Biden offers stark ‘Armageddon’ warning of dangers of Putin’s nuclear threats – Boston News, Weather, Sports

(CNN) — President Joe Biden on Thursday issued a stark warning of the dangers behind the Russian president Vladimir Putin’s nuclear threats while Moscow continues to face military setbacks in Ukraine.

“For the first time since the Cuban Missile Crisis, we have a direct threat of using (a) nuclear weapon if things actually continue as they are,” Biden warned during a speech at a Democratic fundraiser in New York where he was introduced James Murdochaccording to the pool report, the youngest son of media mogul Rupert Murdoch.

He added, “I don’t think there is such a thing as the ability to just (deploy) a tactical nuclear weapon and not end up in Armageddon.”

It is remarkable that the President speaks so openly, invoking Armageddon, particularly at a fundraiser, while his staff from the National Security Council to the State Department to the Pentagon have spoken in much more moderate terms, They say they take the threats seriously, but see no movement from the Kremlin.

“I’m trying to figure out what Putin’s departure is?” Biden said during the event, “Where does he find a way out? Where is he in a position where he not only loses face but also loses significant power within Russia?”

His comments come as the US considers how to respond to a number of possible scenarios. including fears that Russians could use tactical nuclear weaponsaccording to three sources briefed on the latest information and previously reported by CNN.

Officials only warned Thursday that the US has done so unidentified preparations for a nuclear strike. But experts see them as potential options the US needs to prepare for as Russia’s invasion falters and Moscow annexes more Ukrainian territory.

“This nuclear saber-rattling is reckless and irresponsible,” Pentagon spokesman Brig. Gen. Pat Ryder said earlier Thursday. “As I mentioned earlier, we have no information at this time that would cause us to change our strategic deterrent stance, and we do not appreciate that President Putin made a decision to use nuclear weapons at this time.”

Following Biden’s comments, officials told CNN Thursday night that they had seen no changes to Russia’s nuclear stance.

A US official said that despite Biden’s warning that the world was the closest thing to a nuclear crisis since the 1960s, they had seen no change in Russia’s nuclear stance until now. White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said Tuesday that there was no indication of a change in Russia’s stance and therefore no change in the US stance, the official said.

A senior US official expressed surprise at the president’s comments, saying there were no obvious signs of an escalating threat from Russia.

While there is no doubt Russia’s nuclear stance is being taken seriously, this official said the president’s comments at a fundraiser tonight caught other government officials off guard.

“Nothing was detected today that reflects an escalation,” said the official, who defended Biden’s comments because of the ongoing seriousness of the matter.

At the fundraiser, Biden spoke clearly about the threat officials believe Russia poses, a person familiar with his thinking told CNN.

Still, US officials have taken a somber note of the Russian president’s repeated public threats to use nuclear weapons. In a televised address late last month, Putin said: “If the territorial integrity of our country is threatened, we will undoubtedly use all available means to protect Russia and our people. This is not a bluff.”

Last Friday, at a ceremony in which he announced the illegal annexation of four Ukrainian regionsPutin said Russia would use “all available means” to defend the territories, adding that the US “set a precedent” with the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki in World War II.

“We have a guy that I know pretty well,” Biden said of Putin on Thursday. “He doesn’t joke when he talks about the possible use of tactical nuclear weapons or biological or chemical weapons because his military is, you could say, well below par.”

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Nate Jones

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