Timeline: Trump’s Comments on Nukes; Putin’s Retorts

Modernization Vs. Proliferation

The U.S. is and will continue spending money on modernizing nuclear weapons.  However, expanding nuclear weapons is not something that either the U.S. or Russia has been purporting.

Confusion seems to be the point in when regarding Trump’s comments. It has been an on-going tactic for Putin via his Russian run media, and it seems that the President-elect is wearing the tactic as his own. Putin also addresses Trump supporters directly on Friday.

Trump supporters are asking for something different, and that is what they are getting.

On Thursday, December 22, Trump Tweeted:

trump_nukes_j

Putin responds on the same day in a year-end meeting with defense chiefs in Moscow, Putin makes a statement about Russia’s military today, as reported by NYTimes via AP:

“We can say with certainty: We are stronger now than any potential aggressor,” he says. “Anyone!” 

Then on Friday in Moscow, with the 7 hour time difference, Putin appears to qualify and appease his position a bit, putting the blame on the Obama administration for suggesting that Russia’s military was much weaker than that of the United States, during a press-conference in Moscow.

“Of course the U.S. has more missiles, submarines and aircraft carriers, but what we say is that we are stronger than any aggressor, and this is the case,” Mr. Putin said, according to NYTimes.

“As for Donald Trump, there is nothing new about it, during his election campaign he said the U.S. needs to bolster its nuclear capabilities and its armed forces in general,” he added.  Putin said that any addition to Russia’s nuclear arsenal would stay within the limits of existing treaties.

Moving to Friday morning in the U.S.,Trump says:

Let it be an arms race. We will outmatch them at every pass and outlast them all,” on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.”

As if this exchange couldn’t get any odder, Trump a few hours later releases a Christmas letter he received from Putin dated December 15, 2016:

putins-letter-to-trump-a

As for spending to date, the data is clear (via The Washington Post, in an article dated December 22, 2016)nuclear-weapons

This is an about-face on more than 30-years of policy as the chart above shows, and implies threats of an impending Cold War, Part II.

Either way, when Putin sounds like the more sane personality, on the cusp tensions with the U.S. over the war in Syria, we’ve got to question our foreign policy plays via the President-elect.

Trump supporters are asking for something different, and that is what they are getting.

Putin addresses Trump supporters directly, in the same NYTimes article:

“It means that a significant part of the American people have the same perception about how the world should be developing,” he said. “It is good that people support us in this, in terms of traditional values.” He said it was a good basis for improving Russian-American relations.

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