The supposed "Apocalypse proof" assets gold and Bitcoin jumped on a Wednesday nuclear headline that hit the wires quoting Russia's defense minister who confirmed that Russia will initiate training on nuclear strikes.
"Russia has conducted a major exercise aimed at testing its strategic nuclear forces," the Kremlin announced, per state media. While this doesn't mean a nuclear test per se has happened, it does come at this ultra-sensitive moment where major powers have their fingers on the trigger related to the escalating Gaza crisis. US and Israeli defense officials have just said the Pentagon is sending additional anti-air defenses to protect American troops stationed across the Middle East.
And now this from Russia's military: "The drills involved all three components of the nuclear triad: intercontinental ballistic missiles, nuclear-armed submarines, and strategic bombers, the statement said."
An explanation of the drills was explained in RT as follows:
The test also aimed to evaluate the readiness of the military leadership, and its ability to command the strategic nuclear forces, the Kremlin said. All forces involved “followed through” with their tasks, it added.
In the background, the last major post-Cold War era nuclear treaty between Moscow and Washington is on the brink of collapse: New START, with the formal name of Measures for the Further Reduction and Limitation of Strategic Offensive Arms.
Currently, Russia is drafting a bill to revoke its prior ratification of the treaty which banned all nuclear testing. In follow up, Russia's foreign ministry has stipulated that the military would only resume full-on nuclear tests should the US do the same. Per Interfax, the statement added however that the Russians have "seen signs that the US is making preparations for nuclear testing in Nevada."
Now with Russia talking nuclear tests sprinkled into the dramatically rising geopolitical tensions surrounding the Middle East, this has sent Bitcoin charging higher, as has been the trend in the last several days of "WW3-style" headlines and punditry...
Gold also gained amid the increased safe haven trend...
The annual "Grom" strategic nuclear exercise under the leadership of Putin is now underway in Russia.— Status-6 (Military & Conflict News) (@Archer83Able) October 25, 2023
- Russian Defense Minister Shoigu and Chief of the General Staff Gerasimov reported to Putin about the course of the exercise;
- The RS-24 Yars intercontinental ballistic… pic.twitter.com/PhW1eA8FBv
And finally a note from Rabobank, which observes how easily things could go boom [emphasis ZH]...
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There is really so much that can go wrong when several powerful states are playing chess against each other on three different chess boards around the globe. Let’s just hope that none of the participants in this game is on psychedelic mushrooms and tries to pull “both emergency shut off handles, because they think they are dreaming and just wanna wake up”.