NATO Is Contemplating Making Additional Nuclear Weapons Operational

( — Due to Russia’s ongoing war with Ukraine, as well as comments made by Russian President Vladimir Putin, NATO has started contemplating an expansion of its nuclear arsenal.

According to NATO’s Secretary General, Jens Stoltenberg, NATO fears the possibility of China or Russia using nuclear weapons and has started working on increasing its nuclear stockpile. Stoltenberg’s comments come just days after an address from Putin, who insinuated he would escalate the conflict with Ukraine upon further involvement from Western countries.

While Putin didn’t overtly threaten to use nuclear weapons against Western nations, he did state that he’d retaliate against countries that continue to support Ukraine. Putin clarified his statement by claiming that Russia would only use nuclear weapons if Ukraine or its allies began expanding into Russian territory. Putin has also started using nuclear weapon drills alongside Russia’s ally, Belarus, prompting other countries and NATO members to fear the use of atomic weapons in the near future.

Stoltenberg acknowledged Putin’s recent actions as a primary reason for NATO’s potential expansion of its nuclear arsenal but refused to state how many atomic warheads would be stored to prepare for a nuclear attack. Stoltenberg also referenced China’s recent actions when discussing the contemplated expansion of NATO’s arsenal and China’s ongoing alliance with Russia. China has increased its nuclear weapon production over the past few years and is one of Russia’s most significant supporters, a key concern for NATO members.

While Stoltenberg primarily focused on China and Russia’s actions, he also called for heightened transparency from NATO’s members regarding their nuclear development. Stoltenberg claims that by exercising transparency, NATO could help reduce the likelihood of a nuclear conflict between its members and Russia, China, or North Korea. Another critical concern for NATO is the disparity between its members’ atomic arsenals and Russia’s, as Russia currently has more than 5,900 nuclear warheads, with 1,549 actively ready for deployment.

The United States also maintains a sizable nuclear arsenal, with approximately 5,428 warheads currently stationed throughout the United States and Europe. Among the countries housing American warheads are Germany, Turkey, and Belgium, all of which are capable of striking Russia or China with ballistic weapons. NATO’s contemplated expansion of its nuclear arsenal has some geopolitical experts concerned, although others believe a nuclear exchange with Russia or China remains incredibly unlikely.

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