Russia's reaction to Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskyy's visit and speech to the United States has already started, with Russian President Vladimir Putin speaking to his defense chiefs about bringing the deadly Zircon missile to play in the war, retired U.S. Air Force Brig. Gen. Blaine Holt said on Newsmax Thursday.
"That's the hypersonic missile that is launched from the sea on a new frigate that's coming into the Black Sea," Holt, a former U.S. deputy military representative to NATO and now a Newsmax contributor, commented on "Wake Up America." "Those are missiles that can fly out about 7,000 miles per hour. They are deadly."
Putin has also reportedly said that Russia's RS-28 Sarmat, also known as "Satan II," an intercontinental ballistic missile system, will be operational in about three weeks, said Holt.
"We have been very dubious on that, but if that is true, that's going to be concerning as well," he added.
It was announced before Zelenskyy landed that the United States would allow a Patriot missile defense battery, which Holt called a "very complicated system."
"I've heard several times people saying that's an offensive weapon," he said. "No, it's a defensive weapon. It's quite good. But how will it stand up to the drones? It didn't do so well in Saudi Arabia."
Meanwhile, Holt pointed to a report in The Daily Mail Thursday that Chinese President Xi Jinping is demanding a written explanation from Putin about when the war will end and that he wants an apology.
The publication reports, quoting the Telegram channel General SVR, which reportedly has links to the Kremlin, that Russian Deputy Chair Dmitry Medvedev was dispatched Wednesday to Beijing to deliver Putin's response.
"This is very disruptive to what China is trying to accomplish strategically, and it couldn't be better news for these wonderful kids to start having a serious moment between themselves," said Holt.
Meanwhile, Zelenskyy delivered "quite a speech" to the joint session of Congress Wednesday night, said Holt, at a time when President Joe Biden is trying to convey the message that it is a "balancing act" concerning what kind of weapons the United States can provide Ukraine.
"If you go to the absolute highest end that we have, you're going to potentially, probably likey compromise our technology that gets captured on the battlefield," said Holt.
Further, such weapons could escalate the situation in Ukraine and back Russia into a deep corner, said Holt.
"We have to be very careful about what flows in this balance not to protract or keep the war going," he added.
He noted that Zelenskyy had one line in his speech that he thought was a lesson for all Americans: "'Your well-being is a product of your national security.' How much could we learn from that statement alone?"
Zelenskyy's trip to the United States was dangerous, said Holt.
"It is very risky to travel outside of a wartorn country when you're the leader," he said. "The return is the most dangerous … it's telling to us if the Russians can't mount any type of big event up on his return, about how much trouble they are in."
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Sandy Fitzgerald has more than three decades in journalism and serves as a general assignment writer for Newsmax covering news, media, and politics.
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