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Steven Schaefer

Apr 22, 2024

In lieu of any meaningful Ukrainian battlefield gains and amidst the backdrop of waning western enthusiasm for propping up the Ukrainian war machine, Ukrainian military intelligence has been launching unmanned drone attacks against oil refineries located within Russia.

Ukraine has launched no less than 18 unique drone attacks against domestic Russian oil production this year. These attacks have been a dramatic tantrum-like response from Ukraine in an attempt to compensate for their inability to maintain defensive positions, despite seemingly unlimited financial support from the NATO imperialist core.

Ukraine Worsens Global Energy Crisis

These strikes are occurring while the world, most notably the working class, continues to feel the brunt of the ongoing global energy crisis. The Russian Federation is the world's third-largest oil producer and provides Europe with 60% of its oil. Nevertheless, Russia's Special Military Operation in February 2022 was met with an onslaught of western sanctions. And further attacks against domestic Russian oil production will only hurt the global economy, not Russia's defense industry.

The world's reliance on Russian oil production and refinery capabilities is a fact acknowledged even by self-described enemies of Russia. U.S. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin recently admitted as much to the Senate Armed Services Committee, warning that continued Ukrainian attacks on Russian oil facilities "could have a knock-on effect in terms of the global energy situation.”

The U.S. says it has pressured Ukrainian intelligence agencies such as the SBU and GUR to cease these strikes against Russian energy production, voicing concerns over the rising cost of crude oil globally as well as the possibility of a reprisal attack by the Russian Federation against oil production and storage sites relied on by NATO.

Ukraine’s deputy prime minister for European and Euro-Atlantic integration Olha Stefanishyna recently responded to these warnings, stating, “We understand the appeals of our American partners. At the same time, we are fighting with the capabilities, resources and practices that we have today.”

Ukrainian Attacks Hurt Biden's Campaign

One of American voters' top concerns is this brewing global energy crisis, which originated in part from rapid economic expansion following the COVID-19 pandemic in 2021. The pandemic caused rapid drops in both energy demand and production; global economies ground to a halt during the rollout of pandemic control measures. The energy industry adjusted to this “new normal,” but after the relaxation of COVID restrictions, it was unable to ramp up production to meet growing demand.

This poses a major problem for the reelection campaign of U.S. President Joe Biden, who is facing an uphill battle in his campaign, with polling data showing former President Donald Trump leading with a 0.2% margin.

Throughout Biden's presidency, American workers have seen skyrocketing gasoline prices, with the average price per gallon rising to $3.67 according to the American Automobile Association. In California, prices have risen as high as $5.44 per gallon. JPMorgan has reported that it anticipates the national average to reach $4 per gallon by May.

The Biden administration's attempt to rein in Ukrainian drone attacks is one of the few mechanisms Biden has at its disposal to lower domestic gas prices. U.S.-Saudi diplomatic relations have reached a historic low, reducing U.S. leverage with the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC). 

This continued international pressure on oil production, in relation to Ukraine's attacks in Russia as well as the increased tensions in West Asia with Israel's war of aggression in Gaza and their antagonisms against Iran, has worsened inflation of the U.S. dollar. The US Federal Reserve has responded to inflationary pressures by raising interest rates. Increased prices of gasoline, diesel, and other petroleum products like jet fuel will have a further knock-on effect, increasing the prices of commodities across the board, as production, distribution, and shipping costs increase with the cost-per-barrel of oil products.

Ukraine Must Submit to Washington to Slow Inevitable Defeat

Support for the regime in Kiev is rapidly dwindling, especially in the United States, as American taxpayers question why billions of dollars are sent to fight a proxy war against Russia in Ukraine, needlessly prolonging a conflict in which Russia's victory looks increasingly inevitable.

If the Ukrainian political establishment fails to heed the call of its handlers in Washington to call off such attacks on Russian oil, US Congress may begin to reconsider its generous and enthusiastic bipartisan support for its puppets in Kiev. Only time will tell.

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