Now 8 months into the war in Ukraine, it has become ostensibly clear that Vladimir Putin was not prepared for this sort of conflict.
In fact, the entire mess has revealed a rather dark secret about the world order: Russia’s military isn’t nearly as fearsome as we once imagined, and their standing on the world’s stage will be affected greatly by this.
And so, in his desperation to remain relevant, Putin has begun suggesting that he may use nuclear weapons, either to defend Russia from the now-winning Ukraine, or to deter outside intervention on behalf of his sovereign neighbor.
Now, terrifyingly, it appears as though he may have already attempted to detonate a nuclear weapon, but experienced some insider resistance.
Vladimir Putin’s tried to detonate a nuke but his plans were “sabotaged”, an insider has claimed.
Top brass at the Kremlin are “sabotaging” his plans to use atomic weapons or there may be issues due to technical failures, it is claimed.
In recent days, there have been a series of NOTAM messages (Notice to air missions) and linked Russian navigation warnings indicating tests or live firing drills.
So far, there has been few indications of any major testing, although the final date for such disruption in the Barents Sea is October 22.
Here is where it gets odd:
Valery Solovey, an expert on the president and former professor at Moscow’s prestigious Institute of International Relations [MGIMO], a training school for spies and diplomats said: “[Putin’s] decision on the use of tactical nuclear weapons [in the Ukraine conflict] would no doubt face resistance.
“I don’t know how effective the resistance will be but I will indicate [that] nuclear tests were supposed to be held over the past two weeks, one in the Barents sea, underwater, and the second underground, in Arkhangelsk region.
“Both times the tests were not held.”
“The president got reports that there was an emergency situation, that it didn’t work out” – implying technical failings.
Putin insisted that the tests are held in the future, said Sololvey. He has also claimed the Kremlin leader has made a decision in principle to use nuclear weapons.
He added: “But the thing is, once is an accident, twice is a coincidence.
From a bird’s eye view, however, the outcome is all the same: Either Putin is attempting to dangerously employ his nuke arsenal and being sabotaged, or his nuke arsenal is so dangerously fragile that he cannot get a test off.
Neither reality provides a healthy outcome for the world at large.