Does Ukraine have a trump card up its sleeve?  “This will be a turning point that worries Washington.”

O'Donnell referred to reports published by the British newspaper “Financial Times” stating that The United States has repeatedly called on Ukraine to stop drone attacks on Russian oil refineries.

The analyst explained that the reasons mentioned are American concerns about the possibility of Russia retaliating against Western energy infrastructure and the potential increase in gasoline prices, which is something every president wants to prevent in an election year.

Ukraine may disrupt Russian oil exports through ports

But in his opinion, these “official” fears are not justified.

First of all, the United States has always supported Ukraine's right to attack targets in Russia, provided that Kiev does not use American weapons. We can check this condition: Drones do not come from the USA. Of course, Putin could retaliate against NATO energy facilities, but that would be too risky for Moscow, O'Donnell said.

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– What about the prices of oil and refined products? Ukraine attacks oil refineries, not export infrastructure. Striking refineries reduces the production of diesel, gasoline and jet fuel for the Russian war economy and its armed forces in Ukraine. If Russia is unable to refine this oil – which it does not export anyway – it may stop producing it, but this will not lead to reduced exports or higher prices. Restricting the export of refined products should also not lead to an increase in prices, because in such a situation other producers will enter the market, the analyst concluded, adding that if Russia decides to export oil that it cannot process domestically, there will be more raw materials, and as a result, Prices will fall.

As O'Donnell emphasized, these issues are clear for the United States – the largest oil producing country in the world.

“That would be transformative.”

-So what really worries Washington? Well, recent attacks have shown that Ukraine also has the ability to attack ports through which Russian oil is exported and disrupt perhaps half of Russia's total exports of these raw materials. This would constitute a shift that would really worry Washington – Notice.

Specifically, there are two major ports for oil exports from western Russia: Primorsk, north of Saint Petersburg, at the end of the Baltic Pipeline, and Novorossiysk, on the shores of the Black Sea. Ukraine has proven this Both of these ports are within the range of its drones. It's also worth noting that Ukrainian Navy drones recently sank a Russian amphibious assault ship on the eastern side of Crimea, meaning they may also be able to strike Novorossiysk from the sea. For example, if Kiev decided to attack these oil ports tomorrow, this would lead to a decline in Russian oil revenues to fund the war and an increase in global prices for a longer period, perhaps as happened in 2003-2008. The analyst explained that this would have serious consequences.

However, he noted that the crisis could be mitigated or prevented if Ukraine gave the US, UK and EU time to prepare.

The real fear for the United States is that Ukraine may begin these moves before oil-producing countries and international oil companies have enough time to understand what is coming and increase production to regain the market share that Russia lost. Ukraine's destruction of Russian oil ports may be a factor that increases the strength of the current, ineffective and often complex, strategy to limit oil prices, which was intended to reduce Russian revenues without risking reduced exports. However, we know that there are many untapped oil reserves outside Russia that could completely replace Russian exports. Therefore, Washington, London, Warsaw and other European Union capitals must move quickly to achieve this goal. The American expert concluded that Kiev cannot be patient.

Attacks on Russian refineries

-If there is no air defense to protect our energy system and the Russians attack it, my question is: Why can't we answer them? The President of Ukraine said that their society must learn to live without gasoline, without diesel, without electricity (…), this is fair.

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PAP

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