MUTUALLY ASSURED DESTRUCTION: Nuclear Arms Race rebooted

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Russia’s military industry has taken the necessary steps in the face of threats from NATO, and the new weapons systems are aimed at ensuring nuclear parity, said Russian President Dmitry Peskov. He’s confirming that there is a new nuclear arms race afoot.

“You know that parity is certainly guaranteed by the new inventions, that is, the inventions of weapon systems that aim to ‘cement’ nuclear parity, […]Nuclear parity is an element of mutual containment as well as an element that ensures strategic nuclear safety,”

 

The strategic nuclear safety he refers to is known as MAD in the west – Mutually Assured Destruction. This was the overriding  nuclear doctrine of both the USSR and USA during the Cold War. At the NATO summit in Brussels, US President Donald Trump demanded that the allies increase defense spending by up to 2% under the alliance rules by the end of the year.

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In 2014, NATO countries agreed to gradually increase their defense spending to the required level. However, according to alliance estimates made in June 2017, out of the 29 countries in the organization, only the US, bankrupt Greece, the UK, Estonia, Romania and Poland follow the rules and spend at least 2%.

Trump has been urging allies to commit to the rules, threatening that otherwise it would reduce US involvement in NATO’s joint programs.

Many members question the necessity of NATO since it was first established to challenge the expansion of communism and protect the capitalist system throughout the world. The main facilitator for the spread of communism was the Russian-led Soviet Union, and with its collapse in 1991, many question why NATO still exists.

Rather, NATO is used today to continually pressure a consolidated Russia that had significantly suffered  previously with the collapse of the Soviet Union. However, under President Vladimir Putin’s leadership, the Eurasian giant has recovered its economy that was destroyed under previous drunken president Yeltsin and fully professionalized and modernized the military after it was left to rot and rust under the same previous leadership. This has meant that Putin-led Russia has continually been targeted by the West, especially the US, who want to maintain their global hegemony in an era of multipolarity.

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