The award-winning 86-year-old American journalist Seymour Hersh claims to have uncovered the mystery behind the sudden, seemingly inexplicable damage done to the Nord Stream pipeline last summer.
Hersh, who won a Pulitzer Prize in 1969 for uncovering the massacre of villagers by the U.S. Army in the Vietnam War, reports that the U.S. Navy, at the command of the Biden Administration, executed the explosions that ripped huge holes in the main gas pipeline that supplies cheap Russian natural gas to central Europe, particularly Germany.
The piece, “How America Took Out The Nord Stream Pipeline,” self-published by Hersh on his new Substack site, states that the sabotage was carried out by Navy divers, operating under the cover of a widely publicised mid-summer NATO exercise known as BALTOPS 22. The specially trained, highly skilled deep-water divers planted C4 explosives that could be remotely detonated, which they were, three months later.
The career investigative journalist explains in his article that the U.S. government has always had serious concerns about Nord Stream Pipelines, fearing they threatened Western dominance, and President Joe Biden’s security advisers were no exception. In the months leading up to the Russian invasion of Ukraine, their fears grew. A second pipeline, Nord Stream 2, seemed about to come online at the same time that Russia was amassing troops at the Ukrainian border.
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.
Finally, the team decided to turn to the Navy divers because they could be deployed without triggering the country’s congressional oversight mechanism. The planning took place late in 2021 and into the first months of 2022.
Both the White House and the Pentagon have called Hersh’s report a complete fabrication, but Hersh also says that he is used to that. In an introductory explanation of his decision to independently publish on Substack, he wrote:
I’ve been told my stories were wrong, invented, outrageous for as long as I can remember—but I’ve never stopped. In 2004, after I published the first stories about the torture of Iraqi prisoners at Abu Ghraib, a Pentagon spokesman responded by calling my journalism “a tapestry of nonsense.”
He recalled, too, how his first report on government cover-up, his exposé of the atrocities in Vietnam, was also impossible to get published. After having it rejected by major publications, he published it on the obscure wire service of a friend.
As he explains, he has worked for major news outlets but has spent most of his career as a freelancer and has always felt most at home in what today is known as independent media.
Substack, then, was a natural next step, as he notes many other journalists have also found the freedom to publish independently on the platform.
He also explained how he gets his stories, and, by implication, his latest bombshell article as well:
I’ve never been interested in socializing with pols or cozying up to money types at the self-important cocktail get-togethers… I’m at my best when I swig cheap bourbon with the servicemen, work over the first-year law firm associates for intel, or swap stories with the junior minister from a country most people can’t name. That’s always been my style.
History is often written by the most ordinary people.