US intelligence believes that advisers to Russian President Vladimir Putin are hiding from him the truth about the real situation during the fighting in Ukraine. This was reported by the Associated Press, citing a representative of the US administration, who spoke to reporters on condition of anonymity.
According to a representative of the administration, in particular, they are hiding information from Putin about the participation of conscripts in the war and the cases of their deaths. The Russian president has repeatedly stated that only contractors are involved in the so-called special operation, but the Defense Ministry later acknowledged that there were conscripts in Ukraine, some of whom were taken prisoner. The Ministry of Defense assured that all of them have already been sent back to Russia.
Also, according to the American official, they are trying to hide from Putin the scale of damage to Russia’s economy caused by Western sanctions. A spokesman for the US administration said Putin’s entourage was “afraid to tell him the truth”. At the same time, according to him, Putin feels that in any case the military is trying to hide from him the problems at the front, which, according to the American official, has already led to growing tensions between the president and the military command.
Jeremy Flemming, head of the British intelligence service GCHQ’s British Communications Headquarters, also said Putin was wrong in his assessment of the situation in deciding to start the war. Flemming believes Putin’s advisers are afraid to tell him the truth. According to him, during the invasion of Ukraine, Russian soldiers refused to carry out orders, sabotaged their own equipment and even mistakenly shot down one of their planes, said the head of the British intelligence service, speaking at the Australian National University in Canberra.
The Kremlin has not yet commented on the report.
Putin has rarely appeared in public since the Russian invasion began. He commented on the course of hostilities in Ukraine only a few times, claiming that the operation was going according to plan. Officially, Russia has not renounced its demands on Ukraine, including “demilitarization” and “denazification.” At the same time, according to the head of the Russian delegation to the peace talks Vladimir Medinsky, Moscow believes that Ukraine’s refusal to join NATO and guarantees its neutrality mean meeting “principled” Russian demands.
The Russian operation has been going on for more than 30 days, during which time, despite a number of successes, Russian troops have failed to defeat the Ukrainian army and take control of any of the regional centers, with the exception of Kherson.