Russia's war on Ukraine: Vladimir Putin's nuclear weapons threats show his fear and expose his lies – Scotsman comment

From today, after Vladimir Putin declares that Russia has annexed four regions of Ukraine, his military will, according to their own doctrine, acquire a most terrifying ‘right’ to use nuclear weapons to defend this illegally acquired home soil.

A Ukrainian serviceman sits on a tank near the recently retaken village of Dolina in the Donetsk region, which Russia plans to annex today (Picture: Anatolii Stepanov/AFP via Getty Images)
A Ukrainian serviceman sits on a tank near the recently retaken village of Dolina in the Donetsk region, which Russia plans to annex today (Picture: Anatolii Stepanov/AFP via Getty Images)

The Kremlin plans to take 15 per cent of Ukraine that Russian forces currently control and three per cent that they do not, where the fighting continues.

Fake referendums held in four regions, in which armed soldiers went door to door asking people how they wanted to vote, produced predictably large majorities in favour of annexation. This was a sickening parody of the ‘will of the people’ but it at least demonstrated that Putin still cannot say what he really is and requires a fake democratic cloak to hide his tyranny.

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The threat of a nuclear strike is an attempt to intimidate Ukraine and the West. Earlier this week Putin ally Dmitry Medvedev warned “Russia has the right to use nuclear weapons if necessary”, adding that he did not believe Nato would intervene in the conflict “even in this scenario”. “The demagogues across the ocean and in Europe are not going to die in a nuclear apocalypse,” he said.

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Putin’s regime launched an utterly unnecessary and unjust war of conquest, but are now faced with the prospect of defeat. Their wild threats to use nuclear weapons show how scared they are and expose their lies that Russian forces are “liberators”.

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In these dangerous times, the West must remain calm and resolute, and work to persuade those countries not already convinced that Putin is a profound danger to the world of the need to work towards his downfall.

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