Exposing Russia’s Nuclear-Arms Hypocrisy
by “Dominic X”
Original to La Russophobe
Although the Russian media put out anti-western propaganda and disinformation on a regular basis, I thought that a particular article from RIA Novosti deserved some special analysis. The article is dated 6th of May and is still to my knowledge a leading article and unfortunately has been linked to by USA Today and others. Wikipedia describes RIA Novosti as “one of the most authoritative and professional sources of information in Russia”, which does not say much for the rest of them.
The article is by one Yevgeny Kozhokhin, who turns out to be director of Moscow’s “Strategic Studies Institute.” Perhaps I am cynical, but I think it is a safe bet that that institute is an arm of government, unlike its western counterparts. Incidentally, when I googled him I found the quote “in the modern world Russia’s objective of ensuring a conflict-free environment can often only be achieved by offensive means” – obviously trying to out-do the American neocons.
The article follows in ordinary print,with my comments in boldface.
Pavel Felgenhauer, writing on the Jamestown Foundation’s Eurasia Daily Monitor, explains why Russia will never give up its nuclear arsenal as Barack Obama seems to hope:
On April 5 President Barack Obama in his speech in Prague, outlined his vision of a nuclear-free world: “This goal will not be reached quickly -perhaps not in my lifetime. It will take patience and persistence. But now we, too, must ignore the voices who tell us that the world cannot change.” Obama argued that if nuclear nations eliminated their arsenals, others would not move to acquire such weapons. He implied that the process of nuclear reduction began in London after a summit with President Dmitry Medvedev when it was agreed to prepare “by the end of this year a legally binding and sufficiently bold” new arms reduction treaty. This treaty, according to Obama “will set the stage for further cuts, and we will seek to include all nuclear weapons states in this endeavor.” He added, “As long as these weapons exist, we will maintain a safe, secure and effective arsenal to deter any adversary, and guarantee that defense to our allies” (AP, April 5).
In the Cold War Russian Communist leaders often used the theme of the elimination of nuclear weapons as a propaganda weapon to prod Western adversaries. Nuclear disarmament per se was never truly considered by the Russian military, but even if the West publicly took up the nuclear disarmament offer at face value, it was considered a safe option: during the Cold War Russia had a clear conventional troop superiority in Europe and an elimination of the nuclear deterrent would have shifted the balance in its favor.
Now the situation is radically different: Russia’s conventional forces are weak and outdated, while Western militaries are in the midst of a military-technical revolution, acquiring new capabilities of precision warfare that the Russians can only dream about. Russia’s nuclear deterrent is seen as practically the only item left that still keeps the country in the league of military superpowers. Safeguarding a credible nuclear deterrent is the main strategic goal of Russian military chiefs, diplomats and political leaders. Obama’s nuclear-free world vision was publicly ignored by the officialdom in Moscow (www.newsru.com, April 7).
The New York Times reports that a Russian scientist has been nabbed providing advice to Iran on how to build a nuclear weapon.
Reuters reports (hat tip: TakeYourCross):
Russia hopes to deploy a new nuclear missile next year designed to penetrate anti-missile defenses and will build eight submarines to carry it, defense officials said on Thursday.
The latest statements underline Moscow’s determination to upgrade its nuclear strike forces on land, sea and air. They are regarded by Russian commanders as the cornerstone of the country’s defenses.
Colonel-General Vladimir Popovkin, head of armaments for the Russian armed forces, told the Defense Ministry newspaper “Red Star” that Russia’s recent war with Georgia “compels us to rethink the current state of the armed forces and how they should develop further.”