Tucker Carlson suggests US blew up Nord Stream pipeline – and lists possible Russian ‘retaliations’

A Tucker Carlson segment focused on the purported “sabotage” of the Nord Stream gas pipelines connecting Russia and Europe, which the Fox News anchor appeared to blame on the US.

Speaking following reports of leaks in the Nord Stream pipeline on Tuesday, Mr Carlson suggested that the Biden administration was behind the “sabotage” and act of “environmental terrorism” and warned of a Russian counter-response.

“Blow up the Nord Stream pipelines? OK, we’ve entered a new phase, one in which the United States is directly at war with the largest nuclear power in the world,” said the Fox News anchor.

While the US has not designated the leaks as an act of sabotage, the President of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, said the leaks were the result of acts of “sabotage” on the critical piece of energy infrastructure on Tuesday.

Finland, Denmark, Sweden and the United Kingdom – as well as Russia itself – cited a deliberate attack on the pipeline that prior to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in February, supplied Europe with millions of cubic metres of gas annually. Now, that figure is effectively zero.

Citing US opposition to the Nord Stream 2 pipeline connecting Russia and Germany, Mr Carlson suggested that the US president had pre-warned of an attack on the pipeline by playing a clip from a joint press conference with German Chancellor Olaf Scholz in February.

Speaking two weeks before Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, Mr Biden said “there will no longer be a Nord Stream 2 ... We will bring an end to it”, if Russia did invade and when asked by a reporter how the US could “end” the pipeline, responded, “I promise you, we will be able to do it.”

The Fox News host, who said he did not believe Russia was responsible for the leaks, added: “Notice how he phrased that. He didn’t say, ‘I will pause the delivery of gas from Russia to Germany.’ He said there won’t be a Nord Stream 2. We’ll put an end to it. We’ll take it out. We’ll blow it up.”

He continued: “If you are Vladimir Putin you would have to be a suicidal moron to blow up your own energy pipeline—that’s one thing you would never do...Natural gas pipelines are the main source of your power and wealth. And most critically, your leverage over other countries.”

Despite those remarks, Russia had already stopped gas supplies to Europe and had been operating Nord Stream 1 and 2 at very limited capacity before the leaks occurred, amid sanctions placed on Russia for the war and other retaliations by European governments.

Russia, which Mr Carlson suggested could cut undersea power cables between the US and Europe to cause an economic crisis and “third world” conditions – amid other possible acts of retaliation – said that it would call a United Nations Security Council meeting over the damage.

In the UK, defence sources told The Times that the most likely cause of the leaks were a Russian drone used to detonate holes in the pipes, which are now leaking gas into the Baltic Sea. That remains to be confirmed however.

Mr Carlson’s comments on Russia and Ukraine were not the first to appear sympathetic to, or in line with, Russian president Vladimir Putin after he called Western support for Ukraine “the largest political flashmob in American history” in March.

Clips of Mr Carlson’s Fox News show are meanwhile used on Russian-state owned television to prove Russia’s point over its invasion of Ukraine, which has dragged on for seven months.