A nuclear war between Russia and the United States could lead to the total destruction of the two countries, Konstantin Sivkov, Deputy President of the Russian Academy of Missile and Artillery Sciences for Information Policy believes.
In his article for the Military Industrial Courier, "The Path to Armageddon", Sivkov wrote that in the event of a nuclear attack on Russia, Moscow would have four options of how to respond.
In a first option, Russia launches a preemptive nuclear strike against the United States and its allies.
"In this case, almost all warheads will reach their targets, and the United States will cease to exist as a state,” the expert assures, admitting that Washington's retaliatory strike will be 30-40 percent weaker than the preventive one. Still, it will cause monstrous damage to Russia.
The second option for Moscow to act is to launch a preemptive nuclear strike at the time when Washington begins to destroy Russian strategic deterrence forces with conventional arms.
"The enemy will be able to neutralize only a small part of the Russian nuclear potential — no more than 10-12 percent. The consequences of such a strike will be just as catastrophic for the United States as in the first option,” the author wrote.
In a third option, Russia may engage from 40-50 to 70-75 percent of its nuclear potential to strike a retaliatory nuclear blow. The two countries will actually cease to exist after they exchange such attacks, Konstantin Sivkov believes.
"The fourth option involves a retaliatory nuclear strike. One has to admit that this is the most probable way for Russia to proceed. In this case, up to 30 percent of the initial number of Russian warheads will be able to reach targets on the territory of the United States. Most of the American economy will be destroyed with such an attack, but not completely, the specialist believes.
Sivkov is confident that as a result of a nuclear war between Russia and the United States, human civilization will persist, but it will be completely different with such countries as China, India, and Brazil taking the lead. In his opinion, a nuclear conflict between Russia and the USA will mark the onset of a "nuclear autumn", rather than a "nuclear winter”.
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