Putin claims that the West has wrongly assumed that Russia will never use nuclear weapons

ST PETERSBURG (Russia) – Russian president Vladimir Putin said Wednesday that the West had assumed that Moscow would not use nuclear weapons. He said he was considering deploying missiles within striking distance of America and its allies.

The Kremlin warned repeatedly that the threat of global war was increasing after Russia invaded Ukraine on a full-scale in 2022. This marked the worst break in relations between Russia, the West and Cuba since the Cuban Missile Crisis of 1962.

Putin dismissed Western claims of Russia’s ability to attack NATO, citing NATO’s military strength, as “stupid” when he spoke face-to-face with senior editors from international news agencies, for the first since the beginning of the Ukraine war.

When asked about the possibility of nuclear war the 71 year old Kremlin chief replied that Russia’s nuclear policy allows the use of such weapons in the event of a threat to the country’s sovereignty or territorial integrity.

“The West thinks that Russia won’t use it,” Putin replied when Reuters asked him about the possibility of a nuclear escalation in Ukraine. This was after more than three-hours of questioning.

Look at our nuclear doctrine. We consider it acceptable to use any means available if someone threatens our territorial integrity and sovereignty. “This should not be treated lightly or superficially.”

The Russian nuclear doctrine 2020 outlines the conditions in which a Russian President would consider the use of a nuclear weapon. These include a broad response to an attack involving nuclear weapons or other weapons that cause mass destruction or the use of conventional weapons by Russia “when its very existence is threatened.”

Putin denied Western claims that Russia had used nuclear weapons to threaten war and said that only the United States had done so – by attacking Japanese cities Hiroshima & Nagasaki during World War II.

MISSILES

Putin said the decision by Western nations to allow Ukraine use more powerful Western missiles in order to attack Russian territory is a serious escalation. He also stated that these weapons will have to be guided and controlled by Western personnel and systems.

President Joe Biden has authorized Kyiv’s launch of U.S. weapons against military targets in Russia. However, Washington continues to prohibit Kyiv’s use of ATACMS weapons, which can reach a distance up to 186 miles (325 km), or other U.S. weapons with long range.

When asked about Western decisions, Putin distinguished between different weapons. However, he said that the use ATACMS missiles or British Storm Shadows against Russia may lead to a more severe response from Moscow.

Putin stated that “we will enhance our air defence system and destroy them.”

“Secondly, if it is possible for someone to send weapons of this class into a warzone to strike at our territory, and cause us problems, why don’t we have the right send weapons of this type to regions around the world, where we can make strikes on sensitive facilities in countries who do that against Russia? This means that the response could be asymmetric.

“If we observe that these countries are being drawn in to a war with the Russian Federation, we reserve the rights to act the same way.” This is generally a road to serious problems.

Putin frames the war as a part of an existence battle with a declining, decadent West that he claims humiliated Russia following the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989 by encroaching upon what he believes to be Moscow’s spheres of influence including Ukraine.

Putin claimed that the West would not discuss the causes of war, which began in 2014 when a prorussian president in Ukraine was overthrown in the Maidan Revolution. Putin portrayed it as an American-backed coup.

The West has dismissed Putin’s analysis and portrayed the invasion as a land grab in the imperial style. It has also vowed to assist Ukraine defeat Russian forces.

Ukraine has said it will not stop until every single Russian soldier is removed from the parts of Ukraine that they control, and which Russia considers now to be part of Russia.

Russia’s leader, more than two years after the deadliest war in Europe since World War Two began, is increasingly talking about the danger of a world war while the West struggles with what to say in response to the Russian advance in Ukraine.

Western leaders, including Ukraine, have downplayed Russia’s warnings that a wider war could involve the world’s largest nuclear power. However, they have warned repeatedly that Putin may attack a NATO member, the most powerful military alliance in the world led by the United States.

Putin and Biden both said that a direct confrontation between Russia and NATO could lead to World War Three.

You should not portray Russia as an enemy. “You’re only harming yourself by doing this, don’t you know?” Putin replied.

They thought Russia was going to attack NATO. Are you completely insane? This is thicker than this table. Who thought of this? You know, it’s just total nonsense. Total rubbish.”

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