Russia has lambasted the “bellicose” and “anti-Russian” nature of Washington’s new nuclear policy, threatening that Moscow would adopt necessary measures to ensure its own security.
The Russian Foreign Ministry made the comments in a statement released on Saturday, a day after Washington unveiled its Nuclear Posture Review (NPR), a new nuclear arms policy that purportedly aims to revamp the US nuclear arsenal and develop new low-yield atomic weapons.
The policy, which is meant largely to counter Russia, effectively ends efforts under the administration of former President Barack Obama to reduce the size and scope of the US arsenal and minimize the role of nuclear weapons in defense planning, outlining the Pentagon’s nuclear ambitions under President Donald Trump.
It is the first time since 2010 that the US military has acknowledged how it foresees nuclear threats in the coming decades. The document said such measures were needed to counter “Russia’s non-compliance with the Intermediate-range Nuclear Forces Treaty (INF), its non-strategic nuclear arsenal, and its other destabilizing behaviors.”
Elsewhere in the statement, the foreign ministry said it was “deeply disappointed” at the “confrontational charge” of the new US policy toward Moscow.
“We state with regret that the US justifies its policy for a massive buildup of nuclear forces and an alleged increasing role of nuclear weapons in Russia’s doctrines,” it added.
The statement also said the NPR would certainly compel the Kremlin to take into consideration the newly adopted approaches by the White House and to “take necessary steps in order to ensure own security.”
Earlier in the day, Moscow’s Ambassador to Washington Anatoly Antonov also accused the United States of using, once again, Russophobia to justify the rise in military spending and the nuclear buildup.
The brandishing of a “Russian threat” comes while NATO member states have significantly increased their military activities near Russia’s western borders in recent years. The US-led military alliance has deployed about 4,000 troops, consisting of four battle groups, to Estonia, Lithuania, Latvia, and Poland, all near Russian borders.
Moscow, realizing the security threat under its nose, has held several military exercises to maintain preparedness, something that has prompted the NATO member states to refer to the drills as signs that Russia has aggressive intentions.
Russia calls NATO’s military buildup at its doorstep a threat to its national security and accuses the alliance of fearmongering to justify larger defense expenditure by its members.