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The idea of using U.S. energy resources as a weapon has taken hold in some quarters of Congress, but not everyone thinks it’s a good idea.

“While the rhetorical flourish associated with the linkage is politically intoxicating, the underlying facts bear scrutiny,” said Frank A. Verrastro, an analyst at the Center for Strategic and International Studies. U.S. gas exports would not be available quickly enough to help Europe anytime soon, while even a sizable release of oil from U.S. reserves would have only limited effects, he said.

Russia exports 7 million barrels of crude oil a day, yet the most the U.S. could legally release from the reserves would be 4 million barrels a day, Mr. Verrastro said. “That would not be adequate to replace or offset Russian barrels lost as the result of potential sanctions,” he said, though he conceded that any extended release from the reserves would drive down prices to Russia’s detriment.