US says Russia is running out of ammunition

Putin Loyalist Raises Nuclear Rhetoric as NATO Partners Push for More Weapons in Ukraine

Vladimir Putin (left) toasts with then-Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev, in a 2017 image.

Dmitry Medvedev, vice president of Russia’s Security Council and a key ally of President Vladimir Putin, warned on Thursday that a Russian defeat in Ukraine could lead to nuclear war.

The former Russian president made the threat in a Telegram message ahead of a key meeting of NATO allies and other nations, where they are expected to make additional pledges of military support for Kyiv.

“The loss of a nuclear power in a conventional war can lead to the outbreak of a nuclear war,” Medvedev wrote.

“Nuclear powers do not lose the great conflicts on which their fate depends. This should be obvious to anyone. Even a Western politician who has preserved at least some trace of intelligence.”

Medvedev, who was Russia’s president from 2008 to 2012, has struck a bellicose tone during Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine, repeatedly raising the specter of a nuclear conflict.

Last April, he warned of Russian nuclear expansion should Sweden and Finland join NATO, and in September he said strategic nuclear weapons could be used to defend territories incorporated into Russia from Ukraine.

His remarks on Thursday, while no doubt intended to intimidate NATO partners, also appear to be a rare admission by a senior Russian official that the Kremlin could lose in Ukraine as Moscow’s faltering invasion nears. at the 11 month mark.

The nuclear rhetoric also comes just days after Moscow said it is planning to increase its military because of the “proxy war” it says the West is waging in Ukraine.

This Friday, the NATO Ukraine Defense Contact Group will meet in Germany at the US Ramstein airbase under the auspices of US Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin to discuss increasing military aid to Ukraine. .

The Pentagon announced a $2.5 billion security package for Ukraine on Thursday as the United States and its European allies debate whether to send increasingly sophisticated weapons to Kyiv, including longer-range missiles that would allow Ukraine to hit targets. located up to 200 miles away.

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