caution signEarlier this week, Moscow called upon major the nuclear powers to demonstrate their readiness to prevent escalation and reject provocations with weapons of mass destruction. The West has turned a deaf ear to Russia’s warnings again, thus encouraging potential provocateurs, Dutch journalist Sonja van den Ende told Sputnik.”How can the US and the countries in the West, like France and the UK, reject provocations? They are the actual ‘henchman’ in Ukraine, controlling Ukraine,” Sonja van den Ende told Sputnik. The independent journalist from Rotterdam, Netherlands, has repeatedly visited the theatre of military actions in Donbass since the beginning of the special military operation.The Russia is continuing to issue warnings about the threat of a potential nuclear escalation pertaining to Kiev’s “dirty bomb,” an explosive device loaded with radioactive materials which could be used to stage a false flag operation in the zone of the special military operation with the aim to pin the blame on Moscow. However, the US and its NATO allies have snubbed Moscow’s warning, accusing Russia of exploiting the issue to further escalate tensions over Ukraine.In addition, the West continues to turn a blind eye to Kiev’s continuous shelling of the Zaporozhye Nuclear Power Plant (ZNPP) after Russian forces established full control over the site several months ago.On November 3, Rosenergoatom, Russia’s nuclear power plants operator, raised the alarm over Ukraine cutting off both of the ZNPP main 750 kilovolt (kV) power line and its back-up off-site power supplies from a 330 kV line. The ZNPP was forced to switch to emergency diesel generators. The operator highlighted that Kiev’s actions pose a great threat to nuclear safety and “contradicts all existing regulations and standards in general.””The provocation comes directly against the Zaporozhye NPP, which the Ukrainians keep under fire, nearly every day,” the Dutch journalist said. “The Zaporozhye NPP is the largest nuclear power plant in Europe and therefore the most dangerous one.”© Sputnik / FalinZaporozhskaya nuclear power plantZaporozhskaya nuclear power plantIn August, Russia invited the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) inspectors to the plant to study the situation on the ground. In a series of reports, the IAEA admitted that the atomic plant was subjected to shelling and sustained damages but shied away from calling out Kiev for bombarding the nuclear site. Apparently, if the watchdog openly pointed the finger at the Ukrainian military, the West would have to react and take measures for ending the nuclear provocations.It’s mind boggling as to how the IAEA mission for ZNPP failed to find out where exactly the shelling came from despite spending weeks at the nuclear site, according to van den Ende.For instance, the watchdog’s latest report on the November 3 incident at ZNPP acknowledged that the electric lines “had sustained physical damage” following “shelling” but avoided naming a mysterious force that had attacked the plant. Director General Rafael Mariano Grossi stated ambiguously that “despite the best efforts of the plant’s courageous staff to stabilize the external power situation in recent weeks, the ZNPP has again lost all access to off-site electricity.”Therefore, according to van den Ende, it’s hardly surprising that the IAEA team has failed to “find any indications of undeclared nuclear activities and materials” at the Institute for Nuclear Research in Kiev, Eastern Mining and Processing Plant in Zholtye Vody, and Production Association Yuzhny Mashinbuilding Plant in Dnepropetrovsk, the sites mentioned by the Russian Ministry of Defense as potentially involved in Kiev’s illegal military nuclear research.Russia’s Special Operation in UkraineKiev Made Dummy Missile for Provocation With ‘Dirty Bomb’ Over Chernobyl Zone – Source26 October, 16:07 GMTThe West appears to be not interested in shedding light on Kiev’s sabotage actions and holding it responsible, the journalist noted.Furthermore, she did not rule out that the US and NATO leadership are aware of Ukraine’s grand-design involving the dirty bomb. Apparently, they intentionally avoid criticizing Kiev while setting stage for a new blame game against Russia, according to her.”Large parts of Ukraine are de facto occupied by the US and EU,” she said. “There is still a real danger concerning the ‘dirty bomb.’ So, yes I would say that [the threat of a] nuclear provocation still persists.”The West is a beneficiary of Kiev’s possible nuclear false flag as it could help the US and NATO build up a broader coalition against Russia, stated Nikolai Patrushev, secretary of the Russian Security Council, on November 3. The Russian official underscored that Moscow possesses information about the masterminds of the potential nuclear sabotage and supposed executors of a false-flag attack concocted under the guidance of Kiev’s Western curators.MilitaryWhen Did Ukraine Give Up Nuclear Weapons and Why Have Fears of Kiev’s Pursuit of Nukes Reemerged?3 November, 14:11 GMT
Ukraine Boasted It Can Make Nuclear Bomb Quickly
For its part, the Western mainstream press is deliberately neglecting and downplaying everything connected with Ukraine’s apparent prowess to create atomic weapons, including Volodymyr Zelensky’s “nuclear” remarks made at the Munich Security Conference on February 19, 2022, noted the Dutch journalist.During his February speech, Zelensky threatened to drop Ukraine’s non-nuclear status under the pretext that the signatories of the 1994 Budapest Memorandum on Security Assurances had failed to ensure Ukraine’s security. The memorandum obligated Kiev to return its Soviet nuclear arsenal to Russia in exchange for security guarantees.Still, Ukraine’s non-nuclear status was codified much earlier, by the country’s Declaration of Sovereignty of July 16, 1990. The document clearly says that Kiev would never “accept, produce, or acquire nuclear weapons” and would maintain permanent neutrality.In the wake of Zelensky’s Munich remarks, Ukraine’s media enthusiastically weighed up Kiev’s capabilities of creating nuclear arms. On February 21, 2022 the nation’s Vlada Segodnya portal noted that Ukraine operates a whopping four nuclear power stations with 15 power units. The fifth NPP – the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant – still had enough spent nuclear fuel that could be used to produce weapons-grade plutonium to create the bomb, according to the media. Another option envisaged extracting natural uranium at the Eastern Mining and Processing Plant near Dnepropetrovsk and its further enrichment.CC BY 3.0 / Ace^eVg / Kharkov Institute of Physics and TechnologyKharkov Institute of Physics and TechnologyScientists at the National Science Center Kharkov Institute of Physics and Technology have the necessary expertise to develop a nuclear warhead while specialists of the Production Association Yuzhny Mashinbuilding Plant in Dnepropetrovsk could design and build a missile to deliver it, the Ukrainian media said. (Yuzhmash was famous for producing the Tsyklon, Antares and Zenit orbital carrier rockets during the Soviet era.)
According to the outlet's interviewees, Ukraine's nuclear weapons project could take 5-7 years with annual funding of $200-$300 million. However, the bomb could be done in half a year if Kiev acquires a reactor for the production of weapons-grade plutonium, experts have said. This reactor would allow Ukraine to obtain 100 medium-yield nuclear charges within 15 kilograms in a limited time.
While some Russian and Ukrainian observers previously argued that it would take time and considerable funding to produce nuclear bombs in Ukraine, most of them unanimously agreed that Kiev could create a “dirty bomb” at “any moment.”Moreover, the Ukrainian media openly suggested that nuclear weapons could serve as a “deterrent” against Russia. And it wasn’t “all talk no action”: on October 24, the Russian Ministry of Defense revealed that it is aware of contacts between the office of the President of Ukraine and representatives of the UK on the possible obtaining of nuclear weapon technology.The people of liberated regions of Donbass, Kherson and Zaporozhye are well aware of Kiev’s capability of making a dirty bomb and take it seriously, according to Van den Ende. The Kherson evacuees have every reason to be concerned given both Kiev’s ongoing attacks on Zaporozhye NPP – located just 232 kilometers from Kherson – and the dirty bomb plot, she suggested.”Another threat is the shelling or bombing of the Kakhovka Hydroelectric Station, located in Kherson and not far from the Zaporzhzhya nuclear power plant. This is a double threat for the people living there. When the dam bursts millions of liters of water will come free, a disaster!” Van den Ende said.Opinion & AnalysisEU’s Economy May Collapse in Three Years After Banning Russian Gas, Prof Warns3 November, 17:10 GMT
Kiev is Raising the Stakes; Will Europeans Wake Up?
Kiev has recently ramped up provocation against Russia in order to reinvigorate the West’s support for Ukraine, said Van den Ende, citing the October attacks on the Crimean Bridge and vessels involved in the implementation of the Russo-Ukrainian grain deal.”The Ukrainian (puppet) leader Zelensky will not give up, too much at stake for him, although his popularity is decreasing,” she remarked.According to the Dutch journalist, the Zelensky cabal is unwilling to stop the conflict. Quite the contrary, they are ready to raise stakes. There is a hope that Ukraine’s pragmatic political forces will ultimately take the reins in Kiev to prevent the dangerous nuclear provocation and bring an end to the Western proxy war in Ukraine, she suggested.Another hope is that European citizens “wake up” and exert pressure on their respective governments to stop Kiev’s nuclear provocations as well as NATO’s hybrid war against Russia, which has already backfired on Europe’s economy, according to Van den Ende.”The economy is worsening in European countries, the Netherlands has an inflation of 17% and rising,” said the Dutch journalist. “People are not able to pay their electricity or gas bills anymore. Food prices are rising dramatically. So let’s hope that something will come from the people, when their basic needs are unpayable.”