Everyday, Putin is making his nuclear ambitions against Ukraine, more distinct. The world is, therefore, worried and confused- will Russia nuke Ukraine?
- President Zelenskyy accuses Russia of using phosphorous bombs on Ukraine.
- UNGA approves the resolution, holding Russia accountable for humanitarian crisis.
- The US prepares a contingency plan if Russia enters nuclear war.
- NATO warns Russia that it can never win a nuclear war.
President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelenskyy accused Russia on Thursday of dropping phosphorous bombs on the ex-Soviet nation. In a video address to a US-based military alliance, Zelenskyy quoted, “this morning, by the way, phosphorus bombs were used. Russian phosphorus bombs. Adults were killed again and children were killed again.”
As the war in Ukraine enters the second month of gore, the chances of an impending nuclear attack are spiking. And while a nuclear combat is the last thing that the world needs during the worrisome juncture of climate change and COVID-19 led pandemic, nations can’t help but prepare for the worst possibility.
So what will be the outcomes of another nuclear war after 77 years? We are a far more developed society than we were back in 1945. And this includes much more advanced weapons of mass destructions. And while it is impossible predict the future of Russia-Ukraine war, here is the closest possibility if Russia nukes Ukraine.
Will Russia Nuke Ukraine?
On June 16, 2021, Biden and Putin agreed in Geneva that a nuclear war can never be won and should never happen. Not even a year later, the same two world leaders have brought us on the edge of a nuclear disaster.
Experts and observers strongly believe that we are on the brink of World War III. Further, the Russian Foreign Minister has warned the world that if World War III breaks out, it will involve nuclear weapons.
There are plenty of signs that Putin might be planning to nuke Ukraine- from setting the Russian nuclear forces on high alert to a fire breakout at Europe’s biggest nuclear power plant.
During the onset of the war a month back, Putin sent out a cryptic message to the world that any nation trying to interfere in Ukraine war would face “consequences you have never seen.”
The message was distinctly a signal towards possibility of nuclear combat.
What if a nuclear war breaks out? What nations will step in the combat?
At present, 9 nations across the planet own weapons of mass destruction– the U.S., the U.K., France, China, Russia, India, Pakistan, Israel, and North Korea. These 9 nations together house a whopping 12,705 nuclear weapons.
The country that is sitting on a push button of nuclear combat, Russia, owns 5,977 nuclear warheads. This number is the largest in the world. This number is followed by the U.S. that owns 5,428 nuclear warheads in total.
Here is a fact from history that is now translating into grave consequences- prior to 1991, Ukraine was the third largest holder of nuclear weapons in the world. However, after the breakdown of Soviet Union, the nation offered its arsenal of nukes to Russia in return of economic aid.
Russia also took the charge of protecting the sovereignty of Ukraine after the event.
If not a nuclear war, a nuclear tragedy is a high possibility
Apart from a full-blown war, there are also high possibilities of indirect nuclear disasters. This can be in the way of an attack on a powerful nuclear reactor or unintended nuclear leakage due to war.
And the world has already seen the glimpse of it in the ongoing Ukraine war. Russia attacked the most powerful nuclear plant of not just Ukraine but entire Europe, Zaporizhzhya nuclear power plant. The incident shook the world to an extent that the UN watchdog and IAEA declared it as nuclear terrorism.
However, the damage was controlled before the possibility of catastrophic leakage. of explosion.
There are total 4 nuclear power plants in Ukraine. They together operate total 15 nuclear reactors. These nuclear power plants are responsible for 52% electricity production in the country.
This is what makes the possibility of a nuclear disaster in Ukraine so strong.
While a nuclear battle would definitely put Russia, Ukraine and most probably, the US in direct place of destruction, the entire world would bear irreversible consequences.