Putin is the nuclear threat real or just a bluff

Putin, is the nuclear threat real or just a bluff? General Battisti: “This is the true aim of the Tsar”

A serious threat or a Putin bluff? What is behind the words of the Russian President? According to Army Corps General Giorgio Battisti, the threat to use nuclear weapons is “another Putin bluff or the target could be different” than the disputed area, he told Adnkronos Battisti, former first commander of the Italian contingent of the ISAF mission in Afghanistan and member of the Italian Atlantic Committee, in view of the “spiral towards a potential nuclear threat that undoubtedly has us in suspense”.


Putin and the nuclear threat: is it true or just a bluff?

“In the powers – USA, Russia, France or Great Britain – the order of a possible – and hopefully never – use of the nuclear weapon is divided between at least two people – observes General Battisti – For Russia is from different information the ‘key’ is in the hands from Putin, the defense minister and the chief of defense staff: all three should agree on the use; Being a terrible weapon, it is not left in the hands of a single person, but it is also true that in a regime that is not fully democratic it is easier to influence the decisions of its collaborators”. There is also an open debate on the issue of tactical nuclear weapons. “It’s a purely Western term,” explains General Battisti, “introduced in the early 1950s with the Korean War. In Russia there is no such distinction, we are talking about nuclear weapons with limited potential (non-strategic nuclear weapons). The potential of these weapons could therefore range from 0.1 kilotons to higher intensity. A kiloton is equal to a thousand tons of TNT, to understand it just think that the bombs of Nagasaki and Hiroshima were 15-20 kilotons ».

The nuclear question in the annexed territories

However, General Battisti raises an issue to consider: “If this unfortunate invasion conflict were postponed in order to annex part of Ukraine, I don’t think any sane person would fire a nuclear weapon precisely at the disputed areas, which by that time would render them useless.” will “. The threat to use nuclear weapons is “either another Putin bluff or the goal could be different.” For example, “to prove that he’s not joking,” he could turn against “the island of snakes, the uninhabited island in the Black Sea,” the general points out. In any case, according to General Battisti, one has to think about the fact that Russia’s annexation of the Donbass regions turns logic on its head from Moscow’s point of view: “Putin always said that it was Russia that was under attack, since 2014. Therefore, in the face of these Russian territories, it can resort to any initiative to defend itself against what is considered aggression ». “It is recalled that in 1996 the then Secretary-General of the United Nations, Boutros Boutros-Ghali, asked the International Court of Justice for an assessment of the use of nuclear weapons or whether they were considered prohibited by international conventions, such as cluster bombs or anti-personnel mines; The International Court of Justice affirmed that in order to defend oneself in the event of invasion by a third country, the use of nuclear weapons can be allowed – he reports – if we agree with this opinion, Russia’s nuclear doctrine and the fact that Putin is aligning itself with it The beginning of the conflict says that Russia was attacked, the circle closes ». On the other hand, General Battisti recalls, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg “was clear and warned against the use of nuclear power and stated that NATO’s conventional response would be very strong. It could – according to General Battisti – refer to a missile and air fire intervention against the deployed Russian forces. It is clear that if NATO intervened, it would enter the conflict openly. It is necessary to see how much this attitude will affect the decisions of Russia ».