UKRAINE allegedly tried to kill Vladimir Putin’s top general during a secret visit to the frontline – despite being warned not to by the US.
At least 14 Russian generals have been killed during Putin’s shambolic invasion of Ukraine.
2Ukraine reportedly tried to kill General Valery GerasimovCredit: East2West2At least 14 of Putin’s generals have been killed in the Ukraine warCredit: GettyAccording to US officials, Russia started moving its top generals to the frontline of Putin’s war to shore up its defences – and to boost morale among struggling troops.
But the generals made themselves easy to find, the US said.
And in April, the Russian chief of the general staff, General Valery Gerasimo, 66, allegedly made secret plans to go to the frontlines.
According to the New York Times, American officials warned Ukraine that killing General Gerasimov could sharply escalate the conflict.
While the Americans made clear they were committed to helping Ukraine, they didn’t want to spark a war between the US and Russia, officials said.
After checking with the White House, senior American officials asked the Ukrainians to call off the attack.
“We told them not to do it,” a senior American official told the New York Times.
“We were like, ‘Hey, that’s too much’.”
But Ukrainian military officials told the US they had already launched their strike on the general.
Dozens of Russians died in the attack – but General Gerasimov wasn’t one of them.
At the time, an unofficial Russian source said he was wounded in the strike, which reportedly took place in Izyum.
And Ukrainian government official Anton Gerashchenko claimed a “large number” of senior Russian officers were killed.
After the strike, Russian military leaders reportedly scaled back their visits to the frontline.
It comes after US officials said Russian generals discussed the use of tactical nuclear weapons in Ukraine.
In alarming developments, Putin’s officials are believed to have spoken about when and how Moscow might use such a nuke, following a series of Russian setbacks on the battlefield.
Putin was reportedly not part of the conversations in the Kremlin, which come against a backdrop of increasingly tense nuclear rhetoric between Russia and the West.
John F Kirby, a National Security Council official, declined to comment on “the particulars” of the language used by Vlad’s insiders but added: “We’ve been clear from the outset that Russia’s comments about the potential use of nuclear weapons are deeply concerning, and we take them seriously.
“We continue to monitor this as best we can, and we see no indications that Russia is making preparations for such use.”
Russia’s terrifying nuclear arsenal is believed to contain up to 6,000 warheads, enough to cause worldwide devastation and between 200 to 300 million casualties.
That includes as many as 2,000 tactical nuclear weapons, designed to be used on the battlefield to overwhelm conventional forces.
Such weapons have never been used in combat before but could be deployed in various ways, such as by artillery shells or missiles.
Even the use of a smaller tactical nuke could kill thousands and leave parts of Ukraine uninhabitable for years to come.
Story Credit: thesun.co.uk