West has no play against Russia over Kiev gas subsidy: Editor
… by Jim W. Dean, VT Editor, … with Press TV, Tehran
Press TV has conducted an interview with Jim W. Dean, the Managing Editor of Veteran’s Today from Atlanta, about Ukraine’s gas debt owed to Russia and Russia now hiking up the price of gas exported to Ukraine.
The following is an approximate transcript of the interview.
Press TV: Is this a policy of economic aggression now that Russia has hiked the prices or is it their right to do that with Kiev?
Dean: Well, it certainly is. There were ways they were supporting Ukraine – which has 8-10 million Russians in it – get through their economic problems and this was to subsidize the gas prices.
This is something that Russia has an awful lot of so that was the least expensive way for them to try to support the Ukraine getting through its economic problems.
But then again, un-said in that, Ukraine would not become a bastion for Western military power or NATO or be seduced by them into putting missiles or NATO bases right on the Russian border and they made a very good deal with them.
The EU tried to get a deal by just moving Ukraine’s debt around, but never really wanted to give them any cash because they didn’t really have a lot to give. So, Russia countered that by continuing the gas discounts – which really is ‘cash’.
And that’s why [Viktor] Yanukovych [, former President of Ukraine], he basically went the other way (siding with Russia) and now we saw the West decided that we have to make a move now and we all know that they were totally behind the coup.
So, sure, Russia now is not going to support the Kiev government by continuing to subsidize a government that they say is an illegal coup.
Press TV: How much pressure is that going to put on Kiev if Russia especially dealing with the gas is talking about this major increase for Ukraine? How much pressure are we talking about or can the EU as far as their support – what they say they are going to help Ukraine – will that be enough to balance out the pressure that Kiev will be getting from Moscow?
Dean: Well, that’s the card. NATO and the West are trying to create this bogus military threat from the Russians – which is silly; it has about as much credence as the Iran nuclear threat.
But because they have got the financial card, they say if the West wants to come in and bail out the Ukraine and open their pocket book, well that’s fine, they can pay. Ukraine has to pay all its other debts, too.
So they are thinking now they are maybe going to punish Russia by helping Ukraine stiff them on the bills that they owe for their gas. But they’re forgetting that the Russians basically hold control over how much gas goes in there.
So you’re going to see a big battle on this, this is one of the things that they (West) can’t play, but Russia is sitting in a very good position legally because the money is owed to them.