At the same time, according to the publication, Putin did not take part in such discussions, since only he can decide on the use of such weapons regardless of the opinion of the generals.
In the spring of 2022, Russian officials discussed the possible use of nuclear weapons against Ukraine by Russian President Vladimir Putin.
According to Newsweek, the fact of conducting such discussions is confirmed by e-mails to which the publication received access. They came to the mail of Russian human rights defender, head of the anti-corruption site Gulagu.net Volodymyr Osechkin from an informant from the FSB under the nickname “Wind of Change”. He sent information about conversations inside the Kremlin and Russian power structures.
It is noted that the letters arrived several months before Putin declared his readiness to use nuclear weapons to protect his “territorial integrity”. At the same time, the above-mentioned informant expressed doubt that Putin will launch a nuclear attack, because Russia “will also be on the wave.” He added that although the war against Ukraine was “somewhere beyond logic and common sense”, everyone who participated in the discussions hoped that “outright stupidity” in the form of using nuclear weapons would not be carried out.
In addition, the man with the nickname “Wind of Change” said that the use of tactical nuclear weapons against Ukraine would mean “hurting Russia” both in the eyes of opponents and in the eyes of neutral countries.
“Such a powerful argument for a local conflict would demonstrate a military weakness that even military success could not erase,” the FSB informant noted.
He also suggested that the chain of command in the Kremlin would block Putin’s decision if he tried to order a nuclear strike. At the same time, according to the publication, Putin did not participate in such discussions.
“He is the only one who can make a decision on the use of such weapons, regardless of the opinion of the generals. But the very fact of such discussions causes the White House to fear,” the journalists note.
Mark Bergmann, director of the European program at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS), told Newsweek that Putin is now “desperately looking for some way to try to change this conflict.”
“If you are the leader of a country like Russia, you may be upset by the huge stockpile of nuclear weapons that is your claim to the status of a great power, but at the same time, these stocks are kind of irrelevant – you can’t really use them. All you can do is threaten their application,” explained Bergmann.
At the same time, he believes that if Ukraine continues to make significant progress and moves closer to the occupied Crimea, the Russian Federation may seriously resort to nuclear threats.
At the same time, American officials see no evidence that the Russian military is moving nuclear weapons or is somehow preparing for such a strike. At the same time, sources in the Biden administration said that American officials believe that the risk of using nuclear weapons in Ukraine may increase when Moscow exhausts its forces and conventional weapons in the war.
The war in Ukraine: a nuclear threat
Since the beginning of Russia’s full-scale war against Ukraine, Moscow has repeatedly threatened to use nuclear weapons on the territory of our country.
Thus, at the beginning of November 2022, the president of the aggressor country, Vladimir Putin, warned Western leaders, recalling the nuclear attacks of the United States of America in 1945 on Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Putin spoke about the use of a nuclear bomb against Japan in a conversation with French President Emmanuel Macron.
Against the background of the crushing defeats of the occupiers in Ukraine, Russian propaganda succeeded again in the nuclear threats. The husband of top propagandist Margarita Simonyan, director Tigran Keosayan, said that “a nuclear country cannot lose in any war” if it launches a nuclear attack in time.