In a rare rebuke from a leading European NATO ally, French President Emmanuel Macron when asked about US President Joe Biden's Thursday warning of Russia posing the threat of nuclear "Armageddon" strongly suggested the words were imprudent.
Macron said "we must speak with prudence" in reacting to Biden's comments, explaining that world leaders must speak with care on questions of a nuclear threat. "I have always refused to engage in political fiction, and especially... when speaking of nuclear weapons," Macron said Friday at an EU summit in Prague.
The French leader further emphasized, "On this issue, we must be very careful."
Macron remains among the very few Western leaders who has maintained open lines of communication with Russia's Vladimir Putin (another being Hungary's Viktor Orban), defending himself against critics, explaining that diplomacy must remain an option in hopes of ending the war in Ukraine.
To review, Biden said that the world hasn't been this close to the threat of nuclear weapons use since the 1960's at the height of the Cold War:
"We have not faced the prospect of Armageddon since Kennedy and the Cuban Missile Crisis," he added. He suggested the threat from Putin is real "because his military is — you might say — significantly underperforming."
And yet the following day White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre sought to perhaps re-interpret and downplay Biden's warning, saying it remains that the US has "not seen any reason to adjust our own strategic nuclear posture nor do we have indications that Russia is preparing to imminently use nuclear weapons."
Alongside Macron's pushback, European Council President Charles Michel said Friday that European leadership is taking "every escalation very seriously."
Michel explained, "Threats will not intimidate us," and added: "Instead, we are going to remain calm. We are going to keep cool heads and we will, each time, denounce the irresponsible character of these threats."
The Russiagate hoax was designed to criminalize open diplomacy between the US and Russia, with Trump blasted as a traitor every time he spoke to Putin.— Max Blumenthal (@MaxBlumenthal) October 7, 2022
Now Biden warns of nuclear armageddon as though the cynical forces that put him in power did not make this crisis inevitable.
The EC president aimed his criticisms at Vladimir Putin, following headlines charging that the Russian president is engaged in nuclear saber-rattling and blackmail, something which the Kremlin has denied.