Last week, another huge red line was crossed in the no longer so much proxy war between the West and Russia. On May 23 and 28, Ukraine conducted long-range drone strikes against two Russian radar stations that are part of the country’s early warning radar system designed to detect intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs) – mainly weaponized missiles. nuclear.

Both attacks took place deep within Russian territory – 300 and almost 1,600 kilometers from territory controlled by Kiev, respectively – and at least one attack appears to have caused some damage. This attack on one of the pillars of Russia’s nuclear deterrence infrastructure marks the most horrific escalation of the conflict yet, bringing the world one step closer to the brink of thermonuclear war.

Ukraine claims that the sites in question are used to monitor Ukrainian military activities and that the aim of the attacks was to diminish Russia’s ability to track Ukrainian military activities in southern Ukraine. But speaking to the Washington Post, a US official refuted this argument: “These locations were not involved in supporting Russia’s war against Ukraine,” they said. This means that the Russian nuclear warning system was the target of the attack. It goes without saying that, increasingly, attacking nuclear command and control and early warning sites is as dangerous as it gets short of an actual nuclear attack.

“Unlike the United States, the Russians do not have space-based satellite warning systems that can detect ballistic missile attacks around the world. This means that the radar coverage lost from attacks on these radars greatly reduces warning time against attacks on Moscow from the Mediterranean and Indian Oceans,” commented Dr. Theodore Postol, Professor Emeritus of Science, Technology and National Security at the Institute of Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). “I cannot emphasize enough how frightening and dangerous this development is,” he added. Ralph Bosshard, a retired lieutenant colonel in the Swiss Armed Forces, expressed a similar sentiment.

According to the aforementioned North American official, the USA is very “concerned” about the attacks. However, this good cop-bad cop act – which implies that the US had no knowledge of the attacks – no longer fools anyone, least of all the Russians. Especially since the attacks come at a time when NATO leaders, including US Secretary of State Antony Blinken, have begun to talk openly about allowing Ukraine to attack targets inside Russia – with NATO-supplied weapons, guided by the NATO surveillance and targets, and likely operated by NATO personnel. At this point, it is dangerously false to continue to pretend that this is a proxy war – or that Ukraine could have conducted the attacks in question without full support.

The mood in Moscow was probably best captured by Dmitry Rogozin, former head of Roscosmos, the Russian federal space agency, who wrote on Telegram that “given Washington’s deep involvement in this armed conflict and the Americans’ complete control over military planning for Kiev, the claim that the United States knew nothing about Ukrainian plans to attack the Russian missile defense system can be rejected.”

At this moment, millions of increasingly terrified Europeans are probably asking themselves the same question: what game is NATO playing? Do you think you can continue to provoke Russia without provoking a reaction? Whatever the case, they are playing an incredibly dangerous game – one that could literally kill us all.

By Thomas Fazicolumnist and translator do UnHerd.


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