U.S. Intelligence Report: Putin Was Treated For Cancer In April
WASHINGTON - According to a classified U.S. intelligence report, Russian President Vladimir Putin was treated for advanced cancer in April 2022, Newsweek said that they were privy to the information given by U.S. intelligence leaders reported.
According to the information given to Newsweek by three different intelligence agency leaders, there had also been an assassination attempt on the Russian president in the month of March.
One official that spoke to Newsweek is reported to be from the office of National Intelligence, one is a retired senior officer of the Air Force, and one is from the Defense Intelligence Agency.
The agencies also reportedly told Newsweek that Putin has been 'increasingly paranoid' regarding his hold on power, but they said that this also decreases the likelihood of a nuclear war. They said, however, that Putin's isolation is making it difficult for U.S. intelligence to assess the Russian President's health and current status accurately.
One of the senior intelligence officers with 'direct access to the reports' according to Newsweek said that "Putin's grip is strong but no longer absolute. The jockeying inside the Kremlin has never been more intense during his rule, everyone sensing that the end is near".
A leader in the Director of National Intelligence (DN) told Newsweek "What we know is that there is an iceberg out there, albeit one covered in fog. One source of our best intelligence, which is contact with outsiders, largely dried up as a result of the Ukraine war".
"Putin has had few meetings with foreign leaders", the official said. Face-to-face meetings with foreign leaders would allow intelligence agencies to assess current health and overall status. "Putin's isolation has thus increased levels of speculation".
The retired Air Force leader said "We need to be mindful of the influence of wishful thinking. We learned—or didn't learn—that lesson the hard way with Osama bin Laden and Saddam Hussein".
The senior DNI leader said, "Even if they agree that the intelligence [that the Russian president is dying] is reliable, they can't bank on an expiration date nor signal their support for a Russia without Putin".
"A nuclear-armed Russia is still a nuclear-armed Russia, whether Putin is strong or weak, in or out, and not wanting to provoke him or his potential successor into thinking we are hell-bent on their destruction is an important part of continued strategic stability".
The DIA leader said that in some ways "Putin being sick or dying is good for the world, not just because of the future of Russia or ending the Ukraine war, but in diminishing the mad man threat of nuclear war" he said.
"A weakened Putin—an obviously declining leader, not one at the top of his game—has less influence over his advisors and subordinates, say, if he orders the use of nukes," he said, adding "Putin is definitely sick ... whether he's going to die soon is mere speculation".
"Still, we shouldn't rest assured. We shouldn't answer our own mail, if you will, believing only the intelligence that affirms our own desired outcome. He's still dangerous, and chaos does lie ahead if he does die. We need to focus on that. Be ready".
Russian foreign minister Sergei Lavrov however, denied reports that Putin was sick, saying that "no sane person" thinks that the Russian President is ill and said that there have been no signs of any illness in the leader.
"I don't think that sane people can see in this person signs of some kind of illness or ailment" he stated. "You can watch him on screens, read and listen to his speeches. I leave it to the conscience of those who spread such rumors".