Skepticism about Kremlin ‘drone attack’, Moscow now points to Washington

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A sign in front of the Kremlin, stating that it is forbidden to fly drones
NOS News

A day after Russia accused Ukraine of a drone attack on the Kremlin, many questions remain. Moscow now claims that the US is the mastermind behind the attack, which the White House dismisses as lies.

Some experts believe the attack was staged. But in that case, according to experts, it would certainly not be a good advertisement for the Russian armed forces and the defense of Moscow.


Kremlin spokesman Peskov said the US was “undoubtedly” behind the drone attack. “We know very well that the decision to carry out such terrorist attacks is not taken in Kyiv, but in Washington.” Peskov gave no evidence for his accusation. He called the denials of America and Ukraine ridiculous.

White House spokesman Kirby responded that Peskov is “just lying.” Earlier, the US said that everything Russia claims should be taken with a large grain of salt. At the same time, America does not know what exactly happened over the Kremlin.

The Russian reading is that on the night of May 2 to 3, two drones flew towards the Kremlin building. They would both have been shot down by the military.

One of the two drones caused an explosion, as can be seen in this footage:

Footage of the drone incident at the Kremlin

Critics point out that it took half a day for the first images of the incident to come online, while the explosion happened in the center of a metropolis. The first videos appeared when Russia accused Ukraine of an assassination attempt on Putin in the Kremlin.

‘Internally prepared’

“This rapid and coordinated response suggests that the attack was internally prepared and deliberately staged,” writes the American think tank Institute for the Study of War (ISW). According to the researchers, it is also very unlikely that two slow-flying drones could just pass the Russian anti-aircraft guns. Especially in a way “that it’s captured on camera so spectacularly”.

Zelensky immediately denied that Ukraine had anything to do with the attack. “We are not attacking Putin and Moscow,” he said on a visit to Helsinki. “We’re fighting on our own turf.” According to Kyiv, the Kremlin is using this fake incident as an excuse to carry out another large-scale “terror attack” in Ukraine.

Moscow antiaircraft strengthened considerably

But according to Russia, Ukraine has carried out attacks on Russian territory before. For example, in February a Ukrainian attack drone crashed about 30 kilometers from Moscow. Since then, the Russian army has significantly increased the air defenses of the capital.

The Kremlin is also equipped with GPS jammers and anti-air missiles. The Kremlin Guard also has special anti-drone guns to render drones rudderless, Russia expert Mark Galeotti writes on the website The Spectator. As a result, according to him, it is virtually impossible that it concerns a “freelance attack” by “dissatisfied amateurs”.

“Putin so desperate?”

Think tank ISW therefore calls it plausible that Russia staged the attack. The aim of the action is said to have been to increase support among the Russian population for a major mobilization. And to be able to intervene even harder against Ukraine.

Galeotti calls it “hard to believe that Putin is so desperate for political support that he would be willing to pretend his own air defense units can’t stop drones.”

  • Russia says Ukraine attacked Kremlin with drone, Kyiv denies
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