Top Brass Defends Russia's Right to Preemptive Strike

Russia underlined its right to a "preventive" nuclear strike this week in what military analysts interpreted as a move to introduce more clarity into the nation's defense doctrine. The statements, made by Chief of General Staff Yuri Baluyevsky on Saturday, were followed by naval exercises in the northern Atlantic that will feature over 40 aircraft of the Air Force. Though unrelated, the developments pointed to a Russia not so much on the offensive as a one that was eager to bring its defense doctrine in line with that of the Western world and make it more up to date with contemporary military demands.

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