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Tags: russia | war | ukraine | extremists | proxies

Russia Covertly Riling Extremists to Undermine Ukraine

By    |   Sunday, 26 May 2024 09:40 AM EDT

Russia is riling up extremist proxies in Europe to sabotage and undermine support for Ukraine, and the covert operation is picking up intensity, according to U.S. and allied intelligence officials.

Extremists engaging in attacks throughout NATO countries have been plotting random attacks that include personal physical violence and attempted arson, while there have been foiled ploys to attack U.S. military bases in the region, The New York Times reported.

"They want to take the war to Europe, but they don't want a war with NATO," former U.S. intelligence official Andrea Kendall-Taylor, senior fellow at the Center for a New American Security, told the Times.

"So they are doing all these things that are short of conventional attacks.”

The attacks are coming in random isolated incidents, but intelligence reported they are a coordinated effort tied to Russian GRU military intelligence and are picking up after the first years of the war in Ukraine.

"There has been a lot of disruption of Russian intelligence activities in Europe," the Center for Strategic and International Studies' Max Bergmann told the Times. "That caused a pause, and Russian intelligence was consumed by the war in Ukraine.

"Now they have their footing back and are probably trying to build back up."

The attacks are designed to foment dissension for supporting Ukraine, including slowing arms and aid shipments as Russia is making gains on the battlefield, closing in on Kharkiv.

"Russia's strategy is one of divide and conquer," Kendall-Taylor told the Times. "Right now, it’s not a very costly strategy for Russia because we are all responding separately. That is why it is important that over time, we collectivize the response."

The intelligence sources are not revealing their sources and methods, but the same sources exposed Russia's pre-war intention of staging an attack that would create a pretext for a Russian invasion of Ukraine, according to the Times.

The public reporting of that plot was exposed, but Vladimir Putin decided to begin his "special military operation" regardless.

"We are in a very delicate situation because things are already on edge, the Kremlin is already paranoid," Bergmann told the Times. "So Western leaders have to tread very carefully with how they respond."

British intelligence exposed Russia's malign covert operation to recruit and deploy extremists in the U.K. and NATO countries to carry out isolated attacks in Western Europe and even the U.S. in the past six months — a structure mimicked by Iran's use of terrorist proxies in the Middle East.

"The GRU are cultivating a network of right-wing terrorists to deploy against NATO targets," a source said. "These attacks are already happening and have been going on for a while in various NATO countries and the U.K. is definitely on the target list.

"Attacks may have taken place in the U.S. and have occurred in Germany."

Eric Mack

Eric Mack has been a writer and editor at Newsmax since 2016. He is a 1998 Syracuse University journalism graduate and a New York Press Association award-winning writer.

© 2024 Newsmax. All rights reserved.


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Russia is riling up extremist proxies in Europe to sabotage and undermine support for Ukraine and the covert operation is picking up intensity, according to U.S. and allied intelligence officials.
russia, war, ukraine, extremists, proxies
469
2024-40-26
Sunday, 26 May 2024 09:40 AM
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