Defense expert Alexander Golts, writing in the Moscow Times:
Imagine the following scenario: After the standoff between the United States and Russia has reached boiling point, the U.S. president decides to launch a nuclear first strike. Russian radar and spy satellites identify a launch of U.S. missiles directed at Russia. The Russian president gives the command for a nuclear counterstrike and simultaneously orders the destruction of U.S. missile-defense installations in Central Europe. To neutralize U.S. radar systems in the Czech Republic and missile-defense batteries in Poland, Russia launches Iskander missiles from Kaliningrad — the ones that President Dmitry Medvedev mentioned in his state-of-the-nation address on Wednesday.
Is this the script of the latest cheap Armageddon novel? Not at all. I just carried the statements and hints made by Kremlin leaders to their logical conclusion. It all started when then-President Vladimir Putin, and now Medvedev, invented the myth that the United States is attempting to create a global missile-defense system to establish military superiority over Russia. This myth is based on the notion that the United States or NATO could launch a first strike against Russia and its missile-defense system would be able to fully intercept a counterstrike of Russian missiles, thus guaranteeing complete military superiority over Russia.