“Warsaw Will Not be Left Out”: Medvedev Threatens Poland with “Radioactive Ash”

Written by Camilla Jessen

May.27 - 2024 10:39 AM CET

Photo: Knyazevfoto / Shutterstock.com
Photo: Knyazevfoto / Shutterstock.com
Former Russian President Dmitri Medvedev has issued a threat to Poland.

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In a recent interview, the Polish Foreign Minister speculated about a possible US response to a Russian use of nuclear weapons in Ukraine. Russia responded with its usual brutal rhetoric through former President Dmitri Medvedev.

Russia's former President Dmitri Medvedev has threatened Poland with "radioactive ash" following comments by Foreign Minister Radosław Sikorski. Sikorski had spoken to the British newspaper The Guardian about how the USA would presumably react to a Russian use of nuclear weapons against Ukraine.

"The Americans told the Russians that if you detonate a nuclear bomb, even if it doesn't kill anyone, we will hit all your targets in Ukraine with conventional weapons; we will destroy them all," Sikorski told the paper.

Poland is one of Ukraine's strongest supporters.

Medvedev's Response

"The US did not say anything like that because they are more cautious," Medvedev wrote on the social network X. "If Americans hit our targets, it means a world war, and a foreign minister, even of a country like Poland, should understand that," the deputy head of the Russian Security Council wrote on Sunday.

He claimed that Polish President Andrzej Duda had asked for tactical nuclear weapons from the US to be stationed in Poland.

"Warsaw will not be left out and will certainly get its share of radioactive ash. Is that what you want?" Medvedev added.

In April, Duda stated that Poland was ready to accept NATO nuclear weapons as a counterweight to the stationing of Russian tactical nuclear weapons in Belarus.

Shifting Roles and Rhetoric

During his presidency from 2008 to 2012, Medvedev was considered Russia's liberal hope. Since the Russian attack on Ukraine, however, he has developed into one of the biggest hardliners, defending the war with inflammatory posts on social networks.

Sikorski's comments likely refer to events from autumn 2022, when US media reported that Washington believed Moscow might be preparing to use a nuclear weapon in Ukraine.

The US reportedly informed the Kremlin that it would respond not with nuclear weapons but with other powerful means.

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