In an exclusive conversation with India Today, Director of the Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies, Rawi Abdelal, spoke on the chances of nuclear warfare amid escalating tensions between Russia and Ukraine.
When asked if Russian President Vladimir Putin is planning to start a nuclear war against Ukraine, he said, “Putin is more isolated now from getting good and honest feedback from his advisers than before.” Abdelal pointed out that President Putin wants to go down in history as the president who restored Russia’s greatness in central and eastern Europe.
“The broader question about nuclear war as we once feared it is not about Russia versus Ukraine, but Russia versus the West and for that logic, we must think what are the ways Russia and NATO could come to direct conflict leading to a nuclear exchange between the great powers as opposed to a single tactical nuclear strike in Ukraine”, said professor Abdelal.
He added that there are two ways to think about the possibility of a nuclear strike. “One is a tactical strike, just a nuclear weapon not a big one on the territory of Ukraine as the Russian forces get further bogged down and it may last longer”, said Rawi Abdelal.
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