Martin Lewis is desperate to offer energy advice to a retiree
The news comes as Russia continues its assault on Ukraine, taking much of the eastern part of the country, albeit at a snail’s pace, as Western-supplied weapons keep Putin’s forces on edge. the back foot. Putin has long been critical of Western arms supplies and has seen state TV presenters castigate European countries for it, often resorting to scare tactics and talking about nuclear strikes. Yet as summer continues to provide warmth and coolness across Europe, several commentators believe a European winter of discontent looms on the horizon, with Putin holding the keys to misery.
Eddy Wax, Victor Jack and Paola Tamma, writing in Politico, say that Putin is showing himself ready to use food, fuel and fertilizers as weapons of war against Western democracies that arm Ukraine and sanction Moscow, things could get worse quickly.
The argument is supported by political scientist Ivan Krastev who said: “It was the harsh Russian winters that stopped Napoleon.
“It was the harsh Russian winters that in 1941 stopped Hitler.
“Now Putin’s idea is to make winter harsh in Europe.”
Putin was accused of using the same tactic to stop Hitler
Putin criticized the West for supplying weapons to Ukraine
Speaking during a special July 14 presidential interview on TF1, French President Emmanuel Macron accused Putin of using gas as a weapon as autumn approaches, warning citizens to use their energy more effectively.
Germany and the Netherlands also braced for winter, warning citizens about gas use and energy efficiency.
In addition to the threat of energy shortages, the continuing risk of food shortages also threatens Europe and the rest of the world.
Millions of tonnes of grain and wheat have remained locked up in silos, ships and Ukraine’s fields, leaving many developing countries short of bread-making staples.
There have been reports of fires being started in fields in Ukraine by Russian troops to further tighten the grip on food supplies.
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Emmanuel Macron has raised concerns about energy shortages, accusing Putin of weaponizing energy
Millions of tonnes of grain remain blocked in Ukraine
A survey commissioned by the European Parliament this spring found that almost 60% of EU citizens said they were not prepared to face increases in the cost of food or energy.
Some 59% agreed that “European values such as freedom and democracy must be a priority, even if this has an impact on prices and the cost of living”.
But the report noted that support was highest among the most economically secure people – and fell below 50% among those who sometimes or regularly struggled to pay bills.
Tim Benton, director of the society and environment program at Chatham House, said: ‘You could end up with a lot of severely disadvantaged people, plus a number of people in the streets protesting job losses or throwing rocks at politicians in yellow vests and Extinction Rebellion-style protests.
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Food prices are not expected to fall in the near future
Food prices have risen sharply since the start of the conflict, with some items also experiencing shortages on the shelves.
Cooking oil has been a major casualty of the war, with much of Europe’s supply coming from seeds in Ukraine.
According to the chief economist of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, Beata Javorcik, food prices are not expected to drop any time soon.
Worries are now becoming a reality in terms of world hunger and more people falling into poverty.
UN figures show that the number of hungry people has increased by 50 million in 2021 compared to 2020, and this number will only increase due to the outbreak of war between two granaries.
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Putin hopes to provoke an influx of refugees into Europe as a tactic
The worst-case scenario from a European perspective is that the food crisis triggers a new wave of mass migration, putting further pressure on political systems and causing a security problem for many states, with hunger forcing desperate measures.
Speaking about how Putin uses food as a weapon, Yale University historian Timothy Snyder said: “Putin’s plan to fight hunger is intended to generate refugees from North Africa and from the Middle East, regions generally supplied by Ukraine.
“It would generate instability in the EU.”
Many have suggested that Putin played a similar trick during the border crisis between Belarus and Poland last year, in which thousands of Iraqi and Syrian refugees tried to cross the border into the EU.
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