Americans needlessly placed in fear of Armageddon

Americans needlessly placed in fear of Armageddon

 Americans needlessly placed in fear of Armageddon
President Joe Biden sent the wrong message when he warned that the world is at risk of nuclear “Armageddon.” (AP)
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During a reception for the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee in New York last Thursday, US President Joe Biden shocked America and the international community when he warned of a deadly new war. Although several US security officials do not see any evidence of an imminent Russian plan for a nuclear strike, Biden believes that the world is at risk of nuclear “Armageddon.” He added that it was the greatest direct threat since the 1962 Cuban Missile Crisis.
Biden told attendees that he takes Russian President Vladimir Putin’s threats seriously. “We’ve got a guy I know fairly well. He’s not joking when he talks about potential use of tactical nuclear weapons or biological or chemical weapons because his military is, you might say, significantly underperforming,” he said.
The next day, as is the usual drill, the administration came out to clarify the president’s remarks and divert the course of the argument away from what he said. White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre did not directly respond to questions related to Biden’s Armageddon comments. However, she told reporters that Russia’s talk of using nuclear weapons was irresponsible and there was no way to use them without unintended consequences. “If the Cuban Missile Crisis has taught us anything, it is the value of reducing nuclear risk and not brandishing it,” Jean-Pierre said.
What does it mean when the US president says something as dangerous as this but no one from his administration can confirm it?
According to CNN, Biden’s comments about the prospect of nuclear Armageddon were not scripted and aides back in Washington first learned of his remarks through news reports and dispatches from the press pool in the room.

Biden’s statement was utterly counterproductive: He scared the American people instead of sending a strong message to Putin.

Dalia Al-Aqidi

Meanwhile, Politico reported that the Pentagon had not seen any indications that Putin was planning to launch a nuclear strike, even following Biden’s warning. “The tenor of Biden’s remarks were different compared to comments by officials from his own administration, which have been much more measured. National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan recently said the US takes Putin’s threats seriously but does not see any indications that he is planning to use nuclear weapons,” it stated.
With his Armageddon statement, did Biden intend to instill fear among the American people less than a month before the midterm elections in an attempt to deliver a message that Democrats are the only ones who will face Putin’s threat and stop him?
Or perhaps he wanted to convince citizens of the importance of US military aid to Ukraine, as some have started to complain about the large sums involved while the country is going through great economic hardship and inflation.
His statement was utterly counterproductive: He scared the American people instead of sending a strong message to Russia that, if it ever used nuclear weapons anywhere, it would pay a hefty price.
Somebody like Putin would never jeopardize his position, not even for his own people, who have now begun fleeing Russia to avoid being sent to fight in Ukraine. No matter how badly Russia’s military mission in Ukraine goes, it is improbable that he would use his strategic arsenal to strike the US and trigger a horrific nuclear war.
Having said that, Russia could use low-yield tactical nuclear weapons to target a sparsely populated Ukrainian area or a military installation to terrorize the world and put pressure on President Volodymyr Zelensky to surrender or reach an agreement.
On the other hand, accepting the Ukrainian request to join NATO would be the worst possible step, opening the door to a third world war.
The US president, along with his European allies, should have threatened Moscow with Armageddon if the Kremlin crossed the nuclear weapons line, instead of sowing fear and anxiety in the hearts of his people.

Dalia Al-Aqidi is a senior fellow at the Center for Security Policy. Twitter: @DaliaAlAqidi

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