The German edition BILD also wrote about the invasion and the phased plan of Russia’s aggression against Ukraine, citing its sources among civil servants.
Putin is preparing to seize 2/3 of the territory of Ukraine, and he has already prepared a “maximum plan”. The only question is whether it will be implemented.
According to a BILD study, Russia’s “maximum plans” for a war against Ukraine have been known since mid-October. The CIA’s foreign intelligence service intercepted them from Russian military communications, briefed its own government for the first time, which briefed NATO in November.
According to US media reports, Russia is planning a multi-front offensive next year in conflict with Ukraine. This is reported by the Washington Post with reference to a senior US government official.
Therefore, Moscow’s plans should include “extensive movements of one hundred battalions of tactical formations numbering approximately 175,000 people, as well as tanks, artillery and equipment.”
Following new intelligence data from the United States, 50 battalion-tactical groups of the Russian army are now concentrated near the Ukrainian border.
Kirill Budanov, head of the Main Intelligence Directorate (GUR) of the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine, predicted an imminent Russian invasion of the country. He noted in an interview with Military Times that the attack would occur in late January or early February.
According to him, Moscow has concentrated more than 92,000 troops on the border and is preparing for an attack. The head of the GUR indicated that it would become much more destructive than any previously undertaken.
On November 20, The New York Times, citing sources, reported that US intelligence had warned European allies that there was “little time left” to prevent Russia from starting hostilities in Ukraine. According to the interlocutors of the publication, Russia has not yet decided what it will do with the troops “which it has gathered at the border of Ukraine.”
NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said that Russia had used force against its neighbors before, so it cannot be assumed that the pulling of Russian troops to the Ukrainian border is “just a bluff,” writes the German newspaper Welt.
“For the second time this year, we have seen that Russia has drawn thousands of soldiers to the border with Ukraine <…> I do not know about Russia’s intentions. But we have seen that Russia has previously used force against its neighbors. Therefore, one cannot assume that this is just a bluff, ”the politician said.
The Pentagon then said that they were watching the events. At the same time, the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine initially denied the pulling together of additional troops by Russia to its borders, but soon changed the operational assessment of the situation. The military department explained that on the border with Ukraine, as well as in the territories not controlled by Kiev, Russian military groups numbering about 90 thousand are concentrated with the aim, as the statement says, “of maintaining tension in the region.”
According to a senior security source, the Russian army will attack “a simultaneous attack from the north of Crimea, through separatist areas in the east and north.” This is both an assessment of NATO and Ukrainian military intelligence. Therefore, the attack could occur “late January, early February” – if Ukraine and NATO do not respond to Putin’s demands.
Other insiders around NATO, on the other hand, see the attack in three phases, each phase of which could also be the last in an operation if the West’s response to the invasion leads to a reassessment of the situation.
Meanwhile, in Kiev, they began to check the bomb shelters. The Ministry of Defense of Ukraine predicts a missile and bomb attack on the country’s critical infrastructure.