Putin news: Horror ‘destruction of Russia’ warning sent as nuclear threats blown apart | World | News

Vladimir Putin has seen his threats to use nuclear weapons on Ukraine blown to shreds after being warned by a British army veteran it would lead to the “destruction of Russia” and to his own “downfall”. War tensions have exploded over fears Russia could use tactical nuclear weapons in Ukraine, with Putin issuing threats as he staged the annexation of four occupied regions.

Last month, Putin chillingly warned during a national address he could use nuclear weapons if Russia’s territory comes under threat, reminding the West of the huge arsenal available to his country and adding: “I am not bluffing”.

Western superpowers have fired back at those threats, warning any use of nuclear weaspons on Ukraine will be met with the most devastating retaliation.

There are surging fears that with Russia continuing to be battered by damaging losses in the battlefield, Putin may take the extreme step of using nuclear weapons.

But Colonel Richard Kemp, a retired British Army officer who served for nearly 30 years from 1977 to 2006, has taken apart the nuclear weapons threats from Putin.

He told Express.co.uk: “We should take any nuclear threat from Putin over the threat of nuclear weapons very seriously.

However, it is hard to see what he will achieve with that because if he is planning to use them against Ukrainian troops on the ground, he could achieve the same thing with heavy bombing and artillery as he could do with the use of nuclear weapons against enemy troops.

“The problem Putin has is his troops are not really in a position to operate on a nuclear battlefield and they would potentially suffer contamination and casualties from operating where nuclear weapons are being operated.

“He might destroy a large number of Ukrainian troops, but he is not going to be able to move forward and will still be in defensive mode.”

Colonel Kemp added: “The other option would be to use nuclear weapons on cities and that could potentially break Ukrainian morale.

“But that would also likely result in Western and NATO intervention in some way, whether that would be to sink the Black Sea fleet or carry out serious rocket attacks on Russian military installations.

“That could result in the destruction of Russia and lead directly to Putin’s downfall. We don’t know what Biden and the US could be planning for Russia in such an event, but any type of retaliation could be devastating for Putin.”

Earlier this month, the European Union’s top diplomat hit back at Putin’s threats, warning any Russian nuclear attack on Ukraine would result in its own forces being completely destroyed.

EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell said at the opening of a Diplomatic Academy in Brussels: “Putin is saying he is not bluffing.

“Well, he cannot afford bluffing, and it has to be clear that the people supporting Ukraine and the European Union and the Member States, and the United States and NATO are not bluffing neither.”

“Any nuclear attack against Ukraine will create an answer, not a nuclear answer but such a powerful answer from the military side that the Russian Army will be annihilated.”

NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg also said the circumstances in which the defence alliance might have to use nuclear weapons are “extremely remote” but warned there would be “severe consequences” if Russia made such a move.

He told a news conference after a meeting of NATO defence ministers last week: “There would be severe consequences if Russia used nuclear weapons, any kind of nuclear weapon against Ukraine.

“We will not go into exactly how we will respond, but this will fundamentally change the nature of the conflict. It means that a very important line has been crossed.”

But Colonel Kemp urged caution and warned: “If Putin does use nuclear weapons, I would doubt that NATO would retaliate in the same manner even though it has the capabilities to do so.

“NATO does not have battlefield nuclear weapons so it couldn’t really respond in a proportionate way. There will be a very big reluctance from within NATO to use nuclear weapons at all.”

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