Biden says Putin seems to be self-isolating
President Biden on Thursday said Russian President Vladimir Putin appears to be self-isolating following U.S. intelligence that the Russian leader feels “misled” by his military.
“That’s an open question,” Biden said at the White House when asked how badly Putin is being misinformed by his advisers.
“There’s a lot of speculation but he seems to be — I’m not saying this with a certainty — he seems to be self-isolating and there’s some indication that he has fired or put under house arrest some of his advisers,” he added.
Intelligence released on Wednesday assessed that Putin was feeling misled, which has resulted in tensions between the Russian leader and top military officials. Biden was not forthcoming with more details on the information.
“But I don’t want to put too much stock in that at this time because we don’t have that much hard evidence,” the president said.
White House communications director Kate Bedingfield detailed the declassified intelligence in the briefing on Wednesday and said the U.S. believes “Putin is being misinformed by his advisers about how badly the Russian military is performing.”
She added that Putin’s advisers are not telling him the truth about the country’s crippled economy.
Biden appeared uncertain on Thursday when asked if Putin was pulling Russian troops back in Ukraine.
The president said there is “no clear evidence” that troops are entirely leaving Ukraine.
“I’m a little skeptical,” he added.
Bedingfield on Wednesday said that the intelligence adds to a body of evidence that Putin’s war in Ukraine has been a “strategic blunder,” and would not say what the motivation was behind the U.S. releasing the intelligence.
The Biden administration has recently proactively declassified and released intelligence related to Russia to disrupt Moscow’s plans in Ukraine.
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