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US warned Ukraine against killing Russian top general Gerasimov. They tried it anyway – NYT

US warned Ukraine against killing Russian top general Gerasimov. They tried it anyway – NYT

As the Russian Army faced faltering morale amid its disastrous invasion of Ukraine, a tactic of moving generals to the frontline was chosen to raise the spirits of undertrained and undersupplied troops, exposing them to Ukrainian strikes.

One of these generals was the chief of Russia’s general staff General Valeriy Gerasimov, who secretly visited the frontline in late April. The Americans asked Ukraine not to hit him because it would be “too much,” yet Ukraine made the strike. However, Gerasimov survived, the New York Times reported in a special feature.

The generals made a deadly mistake. They positioned themselves near antennas and communication arrays, exposing their location to Ukrainians, New York Times’ American sources told. Despite the killings, the generals’ visits to the frontline continued, and in late April, chief of the General Staff General Valeriy Gerasimov made secret plans for a visit.

Americans found out about the plans, but kept this secret from the Ukrainians, “worried they would strike.”

“Killing General Gerasimov could sharply escalate the conflict, officials said, and while the Americans were committed to helping Ukraine, they didn’t want to set off a war between the United States and Russia,” NYT reported.

Ukrainians found out about Gerasimov’s visit anyway. After checking with the White House, senior American officials asked the Ukrainians to not attack.

“‘We told them not to do it,’ a senior American official said. ‘We were like, ‘Hey, that’s too much.’”

However, the message arrived too late — Ukraine had launched the strike. Dozens of Russians were killed, but Gerasimov wasn’t one of them. Russian military leaders scaled back their visits to the front after that, NYT reported.

This NYT report corroborates another one from 5 May, when the news outlet reported that US intelligence helped Ukrainians kill many generals. A day after its publication, the Pentagon denied this report, stating that US intelligence is not targeting generals in Ukraine.

Over 1,400 Russian officers killed in Ukraine – OSINT project

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