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Here in the States, when we talk about monopolies and corporations, it usually follows that the corporations have too much influence over government policies, thus benefiting corporate ends. We rarely talk about the flipside which is the government exerting its political power over a corporation to serve its political ends. Whilst King George works to turn us into an empire, Russia, it seems, never let go.

Russia's state-owned gas company Gazprom cut the supply of gas to Ukraine after the latter refused to pay the new price Russia is charging Kiev: a rise from 50$ to 230$ per 1,000 cubic metres of gas.


"...Konstantin Kosachev, Chair of the Duma's Foreign Relations Committee, put it succinctly when he said the other day that no deal would be reached before Ukraine has its parliamentary election in March. [...] Russia has made it plain it wants [control over] Ukraine's gas transporting system. Then, Gazprom says, the prices will go down."

Putin's play to influence the Ukrainian parliamentary elections is just another example of the Russian leader testing his reach. They didn't succeed in quietly poisoning Victor Yushchenko, so now they'll try for the old fashioned squeeze tactic. As this article describes, the Russian owned gas company Gazprom controls 25% of the world's oil reserves. This could mean serious trouble for the EU, at the least, especially since the reluctance to admit an energy crisis is imminent has stunted development of alternative energy resources.

By min | January 4, 2006, 9:00 AM | Liberal Outrage