I Was Wrong — Ukraine Did Attack the Kremlin With Drones

Wes O'Donnell
4 min readMay 25
Licensed by the author from Envato Elements

Maybe they really did try to assassinate Putin… and I’m fine with that.

On May 3, I wrote an article that made the case, based on my own experience, and current intelligence assessments at the time, that the drone attack on the Kremlin was a Russian false flag operation.

I may have been wrong.

While there is no concrete proof that the attack was approved by the Ukrainian government, U.S. intelligence has new evidence from both intercepted communications in which Russian officials blamed Ukraine, and other communications in which Ukrainian officials said they believed their country was responsible for the attack.

U.S. intel now believes that the attack was planned and carried out by Ukraine’s special military units.

So how could a group of Ukrainian special operators have carried out a brazen attack against the Russian capital without senior Ukrainian leaders not being aware?

The Ukrainian armed forces are surprisingly distributed, and self-directed.

The more traditional units like artillery or drone units have a more direct connection with the chain of command, but there are an unknown number of units that plan and execute missions without oversight.

American spy agencies are starting to see an emerging picture of a loose confederation of Ukrainian units able to conduct limited operations inside and outside Russia, either by using their own soldiers and fighters or partner units working under their direction.

Figuring out who is responsible for what is complicated by the fact that Ukraine’s security services each field their own secretive units — some of these units have overlapping areas of responsibility.

These missions are thought to be performed beyond the line of sight of officials in Kyiv.

Now, the U.S. is taking a fresh look at the assassination of the daughter of a prominent Russian nationalist, the killing…

Wes O'Donnell

Army & Air Force Veteran | Global Security Wonk for War is Boring, GEN, OneZero, Soldier of Fortune | Law Student | TEDx Speaker | Founder of Warrior Lodge