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The Neue Ostpolitik approach to Nord Stream 2: A legal fiction carried a little too far

EnergySource by Dr. Benjamin L. Schmitt

On April 10, 2018, signs emerged that the German government was finally beginning to recognize the geostrategic implications of the proposed Nord Stream 2 pipeline. Standing next to then Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko in Berlin, German Chancellor Angela Merkel stated: “I made very clear that a Nord Stream 2 project is not possible without clarity on the future transit role of Ukraine…so you can see that it is not just an economic issue, but there are also political considerations.” In one short statement, the chancellor had seemingly repudiated years of arguments that she and other German politicians had made since the pipeline’s announcement: namely, the claim that Nord Stream 2 is “just a commercial project,” rather than what it is—a vehicle to end, or significantly reduce, gas flows via Ukraine, while serving as a conduit of the Kremlin’s malign influence campaign against the transatlantic community.

Continue reading the blog article on the Atlantic Council news website.