Russia could strike back against Ukraine after suffering several devastating losses in the battlefield over recent weeks.
By Paul Withers
21:37, Fri, Nov 11, 2022 | UPDATED: 21:41, Fri, Nov 11, 2022
Putin ‘to opt for nuclear option’ if Ukraine attempt Crimea recovery
Vladimir Putin could be plotting to reverse Russia’s sinking war plan by unleashing a Bond villain-style hypersonic EMP strike that could bring Ukraine to its knees if he can’t use nuclear weapons. In July, Russia boasted about possessing a new electromagnetic pulse (EMP) cannon – a weapon that could wipe out electronic communication within a six-mile radius. If launched successfully, sinister EMP has the ability to burn through Ukraine’s power grid, sparking panic and plunging millions of people into darkness in the bitterly cold winter months.
The destructive weapon could also knock out communication towers and other electronic assets that could severely impact on Ukraine’s ability to defend itself in battle.
EMPs are frequently attached to horrifying hypersonic nuclear missiles and fired more than 100 miles into space, potentially destroying electronic devices across an area the size of the US. But the non-nuclear version is understood to be able to wipe out enemy assets within a six-mile range.
Russia has suffered numerous devastating battlefield losses in southern and eastern Ukraine over recent weeks and has frequently resorted to attacking critical civilian infrastructure.
But now numerous experts are warning there is a chance Russia could launch an EMP to plunge millions of innocent Ukrainians into darkness.
Defence analyst Francis Tusa warned Russia “has already been attempting to make Ukraine as uninhabitable as possible ahead of winter”, adding in aninterview with The Times: “So I don’t rule out the possibility of an EMP strike as part of what seems to be a ‘scorched earth’ policy.”
Council on Geostrategy director James Rogers also warned it is appearing “increasingly” likely Putin will resort to an EMP strike to “provide that break that would turn the tide for him”.
He said: “We know that there is pressure on him with all the chatter within Russia about the failure of their generals. An EMP strike could provide that break that would turn the tide for him. But I don’t think that he is yet in a position.
“The real stepping-stone to escalation — if there is one — is if the Ukrainians were to recapture the territory they had lost and begin to march on Crimea.”
Weapons expert Justin Brook claimed Russia has an arsenal of MPs ready to go and said some Spetznaz units in Ukraine already carry them.
He said: “EMP strikes leave very little visible trace so it’s difficult to know whether one has already been used without being there on the ground to investigate.”
If Putin was to make such a drastic move, it would escalate the already tense war by knocking out the infrastructure in neighbouring NATO countries.
But electronics warfare boffin Thomas Withington warned Russia of retaliation from the defence alliance and said: “I think that the big danger for the Russian government is that once it performs an EMP nuclear detonation.