By supplying German industries with gas Russia held a tiny amount of leverage over Berlin since it could theoretically switch off the valve. It was a tiny amount of leverage since nobody had ever witnessed Russia actually do such a thing despite decades of financial, economic, diplomatic, political, propaganda, and moral war against her by Berlin and its Washington overlord.
When a month ago Russia actually went ahead and switched off Nord Stream gas it boosted its leverage. By carrying out the threat it demonstrated the credibility of said threat, while still retaining the ability to restore supplies. Its leverage proposition was “We can restore your gas the moment we reach a modicum of peace.”
By destroying Nord Stream the “mystery” explosions have removed Russian ability to make that offer, and have removed Russian leverage with Germany.
The explosion also removes popular pressure on Berlin from below. If there is no Nord Stream then there also can not be protest to open Nord Stream by freezing proles.
The explosion also removes a piece of infrastructure that the Imperial Capital has been obsessed with for years. Obsessions that led it to enact sanctions against entities of its own “ally” (vassal). Obsession that was out of all proportion to Nord Stream’s actual significance or prospects of German-Russian peace.
That is to say, I believe the chances of German-Russian rapprochement were always zero. But that did not stop Washington from traditionally hugely overreacting to the possibility and zeroing in on Nord Stream as the potential catalyst. Its final destruction will have caused a deluge of satisfaction and merriment in DC. (Never underestimate the drive of DC apparatchiks to create feel-good moments for themselves.)
And because the pipeline was inactive anyway the costs associated with blowing it up are minimal. Blow up an active pipe and you risk turning a vassal against you. But having succeeded in making the pipe into an object of shame that Berlin must apologize for ever having built, delivering the explosive coup de grace carries little risk.