Russian Senator Urges Missile Strikes on U.S. Bases in Europe

A Russian senator has suggested that his country should attack U.S. military bases in Europe in response to the Biden administration's decision to send rocket systems to Ukraine.

Senator Frants Klintsevich told Russian state TV that Russia should "wreck" American bases using the country's "high-precision long-range weapons" after the U.S. announced it will send Ukraine the M142 High Mobility Artillery Rocket System (HIMARS).

A clip of Klintsevich's remarks was shared by Francis Scarr of BBC Monitoring on Thursday, who monitors Russian state TV. The senator's comments come ahead of the 100th day of the invasion of Ukraine on Friday.

Klintsevich was part of a panel discussing the Biden administration's decision to send HIMARS to Ukraine and said it was "complete nonsense" for Ukraine to claim the rocket system would only be used in defense.

He argued that it was "impossible to talk to the Americans and Ukrainians in these conditions."

The senator said that Russia was speaking to the West "from a position of tolerance" and "giving signals when we say that line cannot be crossed."

"But unfortunately, they view our tolerance and integrity as weakness," Klintsevich said. "And now, the places where the arms shipments are arriving, in particular in Europe, taking into consideration Russia's high precision long-range weaponry, it's about time we took steps to warn them."

Klintsevich said that Russia had shot down U.S. aircraft during the Korean War in the early 1950s. It's likely he was referring to Soviet pilots who flew in planes bearing Chinese and North Korean markings during the conflict. The U.S. and the former Soviet Union were not officially at war at the time.

The senator said that when the Soviets shot down American planes "the world didn't end."

"It's time to wreck American bases, for now, the ones in Europe," Klintsevich went on.

"Unfortunately, that's just my personal opinion," he said, adding that Russia should do so "if we're not heard if it threatens our people on our territory."

The U.S. has a significant number of bases in Europe, with 119 bases in Germany alone as of 2021, with the largest being Ramstein Airbase which covers 3,000 acres.

The countries where U.S. bases are located are also members of the NATO military alliance and if they were attacked by Russia, such an action would trigger a mutual defense clause that could potentially see all NATO members treat the attack as an act of war.

President Joe Biden had previously said the U.S. would not provide Ukraine with the Multiple Launch Rocket System (MLRS) that could potentially strike targets in Russian territory but the administration later said the U.S. would provide MLRS and Ukraine had committed to not using the system to launch attacks within Russia.

Military Personnel Pictured with HIMARS
US military personnel stand by a M142 High Mobility Artillery Rocket System (HIMARS) during Saudi Arabia's first World Defense Show, north of the capital Riyadh, on March 6, 2022. The U.S. will provide HIMARS to Ukraine. AYEZ NURELDINE/AFP/Getty Images