Russian propaganda calls for a "pre-emptive strike" on France in response to its military support for Ukraine

Russian propaganda calls for a "pre-emptive strike" on France in response to its military support for Ukraine

A "pre-emptive strike" should be launched against France for its support of the Kyiv authorities and its recent decision to supply Ukraine with combat tanks, Russian analysts said in a heated debate broadcast on Monday by the pro-Putin state channel Rossiya-1. On the other hand, observers interviewed by France 24 considered that such statements are only propaganda and directed at the Russian Interior, ruling out that Moscow will make such an escalation.

Russian propaganda called on Monday for a "pre-emptive strike" on France in response to its military support for Kyiv, especially after Macron's decision last Wednesday to send light combat tanks to Ukraine.

This came during a television program broadcast on the official pro-Kremlin Rossiya-1 channel, where guests presented as military experts said that instead of "sitting and waiting", a "counterattack" should be launched immediately.

Russian propaganda takes a dim view of Western aid to Ukraine and repeatedly calls for action and radical measures.

Rossiya-1 TV channel is a state media loyal to President Vladimir Putin and has become especially well-known since the beginning of the war in Ukraine, with its publication of aggressive and extremist statements against Kyiv and the Western countries supporting it.

"France... Beware of a preemptive strike"

During Monday's discussion on Ukraine, a military expert on the program presented by Vladimir Rudolfovich (a Russian propaganda promoter), as quoted by the French TV channel TF1, said that if Emmanuel Macron provided tanks to Ukraine, France should "receive a preemptive strike as a party to the conflict," but did not specify whether the strike would be a nuclear attack. However, the same speaker warned that "hitting France once" would be enough to "scare everyone," including Russian citizens who are thinking of fleeing to France or Britain.

In response to these new but repeated fiery statements, which are constantly issued by Russian propaganda since the start of the war on February 24, 2022, Antoine Gerashchenko, adviser to the Ministry of internal affairs of Ukraine, wrote on Twitter: "beware of France! He warned that "preemptive attack" propaganda was being spread by Russia. He accompanied his warnings with the publication of the video of the discussion broadcast by the Russian channel.

The French presidency said that it had been decided to send AMX-10 RC tanks, noting that "this is the first time that Ukrainian forces have been provided with Western-designed tanks".

"Propaganda reflects the failure of Russia's bets"
In reading these statements, Dr. Omar Raddad, a strategist and political analyst, said that the threats broadcast by Rossiya-1 are just "calls in the framework of propaganda and threats practiced by the nationalist current in Russia after France announced the provision of light armored vehicles to the Ukrainian army. It is an unthinkable possibility that Russia was quick to deny accusations that one of its missiles fell inside Poland. France is a key member of NATO and today, despite President Macron's statements about disagreements with America and the need to maintain lines of communication with President Putin, it seems closer to the positions of America, Germany, and Britain. The threat to France by Russian Circles is not far from the media campaign that does not extend beyond the Russian borders, and reflects the failure of Russian bets on increasing the gap between Europe and America towards the Russian war on Ukraine,".

Adds Dr.Omar al-Raddad: "it is likely that unless President Putin makes concessions that include finding acceptable solutions, outside of his known conditions, military support to Ukraine will continue in the framework of weapons that ensure the realization of the Western military strategy, the essence of which is the depletion of Russian forces in Ukraine without reaching the Russian depth or going beyond the borders of Ukraine to the west towards European countries. It is not excluded that NATO will decide next March to supply Ukraine with more advanced weapons and military equipment that will further deplete Russia in the Ukrainian quagmire, by reference that President Putin will not accept negotiations if he does not realize his losses on the ground in Ukraine,".

Aiming to prevent NATO from supplying Ukraine with weapons.

For Imad Abulrab, head of the Ukrainian Center for communication and dialogue, these statements come "in light of the escalation of the (Russian) aggressive war on Ukraine and the increasing American and European military, economic and humanitarian support for Kyiv, and in anticipation of Russia's trends, which were stated by many officials and in which Russian President Vladimir Putin announced partial mobilization in his country, in addition to threatening several times to conduct preemptive strikes against some European countries, especially Britain and France, as they are among the most prominent supporters of Ukraine, as Russian officials said.

But Abulrab explains that according to " many military experts, Russia is not interested now and is not even capable of launching strikes against NATO member countries, and they consider such statements as messages to deter NATO countries from supplying Ukraine with offensive weapons that will have an impact on the field, although Russia claims that this will not benefit Ukraine, which will pay the price by causing more casualties and destroying infrastructure in it, and pointed out that this will only prolong the war. A second piece of information was relayed to us by our source: "Since the start of the New Year, the fronts have been seeing events on the ground, as the stage of a new Russian ground onslaught on the Ukrainian East has begun." the Ukrainian East has begun, accompanied by Wagner militias, which are now aggressively attacking the city of Bakhmut and trying to tighten the siege on it. Rocket attacks on the cities of eastern and southern Ukraine continue daily, especially Kherson, Mykolaiv, Kharkiv, Zaporizhia, and Sumy,".

Russian animosity and anger over France's support for Ukraine.

In turn, Lana Badvan, a researcher of international and European relations at the Moscow Higher School of Economics, said: "this analyst does not represent Russia and what the ruling elite said or the Russian decision. There can certainly be no talk of a preemptive strike between France and Russia at the moment. French support for Ukraine does not qualify Russia to launch a military strike on its territory, but strikes can be directed against aid sent to Ukraine, such as tanks that it decides to send and others. We cannot talk about a scenario beyond Ukraine, whether it is in eastern Europe or in any European country, especially what has been talked about in relation to France,".

Badvan added: "the feelings here are mixed, there is anger and resentment from the Russian Interior and from some politicians about the French support, perhaps this is what prompted this analyst to declare the need for a military strike, but it does not represent the government agencies nor their opinion, especially that Russian-French relations, despite the current tension, were positive as they were affected by the military operation on Ukrainian territory. Putin congratulated Macron on assuming the presidency for the second time, and therefore we cannot talk about a permanent break in relations, but great tension because of French support for Ukraine. At the moment, diplomatic channels are open and we always hear about phone calls between the two presidents. The French diplomatic representation is still in Russia,".

In the same context, Rami Kalyoubi, visiting professor at the Faculty of Orientalism at the Higher School of Economics in Moscow and correspondent of Al-Arabi al-Jadeed newspaper, explained: "these statements are issued by a military expert who represents only himself and is addressed to the internal public and not to the outside, as Russian society is witnessing a wave of militarization. Ukraine, in turn, seeks to exploit such statements and direct them to European public opinion to portray Russia as a satanic state, all within the media war between the two countries. Also, any Russian strike on France or another NATO country is completely out of the question," he said.

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