Jens Stoltenberg, the secretary general of NATO, just warned the world of the possibility that the Russia-Ukraine war could escalate to a "major war" that could involve the West.
Stoltenberg's warning, according to PBS, came on Friday during an interview that he did with the Norwegian broadcast NRK. That interview focused on the war between Russia and Ukraine, which has been ongoing for over nine months now, since Feb. 24.
Stoltenberg, referring to the Russia-Ukraine war, told NRK, "if things go wrong, they can go horribly wrong."
"It is a terrible war in Ukraine," Stoltenberg continued. "It is also a war that can become a full-fledged war that spreads into a major war between NATO and Russia."
Newsweek explains how this could happen:
Russia expanding the invasion—or mistakingly striking one of Ukraine's neighbors that are part of the [NATO] organization—would threaten to lead to a wider conflict. Article 5 of NATO's charter states that "an attack against one Ally is considered as an attack against all Allies," meaning an attack against a NATO state could draw a military response by all others.
In the interview, Stoltenberg said that NATO is "working . . . every day to avoid" this from happening.
But, he stated that "there is no doubt that a full-fledged war is a possibility."
Despite how long the Russia-Ukraine war has been ongoing, tensions still remain high between Russia and the West, primarily because of the West's backing of Ukraine in various ways.
Over the weekend, reports emerged indicating that Russian President Vladimir Putin was considering whether or not to adopt a doctrine of preemptive nuclear strikes.
The Daily Wire reports:
Speaking at a summit of former Soviet nations in Kyrgyzstan, the Russian dictator referred to what he called America’s preemptive nuclear strike doctrine, saying that Russia is “thinking about” implementing something similar. Currently, Russian military doctrine states that Moscow can use a nuclear strike if the country comes under nuclear attack or the existence of the country is threatened.
Putin also tried to claim that Russia has superior firepower to the U.S. The Daily Wire reports:
During the summit, Putin also claimed that Russia has already commissioned hypersonic missiles capable of carrying out a preventative strike and that Russia’s cruise missiles surpass their U.S. equivalents. Later, he upped the direct warning about his country’s nuclear capabilities.
Previously, Fox News reported Putin as saying that Russia's war with Ukraine could be a "long process." The outlet also reported Putin as saying that "the threat of nuclear war is growing."
On the other side, the West, including the U.S., has made it clear that it is not backing down from assisting Ukraine. In fact, President Joe Biden is trying to get Congress to spend another $37 billion in aid to Ukraine, and the European Union is giving Ukraine another $2 billion.
The bottom line is that tensions between Russia and the West remain as high as ever, and a "major war" between Russia and the West remains a possibility.