Interview with Dr. Vladimir Orlov, Founding Director of PIR Center, Professor at MGIMO University, for MGIMO Journal

August 21, 2023

The use of nuclear weapons in the special military operation is unreasonable, unnecessary and not considered. Limited use of nuclear weapons is impossible as it will end up in a total nuclear war and total annihilation. As to risks that I see, there may be some. Suppose common sense of the US, our potential adversary, fails, we will have to carry out a counterstrike. But I hope Washington has no insane or suicidal people. 

“Responsible practices of dealing with nuclear weapons have been developed. US — Russia dialog on nuclear threats is going on”. 

Another risk is very serious — accident. I do not mean someone pushing some wrong button by mistake, it is unlikely. However, misinterpretation of information (remember we are at information war with the US) is possible. So, it would be irresponsible to say that there is no risk at all. Nonetheless, I would conclude that the probability of the use of nuclear weapon is low. 

Sooner or later the acute military phases of conflicts end, diplomacy and arms control will continue. There will simply be other formats and a completely different architecture of contracts — some will disappear, new ones will be made. 

It may take quite a lot of time, and we will actually have a chance for a stunningly interesting, although emotionally challenging analysis of the prospects and contours of the new arms control architecture, which in fact we are already doing today.

Read the full interview in MGIMO Journal.

Key words: Nuclear Nonproliferation