Former CIA intelligence officer Larry Johnson said the Biden administration and the U.S military industrial complex made the decision to launch a drone attack on the Kremlin earlier this week.
The attack, which Russia claims was a targeted assassination attempt against Russian President Vladimir Putin, was stopped by electronic warfare systems which disabled the drones.
Johnson claims the attack was spearheaded by the Biden administration and the U.S. military-industrial complex because “decisions on such attacks are made not in Kyiv, but in Washington.”
“Washington should understand clearly that we know this,” Johnson told reporters.
While the attack failed to accomplish its tactical goal, Johnson warned the incident was still highly “symbolic,”
“[It] didn’t cause significant damage. The psychological impact, though, there are people that disagree on this, my view is that this is going to galvanize Russia, not create fear or discontent or division,” he said.
“There are others who believe that by doing this, it is going to portray Russia as weak and create internal problems,” Johnson added.
“I simply note that the reactions of former [Russian] President [Dmitry] Medvedev, as well as members of the Duma – they are livid, they are outraged, and calling for escalatory retaliation against Ukraine. So I think in many respects this backfired,” he continued.
The former CIA officer also said the drone attack on the Kremlin smacked of desperation, theorizing it was an attempt to provoke Russia into a major escalation “to get the United States more deeply involved in this conflict.”
“At the same time, I think Washington correctly notes that they try to discourage this [escalation] because they recognize that it’s spun out of control,” he said.
“And the United States is in no position militarily to confront Russia and survive that confrontation,” Johnson said.
Democratic presidential candidate Robert F. Kennedy Jr. also concurred that the attack was a dangerous escalation.
“Imagine how we would respond if Russian-backed forces launched a drone strike on the Capitol. We must stop these deranged attempts to escalate the war,” said Kennedy.
“After successfully defusing the Cuban Missile Crisis, President John Kennedy warned against ever again forcing Russia to choose between national humiliation and nuclear war. We should heed his advice,” he added.
Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov claimed Washington had masterminded the incident.
“We are well aware that decisions on such a level of terrorist attacks are made not in Kyiv, but in Washington,” he said in his daily briefing with reporters. “Kyiv only does what it is told to do.”
The U.S. rejected the accusations.