A Summary of Hersh’s ‘How America Took Out The Nord Stream Pipeline’

Overnight, Seymour Hersh published How America Took Out The Nord Stream Pipeline. Here are the key points.

The explosives were allegedly planted months earlier, during a mid-summer NATO exercise:

Last June, the Navy divers, operating under the cover of a widely publicized mid-summer NATO exercise known as BALTOPS 22, planted the remotely triggered explosives that, three months later, destroyed three of the four Nord Stream pipelines, according to a source with direct knowledge of the operational planning.

Planning for the operation began months prior to the war in the last quarter of 2021, and Navy divers were used in order to avoid Congressional oversight and the possibility of leaking to the press:

Biden’s decision to sabotage the pipelines came after more than nine months of highly secret back and forth debate inside Washington’s national security community about how to best achieve that goal. For much of that time, the issue was not whether to do the mission, but how to get it done with no overt clue as to who was responsible.

There was a vital bureaucratic reason for relying on the graduates of the center’s hardcore diving school in Panama City. The divers were Navy only, and not members of America’s Special Operations Command, whose covert operations must be reported to Congress and briefed in advance to the Senate and House leadership—the so-called Gang of Eight. The Biden Administration was doing everything possible to avoid leaks as the planning took place late in 2021 and into the first months of 2022.

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