Russia has maintained a threatening posture against Ukraine, including maintaining approximately 100,000 troops near the Ukrainian border. The United States and the United Kingdom have taken the lead in crafting a set of financial sanctions they are threatening to levy against Russia in the case of any aggression. Moscow has said that such a move would result in a cessation of energy supplies to the Europeans–who happen to get about 30% of their oil and natural gas from Russia.
Russia’s energy leverage over the EU (and as many other states as it can connect itself to via pipelines) is significant, particularly in terms of natural gas. Global liquefied natural gas production–including the burgeoning US LNG industry–might help alleviate some of these pressures, but not all.
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