Russian warships en route to Cuba after Putin warns of arming West’s enemies – National & International News – THU 6Jun2024

Biden says he will not pardon Hunter if convicted.

Russian warships en route to Cuba after Putin warns of arming West’s enemies.


Biden says he will not pardon Hunter if convicted

In an interview near the D-Day memorial in Normandy, France, President Biden told ABC’s John Muir that he will not pardon his son Hunter if he is convicted in his ongoing federal trial.

Hunter is currently facing charges of lying to a federally licensed gun dealer; making a false claim on his application to purchase a gun (claiming he was not using drugs); and illegally possessing the gun for 11 days. He could face up to 25 years in prison if convicted on all counts. However, it is unlikely he will receive the maximum sentence as a first-time offender.

The trial in Delaware has just wrapped up its fourth day. So far, the jury has heard testimony from Kathleen Buhle (Hunter’s ex-wife), Zoe Kestan (a former girlfriend) and Hallie Biden (the widow of Hunter’s brother Beau, with whom Hunter had a brief relationship after his brother’s death). All three women testified to Hunter’s use of crack cocaine from 2016-2018.

The gun-shop owner who sold Hunter the gun in October 2018 has also testified. It was Hallie Biden who discovered the gun that Hunter had purchased. Fearful of what he might do with it, she tossed it in a dumpster behind a grocery store. The jury also heard from the elderly man who found the gun while collecting cans, and from members of law enforcement.

The prosecution expects to wrap up its case tomorrow.

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Russian warships en route to Cuba after Putin warns of arming West’s enemies

In recent days, numerous countries supplying weapons to Ukraine have given them permission to use their weapons to strike within Russian territory. President Biden was one of the final holdouts to allow strikes in Russia with US arms, following weeks of pressure. Biden did ask the Ukrainians to limit their strikes with US weapons to the Russian border region near Kharkiv, where the Russians are currently advancing their lines. Other allies have placed no meaningful limits on what Russian targets Ukraine can strike, nor on how deep within Russia they can strike.

The US also warned Ukraine to stop attacking Russian radar systems, which function as early warning systems in the event of a nuclear launch towards Russia. Despite this warning, Ukraine has apparently persisted in targeting Russian air defense and radar systems.

Putin warns West, sends ships to Cuba

Russian President Vladimir Putin warned today that Russia could reciprocate by supplying similar long-range weapons to nations that might use them to strike Western targets. 

“If someone thinks it is possible to supply such weapons to a war zone to attack our territory and create problems for us, why don’t we have the right to supply weapons of the same class to regions of the world where there will be strikes on sensitive facilities of those countries?” the Putin said. “That is, the response can be asymmetric. We will think about it.” These remarks were couched in a hypothetical and Putin did not name any specific countries he might consider supplying weapons to. 

Putin also warned Ukraine’s allies against complacency about the potential for nuclear escalation over Ukraine.

“For some reason, the West believes that Russia will never use [nuclear weapons],” Putin said. “We have a nuclear doctrine, look what it says. If someone’s actions threaten our sovereignty and territorial integrity, we consider it possible for us to use all means at our disposal. This should not be taken lightly, superficially.”

Hours after Putin’s statements to the press, Cuba announced that four Russian warships, including a nuclear-powered submarine, will arrive in Cuban waters next week. Cuban officials say that none of the ships will be carrying nuclear weapons and insisted that their presence “does not represent a threat to the region”.

This show of force by Putin is reminiscent of the events that led up to the Cuban Missile Crisis of 1962 when Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev installed nuclear weapons on Cuba. This was Khrushchev’s response to the US placing nuclear weapons in Turkey, which bordered the Soviet Union at the time. 

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