Destruction of the “Moskva”: USA call reports about US secret services exaggerated

The White House sees reports about the role of US intelligence in the Ukraine war as exaggerated. Spokeswoman Jen Psaki specifically referred to media reports on Friday that US intelligence information had helped the Ukrainian military sink the Russian Black Sea Fleet’s flagship Moskva (Moscow). This does not accurately reflect what happened, she said. “This is an inaccurate overstatement of our role and an understatement of the role of Ukrainians who, frankly, have a greater level of information and access to information than we do.”

Psaki emphasized: “We have not provided Ukraine with specific target information for the ‘Moskva’.” The US was not involved in the Ukrainians’ decision to attack the ship, nor in the actual operation. “We had no prior knowledge of the Ukrainians’ intention to attack the ship.”

Kyiv has intelligence capabilities of its own to target Russian ships. “We are providing them with a range of information that will help them understand the threat posed by Russian ships in the Black Sea and prepare for possible attacks from the sea,” Psaki said. However, the Ukrainians combined this with their own information.

Several US media such as the Washington Post and the New York Times reported on Thursday evening, citing unnamed sources, that the “Moskva” had been sunk with the help of US intelligence information. However, the US government had no knowledge of Ukraine’s concrete plans. At the request of the Ukrainian military, the United States identified the ship as “Moskva” and helped to locate it.

The ship was sunk in mid-April by Ukrainian anti-ship missiles of the Neptun type. Moscow denies that.

A high-ranking US official also told AFP that the US had not provided Ukraine with information aimed at attacking the “Moskva”. “We do not provide specific target information about ships.”

More on the Ukraine war on Tagesspiegel Plus:

The US Department of Defense also reiterated Thursday that it is not providing Ukrainians with intelligence for the purpose of targeting Russian generals to be killed. The New York Times previously reported, citing anonymous US officials, that of the dozen or so Russian generals killed by Ukrainian forces, “many” were targeted with the help of US intelligence.

“We do not provide information about the whereabouts of senior military leaders on the battlefield and do not participate in targeting decisions by the Ukrainian military,” Pentagon spokesman Kirby said. “Ukraine combines information that we and other partners provide with the information that it collects itself on the battlefield,” he said. “Then she makes her own decisions and takes her own actions.” (AFP, dpa)

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