How badly the intelligence businesses bought it improper is topic to debate. Ahead of the invasion, Ukraine specialists “clearly and repeatedly” advised policymakers within the White House and Congress that Ukraine’s authorities and folks “probably would resist a Russian invasion,” a U.S. official stated.
But intelligence reviews are normally hedged. And underneath questioning from Senator Tom Cotton, Republican of Arkansas, Lt. Gen. Scott D. Berrier, the director of the Defense Intelligence Agency, stated this month that, earlier than the invasion, he had thought the Ukrainians weren’t as prepared for an assault as they wanted to be.
“Therefore, I questioned their will to fight. That was a bad assessment on my part because they have fought bravely and honorably,” General Berrier stated.
In an interview, Mr. Cotton stated the intelligence businesses have been at their finest assessing Russia within the lead-up to the invasion. Once the invasion started, the assessments of Ukraine’s capabilities and Russia’s army have been “less than stellar.” Still, he stated, judging how efficient a nation’s defenses shall be forward of a potential assault is hard.
“Will to fight is not a discrete area of intelligence you can go out and collect on it,” Mr. Cotton stated. “It’s not like how many working fighters did an air force have? There’s a lot of subjectivity.”
Recent counteroffensives by the Ukrainian army recommend that the nation’s leaders are resolved to do greater than merely defend Ukraine in opposition to the Russian invasion. Over the final week, Ukrainian forces have used tanks and fighter jets to assault Russian positions outdoors Kyiv and different cities in a manner that demonstrates that their goal shouldn’t be to take again territory, however to destroy Russian forces. It is a signal of not solely savvy technique however a clear intent by Ukraine to defeat the Russian army and win the warfare.
Representative Adam B. Schiff, Democrat of California and the chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, stated it was straightforward to overstate what the intelligence group bought improper, each in Ukraine and Afghanistan. Last summer season, intelligence businesses repeatedly warned that the Afghan authorities would collapse and that army leaders have been surrendering to the Taliban, Mr. Schiff stated.