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Britain’s spy chief claims intelligence win on Putin’s invasion of Ukraine

“We exposed his attempts to engineer ‘false flag’, fake attacks to justify his invasion,” MI6 head says

By Reuters

Published: Fri 25 Feb 2022, 3:10 PM

Spies in the United States and Britain scored an intelligence victory by uncovering Russian President Vladimir Putin’s decision to order the biggest attack on a European state since World War Two, Britain’s foreign spy chief has claimed.

Kremlin chief Putin used an early morning address to the nation on Feb. 24 to order “a special military operation” against Ukraine, just three days after recognising two Russian-backed rebel regions of Ukraine.

For months, US and British ministers and Western security sources had warned that Russia could invade Ukraine. They stepped up warnings that an invasion was imminent in the weeks and days ahead of Putin’s declaration.

Ahead of the Russian invasion, Moscow repeatedly dismissed those claims as anti-Russian hysteria or disinformation designed to tempt Putin into a war.

“US and UK intelligence communities uncovered Putin’s plans for Ukraine,” Richard Moore, the chief of Britain’s Secret Intelligence Service, known as MI6, said on Twitter.

“We exposed his attempts to engineer ‘false flag’, fake attacks to justify his invasion,” Moore said. “This attack was long planned, unprovoked, cruel aggression.”


The apparent prescience of British and American spies on Putin’s invasion of Ukraine contrasts sharply with the faulty intelligence which was used to justify the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq in 2003.

Before that war, President George W. Bush said that intelligence gathered by the United States and others left no doubt that Iraq was concealing what he intimated were weapons of mass destruction. No such weapons were found.

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