Media outlets name another ‘Russian invasion’ date
Western media outlets have predicted yet another date for the supposedly looming ‘Russian invasion of Ukraine’, this time claiming it could start next Wednesday. Moscow has repeatedly denied plans to attack its neighbor.
Der Spiegel reported on Friday that the CIA and the US military warned Germany and other NATO members that Russia was gearing up to attack its neighbor on February 16.
According to the German magazine, the Americans outlined which specific units of the Russian Army will participate in the invasion, and what routes they will use. It is still “not possible,” however, to determine if the attack is imminent, Der Spiegel said.
The magazine, however, also quoted unnamed “insiders” as saying that Washington may have been deliberately spreading the information to prevent a potential Russian attack.
Politico’s NatSec Daily similarly quoted a source as saying that US President Joe Biden warned Western leaders in a phone call on Friday that Moscow could attack on February 16. Several US officials told the magazine that Russia could launch “a barrage of missile strikes” and cyberattacks on Ukraine before invading it with troops.
However, a British official told the magazine that London has “a different interpretation” of the intelligence provided by the US regarding the potential invasion. Two EU diplomats told Politico they “still refuse to buy it,” arguing that attacking Ukraine would be a costly “mistake” for Russian President Vladimir Putin.
The news comes as Bloomberg, also citing sources, said Russia could launch an invasion as soon as February 15, a day earlier than Der Spiegel and Politico say. White House National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan told reporters on Friday that a Russian assault on Ukraine will likely begin with aerial bombing and missile strikes, followed by a ground invasion of “a massive force.”
Western countries have been accusing Russia of amassing troops and military hardware dangerously close to Ukraine’s borders since last fall. Moscow has denied making threats to Kiev and blamed the West for the escalation in tensions.
Anatoly Antonov, Russia’s ambassador to the US, dismissed Sullivan’s speech as an attempt to boost the “propaganda campaign” aimed at “forming a public impression that ‘aggression’ is imminent.”
“Russia’s leadership has repeatedly stated that our country is not planning to attack anyone,” Antonov said in a statement on social media.