Russia’s war in Ukraine has been going on since February 24 and caused enormous destruction and death.
The United States has been backing Ukraine and sending Kiev weapons, money, and support. Whereas now the Biden Administration is about to take it a step further and provide Patriot Missile Systems.
Russian leader Vladimir Putin says that if this happens, Russia will consider the US to have joined the war.
Russia Says What?
Russia’s threat was delivered by Kremlin spokeswoman Maria Zakharova, who speaks on behalf of Putin.
She said if the US takes the “provocative” step of supplying Ukraine with air defense Patriot systems, it will be the same as the US joining the war.
Patriot surface-to-air missiles are highly effective at stopping air attacks. They would potentially cripple Russia’s ability to keep Ukraine under its terror and keep destroying its infrastructure and military from the sky.
Zakharova went further in saying the US doing this would bring “possible consequences,” although she didn’t get more specific about what such consequences might be.
What is clear is that sending Patriot missiles is a big spending endeavor, especially when it’s mainly going to be stopping cheap Russian drones, which can be easily replaced.
Ukraine now gets US Patriot missiles that cost the US taxpayer $3 million per missile to shoot down $30,000 Russian drones. The Russians can fire 100 drones for each US Patriot missile. The Pentagon strategists call this ‘unbalancing Russia’. pic.twitter.com/33kHrTEYk1
— Kim Dotcom (@KimDotcom) December 14, 2022
Putin has already threatened Sweden and Finland for joining NATO and shook his finger at the West many times.
He recently said Russia may adopt the American strategy of preemptive strikes and hitting first at something they consider a threat. What exactly does this mean?
Putin already invaded Ukraine preemptively in February, claiming he was clearing it of extreme fascists and corrupt drug addicts who were running the country. Was that not preemptive?
Russia issues a lot of threats, but its past threats to escalate against the US if they helped supply Ukraine with a HIMARS (High-mobility artillery rocket system) never ended up occurring.
Is this more rhetoric and bluster or is Putin going to take dramatic action against the West soon?
Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said that if US Patriot missiles are sent to Ukraine, they would be legitimate targets for Russian forces.
They have nothing else, but talk… Have not they threatened HIMARS?:)
— Iuliia Mendel (@IuliiaMendel) December 14, 2022
How Would Patriots Help?
The Patriot missiles would help Ukraine in various ways; although they do need around 100 military personnel per missile battery to run it properly.
Even if Ukrainians are able to be trained enough to use these systems, there is the chance that it will escalate this war quite a bit or possibly even strike inside Russia, leading to severe retaliation.
Putin’s top security council man, Dmitry Peskov, has said previously that Russia will attack NATO troops and countries if Patriots are deployed to Ukraine.
Zakharova’s recent words sound a bit softer about “possible consequences,” but it seems Russia may indeed do something severe.
Delivery of Patriot systems is not yet official and could still be cancelled, but at this point, it looks likely to happen as a way to try to help Ukraine gain the edge during this vicious winter war.This article appeared in StatesmanPost and has been published here with permission.