With the latest addition of Russia, the world’s five nations with the largest holdings of nuclear weapons are now involved in the Syrian Civil War. An infographic by the Federation of American Scientists can be seen below.
Russia recently joined the fight in the Middle East, with Putin pledging to help root out ISIS in Syria. However, Russian actions seem more inline with propping up the beleaguered Assad regime by attacking Syrian rebels supported by the United States. The New York Times writes:
Russia expanded its bombings on Friday, saying its warplanes struck seven targets, including a command post and training camp near Raqqa, the northeast Syrian city that the Islamic State has converted into the capital of its self-proclaimed caliphate straddling Syria and Iraq. Until now, Russia had hit territory that was not dominated by ISIS but, in some cases, where American-supported rebels were located.
With Russia’s latest actions, nearly 20,000 nuclear bombs are now possibly at play in the Middle East.