While Putin’s speech about new nuclear missiles last week put many countries on the defensive, it now appears that his speech was mainly directed at the United States.
Political experts and now saying that the speech was a direct response to President Trump’s Nuclear Posture Review, which was released just a few weeks ago. The Nuclear Posture Review named Russia as the primary competitor of the U.S and then requested that new nuclear weapons be made in order to counteract any new weapons that Russia might be producing.
The United States has said that working on missile defense is not directed at the Russians and is not a way to undermine their nuclear program. However, this is not how they took the information in the Nuclear Posture Review, and they don’t seem very happy about policymakers in Washington who want to further expand missile defences in response to threats made by North Korea in the past few months.
Most of the nuclear weapons that Putin talked about in his Federal Assembly speech focused on technical abilities that would help them circumvent or penetrate specific the United States missile defense systems. The most troubling information that Russia released was the cruise missile, he described it as “A low-flying low-visibility cruise missile armed with a nuclear warhead and possessing practically unlimited range, an unpredictable flight path that is invulnerable to all existing and future anti-missile and air defense weapons.”
At first Putin’s speech was looked at simply as propaganda, but over the weekend more people started to express concern due to the fact that although the quality and size of Russia’s missile-defenses are low, especially compared to the United States, that would be foolish to think that Russia would not gain new nuclear technology, especially during a time when it is such a hot-button topic between the United States and North Korea.