Russian Official Cancels U.S. Visit, Saying ‘Second American Civil War’ Is Underway

https://s.newsweek.com/sites/www.newsweek.com/files/styles/embed_tablet/public/2019/01/10/gettyimages-810825414.jpg

Activists and protesters gesture at a man wearing a confederate flag before a Ku Klux Klan rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, July 8, 2017. Such clashes in the same city would turn deadly one month later when a white supremacist killed a protester with his vehicles, sparking nationwide tensions only further stoked by President Donald Trump’s polarizing response. (ANDREW CABALLERO-REYNOLDS/AFP/Getty Images )

 

Dmitry Rogozin, the head of Russia’s Roscosmos State Space Corporation, who served as deputy prime minister until May 2017, said Thursday that rising tensions between Republicans and Democrats were leading to a breakdown of U.S. society. This included the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), one of many federal agencies affected by a government shutdown due to an inability for the rival U.S. parties to agree on funding for a border wall proposed by President Donald Trump.

“I think that America is actually engulfed by its second civil war now,” Rogozin told the Rossiya-24 TV channel, as translated by the state-run Tass Russian News Agency. Continue reading

Russia and NATO War Games in Europe see New Player: China

A Chinese soldier waves farewell to Russian fleets as the Chinese-Russian joint naval drill concludes in Zhanjiang, Guangdong Province, China, September 19, 2016. Russia and China, which trail behind only the U.S. in military power, have sought greater cooperation in recent years and have begun joint naval drills in the highly contested Baltic Sea, where NATO has raised its defenses. STRINGER/REUTERS

 

Russia and China have begun naval exercises in the Baltic Sea, the most significant sign of military cooperation between the two major powers in a region seen as a flashpoint for Moscow’s rivalry with Western military alliance NATO.

Russia’s ambassador to China Andrei Denisov acknowledged Friday that the joint drills conducted by Russian and Chinese armed forces were unique, especially in the increasingly militarized Baltic region, but denied that the nations were “scaring off” rival powers. The Baltics have become a major point of contention between Russia and U.S.-led NATO, which have both devoted extensive military resources toward fortifying the region’s borders. The two factions accuse one another of instigating a European arms race, but Denisov dismissed Western concerns Friday. Continue reading

Russian Senator: U.K. Will be ‘Wiped off the Face of the Earth’ if it uses Nuclear Weapons

You can read further about Michael Fallon’s comments in yesterday’s post:

Britain could use ‘nuclear weapons as a first strike’

 

The mushroom cloud from the first hydrogen bomb test, as photographed on Enewetak, an atoll in the Pacific Ocean, in 1952, by a member of the United States Air Force. Russia has begun developing the R-28 Sarmat or Satan 2, which could produce a nuclear charge of at least 40 megatons, or four times that of the first hydrogen bomb. AIR FORCE/REUTERS

 

A senior Russian politician responded aggressively Monday to comments by the U.K.’s defense minister suggesting pre-emptive use of nuclear weapons against Russia is an option for London, claiming the U.K. would be completely annihilated by Russia’s nukes in response.

Russia’s Frants Klintsevich, who heads the defense and security committee in Moscow’s upper house of parliament, said the U.K. would be “literally wiped off the face of the Earth by a counter strike.” Earlier that day, U.K. Defense Minister Michael Fallon said during a radio show that the U.K. could consider a preemptive nuclear attack amid recent political tensions between Russia and Western governments, according to The Moscow Times. Fallon said the U.K.’s military would only make combat use of its Trident nuclear program in extenuating circumstances, but refused to say exactly what those conditions would be. Continue reading