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Stanislav Byshok: Danger of a nuclear Iran is overestimated

In a recent interview, United States President Donald Trump said that the key strategic agreement between the US and Russia is a "bad deal" and vowed to build up the US nuclear potential.

The President referred to the New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START). The deal was signed between Moscow and Washington in 2010 and came into effect in 2011. The document limits the number of deployed strategic nuclear carriers to 700 and the number of deployed strategic nuclear warheads to 1,550. It is expected to last until 2021 with an option to be extended.

In an interview with Reuters, Trump said: "I am the first one that would like to see everybody – nobody have nukes, but we’re going to fall behind any country even if it’s friendly country, we’re never going to fall behind on nuclear power."

This was not the first statement of this kind by Trump about the New START Treaty. He had begun criticizing the agreement even during the presidency of Barack Obama.

In the interview, Trump also called the New START Treaty a "one-sided deal."

"Just another bad deal that the country made, whether it’s START, whether it’s the Iran deal…we’re going to start making good deals," the President stated.

Political analyst Stanislav Byshok suggested that statements by Trump that the US falls behind in terms of nuclear potential are due to an informal agreement between Washington and the defense industry.

"Since his electoral campaign, Trump has had certain informal agreements with the defense industry, including on arms procurement plans. This means modernization of the armed forces and additional military spending. Moreover, nuclear arms also presume additional spending, including on its production, storage and transportation," Byshok told RT.

Thus, according to the expert, Trump’s loud statement on nuclear buildup are only rhetoric and no threat to the rest of the world. At the same time, they are sending a message to certain actors inside the US.

"To a great extent, this is a matter of domestic importance, regarding relations between the President and the defense industry. Trump is trying to meet obligations to defense companies. Of course, all of the above needs to be explained to the public, especially in the US. This is why Trump says that the US is going to fall behind on nuclear power. In fact, it is not," Byshok explained.

The very same reasons were behind the imaginary "Russian threat" and the story about Iran’s nuclear program, he added.

"The same is about Iran and North Korea. Of course, everyone understands that Iran, and of course North Korea, will never attack anyone. Nevertheless, in order to maintain a public consensus, Iran, North Korea and Russia are used as bogeymen," he said.

Trump’s statements should not be regarded as a threat since it is clear that no one is going to use nuclear weapons, according to Byshok.

"I think his statement will mean nothing because in the contemporary world nuclear arms are a tool of deterrence and a way to gain global reputation, rather than an offensive weapon. Currently, both Russia and the US have sufficient arsenals for mutual destruction. So, even if their arsenals are increased the threat will remain the same," the expert said.

Source: Sputnik International

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