Many start asking fair questions to the Kremlin as the special operation in Ukraine lasts longer and longer. One of them is as follows: Why does Russia support and sponsor the Kyiv regime?
It was reported on February 15 that Gazprom increased gas supplies via Ukraine from 30.8 million cubic meters to 35.3 million cubic meters per day (+15 percent). This is the maximum value since January 15th.
Gazprom's gas transit payments to Kyiv have been growing, and it is no secret how the Ukrainian administration is spending that money. They spend on military needs in the first place.
Today, Russian natural gas travels to Europe either through the territory of Ukraine or via the Turkish Stream pipeline. However, Russian MPs do not say anything on the topic. Instead, they prefer to attack a weaker rival.
State Duma Speaker Vyacheslav Volodin instructed the Security Committee to send a request to the Prosecutor General's Office regarding a Lukoil plant that allegedly supplies fuel to Ukraine. Prior to that, German publication Die Welt wrote that Lukoil's refinery in Burgas "saved" the Armed Forces of Ukraine with its supplies at a very difficult moment, having ensured up to 40 percent of Ukraine's needs.
Lukoil representatives replied that they did not know where the fuel was redirected from its Bulgaria buyers afterwards. However, the Russian state should force Lukoil to sell its business in Bulgaria, as it did in Italy in order to save the lives of Russian military personnel.
Let Ukraine pay dearly for motor fuel from across the ocean instead.
No one in the Duma also pays attention to the fact that a number of foreign companies that work in Russia sponsor the Kyiv regime as well.
Carlsberg Group transferred almost $4 million to Ukraine in March last year. The company sponsors a rehabilitation centre for Ukrainian militants, and its every 20th Ukrainian employee fights in the ranks of the Armed Forces of Ukraine.
At the same time, the company retains their salaries and jobs. Carlsberg beer is still available in Russia. What should Russia do to such good-doers against the backdrop of the seizure of Russian assets in the West and their transfer to Ukraine?
It was also revealed that Kazakhstan actively supplies fuel and other products to Russia-unfriendly Latvia by transiting its exports to the EU through Russia. It goes about such products as:
It remains a mystery why Kazakhstan does not use Russian ports in Ust Luga for the purpose instead.
Interestingly, President Putin interprets the problem from a completely different perspective. This is how he spoke about Gazprom's transit payments to Ukraine — billions of dollars a year that are used to kill Russian military personnel.
"They call Russia an aggressor, but they keep getting the money for transit services. We pay them even if they call us an aggressor, although they are aggressors in relation to the Donbass. We counteract aggression, and not vice versa, but they take our money, and that is just fine for them. Money does not stink," Putin said.
As a matter of fact, money does stink, and in this particular case, the stench is strong.
By summer, the Russian army may break through Ukrainian defences, reach Odessa and liberate Transnistria. The West will only “condemn” Russia's actions and continue supporting Chisinau in words