Putin tipped for final gamble in desperate bid to win Ukraine | World | News

Professor Lucas warned Russia‘s president could play his last card if he cannot take any more territory in Ukraine this winter. Prof Lucas claimed that if Vladimir Putin fails to break the Ukrainians and stop them from receiving military aid from the West, then he will try to “freeze the West out” as a way to try and stop the ongoing support being offered to Ukraine. The academic also warned that the Russian people do not have the capacity to remove Putin from power as those in his inner circle are still supporting him. Western experts have been announcing this week that the European Union’s plan to cripple the Russian economy has begun to backfire on the West. 

Prof Lucas told Times Radio: “Even to this day, you know damaging one of those reactors in Southern Ukraine could set off another Chornobyl, what? 35 years later?

“Extra ones are crucial because then when we get into winter Vladimir Putin plays his last card.

“If he can’t take more territory, if he can’t break the will of the Ukrainians, if he can’t stop the military aid, he’s going to try and freeze us.

“He’s going to try to say, don’t support Kyiv, or if you keep supporting them, then you won’t get oil and gas.’ Let’s see how you cope with your increased heating costs huddling under your blankets.”

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Prof Lucas added: “I think there have been hopes that you know, perhaps the war could be curbed because you know, initially we thought you know, would Russians support this war?

“Especially when the sanctions were imposed, when they paid a cost for it, but I think Putin is dug in and I don’t think Russians, a lot of whom do support this war, you have to acknowledge that.

“I don’t think even if they oppose it they have the capacity to remove him, I think the inner circle are still there around Putin.

“We had the idea that maybe Putin had serious health issues, the possibility of Parkinson’s disease but I think intelligence agencies say they don’t think that is on the cards, at least preventing him from falling from power.”

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Dr Samir Dani, an Energy expert from Keele University, told the Express: “From my perspective, they have reduced gas supply to Europe, but their gas supply – gas and oil – to China and India has been pretty steady.

“There are lots of other players in the market, which are trading energy to other parts of the world, not Europe.”

He added: “At the moment, Russia is getting three times the price for supply so they are not making a loss at all, they’re actually making a profit.

“[The effects on] the world economic market by sanctions have actually increased the worth of their gas supply.”

 “Economically, the sanctions we’ve imposed on Russia to end its aggression are having a powerful and also growing effect.

“Now, Moscow has been cherry-picking economic data to support President Putin’s insistence that everything is fine and the Russian economy is going strong. It’s simply not true.”


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