German Officials Believe Nord Stream Pipelines Blown Up By “State Actors,” Undersea Repair “Unlikely”
German weekly DER SPIEGEL: “Since the damaged pipelines are currently flooded with seawater, the special inner coating is corroding very quickly.”
The undersea blasts on Monday, which blew up Nord Stream pipelines from Russia to Germany, were caused by “highly effective explosive devices” and could only have been carried out by “state actors,” German news weekly Der Spiegel reported Thursday, citing sources within the German government and security services.
The blasts that raptured the Baltic Sea pipelines off the coast of Denmark were “comparable to that of 500 kilograms of TNT,” Der Spiegel added.
The damage was apparently caused by military-grade explosives, initial evidence suggests. “One of the explosions measured 2.3 on the Richter scale, which Danish experts described as in line with a powerful bomb from the second world war,” The Guardian newspaper reported.
The incident occurred in relatively shallow waters near the Danish island of Bornholm, roughly 30 miles from the Polish shore. The damaged pipelines are “80-110 meters (265-360 feet) below sea level,” German Deutsche Welle reported.
Hamburg-based Der Spiegel reported the conclusions reached by the German government and security services:
German security authorities believe that highly effective explosive devices were required to disrupt the Nord Stream pipelines in the Baltic Sea. According to Der Spiegel‘s information, it is estimated that explosive devices with an impact comparable to that of 500 kilograms of TNT must have been used to destroy the pipes.
The seismic signals registered by various monitoring stations were also included in the estimate. The previously unknown estimates back the assumption that only a state actor could be behind the incident. So far, the [German] government has held itself back from speculating about what caused the disruption of the pipelines.
There is a lot of speculation about Russia being behind the incident. The Russian leadership, however, described the incident as international terrorism directed towards Russia. (…)
In security circles it was said that divers or a remote-controlled robot could possibly assess the damage[d cite] by weekend.
In the best-case scenario, one could thereafter draw initial conclusions about the type of the underwater explosion and the explosives used, according to the security circles. However, it is difficult to predict how many traces can still be found.
The undersea pipelines were engineered to withstand massive amounts of pressure. “They are designed to be tough: each section of the Nord Stream 1 pipeline, the company’s literature says, has a steel case 27 to 41mm thick, in turn surrounded by a concrete coating of 60 to 110mm,” the British newspaper Guardian noted.
“Repair Considered Unlikely”
According to official German sources, the Nord Stream 1 and 2 pipelines, a joint German-Russia project which cost billions to construct, may never be operational again. The Nord Stream 2 alone was built for 11 billion euros, media reports claim.
The “repair of the pipeline is now regarded as highly unlikely,” Der Spiegel said, citing German government sources. “Since the damaged pipelines are currently flooded with seawater, the special inner coating is corroding very quickly,” the magazine explained.
“According to the analysis, once the pipes are flooded, the pipeline can no longer be used to transport gas,” the magazine concluded.
Kremlin Decries State-Sponsored “Terrorism”
Four days after the incident, the Russian government declared the disruption of its gas pipelines an act of terrorism. Moscow dismissed the Western media reports blaming Russia for the alleged underwater strike as “stupid and absurd.
Reuters reported the Kremlin’s response:
Russia said on Thursday that leaks spewing gas into the Baltic Sea from pipelines to Germany appeared to be the result of state-sponsored “terrorism” (…).
“This looks like an act of terrorism, possibly on a state level,” Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said, adding: “It is very difficult to imagine that such an act of a terrorism could have happened without the involvement of a state of some kind”.
(Excerpts from German media reports translated by the author)
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This too is Trump’s fault
Hmm. Wouldn’t a declaration like that make him a top suspect in this international crime?
I hope to God that the US had nothing to do with that explosion. If the US is linked to it, it will have alienated its allies and enraged its enemies, and that is not a good position to be in.
And yet, I cannot imagine anyone else with motive.
The UK could have done it. They are historically good at sabotage operations.
Russia has a financial motive. Their unilateral shutdown probably incurs penalties, under contracts.
It’s an Agatha Christie mystery. You can claim everyone has a motive.
My favorite scenario is Russian engineers trying to clear a methane hydrate plug.
This fits with the unspecified technical reason for the shutdown.
I doubt if a military submarine could operate undetected in these waters. Sweden gets testy when Russian subs stray too close.
Rogue countries: NoKo, Iran. I can imagine China doing just to cause havoc in Europe. “Hey Europe, you need to buy more of our green energy.”
“…I cannot imagine anyone else with motive.”
Come on Henry, your imagination is much better than that.
Someone ought to put a Brandon “I did that!” sticker on the pipelines.
Heh, that’s a good one.
I have a hard time believing Putin would have blown this up when he could accomplish the same thing merely by shutting the valves to the pipeline – and not have to spend hundreds of millions to repair it.
If the idea was to create eco-terrorism (remember Saddam pouring oil into the Persian Gulf?), then wouldn’t he then want to OPEN the valves to let as much methane out as possible?
“I have a hard time believing Putin would have blown this up when he could accomplish the same thing merely by shutting the valves to the pipeline – and not have to spend hundreds of millions to repair it.”
Nord Stream 1 was already shutdown. And Nord Stream 2 was never operational to begin with as Germany never granted final operational/safety approval to operate it. Sabotaging them in this manner makes absolutely no sense whatsoever. The only people that this will hurt in the long run are the citizens of the EU. Russia will not repair the pipelines nor will they be economically affected any more than they already are under the current “sanctions”.
This is true, because the Chinese will buy as much as the Russians are capable of pushing that way and I’d bet India isn’t far behind.
It doesn’t even sound like repair is possible, so the “repair” would be to run an entirely new pipeline. If it is cost effective, perhaps they could scavenge the old one, but I’d say that’s pretty questionable.
Can an act of terrorism also be an act of war if it’s done by a government? Just wondering if the US is at war with Russia..
On a parallel note, this is another example of trendy words being misused because they are trendy. This was not terrorism. Nobody was put in fear because some pipeline was blown up far out into a body of water. This was, indeed, an act of war.
Let’s put Christopher Steele on the case! I’m sure he could get to the bottom of it all by placing a few phone calls from his London office. . .
Where ‘state actor’ = Brandon.
Everyone knows the US did it. Or at a minimum enabled Ukraine to do it, however that would work. We know everyone knows we did it. And they know we know they know we did it.
Everyone knows Putin had zero motivation to blow up his own pipeline. A pipeline he spend billions building. In which he controlled the gas flow. Why would he literally blow up an option, an economic weapon, and a source of revenue? When he could simply turn the flow on and of whenever he wanted?
This has tough guy Brandon written all over it. This is in character with the guy who took on Corn Pop and got Ukraine’s AG fired by withholding military funding.
What are our NATO allies going to do about it? What will Germany do now that Brandon has taken away their option of negotiating with Putin? Side with Putin now? Of course not. They will be expected to pretend we didn’t do it and try to imply Putin did it.
And some of our NATO allies may be starting to reconsider the pluses and minuses of being a member of an alliance in which a member state will undermine the sovereignty of one of the other members.
It will be ironic if Brandon’s actions are what begins the process of destroying NATO.
You don’t know & neither do I. But Napoleon was right, “Never attribute to malice what can be explained by incompetence”.
Outside of his own bank account, he destroys everything he turns his attention to.
You can’t Reset an omelet without breaking some alliances.
Weird, because I looked up how the pipeline was constructed and they pressurized them using water after laying the pipe to test their integrity.
The magazine is incorrect in the statement as published but was conveying the governing opinion.
Yes, in almost all cases, gas piping is hydrostat tested- just the way its done. (then purged)- but its not done with raw seawater.
Raw seawater, in addition to the salt and dirt has “who knows what” else in it and there’s no telling how much “stuff” came with the sea water ( biologicals etc.)
Then there’s coating damage and corrosion potential ( most gas lines almost have to be close to “white room” clean to avoid contaminating the gas or other effect)
So, to properly repair, clean, rehydro a large section of INSTALLED pipe after a catastrophic failure ( maybe if it were just underground) makes it so cost prohibitive that usually repair is not a realistic option
Sabotage is fun to wonder about but I still won’t rule out lack of proper maintenance from the Russian side. Gas not flowing will cause other problems as chemical reactions can result in unwanted blockages or ‘plugs’ as I have seen them referred to in technical publications. A blockage in a four foot diameter pipe is a serious matter and dissolving the mass is time consuming and dangerous. More than one ‘plug’ can occur during a period of inactivity. Too many things have blown up in Russia recently. A gas pipe(s) of this size and importance has a catastrophic explosion(s) and is rendered useless for a long time, well it must be sabotage because if not there are people to be blamed and business to be at fault because Russian engineering and maintenance can not be allowed to look bad.
Nor do I (I have done miles of pipe repair) rule out failure due to design flaw or maintenance.
Fixed too many overseas for just that reason.
That said, it cannot be ruled out.
I would love to see the damage assessment- that would tell me pretty quick if this is live or Memorex.
If it legitimately is sabotage- then there’s a murky field as to who did it. Many different and varied agenda’s here in play.
Two separate lines. Explosions hours apart. Not a maintenance issue.
I had just reported to work the morning 9/11 happened. Saw footage of the first tower – figured accident. 2nd tower – knew then it wasn’t.
And one of the lines non-operational even if they wanted to.
One inch and a half inches of steel and a 4 inch concrete casing. A two pound shaped charge would take care of that with room to spare. No need for 1000 pounds of TNT.
The leak caused by a small shaped charge might be repairable. Blowing out a large section with a 1/2 ton bomb is something else.
It makes no sense for Russia
to blow up its pipeline unless it wants to create an excuse that it is being provoked. That is a very expensive way to create a provocation.
It makes no sense for the US to do it unless they want to risk a war with Russia, prevent Europe from using Russian gas directly (sanctions! Climate change!), and minimize the chance of an early negotiated settlement to the war in Ukraine on terms other than they want or before they have had the chance to maximize graft opportunities for both parties.
So it doesn’t really make sense to blow up, but one of the two parties did it.
So who is the bigger bozo? It’s a coin toss, Putin and Biden administration are each dumb in their own way.
Isn’t there another major power that has submarines and would profit from setting the EU, the US, and Russia at each other’s throats?
This didn’t happen in water deep enough for military subs. Plus, I imagine that sea traffic is closely monitored in that area and are being scrutinized right now. One theory that is being floated that Russia might have planted the explosives while they were being laid down. Keep in mind that those pipelines had already become essentially useless in the hands of Russia. Expendable to Russia to accomplish another objective.
This is a dream scenario a desperate WEF would have been hoping for too.
Oh yes it does. At this point, it is highly unlikely that those pipelines were ever going to be a critical part of EU’s future plans for energy unless they are taken away from Russia. Russia is losing a war and cannot defend those pipelines anyway. Why not blow them up and use that as another excuse for using tactical nuclear weapons? With their annexing part of Ukraine already be used for that purpose, it seems to me that Russia’s only remaining negotiating leverage is to sue for a truce, secure their new holdings and stabilize their situation. They can always sell that oil to China whereas the pipelines weren’t flowing anyway.
Doesn’t mean it happened that way but Russia DOES have reasons for having blown up useless pipelines rather than surrender them to the West. Look at the diplomatic turmoil it stirred up while everyone is looking at Brandon which if true, will be a disaster for everyone.
I’m reading your second paragraph and thinking, “Yeah? And?”
It sounds exactly like the motive I imagine.
“I call them “incidents” for a reason. I grew up in overseas oilfields. I try to, by training, observe everything from as objectively neutral a viewpoint as possible.
“In my experience when anything involving energy-industry hydrocarbons explodes … well, sabotage isn’t the first thing that comes to mind. And honestly, when it comes to a pipeline running natural gas under Russian (non)maintenance, an explosion means that it’s Tuesday. Or Friday. Or another day of the week ending in “y”.”
Yeah, I’m a natural skeptic. Never assume malice and competence when incompetence and happenstance can adequately explain a incident. Methane hydrates caused no end of trouble in the Deepwater Horizon incident, from making the well ‘carbonated’ to a great degree and therefore hard to plug, and when it was ruptured and spilling, attempts to cork and stop the spillage were hindered by the same hydrates forming in the lines. With the start-stop-start sequencing in the pipeline and typical Russian maintenance issues, I can see a hydrate plug getting ‘blown’ down the line and causing this.
I bet that if Biden was given an IQ test that he would score below 70. I see no value in us blowing up that pipeline when Russia is now sending fuel to China. And that is why Russia would blow it up themselves. They no longer needed it, and they cost their adversaries in Europe a bunch of money. Plus they can blame others.
Russia wouldn’t blow it up themselves because they would want to hold the prospect of turning on the taps over the EU during a cold winter. An operational pipeline gives them leverage. Somebody (probably the US, UK or Ukraine) just took away that leverage. Russia isn’t selling gas to the EU ever again now.
“score below 70”
That would be optimistic.
Destroying Europe economically is reason enough for Putin to do this, particularly if he can sell oil and gas elsewhere. Putin’s priority is Ukraine.
What does idiot Merkel have to say about all this? Nord Stream is her baby.
Note how all these narcissistic, self-congratulatory Dumb-o-crats and media shills on Twitter sporting Ukrainian flag icons are the same idiots who obsequiously fawned over and enthusiastically supported Merkel, narcissist-incompetent, Obama, and, dotard-marionette, Biden — the three western leaders most directly responsible for enabling and appeasing Putin’s belligerent predations, over decades.
I don’t for a moment doubt Biden is dumb enough to pull a stunt like that. But the benefits I don’t understand. Doesn’t blowing up those pipelines put a hell of a dent in the EU? I don’t see a benefit for Russia other than give them cover for having turned the pipelines off in the first place. And now they can claim we can’t turn them back on even if we wanted to.
In my make-believe spy thriller world, I could imagine Trump as the legitimate but exiled president of the United states, still has control over some faithful in the military. Trump a nationalist not a globalist would like to take the EU down along with the Chinese. Putin a nationalist is trying to claw back ukraine. So I could almost see the potential for some cooperation between Putin and Trump as nationalists to cut the European Union off from energy and force them into a long cold winter. Powerless to deal with protests over skyrocketing energy prices. To expose the European Union as utterly incompetent for putting all of their eggs in one proverbial pipeline basket. It would make an intriguing plotline in a political thriller.
It doesn’t make sense to me that Brandon would order such a thing and deal such a devastating blow to members of the global elite that he partners with.
As such a story might go interesting also the angle of election interference. Biden in a stupid October move has us on the threshold of a retaliatory nuclear strike. And all people in November want to do is get him the hell out of office and all his minions.
Almost sounds like something Tom Clancy might write. And yes I’ve done some drinking over dinner. Currently in Butte ready to pass out and to put in another 550 miles to Spearfish tomorrow.
Everyone thinks the “explosion” occurred from the outside. They are scouring the tapes and records and video and acoustic devices and they will find –
The explosion was caused by a device from inside the pipe, Russian made. Not possible to trace it because it was hidden as it traveled down the inside of the pipe.
Before the sabotage, Russia had leverage over Europe, especially with winter just over the horizon.
Now the leverage is gone. As intended. The Biden Admin is almost certainly behind this, although they probably used a proxy, perhaps Ukraine itself, for deniability purposes in case it leaked.
I got dragged on Twitter for suggesting Russia. There are many who had motive. The only thing we can really know is there are few who could pull this off in two locations on two different pipelines. Also remember, the Baltic Sea is almost land locked with two narrow access points. I would expect Denmark to be going over records of ships passing through.
I only include the US because of Biden/dem ineptness.
Also, does Ukraine have capability?
From what else I’ve read
I find it unlikely that Russia did it unless they wanted to create a political incident for some reason. All they had to do was shut the pipeline off from their end which they did and wait out Europe. It is too convenient a source of revenue.