Zelenskyy suggested invading Russian villages and blowing up oil pipeline
According to secret US intelligence documents, President Volodymyr Zelenskyy proposed to occupy Russian villages to gain leverage over Moscow, and to blow up the Druzhba oil pipeline.
Source: The Washington Post with reference to previously unpublished secret US intelligence documents distributed on Discord
Details: According to one of the documents marked "top secret", at a meeting in late January, Zelenskyy proposed that Ukraine "conduct strikes in Russia", while simultaneously deploying Ukrainian ground forces to the Russian territory to "occupy unspecified Russian border cities" in order "to give Kyiv leverage in talks with Moscow".
In a separate meeting in late February with Valerii Zaluzhnyi, Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, Zelenskyy "expressed concern" that "Ukraine does not have long-range missiles capable of reaching Russian troop deployments in Russia nor anything with which to attack them". Then, Zelenskyy "suggested that Ukraine attack unspecified deployment locations in Rostov" using drones instead, according to another classified document.
At a meeting in mid-February with Deputy Prime Minister Yuliia Svyrydenko, Zelenskyy supposedly suggested that Ukraine "blow up" the Soviet-built Druzhba oil pipeline, which supplies oil to Hungary.
"Zelenskyy highlighted that … Ukraine should just blow up the pipeline and destroy likely Hungarian [Prime Minister] Viktor Orban’s industry, which is based heavily on Russian oil," the document says.
Explaining the conversation in detail, intelligence officials concede that Zelenskyy was "expressing rage toward Hungary and therefore could be making hyperbolic, meaningless threats."
When asked by the Washington Post whether he had proposed to occupy parts of Russia, Zelenskyy dismissed the leaked US intelligence documents’ claims as "fantasies", but defended his right to use unconventional tactics to defend Ukraine.
Quote from Zelenskyy: "Ukraine has every right to protect itself, and we are doing it. Ukraine did not occupy anyone, but vice versa. When so many people have died and there have been mass graves and our people have been tortured, I am sure that we have to use any tricks."
More details: When asked about intelligence reports suggesting that he was weighing the possibility of using long-range missiles to strike Russia, Zelenskyy said that this was not something Ukraine was considering.
"No one in our country has given orders for offensive actions or strikes on Russian territory," he said.
The Biden administration said that Zelenskyy's intercepted comments were not a reason to refuse to provide ATACMS.
"Ukraine has repeatedly committed to employ U.S.-provided weapons responsibly and strategically when needed to counter Russian aggression, and we are confident that will continue to be the case," a US Department of Defense spokesman said anonymously.
Zelenskyy promised that Ukraine would not use US weapons to strike Russian territory, and the White House believes he has fulfilled that promise.
"President Zelensky has kept the promises he has made to President Biden, and we do not believe that that will change," a senior administration official said.
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