gas tanker ship
While Russia and Europe deal with their tensions over the Yamal-Europe pipeline, Washington seems to take advantage by selling some of its goods on the side.

Could the US be projecting its fears of Europe's 'Russian dependence' on gas by binge-selling dry gas?

Vessels carrying liquefied natural gas carried from the US to European ports multiplied by a third this Christmas weekend, according to Bloomberg data.

One day before the Christmas Eve holiday, 15 vessels were observed. Over the Christmas weekend, 20 tankers carrying liquefied natural gas were reported heading to Europe. Another 14 vessels are also on their way.

The US tankers, allegedly sent to Europe to mitigate the energy crisis, intercept European gas whose prices are 10 times higher than they were a year ago.

Although European officials claim that the hike in prices is due to a shortage of heating supplies this winter, Russian authorities, including Putin, contend that European countries like Germany have been purchasing cheap Russian gas and reselling them at much higher prices, and that winter is just beginning.

The price of dry US gas is predicted to be up 55% by the end of 2021 after it has risen more than 100% previously.

Gazprom retorts

Poland, among others, accused Russia of cutting off gas supplies (as the pipeline has been in reverse mode for almost a week now), accusing Moscow of "manipulation."

Gazprom responded, "All accusations against Russia and Gazprom that we are not supplying enough gas to the European market are absolutely groundless and unacceptable and untrue," Gazprom spokesman Sergei Kupriyanov said late Saturday, dubbing the accusations as "lies".

For the sixth day in a row, gas in the pipeline has been in reverse flow, sending the gas from Germany to Poland, according to public data.

Putin: Europe can only blame itself

On Friday, Putin rejected claims that the reverse flow is a political move, saying that Poland "sidelined" Russia in the pipeline management. The Russian president, furthermore, accused Germany of reselling cheap Russian gas at higher prices, contending that Europe's problems are from Europe itself.

"I don't even want to talk about the price of such reverse supplies. These prices are significantly higher than the prices for contract volumes set by Gazprom," he said in an interview on state television, continuing to say that "all problems in Western Europe have been created by themselves and there is no need to blame Gazprom for this. It is better to look in the mirror."

Putin said that the European Union can only blame its own policies for record gas prices, as some of its members resell cheap Russian gas at much higher prices within the bloc.

Putin called on the EU to agree to a novelty route for Russian gas - the Nord Stream 2 pipeline - to cut prices down.

Gas prices in Europe hit a new record last Tuesday, reaching almost 800% so far this year. Although prices decreased on Friday, they are still up over 400%.

The US, in addition to some eastern European countries, stand against the Nord Stream 2 pipeline coming into effect, contending that the line would increase Europe's dependence on Russian gas, which provides 35% of the bloc's gas demands. Germany and Belgium are yet to approve the pipeline, which was built in September.