Europe and America will battle for Russia
The Saga of the "Nord stream — 2" was an interesting sequel, in the sense that the American attempts to stop the commissioning of the Russian gas pipeline could not only lead to the fact that he will get more support from European politicians, but also to the fact that the European Union will attend to system protection from us sanctions.
If you compare the damage to American interests from the "Nord stream — 2" and the damage in the case of a "vandal" (in the sense of "anticyclonic") financial and economic system in the European Union, the Russian pipeline is almost irrelevant. And if Washington is to be deprived of the really important issues to put pressure on Brussels or European companies with sanctions, American foreign policy it would be a disaster on a planetary scale.
Last week, the conflict for the Washington — Brussels, and, in fact, the state Department, the European Commission, has escalated due to the fact that the heads of American and European diplomacy exchanged threats and statements, outlining their harsh criticism.
Mike Pompeo decided to destroy the so-called reservation Tillerson — limitation on the imposition of sanctions against companies contributing to the construction of "Nord stream — 2" prior to the adoption of the law on sanctions. This "disclaimer", whose appearance in the original package of anti-Russian and "antijaponesa" sanctions are credited with the then Secretary of state Tillerson, understood that to "punish" a major European oil and gas company is a very bad idea, was cancelled in advance of travel Pompeo in the EU that can be perceived as a gesture of intimidation. The Department has even moved on to direct threats, demanding that all companies that have or had relation to the project "out of it" or to sanctions, which (if you follow American standards and historical experience) will involve the destruction of American business off from the dollar system, the confiscation of property and a ban on visits to US for their Directors. Apart from the fact that under the steamroller of the us sanctions can reach a huge number of European companies that, for example, port services or insurance, the impression (shared by some Western media) that the state Department also hinted at willingness to still "punish the dollar," the leading European partners of "Gazprom", that is, Wintershall, OMV, Engie, Shell and Uniper.
On the one hand, this escalation is a powerful step in terms of demonstrating the seriousness of Washington in terms of blocking the "Nord stream — 2". On the other — not very clear what you want to achieve from the point of view of a demonstration of anything other than intentions: the money of the European partners "Gazprom" has invested in the project, and the pipeline being completed by the Russian company, which is now the sole shareholder of the company that owns the pipeline.
In this sense, even if a foreign company wanted to "exit" from the project, it is simply impossible to do — the train has already left. It turns out that sanctions against European companies would simply revenge, absolutely senseless from the point of view of blocking of the pipeline. Of course, Washington may try to impose sanctions on buyers of Russian gas in Europe, but here and there a whole series of technical problems and political risks.
Pretty easy to build a scheme of sale of "Gazprom" gas in such a way that the end buyers was quite difficult to determine, thereby putting the United States and faced with a choice: to close their eyes to the ineffectiveness of sanctions, or enter "carpet" sanctions against all companies that are suspected of purchase of Russian gas. The scenario of further escalation of this kind is possible, but it is unlikely Washington will enjoy the consequences.
EU high representative for foreign and security policy of Josep Borrell in a written statement condemned the American methods of influence on the EU:
"I am deeply concerned about the growing use of sanctions or threat of sanctions by the United States against European companies and interests. We have witnessed this growing trend in the cases of Iran, Cuba, the International criminal court and more recently in the case of projects "Northern stream — 2" and "Turkish stream".