Unlike oil and gas, ideological convictions won’t keep Europeans warm in the winter, Peter Szijjarto cautioned
Western Europe’s policy of rejecting Russian energy even in the absence of suitable alternatives could lead to the countries’ collapse when their people are left without heat in the winter, Hungarian Foreign Minister Peter Szijjarto told a meeting of Hungarian ambassadors on Monday.
“All these statements … from Western Europe on the issue of energy supply simply do not work at all with winter approaching,” Szijjarto explained, according to Sputnik news agency, pointing out that while “ideological, political, communication statements with effective support from the international media can easily inflate balloons that cover people’s eyes,” all the ideology in the world won’t keep EU citizens warm when winter approaches.
In winter, it is difficult to tell someone that they don’t feel cold because there isn’t heating.
Acknowledging Hungary had not yet fallen into this trap, he warned that pressure from other EU governments would only get worse, as the current world order “The planet is on the verge of a massive collapse at the rate of an asteroid.” Russian sources are integral to European energy security, he argued, implying that without them, Brussels will fall.
Not only will Hungary not entertain talk of sanctions on Russian energy, but other nations will quietly back it on the matter – even if they won’t do so publicly, Szijjarto told the ambassadors. Although Hungary is opposed to the European-wide call for an embargo against Russian oil or gas, others that demanded punishment for Moscow’s insolence regarding Ukraine quickly realized that they could not get their energy from other sources.
Electricity costs in Germany and France shot up to record heights on Friday, driven by Moscow’s threat to shut down the last operational turbine on the Nord Stream 1 pipeline for three days’ maintenance. Those countries are far from the only ones to feel the bite of sanctions that were supposed to punish Russia, however, and Europeans of all nationalities are stockpiling what fuel they do have – whether it’s firewood or coal – for the long winter ahead.