White House: We Have Explained To The Russians What The Consequences Would Be

White House: We Have Explained To The Russians What The Consequences Would Be

In reaction to Russian President Vladimir Putin’s most recent indication that he could be prepared to use nuclear weapons, U.S. officials are treading carefully. Biden administration officials have stated that they are taking Putin’s apparent allusion to the nuclear option in last week’s speech seriously while attempting to avoid aggravating the situation with more bellicose language.

With Putin’s nuclear saber-rattling, the Kremlin’s declaration, which also outlined tough new measures to try and reverse the tide of the battle in Ukraine back in Moscow’s favor, has left U.S. policymakers with a limited number of alternatives.

According to White House national security adviser Jake Sullivan, “We have explained to the Russians what the consequences would be, but we have been careful in how we talk about this publicly because, from our perspective, we want to lay down the principle that there would be catastrophic consequences, but not engage in a game of rhetorical tit for tat.

Putin said last week that Moscow was ready to use nuclear weapons to protect any of its territory and that the United States and its allies were attempting to “destroy” his nation by using “nuclear blackmail.”

In a speech that was broadcast nationwide, Putin said, “I want to remind you that our country too has numerous means of devastation, and certain components are more contemporary than those of the NATO nations.”

According to the White House, it does not see any justification for changing its nuclear posture in reaction to Putin’s remarks. Instead, U.S. officials have attempted to strike a compromise between strong warnings to Russia not to escalate the confrontation and a willingness to maintain communications with Moscow in secret.

Putin was employing “irresponsible language,” Secretary of State Antony Blinken said “60 Minutes” in an interview that aired on Sunday. He said that both publicly and privately, the White House had warned Moscow against using nuclear weapons. Blinken declined to discuss the specifics of the American message or approach, but he did say that the administration had a plan in place in the event that Russia deploys nuclear weapons.

When asked if there was a plan to “prevent World War III,” Blinken responded, “President Biden has been determined that this war not expand, not get broader, as we’re doing everything we can to help the Ukrainians defend themselves, as we’re doing everything we can to rally other countries to put pressure on Russia.” Karine Jean-Pierre, the press secretary for the White House, followed President Biden and the secretary of state in recent weeks by declining to discuss the possible repercussions of Russia using nuclear weapons on Monday.

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On Monday, Russian spokesperson Dmitry Peskov stated that Moscow and Washington were in touch with nuclear matters, but he noted that the communication was “extremely intermittent.”

Peskov told state-run Russian media in response to Sullivan’s statement: “There are channels of engagement between the Russian Federation and the United States; they are extremely infrequent, but they enable you to deliver emergency communications concerning each other’s stance.”

Additionally, there has been a lot of conjecture on the precise type of weapon Putin is using. Tactical nuclear weapons, also known as nonstrategic nuclear weapons, are designed to win a conflict, and there are concerns that the Russian president may turn to utilizing them. While long-range or strategic nuclear weapons are intended to bring an end to a conflict, as was the case when the Allies dropped atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki during World War II.

The fact that nuclear technology has improved significantly and that both the United States and Russia have tactical weapons in their arsenals that would cause far more damage than the bombs used almost 80 years ago is a significant problem.

In 2018, James Mattis, who was then the defense secretary, asserted that he didn’t think “there’s such such thing as a “tactical nuclear weapon.” Any nuclear bomb deployed at any point changes the nature of the strategic game.

Additionally, the chilly ties between the two countries only highlight the dangers present as administration officials attempt to warn Russia of the repercussions plainly without further exacerbating an already delicate situation.

“In my opinion, Putin has done a great job of keeping the west on edge by threatening nuclear war. The west responds to these dangers with great fervor and, in my opinion, reads more into them than is necessary. But I believe it has worked in his favor,” said Mark Cancian, senior consultant for the Center for Strategic and International Studies’ international security program.

Cancian asserted that U.S. authorities had so far used strategic ambiguity to respond appropriately, warning Russia without causing widespread fear by committing a military response to the deployment of nuclear weapons.

John Herbst, a former U.S. ambassador to Ukraine, concurred that Washington has been sending Moscow clear messages over the last week, and there is no indication that Putin’s threats have stopped the West from continuing to arm Ukraine.

It appears that we have advised the Russians to refrain from doing so. If you do, expect a severe retaliation from us. It won’t be to your liking. Herbst told The Hill on Monday, “That’s good.

“Putin, the devoted KGB agent, is skilled at psychological tricks. Therefore, he has expertly crafted this persona to intimidate us and fail to uphold our interests, Herbst said, adding, “we cannot afford to fall for it.”

Herbst argued that the United States may try to enlist China and India in a lobbying operation to secretly try to convince Putin to refrain from using nuclear weapons.

He remarked, “The Chinese are obviously not our allies, but they have voiced dissatisfaction with Putin’s thus far unsuccessful campaign in Ukraine. “I assume that if Putin used a weapon of mass destruction, the Chinese would not be happy. In order to encourage the Russians not to do this, we should speak with the Chinese and, for that matter, the Indians. Of course, just in secret.

Approximately seven months after Putin started an invasion of Ukraine, there has been a recent flurry of discussion about Russia’s use of nuclear weapons. Soon after the conflict began, the Russian president made a suggestion that nuclear weapons may be used. In reaction to their remarks, the U.S. administration stated in March that it was not changing its nuclear posture.

However, Putin’s invocation of nuclear weapons last week occurred at a time when he had firmly established his position in response to a Ukrainian counteroffensive that had driven back Russian soldiers and regained control of vital towns.

Some have questioned if Putin was referring to the autonomous regions of Ukraine that Moscow has claimed through rigged referendums when he warned nuclear weapons may be used to defend the Russian nation.

Putin demanded the enlistment of hundreds of thousands of males of military age in the same audiotaped speech that alluded to nuclear war. This action sparked public outcry, legislative opposition, and footage of Russian men abandoning their families that went viral.

In an interview with “Face The Nation,” Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky cited Putin’s previous statements as well as Russia’s takeover of nuclear facilities in Ukraine as reasons to take him seriously when he raises the prospect of nuclear conflict. Zelensky declared, “I don’t think he’s bluffing.” “I believe that the world is containing and discouraging this menace. We must maintain pressure on him and forbid him from going on.

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Charlene Greenway
1 month ago

I’m sure Putin’s scared to death by biden’s threats, he knows biden’s weak and won’t do anything.

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