Putin sets course for new USA race with 'invincible' weapons

Sergei Bobylev  TASS

Peskov also said that Putin's speech would not increase Russia's global isolation and did not herald the start of a new arms race.

"They have not succeeded in holding Russian Federation back", said Putin, referring to the West, which he said had ignored Moscow in the past, but would now have to sit up and listen. The president has come under sharp criticism for not implementing further sanctions against Russian intelligence and military enacted by Congress past year.

By poking at Trump's insecurities, Putin is hoping to distract the President - making it less likely Trump will take action to hold Russian Federation accountable for its ongoing attacks on the United States.

"We're not surprised by the statement, and the American people should rest assured that we are fully prepared", Pentagon spokeswoman Dana White told reporters after the announcement by Putin.

Trump has also posted about the US steel industry.

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State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert noted that Putin was speaking ahead of the March 18 election.

Putin unveiled the new arsenal Thursday in a state of the nation address, and showed a series of video montages of missiles crossing mountains and oceans, heading over the Atlantic before striking the USA eastern seaboard.

Sarah Huckabee Sanders said in a briefing Thursday, "President Putin has confirmed what the United States government has known all along, which Russian Federation has denied: Russian Federation has been developing destabilizing weapons systems for over a decade in direct violations of its treaty obligations".

The Pentagon spoke about Putin's display on Thursday, assuring, "We've been watching Russian Federation for a long time".

"We do not want a new Cold War or a new arms race", Lungescu said.

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Michaela Dodge, a Heritage Foundation missile defence expert, said Putin's statements confirmed that the Trump Administration was right to build its recent review of nuclear weapons policy around concerns about Russian Federation.

The Trump Administration interprets Russian statements and actions over the past several years, including its annexation of Crimea and military incursions into eastern Ukraine, as requiring a stronger USA nuclear deterrent.

"Russia does not plan to get dragged into any arms race", Peskov said.

Analysts said Putin was effectively challenging Washington to a new arms race.

Last month, the Pentagon unveiled its Nuclear Posture Review, which calls for developing smaller, low-yield nuclear weapons to deter Russian Federation and China. Russia's growing military might was a guarantee of world peace, he said, created to preserve a strategic balance of power on the planet.

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