, On the threshold of his 51st birthday, Vladimir Putin has apparently decided to remind the West of his existence. At any rate, foreign mass media outlets were rather alarmed discussing the latest statement from the Russian president. This time, Putin did not say anything obscene like “we will eliminate terrorists in outhouses,” though.
Russian Defense Minister Sergey Ivanov has recently presented the report concerning the problems for the development of the Russian Armed Forces. After that, Vladimir Putin announced the national nuclear forces should be fundamentally modernized. The president said Russia did not exclude an opportunity to use nuclear weapons for a preventive strike against its “potential enemy.” According to the analysis conducted by Western media outlets, the “potential enemy” implies NATO and the USA.
The Washington Times wrote Putin had decided to revise the nuclear doctrine to remind NATO of Russia's place in the world community. The German weekly Die Welt wrote that Russia was warning NATO against the fundamental change of its military doctrine. Moscow, the weekly wrote, is considering an opportunity to implement the new strategy if NATO preserves its aggressive orientation. Other Western media are writing articles in the same spirit. Analyzing the “attack” from the Russian president, the BBC added that Putin had decided so on account of unsuccessful negotiations with George W. Bush at the end of September.
Vladimir Putin has not decided anything – he has simply released a statement, it was just an utterance. Nadezhda Garifulina, former observer of the Sovetskaya Rossiya newspaper said: “He would like to believe, but- It seems that there are too many facts testifying to Putin's continuation of Boris Yeltsin's policy under a nicer cover.”
Boris Yeltsin's policy – the foreign and defense policy – does not need any introduction. A “radical modernization,” not to mention a “preventive strike” aimed against the territory across the Atlantic Ocean does not seem to be real against such a background. In Camp David, Putin was reportedly willing to win the support of the American administration at the forthcoming presidential election in Russia.