White House adviser says Russia could invade Ukraine ‘any day now’

14 February 2022, 12:40 PM

The United States believes Russia could launch an invasion of Ukraine as soon as this week, but is still holding out hope that diplomacy can prevail, White House National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan told CNN on Feb. 13.

Sullivan said Russian forces are positioned so that an invasion could take place before the end of the Beijing Winter Olympics, which are set to finish on Feb. 20.

“We cannot perfectly predict the day, but we have now been saying for some time that we are in the window, and an invasion could begin, a major military action could begin by Russia in Ukraine any day now – that includes this coming week, before the end of the Olympics,” he said.

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According to Sullivan, this is evidenced by Russia’s ongoing build-up of troops and maneuvers since late October.

At the same time, the advisor insisted that the United States is “prepared to continue to work on diplomacy, but we are also prepared to respond in a united and decisive way with our allies and partners should Russia proceed.”

Sullivan added that the United States has intelligence that indicates Russia has active plans for a false flag operation as pretext for invasion, and that it’s not just the United States saying it.

“We have our NATO allies stepping out and saying it as well, because they’ve been able to review that intelligence, assess its credibility and reach the same conclusion we have reached,” he said.

“So, I do think the world should be prepared for Russia staging a pretext and then watching a potential military action.”

The United States has been releasing intelligence “to stop a war,” Sullivan explained, not start one.

“We are going to make sure that we are laying out for the world what we see as transparently and plainly as we possibly can and share that information as widely as we can,” the official said, adding that the United States will continue to do that.

Earlier, CNN reported that for months the Biden administration has fueled alarming headlines with a remarkable drumbeat of official disclosures of previously classified intelligence, revealing Russian moves as Moscow masses troops on the Ukrainian border. The disclosures have been carefully coordinated among the National Security Council, the intelligence community and other national security agencies in an effort to disrupt Russian planning, blunt the effectiveness of any “false flag” operations and, ultimately, deter military action.

On Feb. 11, U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken said that the U.S. authorities “continue to see very troubling signs of Russian escalation, including new forces arriving at the Ukrainian border.” At that time he also warned that Russia could launch an invasion at any time, including during the Winter Olympics in Beijing.

The U.S.-based Politico political media outlet also reported on Feb. 11 that U.S. President Joe Biden told Western leaders that Russia would start a physical assault on Ukraine as soon as Feb. 16.

Meanwhile, the U.S.-based Bloomberg news agency reported that a fresh Russian aggression against Ukraine could begin on Feb. 15. Russia in turn accused the Western media of a “large-scale disinformation campaign.”

Russia has deployed about 140,000 troops and equipment on the border with Ukraine.

Russia has officially denied its intention to carry out a large-scale invasion of Ukraine, while continuing to provide military assistance to its proxy groups in non-government controlled regions of Donetsk and Luhansk oblasts.

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