Putin announces tactical nuclear weapons drills in Western region

Putin announces tactical nuclear weapons drills in Western region

New Delhi. Following the invasion of Ukraine in 2022, Russian President Vladimir Putin directed the forces to conduct tactical nuclear weapon exercises in response to what he termed as "threats" from the West. It is worth to be noted that on Monday it marked the first public announcement of such drills by Russia, which was hinted at by President Putin.

According to Russia's defense ministry, the exercises will encompass preparations and deployment scenarios involving non-strategic nuclear weapons. The announcement was made as Russian forces claimed to have taken control of two villages in the eastern Ukrainian war-torn districts of Donetsk and Kharkiv, where Ukrainian troops were outnumbered and outgunned and were struggling to hold the line.

Meanwhile, Russian officials in the Belgorod border region said that over thirty individuals, including numerous children had been injured by Ukrainian drones attack, resulting in six fatalities.

The decision to conduct drills has been followed by the defense ministry terming it ‘proactive statements and threats’ from the West, which Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov characterized as reaching "unprecedented levels."

It is worth to be noted that the reports of Vladimir Putin ordering tactical nuclear weapons drills amid perceived Western threats aren't unprecedented. The geopolitical tensions between Russia and Western nations, particularly NATO countries, have been ongoing for years. These tensions often manifest in military exercises and displays of strength from both sides. However, Putin's decision to conduct such drills could be seen as a response to several factors:

Russia may perceive actions or statements from Western countries, particularly NATO members, as threatening. This could include NATO's expansion eastward, military exercises near Russian borders, or geopolitical moves perceived as encroaching on Russian interests.

Apart from this internal politics could be one of the other reasons as leaders sometimes use military maneuvers to bolster domestic support or project strength on the international stage. Putin's decision could be influenced by domestic political considerations, especially given Russia's complex political landscape.

Demonstrating readiness and capability, including with nuclear weapons, is a common strategy for deterrence. By showcasing Russia's military prowess, Putin might seek to dissuade potential adversaries from taking actions deemed harmful to Russian interests.


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