Setting the stage for World War 3, Russian leader Vladimir Putin is threatening to expand Russia's nuclear weapon defense systems near Europe in response to efforts by NATO and the United States to extend air and anti-missile defense coverage over Europe.
In a related report by the Inquisitr, President Obama is also considering giving Ukraine military support and lethal aid as required by the Ukraine Freedom Support Act. Former Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev warns that World War 3 and a major nuclear war could start over the Ukraine war.
This past fall, the number of Russian nuclear weapons surpassed the United States for the first time in 40 years. The development of a new Russian cruise missile which could strike Europe has U.S. officials claiming that Russia is in violation of the 1987 intermediate-range nuclear forces (INF) treaty. In response, the Pentagon is considering deploying U.S. cruise missiles in response to Vladimir Putin's nuclear missile threats.
The day after Christmas, Putin enacted a new Russian military doctrine that calls for a more aggressive stance against NATO, increases the presence of the Russian military in the north due to the Arctic oil, and also strengthens ties with China and India.
"Global developments at present stage are characterized by an increasing global competition, tensions in various interstate and inter-regional areas... There are many regional conflicts which remain unresolved. There is a tendency to force their resolution, including those which are in the regions bordering the Russian Federation. The existing architecture of the international security system does not provide an equal level of security to all states."Since Russia claims that NATO nations are "undermining global stability and violating the balance of power in the nuclear-missile sphere," Russia's nuclear missile defense systems will be expanded in cooperation with Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa, which are sometimes referred to as the BRICS nations. The document, signed by Putin, allows Russia and its allies to set up nuclear missile defense systems as part of joint defense projects. Previously, such a partnership would not be possible based upon the old military doctrine.
Such partnerships have already produced weapons. The Indo-Russian Declaration on Strategic Partnership allowed both Russia and India to develop the BrahMos, a supersonic cruise missile. According to Victoria Panova, assistant professor at the Department of International Relations and Foreign Policy of Russia at the MGIMO University in Moscow, Vladimir Putin's push to increase ties with BRICS nations is a continuation of earlier efforts, not a declaration leading toward World War 3.
Panova said the following, according to Defense News.
"Russia has always intended to have a more sustained and fully structured cooperation between all the BRICS countries... while, at the same time, a number of security topics are much more ripe and relevant to deal with not within BRICS, but, rather, within other formats... South Africa or Brazil would not be interested in the issue of [weapons of mass destruction] non-proliferation or disarmament the same way as the other three countries. All five countries could be very interested in common policies and deepening their cooperation regarding information and cybersecurity."Despite talks of expanding Russia's nuclear missile defense systems, the Washington Post believes that Vladimir Putin may not be capable of following up on these plans due to Russia's economic turmoil over oil prices and the collapse of the Russian ruble.
"Putin's Russia, like the USSR before it, is only as strong as the price of oil. In the 1970s, we made the mistake of thinking that the USSR's invasion of Afghanistan meant we were losing the Cold War, when the reality was that they had stumbled into their own Vietnam and could only afford to feed their people as long as oil stayed sky-high... That history is repeating itself now, just without the Marxism-Leninism. Putin could afford to invade Georgia and Ukraine when oil prices were comfortably in the triple digits, but not when they're half that. Russia can't afford anything then."Despite setting the stage for World War 3, Vladimir Putin insists Russia is not attacking or invading Ukraine, claiming that any actions taken are in defense of Russian interests. Putin also blames the U.S. and NATO for the creation of new nuclear defense systems, since the document explicitly identifies "the expansion of NATO's military potential on the Russian border" as a security threat.