Vladimir Putin gave a talk today. What I am picking up from Twitter is that it was mostly about improving social conditions in Russia, but Putin seems to have though he needed to get into the “My button is bigger than yours” discussion.
The nuclear trolling at the end of Putin’s address seems to be entirely aimed at gathering as many alarmist and jingoistic headlines and comments in the West as possible and then contrasting them on Kremlin TV against the overall progressive nature of the speech.
— Leonid Ragozin (@leonidragozin) March 1, 2018
He claims, as he had before, that Russia has a missile that can hop-skip-jump around any defenses the United States may offer. And he may have said that it’s nuclear-powered, which is possible but absurd. He also claims a doomsday weapon that will stealthily proceed underwater to the east coast of the United States, where it will explode in a radioactive tsunami. Until we see a bit more on these weapons (like US satellite photos of their tests), I remain agnostic as to whether they actually exist.
Here’s the trippy, animated video Putin showed (to great applause) of the new missile Russia has (allegedly) developed. https://t.co/E1wkchmXD5
— Mike Eckel (@Mike_Eckel) March 1, 2018
«Как вы понимаете, ничего подобного в мире ни к кого нет»: Вот так, покашливая, Путин отправил в корзину всю систему ПРО и не только ее pic.twitter.com/HB9mPLDnFh
— Дмитрий Смирнов (@dimsmirnov175) March 1, 2018
The missile over green hills looks photoshopped or animated to me, but I’ll wait until the experts on such things weigh in before that’s a firm conclusion.
My Twitter feed is having fun with this in predictable ways.
Putin has just announced a web contest to name Russia's new underwater nuclear drone weapon pic.twitter.com/8HqcaTVkTs
— Alec Luhn (@ASLuhn) March 1, 2018
I think this is the wisest advice on all this, which I doubt American media will follow.
Re Putin’s remarks: They’re clearly bad. But how bad? An accurate word-for-word translation is critical here. Don’t trust news reports to get the details correct. And the details matter.
— (((James Acton))) (@james_acton32) March 1, 2018