Russian President Vladimir Putin has threatened to use nuclear weapons in his war against Ukraine. Would he really do that?
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Would Putin really use nuclear weapons in his war against Ukraine? Russian’s campaign in Ukraine is becoming increasingly desperate. In an effort to revitalize its campaign and undermine opposition in Ukraine and abroad, Russia continues to look at escalation, including threats to use nuclear weapons against Ukraine. While a low-probability event, the risk of Russia using a nuclear weapon against a military or civilian target in its war on Ukraine isn’t zero. Indeed, Russia has a significant asymmetric advantage over the U.S. and NATO in non-strategic nuclear weapons of 20:1 in Europe and 10:1 overall.
What should we do? Articulate a strong public declaratory policy that any use of a nuclear weapon against Ukraine would have serious penalties for the Russian military and the Russian Federation. Bolster NATO’s force posture to improve conventional deterrence in Europe, especially frontline NATO states.