Day 148 Roundup: EU Urges Members to Slash Gas Use by 15%; Russian FM Says Military Operation to Go Beyond Donbas

    Photo: AP Photos [via AP News]

    The Facts

    • The EU Commission on Wed. urged member states to slash their gas use by 15% on five-year averages, warning that a complete shutdown of Russian supplies was "likely." Commission Pres. Ursula von der Leyen accused Russia of using gas to "blackmail," and said legally binding reduction targets could be put in place by Brussels if the threats to supplies were to materialize.

    • The announcement came as EU diplomats passed their seventh round of financial sanctions against Russia. The latest measures include a ban on all Russian gold imports as well as an asset freeze on the country's biggest lender, Sberbank. The package also extends existing sanctions by six months to Jan. 2023.


    The Spin

    Establishment-critical narrative

    The latest EU sanctions proposal falls short of hitting the Russian economy where it hurts. The EU is now more concerned about protecting its own economies than taking effective opposition against Russian aggression.

    Pro-establishment narrative

    These sanctions will take fresh aim at the Russian economy, including targeting gold which is Russia's top export after energy. The seventh package of sanctions will inflict signficant damage on the Russian elite and economy, working to close loopholes and strengthen compliance with pre-existing restrictions.

    Nerd narrative

    There's a 70% chance that more than 100,000 people will be killed in the Russo-Ukrainian War in 2022, according to the Metaculus prediction community.


    Establishment split

    CRITICAL

    PRO

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