Before the Russian invasion the previous year, CIA Director Bill Burns secretly traveled to Kyiv and met with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy to break the news that the Russians were planning to murder him.
According to Chris Whipple in his upcoming book, “The Fight of His Life: Inside Joe Biden’s White House,” Zelenskyy had been rejecting the idea that Russians would attack Ukraine without warning at the time and had suggested that American public warnings were causing a “panic,” which took place in January 2022.
This rare public intelligence disclosure by the US suggested that Washington was sure of its judgment of Russia’s intentions. Zelenskyy expressed worries that these warnings would have a damaging effect on the Ukrainian economy only weeks before Russia attacked, but he also highlighted that Kyiv was experienced in dealing with Russian threats.
According to Whipple, the CIA director revealed that Russian Special Forces were going for Zelenskyy when Burns arrived to “give him a reality check.” President Joe Biden also ordered Burns to “provide exact facts of the Russian plans.”
Zelensky was shocked and calmed by the news, according to what Whipple wrote in the book, which will be published on January 17. The following month, Russia invaded Ukraine, beginning the biggest military war in Europe since World War II. Since then, Zelenskyy has allegedly survived over a dozen Russian murder attempts, according to Ukrainian officials. However, Whipple, who spoke with Burns, provides readers with a peek at how the consequences were presented to Zelenskyy as he attempted to reject US warnings of a coming invasion.