle for control of energy and energy markets. It is not a coincidence that this strategically important country which lies at the cross roads of competing nations, competing ideologies, and competing markets is broke. Despite the fact that it is blessed with productive farmland and abundant natural resources it is flat broke! In fact Ukraine owes 2.2 billion dollars to Russia for natural gas which Ukrainians have already used to heat their homes. Russia has agreed to sell them more natural gas on credit for now, but that won't go on for much longer. The Russians have given notice. Ukraine has thirty days to pay their bill or no more energy supplies will be shipped to them. Ukraine is in debt not because their people are lazy but rather because other people... Russians, Europeans, and Americans are all manipulating the political and economic circumstances surrounding their lives in order to provide economic benefits to themselves. Most Ukrainians are completely unaware of the extent to which others are influencing their lives. What is going on in Ukraine is primarily an economic struggle between the world's greatest powers over oil and gas markets. It is not very different than the competition that led to World War II.

The United States is very much involved in this struggle for control of energy and energy markets as well as Russia and the European Union. Under Barack Obama our State Department funded and supported the overthrow of Ukraine's President Viktor Yanukovich just as sure as it supported the Muslim Brotherhood’s overthrow of Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak. Neither of these foreign policies seem to make much sense until you follow the money.

Multi-national oil companies have developed technology that has opened up vast new sources of energy right here in America… This new technology is called fracking. It has led to an economic boom in North Dakota and Texas. These advances in oil drilling have spread to other areas of the country where vast untapped tar sands lie buried under the ground… In Pennsylvania and along our eastern seaboard fracking for natural gas is going on right now. It is not a mere coincidence that the Ukrainian Revolution is flaring up again at the same time that the United States of America is undergoing a fracking revolution here at home and we are awash with energy. The Ukrainian Revolution in Kiev and the fracking revolution in America are inter-connected and intertwined.

While the environmental consequences of fracking are still being hotly debated, no matter how you feel about fracking everyone agrees that the abundant new supplies of American oil and natural gas will cause domestic energy prices to come down. The theory behind capitalism is that the price of a commodity should decrease whenever there is more supply than there is demand for it... Falling energy prices are not good for the oil business and in the view of oil company executives, their various Boards of Directors, and the majority of their stock holders something needs to be done about falling oil prices and fast in order to keep them from falling.

Right now overseas markets are being politically prepared in Europe and Asia to relieve this pressure on energy prices to fall when our new found oil and gas reserves finally reach the market. They are being created to provide an outlet for our surplus supplies of American natural gas that will be coming on line soon. These overseas opportunities will allow American oil companies to compete with the large Russian state owned monopoly Gazprom on the world energy stage.

Ten years ago America was a net importer of energy but now we are in the process of building vast export terminals along our coastline to export American natural gas overseas to Europe and Asia in order to keep domestic energy prices high here at home. This will also create the circumstances which are beneficial for continued research and development into alternative forms of energy which is exactly what the Obama Administration wants. They have said that they want the price of electricity to "sky-rocket" so there is a reason to spend the vast amounts of time and money that are necessary to develop these renewable sources of energy.

Ukrainians are caught right in the middle of this fierce battle over what kind of energy we use and who is going to be the dominant force in the world selling it. They are caught in the middle of a competition between Russia and the United States over access to Europe's energy market. Ukraine's future will be determined in large part by the competitive struggle going on between the United States and Russia, as well as by the competition between fossil fuels and renewable forms of energy which are both vying for the same consumer dollars and the same government tax subsidies. Unfortunately most Ukrainians don’t understand anything about this and not many people outside of Ukraine know about it either.

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Selected Reading

Don't Crimea River over Ukraine
Crimea Referendum in Former Soviet Republic Strongly Favors Re-unification with Russia

Beating a Dead Crimean Horse into a Ukrainian Trojan Horse for the Kremlin and Ending the Russian Gas Monopoly in Europe

"The truth, the political truth, and nothing but the political truth.
A journalist has no better friend than the truth."
- Scott Rohter

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