Oh, January. Was it that long ago that regular AAFES gas cost just $3.142 a gallon in Germany?

What heady days those were. On Saturday that same gallon will run you $4.146.

A ninth straight week of skyrocketing U.S. pump prices will drive the Army and Air Force Exchange prices up more than 14 cents a gallon this weekend in Germany and the United Kingdom to — surprise, surprise — more new records.

And the worst still may be to come.

In early May, the U.S. Energy Information Administration’s analysts predicted prices would peak in June with a monthly average of $3.73 a gallon for regular. Well, May averaged $3.765 in the U.S., so one part of that prediction at least is already wrong.

But if EIA got the other part of its prediction right — that prices would peak in June — then we’ll soon be pining for the days of $4.14 gas. There’s no indication yet that prices are slowing their meteoric rise. According to AAA, U.S. gas prices have broken records every day since May 5.

And as bad as gas prices are, diesel is worse. U.S. gas is up nearly 73 cents in the last 12 months, a figure that pales in comparison to the extra $1.906 diesel has packed on – including an extra 22.6 cents per gallon this week.

In Germany, AAFES diesel soars to $4.932 this weekend. In the Netherlands, where AAFES sells fuel at cost, diesel climbs to $5.549.

Even premium gasoline in the Netherlands will bound across the $5 threshold to $5.132. The cheapest fuel available in the Netherlands will run $4.805 — a 25.4 cent increase over the current price.

Prices are now so high globally that even Europeans, who pay more than double what U.S. drivers pay, are complaining. Truck drivers blocked London highways in protest earlier this week, and photos on newspaper front pages in Germany on Thursday carped about 1.52 euro per liter regular (about $9.26 per gallon).

That’s a whole other league from what Americans are used to. But it makes one wonder, when was the last time U.S. gas prices were in the 1.52 (dollar)-per-gallon range?

Not long ago. In early January 2004, the U.S. national average for a gallon of regular was $1.51 according to EIA data, and in January 1994 the average for the whole month was less than $1.

A decade and four months later, prices are more that four times that, leaving AAFES customers in the U.K. to pay at least $4.185 per gallon.

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