A blistering exposé from The Washington Post is casting new aspersions on the oversight — or lack thereof — stemming from President Joe Biden’s administration.
“Forbidden Russian oil flows into the Pentagon supply chain,” the ominous, exclusive report warned readers right off the bat.
The salacious headline and report are rooted in two key issues:
- Russian oil imports were collectively banned by the U.S. and the European Union in March 2022 as a response to the country’s war with Ukraine, per The Post.
- A Greek refinery that serves the U.S. military claimed it adapted to these new sanctions — but apparently did not.
The Motor Oil Hellas refinery on the Aegean Sea in Greece is at the center of this Washington Post investigation, and the company stands accused of continuing to pump Russian petroleum in spite of those 2022 sanctions.
Interestingly, Motor Oil Hellas wasn’t using some particularly Rube Goldberg plot to pump the allegedly illegal oil.
According to The Post, the refinery allegedly rerouted the illegal product “hundreds of miles out of the way through an oil storage facility in Turkey,” a detour which the outlet claimed “obscured Russia’s imprint as ownership of the products changed hands multiple times before they reached Greece.”
The common practice of mixing oil from various countries of origin at refineries (before they’re sent out again) also has reportedly allowed the proliferation of Russian oil.
The paper trail that The Post said it dug up directly links Biden’s Pentagon to this compromised product, as “federal contracting data” revealed that the government entity signed nearly $1 billion worth of new contracts with Motor Oil Hellas since the wartime sanctions were enacted last March.
The Post also noted that since February 2022, a million barrels of jet fuel from Motor Oil Hellas have gone to various entities in Italy, France, Spain and Britain — with those first two countries being founding members of the EU.
All of these entities effectively stand accused of purchasing sanctioned oil via a middleman.
Worse yet, The Post report suggested that all of this sanctioned oil was coming at a hefty premium as part of the sanctions involved a price cap on Russian oil — a price cap that apparently countries are not following through on, allowing Russia to sell its oil for far more money than it’s supposed to.
A Pentagon Defense Logistics Agency representative told the outlet that they had “no knowledge” of banned Russian fuel being found at a contracted supplier.
Motor Oil Hellas has vociferously denied these allegations.
The refinery offered a statement to The Post, noting that the company “does not buy, process or trade Russian oil or products. All its imports are certified of non sanctioned origin.”
An evidently wide-spanning and complicated scandal, it’s unclear what comes next, though the Washington Post did note that enforcement of related penalties have “been scant.”
“The U.S. military has not done its due diligence on the origin of this oil,” Isaac Levi, an analyst for a European nonprofit that tracks the flow of Russian oil, told The Post. “It is not hard to see where it is coming from.”
For Biden, this is a familiar headache.
Up until America acquiesced with the E.U. on sanctions, Biden’s administration actually vociferously opposed them.
Biden’s waffling on the sanctioned petroleum forced the hands of Republicans to push for the “Independence from Russian Energy Act” in March 2022.
For Biden, it’s just the latest in a stretch of headaches for the octogenarian incumbent in the midst of what will likely be a grueling re-election campaign — a re-election bid that sees former President Donald Trump nipping at his heels.
This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.
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