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Paul Lookman
Sun, 03/05/2023 - 16:10


Q: Has Russia, behind a wall of 6,000 nuclear weapons, cowardly attacked a non-nuclear-weapon state?
A: To quote American realist political scientist John Mearsheimer: by expanding Nato eastwards and inviting Ukraine to join, the West created an intolerable situation for Vladimir Putin, which would inevitably result in Russia taking action.

Q: Does the IAEA depend on Russia’s cooperation to manage the risk of the Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant being hit?
A: No. With the plant in Russian hands and a team of IAEA-experts deployed there, it is the Ukrainian side that is shelling de plant.

Q: Will the question whether countries like Iran, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Turkey, Brazil, South Korea and Japan go nuclear be determined more by regional circumstances than the outcome of the war in Ukraine?
A: At best partly. States seek nuclear deterrence capability because of national security concerns, US threats in particular.

Q: Could mutual nuclear arms control be a useful instrument for improving the overall political relationship between the US and Russia?
A: Unlikely. Washingston's bellicosity towards Russia is bipartisan and motivated by neocon regime change and break-up objectives for the Russian Federation.

Finally, for the record: Russia is currently reformulating its nuclear doctrine. 'Preventive' tactical nuclear strikes could be considered, by analogy with US nuclear doctrine. In addition, if Kiev deploys Western long-range missiles against Crimea and/or Russian territory, Moscow will drop hypersonic missiles on US military installations in Europe and the US. These missiles are immune to air defences and, merely because of their mach 8-10 speed, have a devastating impact even without a conventional or nuclear payload.

With the atomic bomb dropped on Hiroshima being a far more powerful weapon of mass destruction with wide destructive power, overwhelmingly killing civilians and fallout as an aftereffect, 'clean' payloadless hypersonic missiles can be aimed with an accuracy of one metre at individual military targets such as weapons depots and aircraft carriers. Having hypersonic missiles in their arsenal, states may consider their nuclear weapons redundant, a boon to the process of nuclear disarmament.

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