Former US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has blasted President Joe Biden's “reckless” remarks about a possible nuclear exchange between the United States and Russia.
Biden said on Thursday that the risk of nuclear “Armageddon” is at the highest level since the 1962 Cuban Missile Crisis after Russian President Vladimir Putin threatened to use the country’s nuclear weapons in face of the Western nuclear aggression.
“This is not a bluff,” Putin said last month. “And those who try to blackmail us with nuclear weapons should know that the weathervane can turn and point towards them.”
Biden said Putin was “a guy I know fairly well” and the Russian leader was “not joking when he talks about the use of tactical nuclear weapons or biological or chemical weapons.”
“We have not faced the prospect of Armageddon since Kennedy and the Cuban Missile Crisis,” Biden added. He suggested the threat from Putin is real “because his military is — you might say — significantly underperforming.”
Pompeo, who served under former President Donald Trump, said on Sunday that Biden’s remarks “were reckless,” and that they were a “terrible risk to the American people.”
Pompeo said, “When you hear the president talking about ‘Armageddon’ as a random thought … at a fundraiser, that is a terrible risk for the American people.”
“He ought to be talking to us in a serious way,” he added.
Pompeo said the Biden administration should “push back against” its adversaries “by showing enormous resolve” rather than the comments he made.
It should be “making very clear to Vladimir Putin that the cost of him using a nuclear weapon will bring the force of not only the United States and Europe but of the whole world,” he added.
Pompeo said that Biden needs to “be doing all the things that are necessary to deter Vladimir Putin.”
Biden has formerly been criticized by his predecessor, Trump, who said that the Ukraine war would not have happened had he been re-elected in 2020.
For months, US officials have repeatedly warned of the possibility of Russia using weapons of mass destruction in Ukraine. However, the officials conceded this week that they have seen no change to Russia's nuclear forces that would require a change in the alert posture of American nuclear forces.
President Putin launched a military operation in Ukraine on Feb. 24, following Kiev’s failure to implement the terms of the 2014 Minsk agreements and Moscow’s recognition of the breakaway regions of Donetsk and Luhansk.
Putin said earlier that he will “protect our land using all our forces and means at our disposal, and will do everything to ensure people’s security.
An American academic and political commentator has warned that the United States will be the first country to pull the nuclear trigger.
Daniel Kovalik, an academic at the University of Pittsburgh, said in an interview with Press TV on Saturday: “It is my sincere fear that nuclear war is now a very real possibility, but it is my belief that it is the US which will be the first country to pull the trigger. All of this talk about Russia possibly using nuclear weapons is based upon the great misrepresentation of Putin’s words and in fact represents the US’s projection of its own intentions upon Russia."
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