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Nato would crush ‘weak’ Russia and Putin knows it, says top UK official

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Admiral Sir Tony Radakin downplays fears of wider conflict in Chatham House speech
Josh Salisbury1 minute ago

Britain’s top Armed Forces official has said the world is not on the brink of World War Three because Vladimir Putin knows Nato would beat Russia in any conflict.

Admiral Sir Tony Radakin, speaking at a conference in London, said that Russia had “struggled” in Ukraine and that its “military weakness” had surprised Western officials.

However, he added that Ukraine would continue to be on the back foot two years on from Putin’s invasion unless the West continued to deliver more supplies.

He told a conference at Chatham House: “Some reflections and observations about Russia. How it has struggled in Ukraine. How we have been surprised at its military weakness.

“The predicament that it has and how that has worsened by a strengthened Nato.”


Chief of Defence Staff Admiral Sir Tony Radakin

“We are not on the cusp of war with Russia. We are not about to be invaded,” he said.

“Britain is safe. We are safe because we are part of Nato, the world’s largest and strongest alliance and also because we are a responsible nuclear power.”

The military chief said Ukraine “was struggling in terms of its ammunition and its stockpiles”, with Republicans in the US Congress holding up further aid, and Europe not yet able to plug the gap.

He said that conversations were continuing among Nato allies to discuss how Ukraine could further be supported.

The intervention comes after the United States said on Tuesday Nato had no plans to send any ground troops to Ukraine, after France hinted at the possibility.

French President Emmanuel Macron had said on Monday that Western allies should exclude no options in seeking to avert a Russian victory in Ukraine, though he stressed there was no consensus at this stage.

His comments, made at a meeting of European leaders in Paris on ways to boost flagging support for Kyiv, were downplayed by allies including Germany and Poland.

“There will be no ground troops, no soldiers on Ukrainian soil sent there by European countries or Nato states,” German Chancellor Olaf Scholz said on Tuesday.

The White House later reiterated that it too had no plan to send ground troops.

Seeking to clarify Mr Macron’s remarks, French Foreign Minister Stephane Sejourne said the president had in mind sending troops for specific tasks such as helping on mine clearance.


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