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The Military

Russian State TV Anchor: Russia Could Turn US To "Radioactive Ash" 878

An anonymous reader writes with a Ukraine news roundup. "'Russia is the only country in the world realistically capable of turning the United States into radioactive ash,' anchor Dmitry Kiselyov said on his weekly news show on state-controlled Rossiya 1 television. ... His programme was broadcast as the first exit polls were being published showing an overwhelming majority of Crimeans voting to leave Ukraine and join Russia. He stood in his studio in front of a gigantic image of a mushroom cloud produced after a nuclear attack, with the words 'into radioactive ash.' ... Kiselyov has earned a reputation as one of Russia's most provocative television news hosts, in particularly with his often blatantly homophobic remarks. But he is also hugely influential with his weekly news show broadcast at Sunday evening prime time. Putin last year appointed Kiselyov head of the new Russia Today news agency that is to replace the soon to be liquidated RIA Novosti news agency with the aim of better promoting Russia's official position. — Russia has threatened to stop nuclear disarmament treaty inspections and cooperation. Russian troops are reported to have seized a natural gas terminal in Ukraine outside of Crimea. There are reported to be 60,000 Russian troops massing on Russia's border with Ukraine."
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Russian State TV Anchor: Russia Could Turn US To "Radioactive Ash"

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  • by kheldan ( 1460303 ) on Monday March 17, 2014 @11:58AM (#46506633) Journal
    I'm fairly sure that Obama wouldn't have the balls to push the Red Button regardless of Putin wanting to, apparently, bring back the Soviet Union, and perhaps wanting to bomb the U.S. back into the stone age, however..

    ..yes, the U.S. could still, so far as I know, nuke Russia just as much as Russia could nuke the U.S.. However it would still be the End Of Life On Earth As We Know It, and anyone who doesn't get that is deeply and dangerously in denial. Furthermore don't forget that China (and maybe India, too) would be sitting there munching on popcorn the entire time, waiting for the show to be over so they could pick up the pieces, and I don't think anyone has forgotten that.
  • by Opportunist ( 166417 ) on Monday March 17, 2014 @11:58AM (#46506635)

    Well, considering that conventional warfare is a nono, and nuclear warfare is a BIG NONO, but economic warfare is fair game, I'd say you have a point.

  • by mikael ( 484 ) on Monday March 17, 2014 @12:00PM (#46506665)

    But once you have done that once, that's it, the economic weapon has been used, and you've got nothing left. Of course, there's always the threat of using it, or selling off a few million dollars of shares every now and again just to prove the point.

  • Re:So..... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Opportunist ( 166417 ) on Monday March 17, 2014 @12:06PM (#46506721)

    Relax. Russia is no problem. That's more for internal use than external use. I mean, ponder what it would be like if the US were in Russia's boots.

    The country "lost" the cold war, depression sets in, crime lords get rich and take over economy and partly politics, the general population is doing worse and worse... I think it's not hard to see how a lot of people are yearning for the "good ol' times" where Russia was some big shot country.

    Now ponder what it would be like if this was the US, and how a president could score with the lowbrow rednecks and of course the military with some speeches about greatness and how we can snuff out that big bad enemy of the days of yore.

    Saber rattling with respect to what's going on on the Crimea peninsula, but little substance.

  • by Chrisq ( 894406 ) on Monday March 17, 2014 @12:07PM (#46506731)

    this is not possible,i am from east . if they do this , their own economy will fall

    It would certainly hurt both countries. But arguably Russia could survive in "economic lockdown" easier than the West, it would be like going back to just before glasnost. For the West it would be something unprecedented.

  • by Xest ( 935314 ) on Monday March 17, 2014 @12:09PM (#46506759)

    "This is also why Russia was so upset with the US considering putting their missile defense systems in Poland."

    Well the US actually negotiated with Putin and pulled back from doing this to allay his concerns.

    Now he starts invading neighbours who gave up their nuclear weapons, annexing their territory and talking about nuclear war.

    Sounds like maybe the Ukraine should've kept their nukes, and the US kept their interceptor program - the more Putin has been appeased, the more dangerous he has gotten.

  • ISS (Score:4, Interesting)

    by tekrat ( 242117 ) on Monday March 17, 2014 @12:13PM (#46506817) Homepage Journal

    Next up: Russians "deport" American astronauts from ISS, as they are the only country with a manned space flight program. How ironic; we spend many billions to build it, and then scrap our only way of getting to it. Nice plan. No wonder USA is number 37.

    Someday USA might be a great country, but this decade and the next is not that day.

    USA is now filled with religious, science-denying blowhards that will turn this country into a backwater 3rd world with nuclear weapons and offshore billionaires that own the government. Just look at Greenspan's comments. We'll all be shooting each other for food in a few years, while CEOs sit on piles of cash that guarantee they are comfortable for 6 or 7 generations.

  • by borcharc ( 56372 ) * on Monday March 17, 2014 @12:20PM (#46506915)

    This risk is outdated. With the amount of bond buying that the US Federal Reserve has engaged in over the past few years buying all of the debt held by Russia and China combined would not even make a dent should they desire to sell it all, the FED and other nations (Japan) will happily buy. Russia's $100 billion and even China's $1.2T are small potatoes compared to the $16T+ the fed and friends have printed with little consequence as of yet.

    Russia relies on Europe energy sales for 25% of its GDP, Europe relies on Russia to provide 6% of its energy. Sanctions targeting this will hurt Russia very badly and they know it. They have been strong arming Europe for years on energy, delaying their economic recovery. Its time the tables were turned.

  • by Erikderzweite ( 1146485 ) on Monday March 17, 2014 @12:24PM (#46506973)

    Keep in mind that the new Ukrainian government has announced massive austerity program. Pensions in Russia are about four times higher and the economy is much healthier compared to the Ukraine. Besides, massive economic support was promised by Russia.

  • by Opportunist ( 166417 ) on Monday March 17, 2014 @12:25PM (#46506983)

    Economic "weapons" are not single use. They're actually usually used in a very long, drawn out way. Kinda like siege warfare. Think of Cuba. They're not really in a bad economic position right from the start, but we "besieged" them after they turned Communist, shutting them off essentially from international trade. And that in turn does hurt a country. Not immediately, but over time.

    What Russia could do is dump a bit of its dollar reserves, then hang the Damocletian sword of dumping the rest over the world economy. That would be far more devastating than them simply dumping their reserves, since that would hurt them, too, considerably. Instead, they now make the rest of the world consider not only dumping what they have in USDs but also trying to switch to other currencies and diversify so a single cash dump can't have such an impact.

    Now ponder that impact on the USD when the whole world wants to get out of it.

  • by GodfatherofSoul ( 174979 ) on Monday March 17, 2014 @12:30PM (#46507075)

    Why not post Sarah Palin's "bold and insightful predictions" that Putin might invade Ukraine while you're at it? Russia isn't the same country any more. This wasn't an invasion of Poland. This is Russia dicking around in their own backyard like they've been doing the last 10 years or so. Russia doesn't have the money to be a world power any more.

    All we're doing by talking him up is getting him more confident in what he thinks he can get away with based on his limited resources. If it goes to the mat, the US and Europe could squash this with sanctions, but Europe is going to have to nut up and accept some economic hardship to make it happen.

  • by Opportunist ( 166417 ) on Monday March 17, 2014 @12:31PM (#46507099)

    Problem is, once the USD goes into free fall, that dream is over. Being able to money print your money out of debt only works as long as those owing you accept that money as payment.

    Also, you might want to take a look at SDRs [] and how they're used for currency value determination.

  • by assemblerex ( 1275164 ) on Monday March 17, 2014 @12:38PM (#46507185)
    Slashdot has gotten so soft, so much like reddit and other useless sites. It pains me to see the decline after so many years. Food is relevant to nerds, so why not cooking news? Best way to arrange you star wars underwear? All these new useless users make me sick.
  • by lgw ( 121541 ) on Monday March 17, 2014 @12:56PM (#46507493) Journal

    With the amount of bond buying that the US Federal Reserve has engaged in over the past few years buying all of the debt held by Russia and China combined would not even make a dent should they desire to sell it all, the FED and other nations (Japan) will happily buy.

    At this point I imagine the Fed chair cackling like the Emperor in Star Wars "witness the firepower of this fully operational buying-station!" OK, the new one isn't quite old enough to look like the Emperor yet, but give her time.

  • Re:So..... (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Registered Coward v2 ( 447531 ) on Monday March 17, 2014 @01:31PM (#46507981)

    No, but both Palin and Romney could tell several years ago that Russia was an actual problem. Unlike Obama and his red line fickleness. Well that's alright, he's off to his what? 197th round of golf, and later today he'll be flying out to Hollywood for his 290th fundraising event. Pressing issues you know.

    Or GW Bush. After all, he "... looked the man in the eye. I found him to be very straight forward and trustworthy and we had a very good dialogue. "I was able to get a sense of his soul." Guess he missed something there.

  • by reve_etrange ( 2377702 ) on Monday March 17, 2014 @03:11PM (#46509147)
    And that weaker dollar will reduce our trade deficit by disincentivizing imports and making exports cheaper, increase domestic production and employment, and help ease the significant private debt overhang which is still crippling US economic growth. Oh, and it will help the Fed and Treasury keep rates on US debt even lower for even longer.
  • by rahvin112 ( 446269 ) on Monday March 17, 2014 @04:50PM (#46510377)

    I always laugh when someone suggests dumping 162 billion in bonds could crush the US economy. That's literally like 3 days worth of auctions. As you said, they dump them all at once and someone pays 72 billion for them, and over a period of a month doubles their money. Now if they owned the 1.3 trillion that china does they could probably hurt the dollar for a month or two while turning their trillion dollars into a 100 billion. And in the process China would destroy their own export economy as the dollar fell and the trade deficit imploded as US imports stopped.

    See that's the problem, they try to "crash" the market and they are guaranteed to lose massive amounts of money on the bonds. And in the long run the bonds recover and there is no long term issue. In the short term it may actually help the US economy by devaluing the dollar short term and harming imports.

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