Russian President Putin Signs Nuclear Decree

  • It outlines nuclear weapons use by Russia.
  • The Russian President is the only one who can give an order for the use of nuclear weapons.
  • Nuclear weapons continue to be a global threat and once used will forever change the trajectory of the world.

Russian President Vladimir Putin signed the Nuclear Weapons decree on June 2. The decree titled “On The Basis Of  The State Policy Of The Russian Federation In The Field of Nuclear Deterrence” is a document regulating the conditions under which Russia has the right to launch a nuclear strike against an aggressor (or a pack of aggressors). The main goal is to legalize the use of nuclear weapons in limited local conflicts.

Key clauses of the decree of possible  Russian nuclear weapons use:

17) The Russian Federation will allow the use of nuclear weapons in response to nuclear weapons used against Russia or its allies. This also includes the use of weapons of mass destruction or aggression against Russia and the threat to its independence.

18) The decision to use nuclear weapons will come directly from the President of Russia.

19) Actions that would constitute the use of nuclear weapons by Russia:

a) Reliable information received by Russian intelligence about ballistic missiles preparing to attack the Russian Federation or its allies.

The main page of the Russian Nuclear Decree.

b) An adversary using nuclear weapons or any other weapons directed against the Russian Federation and its allies.

c) Enemy influence on the most important and strategic infrastructure of the Russian Federation or its allies, including military bases or attempts to destroy vital defense facilities.

d) An enemy aggression with the use of any type of weapon in order to threaten the sovereignty of Russia.

20) The President of Russia may inform other States and international organizations of the intention to use nuclear weapons before and after this.

The full text of the decree is available here.

So, whom does Russia consider an ally? Therefore, can this mean that in the event of an escalation in relations between the US and Iran, Putin can notify the world of the intention to use nuclear weapons to help Iran?

Obviously if Russia needs to strike first, it must be sudden, it must be unlimited, and it must destroy not only the aggressor but also all possible economic opponents including some “allies.” Success in the post-nuclear world is who is the least damaged and maybe the only one left– then they can write the story at their discretion. No allies in a nuclear conflict are unthinkable to bomb because the one who did not receive a nuclear strike in the post-war world automatically becomes a leader and automatically begins to develop, violently destroying the wounded.

In general, the decree contradicts Russia’s interests in terms of allies. The only plausible way to decipher the decree is that the Kremlin wants to give a false sense of security to form further alliances with other nation, hinting that it is possible to provide them with the necessary security if they are involved in large-scale conflicts. After the collapse of the Soviet Union, Russia has no official allies but there are some agreements with the former Soviet republics.

Russia is increasing its military arsenal at a rapid speed. The US and NATO assure Poland and other border countries of their military support due to the rightful fear of these nations.

Possible scenarios for Russia’s use of nuclear weapons:

  • Ukraine and Poland elect a Pro-Russian leader. NATO intervenes because in this case the election results would be wrong. Russia prefers to use the nuclear threat to advance its own geopolitical agenda under the guise of security and order. NATO uses nuclear weapons, and Russia responds.
  • Iran then enters into negotiations with the West, and Russia places a base in Iran. NATO gives the order to neutralize the nuclear threat of Iran, and Russia responds with nuclear weapons.

These are the only scenarios where paragraph 8 of the decree will be useful for Russia.

It is clear, nuclear weapons continue to be a global threat and once used will forever change the trajectory of the world.

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Christina Kitova

I spent most of my professional life in finance, insurance risk management litigation.

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