Speculation is heating up in Brussels over this week’s attack on the Nord Stream pipelines carrying Russian gas to Europe under the Baltic Sea. Many in the West suspect Russia to be behind the sabotage of the pipelines, but Moscow has denied any involvement, pointing the finger at the U.S. or Ukraine instead.
The IAEA has found itself in the thick of two global political crises—securing a Ukrainian nuclear power plant and enforcing oversight of Iran’s nuclear program. Its chief, Rafael Grossi, has managed both files with dexterity, but his ongoing success will depend on his ability to avoid alienating any of the parties involved.
Documents are flying around Brussels with various proposals to resolve Europe’s energy crisis, ahead of a pivotal emergency meeting of the EU’s energy ministers scheduled for tomorrow. But there remain several unanswered questions, including whether those proposals will be durable or sustainable in the long term.
There is nothing more depressing than seeing policymakers surprised by a crisis that informed observers have been predicting for many years. A case in point is the way the EU and the U.K. have lurched into furious action after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine to address their energy dependence on Russia and other autocracies.