Russia will give nuclear response in case of attack, ballistic missile submarines (SLBM), the United States, regardless of the characteristics of their equipment. It follows from the comment of the representative of the Russian foreign Ministry Maria Zakharova. She accused the US of “deliberate blurring of lines between non-strategic and strategic nuclear weapons,” adding that “it inevitably leads to a lowering of the nuclear threshold.” The U.S. state Department published a report with a substantiation of necessity of creation of nuclear warheads of low power W76–2 and equipping them part of ballistic missile submarines, the Trident-II.Criticism of the Russian side caused published on the website of the US state Department on April 24 the report, “Strengthening deterrence and reduce nuclear risks: the additional warheads low power ballistic missile submarines” (.pdf). The document prepared by the office of the under Secretary on arms control and international security. In the Preface to the report States that it aims “to explain the concept of the United States” for the creation of nuclear warheads of low power W76–2.That the U.S. Navy began to place on their submarines Ohio-class ballistic missiles with nuclear warheads of low power (W76–2), it became known on February 4. The number of new warheads the us media was estimated at 50 units. On 7 February the Secretary of defense mark Esper explained the meaning of this innovation: “the Nuclear warheads of low power give the President — the Supreme commander — opportunities for different options. We always want to have options: they allow us to contain the conflict. Ultimately, we want to contain the conflict, but if necessary, we want to be ready to fight and win” (quoted by TASS).In an April state Department report, this idea is explained in more detail. The document notes: modification of the earlier version of SLBM warheads needed USA due to the emergence of “new threats”, especially from Russia and China. “Both Moscow and Beijing in recent years actively worked to ensure that in the event of a crisis situation to be able to stand against the US using nuclear weapons in sub-strategic level. Given their characteristics, these weapons threatened to put before US an insurmountable problem in the early stages accelerometro of the conflict,” the report said.Further specify what would be this “insurmountable problem”: “If they (the Moscow and Beijing.— “B”) will use nuclear weapons of low power in a limited theater of war — and the Russian nuclear doctrine is explicitly allowing and Russian armed forces this script worked in his teachings, we should not be forced to choose whether to apply a much more powerful nuclear attack in response, or allow the Russian or Chinese aggression��and succeed”.According to many Western military experts, in their planning Moscow relies on the following prerequisites: if between Russia and one or more NATO countries will originate local conflict involving conventional weapons and the Russian military considers that suffer a defeat, they may use tactical nuclear weapons to try thus to complete the confrontation on their terms. That the Russian military adopted a doctrine of “Escalation for the sake of de-escalation,” US officials said for the first time in 2015 (at the hearings in the Congress with the participation of high-ranking representatives of the Pentagon). Since this assumption in the West has actually become axiomatic.Note that the concept of “controlled escalation” was part of the military planning of the Soviet Union (and the USA) during the Cold war, but at the end both sides of them officially refused. In Russia such kind of idea from 1990-ies continue to be supported by a number of military experts. But officials stress every time that Moscow this approach does not adhere to and considers him dangerous. “The statement allegedly recorded in the Russian Military doctrine the principle of “escalation to de-escalation” against the use of nuclear weapons does not correspond to reality and is a deliberate distortion of it”,— said “Kommersant” in February the Ministry of defence of the Russian Federation.However, as the state Department report on W76–2, Washington continues to believe that Russia adheres to the doctrine of “Escalation for the sake of de-escalation”. Or make-believe. In any case, the need to deploy ballistic missiles with nuclear warheads of low power, the US government explained primarily coming from Russia threat. According to experts, the new warhead W76–2 has a capacity of 5-6 tonnes (while the W76–1 has about 90-100 kilotons, and W88 — 455 kilotons).The state Department report says that, if Russia (and China) they will believe US nothing to respond to the limited use of nuclear weapons on their part, the existing system of deterrence will be ineffective, and a full-scale nuclear war more likely. Therefore, as the document says, the United States decided to acquire nuclear weapons low power, which can be applied in response to an attack from Russia or China, without the strategic weapons. According to the state Department, a U.S. low-yield nuclear warheads would increase the threshold for using nuclear weapons. “Additional warheads low power ballistic missile submarines, therefore, represent an important contribution to the strengthening of deterrence and reduce nuclear risks,” conclude the authors of the report.In Moscow see the situation is diametrically opposite. Today repr��the representative of the Russian foreign Ministry Maria Zakharova pointed out that Russia considers the development and deployment of nuclear weapons low power “dangerous step”. “He is a destabilizing element, she said.— In our opinion, it is obvious there is a deliberate blurring of the lines between non-strategic and strategic nuclear weapons, which inevitably leads to a lowering of the nuclear threshold and increase the danger of nuclear conflict.”The Russian foreign Ministry warned: “Any attack with the use of American SLBMs, regardless of the characteristics of its equipment will be perceived as an attack involving nuclear weapons.” And threatened: “those who want to speculate about the “flexibility” of the U.S. nuclear capacity, should understand that, according to Russian Military doctrine, such actions will be considered grounds for retaliatory use of nuclear weapons by Russia”.Elena Chernenko
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