/ Go to the mediabankThe Russian pipe layer vessel “Akademik Cherskiy” is pictured in the waters of Kaliningrad, Russia. Pipe-laying vessel Akademik Chersky is able to complete the construction of the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline / Go to the mediabankInternationalIndiaAfricaWestern media is continuing to ignore Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Seymour Hersh’s Nord Stream bombshell and bring forward new hypotheses as to who destroyed the pipelines. None of these versions, however, has managed to refute or eclipse Hersh’s detailed account of events so far.Over the past month, the Western media has been bending over backwards to eclipse the Nord Stream bombshell by US veteran investigative journalist Seymour Hersh, who detailed earlier this year a US-Norwegian operation that resulted in the destruction of three Russian underwater pipes on September 26, 2022.Still, the Western press’ story of six adventurers nixing the pipelines from a pleasure yacht named Andromeda has turned out to be controversial and incomplete.Last week, the mainstream media alleged that the Andromeda had been assisted by another vessel and quoted Mats Ljungqvist, Sweden’s senior prosecutor, as saying that a state actor seems to be the most likely culprit behind the blast.When it comes to the question of who this “state actor” might be, The Washington Post noted that European officials “have been whispering about the potential involvement of the Polish or Ukrainian government in the attack.””The notion that either Kiev or Warsaw might act outside the bidding of Washington, DC is not remotely credible, particularly when it comes to destroying essential energy infrastructure and attendant economic pain across Europe and the wider world,” Charles Ortel, a Wall Street analyst and investigative journalist, told Sputnik.Nord Stream SabotageSeymour Hersh: CIA’s Nord Stream Counter-Op Story Intentionally Absurd to Reinforce Truth5 April, 15:02 GMTAs per Ortel, this version seems to be nothing more than part of the Biden administration’s damage control op, with Ukraine and Poland serving as convenient scapegoats. The New York Times was the first to single out Kiev and Warsaw in December 2022 as having clear motives to blow the pipelines up.The same December piece claimed, citing a 2007 Swedish Defense Research Agency study, that even “one diver would be enough to set an explosive device” on the underwater gas infrastructure in the Baltic Sea. This scenario was once again repeated by the newspaper on April 7, 2023. Citing “one pipeline expert and a professional diver,” who spoke on condition of anonymity, the media outlet said that the potential perpetrators did not need a large quantity of explosives or undersea drones/mini submarine to plant the bomb, since a “small plastic explosive could do the job, as long as it was placed near a seam of the pipeline.” If that were true, the alleged Ukrainian and Polish covert actors could have easily been framed.
However, Hersh dealt a heavy blow to those theories in his April 5 Substack piece. The Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist quoted an intelligence expert as asking: "How does a 49-foot sailboat find the pipelines in the Baltic Sea? The pipelines are not that big and they are not on the charts that come with the lease." According to the expert, it would have taken four years for one diver to search one square mile of the Baltic Sea. Meanwhile, Nord Stream 1 and 2, each with two sets of pipelines, are separated much of the way by slightly more than a mile.
One could easily imagine how long it would have taken for those volunteer divers to find not only the pipes themselves, but also their seams to attach “small plastic explosives” there. In a word, the theory looks absurd unless a state-backed full-scale underwater surveillance expedition took place prior to the placement of the explosives.Nord Stream SabotageRussian Ambassador to Denmark Says Object Found at Nord Stream Part of Explosive Device7 April, 11:05 GMT
Norwegian Vessel and Plane Add More to Hersh’s Story
It appears that some traces of such an expedition were detected by Norwegian investigative journalists from Document.no. One of them, veteran intelligence operative Geir Furuseth, told Sputnik in the wake of Hersh’s bombshell release that one of the reasons the US tapped the Norwegians to assist them to nix the pipelines was the high competence of the Nordic nation’s Navy Special Forces. Indeed, the Norwegian Navy was quick to find the right spot, according to Hersh.
"The pipelines ran more than a mile apart along a seafloor that was only 260 feet deep," the Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist wrote on February 8. "That would be well within the range of the divers, who, operating from a Norwegian Alta class mine hunter, would dive with a mixture of oxygen, nitrogen and helium streaming from their tanks, and plant shaped C4 charges on the four pipelines with concrete protective covers."
Furuseth’s colleague, Alf R. Jacobsen, drew attention to the maneuvers of the KNM Otra, an Alta-class minesweeper of the Royal Norwegian Navy, between May 31 and June 3, 2022 in the Baltic Sea not far from the pipes. The alleged routine sailing/training program took place just two days before the beginning of NATO’s BALTOPS 22 naval drills. (According to Hersh, BALTOPS 22 was used as a cover for the US clandestine sabotage operation.)Jacobsen pointed out yet another strange coincidence. In his February 16 interview to an alternative American broadcaster, Hersh revealed that the CIA delivered a decompression chamber – special equipment for divers – to a Norwegian alt-class hunter somewhere around the BALTOPS 22 exercises. Jacobsen noted that a Norwegian cargo plane of the C-130 type flew over the Atlantic on approximately May 25, 2022 and first landed in Jacksonville, Florida, but then continued to an airport near the oil city of Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Remarkably, the US Navy’s Diving and Salvage Center is located in Florida, while Louisiana is home to oil companies that obviously had a decompression chamber in stock that suited the purpose, the Norwegian journalist presumed.AnalysisWhy Hersh’s Nord Stream Bombshell May Become Legal Nightmare for Team Biden & Its Nordic Allies11 February, 15:39 GMT
Why No MSM Story Can Counter Hersh’s Narrative
There is a stark contrast between Hersh’s detailed story, which was supported by evidence from various sources, and the messy Andromeda yarn disseminated by the Western press.In his April 5 piece, Hersh suggested that the Andromeda story was planted by the CIA, which, according to the journalist, is routine practice for the agency when it needs to divert attention from its clandestine operations. A counter-story should have “a whiff of reality” and be as detailed as possible to be believed, he explained.However, the Andromeda yarn was dead in the water. One possible reason for this could be that the CIA intentionally planted a poorly cooked-up story to “reinforce the truth,” according to the Pulitzer Prize journalist’s interlocutor: “In the world of professional analysts and operators everyone will universally and correctly conclude from your story that the devilish CIA concocted a counter-op that is on its face so ridiculous and childish that the real purpose was to reinforce the truth,” the intelligence expert said, as cited by Hersh. Meanwhile, the Western mainstream press is struggling to connect dots to make the Andromeda story look credible, but is failing over and over again as new questions continue to arise.
"One hopes there are just a few sensible people left in this Deep State who clearly see the dangers of letting whoever pulls Joe Biden's strings blow up vital energy assets of European allies, thereby creating an actual environmental disaster, while also promoting absurd 'clean energy' policies that have already grievously harmed Americans and others, in theory, on our side," said Ortel.
WorldPutin Tells Danish Ambassador Russia Expects International Probe Into Nord Stream Attack5 April, 12:39 GMTThe New York Times recently made another attempt to make its readers reconcile with the fact that the truth may never come out. The newspaper’s rationale is that there are only three options, and each of them is disastrous for international affairs. It could be either Russia, or Ukrainian operatives, or a Western nation behind the blast, the media claimed. However, if one of them is officially named as the culprit, it could irreversibly damage the existing status quo, therefore the public will most likely remain in the dark, the media claimed.Still, Moscow has made it clear that it won’t let its Western partners sweep the matter under the rug, consistently calling for an international investigation under the auspices of the UN.
"Russia has been remarkably patient with many European states that so blindly have followed the Biden 'Administration' down dangerous rat-holes that threaten the viability of NATO, peace across the European land-mass and tranquility on the Atlantic Ocean," Ortel said, adding that at the same time, the patience of the American public with the Biden administration's adventurism is wearing thin.
“Though our government meddles in many places, Americans care most about the home front where crime is rising and where economic pain is mounting, Hersh’s salvoes should signal to thinking observers that myths concerning Biden’s competence and record as president are hanging by thin threads. No politician is indispensable, let alone a doddering and failing one, who might easily be turned out by the Deep State, and then by the electorate,” the Wall Street analyst concluded.