The United States and NATO hope to win strategic and military dominance over Russia by recruiting new member nations for the Western alliance, Russian security council chief Nikolai Patrushev told Izvestia in an interview published today.
"Georgia and especially Ukraine in case of their accession to the alliance can become a convenient springboard for deployment of large ground, air and naval strike forces armed with high-precision and tactical nuclear weapons," he said, as quoted by Izvestiya.
"Potential deployment of such weapons in Ukraine will make them strategic, because their destruction zone will cover critically important military and economic objects in European Russia, with elements of state governance and military command," Patrushev said.
"Such actions by the Americans can aggravate mutual mistrust and spiral (into) an arms race to which we do not aspire, I want to stress," he said, according to the paper.
NATO states in April rejected requests to begin moving Georgia and Ukraine toward membership, but did not shut the door on reconsidering in the future, said Reuters.
Patrushev added that the United States would pose “additional threats to Russia’s national security if Washington launched a strike on Iran from Georgian territory,” Reuters quoted Patrushev as saying.