Russia to Station Nuclear Weapons in Belarus
Russian President Vladimir Putin announced plans on Saturday to station tactical nuclear weapons in Belarus. Russia will begin training crews to operate its Iskander missile system on April 3, and construction of storage facilities for tactical nuclear weapons will be completed by July 1, Putin said. This will be the first time since 1996 that Russia will base its nuclear weapons in another country.
Justification: In a statement made on Russian state television, President Putin said Belarussian President Alexander Lukashenko asked Russia to deploy the tactical nuclear weapons to Belarus. According to Putin, Lukashenko argued that since the United States has bases with nuclear weapons in its European allies, Russia has the right to deploy nukes to Belarus.
We’re basically doing the same thing they’ve been doing for a decade. They have allies in certain countries and they train their carriers, they train their crews. We are going to do the same thing. This is exactly what Alexander [Lukashenko] has asked for.
Putin also claimed that Russia would deploy the weapons “without violating our international obligations on the nonproliferation of nuclear weapons.” Belarus will not be given full control over the weapons, therefore Russia will not be breaking the Nonproliferation Treaty.
Media response: After Putin’s statement, Russian state media began praising the furtherance of the Russia-Belarus diplomatic relationship.
Threat to nato: Hans Kristensen, director of the Nuclear Information Project at the Federation of American Scientists, explained that the purpose of Putin’s plan was to strike fear in nato.
This is part of Putin’s game to try to intimidate nato. … [T]here is no military utility from doing this in Belarus as Russia has so many of these weapons and forces inside Russia.
Bible prophecy: Russia is working hard to gain more influence and control in Eastern Europe, and the rest of Europe is watching closely. Bible prophecy warns that it won’t be long before the European Union responds to Russia’s intimidation tactics and begins exercising stronger control over the region.
We need to watch what is happening in Russia and how Europe responds to it. Daniel 11:44 talks about “tidings out of the east” troubling Europe. Putin’s tactics in Georgia, Ukraine, the Middle East and elsewhere are already deeply troubling to Europe and the world.
—Gerald Flurry, Trumpet editor in chief, “Bible Prophecy Comes Alive in Ukraine”