The Intermarium nations of the lands between the Baltic, Black, and Adriatic seas find themselves in a serious predicament because of US President Joe Biden’s shuttering the Keystone Pipe to countenancing Nord Stream-2. Both are indicators that his administration has turned away from the policy to sell America’s minerals to provide energy security to Europe by breaking Russia’s near monopoly on servicing the Old Continent’s needs. But this is a serious strategic mistake.
Nordstream-2 is Russia’s Trojan horse in Europe. Its success will make the western part of the Old Continent pliable, and the eastern part ready for re-absorption. Most likely, that is the game that Germany is playing: Berlin dreams of a condominium with Russia over Europe.
The Federal Republic already dominates in the EU. It can assert its hegemony over the Intermarium together with the Russian Federation. That is the re-occurring historical pattern since the 18th century. Only the United States is in the way. Both Chancellor Angela Merkel and President Vladimir Putin understand it perfectly well.
Meanwhile, Biden and his team appear to be hell-bent on re-launching Obama’s Reset policy with Putin. OK. It makes sense for Washington to deal with Berlin and Moscow instead with a dozen of small nations in the lands-in-between. That was precisely the logic behind FDR’s brilliant Yalta strategy. He made a deal with Stalin to make half the world safe for Communist tyranny.
The difference with Biden is that now his partners are Germany and Russia, and not Great Britain and the Soviet Union.
What can the Intermarium do? There are a few options. In the short run, our allies there should complain and clamor, every which way, to halt, sanction, and boycott NS-2. This entails diplomatic nimbleness and sabotage through propaganda, lawfare, and a parliamentary offensive in Brussels and at home. Poland should lead the way in conjunction with other Intermarium nations.
For instance, one can tie Poland’s compliance with the Paris Treaty to thwarting NS-2. This can be done jointly with an appropriate Polish referendum, as the Swiss just have held, enabling them to weasel out of the Paris regime as inimical to their national interests, in particular because of its negative impact on the economy. That happens to be applicable to Poland, too, as the fight with Berlin, Brussels, and Prague over the Turów brown coal mine shows.
Further, propaganda and direct action are in order. Green hysteria of an imminent environmental catastrophe brought about by NS-2 should work on the public at large. In addition, radical greens should be encouraged to perform their hijinks on sea and land as well as in the air on and near NS-2. Next, a thoughtful energy security narrative should be aimed at Western elites.
Moreover, protecting our allies, creating jobs, and making money on US gas and oil deliveries will resonate with the folks in America. Invoke often the besieged Baltics and poor Ukraine.
Meanwhile, in a long run, the Intermarium nations should work harder on alternatives to both US and Russian energy.
First, the Poles should step up their efforts to finish the Baltic Pipe from Norway (currently stalled through unreasonable shenanigans of Danish greens).
Second, Warsaw should threaten it would be forced to revert to black and brown coal to meet its energy needs.
Third, the Polish should speed up their nuclear energy project. They have already been working with US Westinghouse. Warsaw should further explore American portable and thorium reactors. If the Biden Administration prevents such a deal, the Poles should turn to the French, Japanese, and South Koreans for their nuclear know how and infrastructure. It is also worth to check out a new Finish method to seal the nuclear waste underground forever (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kYpiK3W-g_0).
Fourth, if nothing else works, and Putin and Merkel succeed with NS-2, sign up for Russian energy. That’s where Poland has been forced to buy most of its gas and oil from anyway. If you can’t beat them, join them. At least until America is ready to be a leader again.
But the good guys should take heart. US parliamentary elections are next year. If the Republicans take back the Congress, the White House will be in trouble. And then we shall have a presidential race in four short years.
At least half the US population can’t wait to get back to normal; same goes for the folks in the Intermarium, also because of energy security. Otherwise, go nuclear!
Marek Jan Chodakiewicz is Professor of History at the Institute of World Politics, a graduate school of statecraft in Washington D.C.; expert on East-Central Europe's Three Seas region; author, among others, of "Intermarium: The Land Between The Baltic and Black Seas." Read Marek Jan Chodakiewicz's Reports — More Here
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