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Hungary cannot maneuver more easily between Russian and American interests

Hungary cannot maneuver more easily between Russian and American interests

Donald Trump’s government has been tough on energy issues. Although the former US president made nods to Russia and its president, Vladimir Putin, on several occasions, he tried to divert his European allies from gas and oil from the East. Some countries, like the Poles, were prominent students of the Americans, and they went to great lengths, such as establishing a liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminal, to drastically reduce their dependence. While others joined the anti-Russian rhetoric at the word level, in practice, to put it mildly, they did so only half-heartedly. It was the most dominant country in Europe, Germany, which called for an embargo on Russia, but in the meantime it worked with Moscow on a pipeline system that bypasses Ukraine to transport gas from the east.

Although Hungary has come under widespread criticism for its politicization with Russian interests, this was not necessarily true, as Viktor Orban and his team tried to balance American and Russian interests by making gestures here and there. The truth is, of course, that since the Hungarian prime minister represented a one-way street on so many issues, it is much easier for EU leaders and politicians in member states to put him in the position than, for example, Angela Merkel. However, in the case of gas pipelines, Hungary and Germany appear to be in the same place.

It is still the European Union, but America will not allow it

Russia has been building several alternative gas supply routes for some time to allow it to supply gas to Europe, bypassing Ukraine. As for the pipeline to the mainland from the north, there would be the North Stream 2, built with the help of the Germans, and which Russian energy could reach.

The two disputed gas pipelines
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Implementing the pipeline from the south has been more difficult than that, having reached it several times over the past decade and a half, but a project called Nabucco, for example, has failed.

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