As the war between Russia and Ukraine enters its fourth week amid rumors of possible future nuclear and bio-chemical attacks, Russian President Vladimir Putin has reportedly unleashed, for the first time in combat, a deadly nuclear-capable hypersonic cruise missile, striking a munitions warehouse in Ukraine’s western Ivano-Frankivsk region.
Fox News Digital reports that the missile, called the Kinzhal or “Dagger,” can travel “at 10 times the speed of sound and a range of roughly 1,250 miles.”
While Fox News has not independently verified the use of the missile, which would have been launched from a MiG-31K warplane, Igor Konashenkov, spokesman for the Russian Defense Ministry, stated the Kinzhal was used in a strike against an underground warehouse.
If true, the strike would lend a new sense of urgency to the pleas of Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskyy before Congress for the United States and NATO to establish a no-fly zone over Ukraine, an action many believe would be a declaration of war on Moscow.
“This is a terror that Europe has not seen for 80 years and we are looking for a reply, for an answer, to this terror, from the whole world,” Zelenskyy stated passionately. “Is this a lot to ask for? To create a no-fly zone over Ukraine to save people, is that too much to ask?”
On March 11, President Joe Biden stated, “We will not fight the third world war in Ukraine,” and despite Zelenskyy’s cries for help, there is no evidence that Biden plans on changing course — a move that, in this instance, many from both sides of the political aisle would agree is a good decision.
— David Sacks (@DavidSacks) March 12, 2022
Fox News reported Thursday that Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin stated that Russian cruise missiles “fired from aerial platforms” were launched from inside Russian borders, meaning that a no-fly zone wouldn’t be effective.
“So a no-fly zone would not have prevented that activity,” Austin said.
“POTUS was clear, we would not have U.S. forces fighting in Ukraine,” he added. “No-fly zone means you are in combat with Russia, our president said we are not getting into a fight with Russia.”
Of course, if Russia has dropped a Kinzhal from inside Ukraine, that situation has changed, though there has, so far, been no indication from the White House that a no-fly zone is now on the table.
In his address, Konashenkov also stated that Russian forces used a Bastion missile to destroy reconnaissance centers and military radio close to the port city of Odessa.
“The Bastion missile is launched from a vehicle and has the capability to travel at supersonic speeds using satellite and radar technologies to locate its target — making it difficult to defend against,” Fox News reports.
While the U.S. has yet to agree to provide Zelenskyy’s forces with fighter jets, another $1 billion in defensive aid to the embattled nation is on its way.
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