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Ryabkov Warns of New Cuban Missile Crisis ‘Right to the Limit’

June 24, 2019 (EIRNS)—The second day of Russian warnings about new U.S. nuclear-capable missiles in Europe, included a direct warning of “escalat[ing] right to the limit” of nuclear war between Russia and the United States.

Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov was quoted in RIA Novosti warning of a new Cuban Missile Crisis, according to Reuters; in October 1962 that naval standoff had both powers’ strategic nuclear forces on alert and ready to launch for more than two weeks. Only urgent—at times desperate—diplomatic efforts by the Kennedy White House and Nikita Khrushchev averted nuclear war.

TASS reported that Ryabkov told the senators in Russia’s Federation Council, during debates on a bill on the suspension of Russia’s participation in INF Treaty:

“The current events, in particular, those involving the Russia-NATO Founding Act, which declares that the alliance has no plans, intentions or reasons to deploy considerable forces near Russian borders in the territories of newly-admitted NATO members, indicate that all this can be easily changed.”

Referring to the U.S. ABM batteries in Eastern Europe and U.S. withdrawal from the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty (INF), he told the senators: “We should brace for the worst scenario. There are no plans, but the Mk-41 launchers are a reality,” Ryabkov said.

“NATO’s intentions have been aggressive all along and they remain so. If it comes to the real deployment of such systems on the ground, the situation will not just get worse, but aggravate to the maximum and we may find ourselves in the situation of a missile crisis pretty close to the Caribbean one.”

Reuters headlined its pickup from RIA Novosti, “Russia Warns of Repeat of 1962 Cuban Missile Crisis.”

On June 23, Ryabkov had issued a related warning in a Kommersant interview against so-called “limited” nuclear war: “The United States is seeking to impose concepts saying that a nuclear war can be won” with very low-yield nuclear weapons “that cannot be seen as anything but meant for combat uses.”

Russian President Vladimir Putin during his meeting with media executives on June 6 in St. Petersburg warned: “If we do not keep this ‘fiery serpent’ under control, if we let it out of the bottle, God forbid, this could lead to a global catastrophe.” His Deputy Foreign Minister has given that greater specificity and force, especially for those old enough to remember the weeks of raw terror worldwide in October 1962.

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