New intelligence out of Ukraine shows that some Russian troops are refusing to carry out orders, even going so far to sabotage their equipment, Jeremy Fleming, head of Britain’s Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ), said on Wednesday.
The spy chief shared the information during a speech at the Australian National University in Canberra. He said Russian President Vladimir Putin “massively misjudged” the capabilities of his military, adding, “We believe Putin’s advisers are afraid to tell him the truth.”
Ukraine has fought back harder than Putin expected, Fleming said, and “we’ve seen Russian soldiers — short of weapons and morale — refusing to carry out orders, sabotaging their own equipment, and even accidentally shooting down their own aircraft.”
Additionally, it’s estimated that Russia is experiencing failure rates as high as 60 percent for some of its precision-guided missiles, three U.S. officials with knowledge of the intelligence told Reuters. Russia’s defense ministry denies the reports of discord, and has accused the West of lying about the invasion of Ukraine.