Putin’s massive troll we missed
WHAT'S the Russian word for "zing"?
Because President Putin is definitely thinking it after he unveiled his new weapons arsenal with a spectacular side-serving of sass aimed at President Trump and the US.
On Thursday, the Russian leader revealed his new "invincible" cruise missile and a nuclear torpedo. And 43 seconds in to the short animated video was a snapshot of nine nuclear-tipped missiles heading straight for Florida - the beloved second home of President Trump and site of the "Winter White House" at Mar-a-Lago.
The animation appeared to show the coastal area including Tampa, St Petersburg and Clearwater. Tampa is home to a US military command centre and has long been considered a prime target.
The jab was not missed by US media, who noted the destination amid predictions the arsenal could usher in an expensive era of nuclear arms building.
"Russian President Vladimir Putin on Thursday used a concept video of unlimited range nuclear warheads apparently raining down on Florida - President Donald Trump's home away from home - to tout his country's new firepower," CNN reported.
"To drive home his point, Putin spoke as a video showed multiple nuclear warheads streaking through space before showering down on what appears to be the outline of the state of Florida."
The Guardian even went so far as to invite comment from Tampa mayor, Bob Buckhorn, who said he is not worried about his city being singled out.
"It's unfortunate that Mr Putin chose to include Tampa Bay in his threat but at this point we'll write it off as overheated rhetoric designed to prop up his failing regime," he said.
Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov denied a map of Florida was used, saying "I did not see it".
"No maps were used there, these are absolutely symbolic contours, there is not any tie-up to any concrete country."
"Russia is not going to attack anyone, and these weapons do not present a danger to anyone who is not hatching plans to attack our country," he said.
Putin stunned the world on Thursday when he used his state of the union speech ahead of the March 18 elections to unveil "invincible" hypersonic weapons and submarines. The Kremlin denied sparking a new arms race or violating weapons treaties with the developments.