- The Washington Times - Sunday, February 20, 2022

U.S. intelligence revealed that Russian President Vladimir Putin has ordered his troops to invade Ukraine with commanders making specific battlefield plans, according to a CBS News report Sunday.

“The intelligence says that Russian troops have actually received orders now to proceed with the invasion,” CBS News reporter David Martin said on “Face on the Nation.”

“So not only are they moving up closer and closer to the border and to attack these positions, but the commanders on the ground are making specific plans for how they would maneuver in their sector of the battlefield,” Mr. Martin said. “They are doing everything that American commanders would do once they got the order to proceed.”

The report comes just days after President Biden said he believes Mr. Putin has made the decision to move forward with an invasion of Ukraine.

“As of this moment, I’m convinced he’s made the decision. We have reason to believe that,” Mr. Biden told reporters after speaking about the Ukraine crisis.

Mr. Biden said he believes Russian forces intend to attack Ukraine in the coming days.

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Administration officials over the weekend echoed similar sentiments that Mr. Putin is bent on invading Ukraine.

Secretary of State Antony Blinken told CBS’ “Face the Nation” that the U.S. believes Russia is “moving forward.”

“Everything we’re seeing tells us that the decision we believe President Putin has made to invade is moving forward,” Mr. Blinken said.

Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin told ABC News that Mr. Putin is “dead serious” about invading Ukraine.

He‘s assembled the kinds of things that you would need to conduct a successful invasion,” Mr. Austin said.

Russia, which has repeatedly denied planning to invade Ukraine, has dismissed Western fears of an invasion as “hysteria.”

• Jeff Mordock can be reached at jmordock@washingtontimes.com.

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