Putin to decide on cyber warfare earlier than nuclear weapons, former NSA chief says

Retired Gen. Keith Alexander, the previous Nationwide Safety Company director and head of U.S. Cyber Command, mentioned on Tuesday that Russian President Vladimir Putin is more likely to proceed utilizing cyberattacks towards Ukraine earlier than utilizing nuclear weapons.

Alexander defined that though Russia hasn’t accomplished vital injury to this point on the cyber entrance, Putin is just not ready to make use of nuclear weapons towards Ukraine, as he is aware of doing so might pull the U.S. and different NATO international locations into the warfare. 

“I feel he’ll use [cyber] clearly earlier than nuclear,” Alexander mentioned.

“If he makes use of nuclear, he’s useless,” he mentioned, including that “if [Putin] makes use of the nuclear possibility, I imagine that can trigger NATO to rethink [whether] they’re in or out.”

“I feel [Putin] acknowledges that, and I feel the administration made that clear,” he continued.

Alexander made his remarks throughout an occasion hosted by the Cyber Initiatives Group.

Putin just lately mentioned he has no intention of utilizing nuclear weapons in Ukraine, regardless of earlier threats.

Throughout a convention held in October, he mentioned utilizing nuclear weapons towards Ukraine would don’t have any political or navy objective. 

“We see no want for that,” Putin mentioned. “There isn’t any level in that, neither political nor navy.”

In response to Putin’s feedback, Biden mentioned throughout an interview that “if he has no intention [of using nuclear weapons], why does he hold speaking about it?”

“He’s been very harmful in how he’s approached this,” Biden added. “He can finish this all, get out of Ukraine.”

The Biden administration has additionally repeatedly warned Russia away from utilizing nuclear weapons.

“Let me simply say Russia can be making an extremely severe mistake if it have been to make use of a tactical nuclear weapon,” Biden instructed reporters in October. 

On the cyber entrance, Alexander praised the U.S. and different Western international locations for serving to Ukraine defend itself towards Russian cyberattacks. 

“I feel [their help] stopped quite a lot of assaults that we’d have seen elsewhere,” Alexander mentioned. “However it’s not over. I feel there might be extra.”