Top Kremlin spy boss reportedly under house arrest over Ukraine debacle: WSJ
(Mikhail Klimentyev/Sputnik/AFP)

According to an exclusive report from the Wall Street Journal, U.S. officials are confirming they believe that one of Russia's top spy bosses has been placed under house arrest as part of the fall-out from the Ukraine invasion that is not going according to plan.

The Journal is reporting that "bickering had broken out between the FSB and the Russian Ministry of Defense, two of the principal government units responsible for the preparation of the Feb. 24 invasion," adding, "A U.S. official described as credible reports that the commander of the FSB intelligence agency’s unit responsible for Ukraine had been placed under house arrest."

According to the report., that official is Col. Gen. Sergei Beseda.

The Journal's Warren Stroebel and Michael Gordon are reporting, "Current and former U.S. officials say Russian intelligence agencies often shy away from telling their bosses bad news and may have reinforced Mr. Putin’s views, which he has expressed publicly, that Ukraine was a dysfunctional country whose leadership would rapidly collapse as some of its citizens welcomed Russian troops."

According to Jeffrey Edmonds, a former CIA and National Security Council official, "It is hard to imagine some senior intelligence person talking with Putin and not telling Putin what he wants to hear, especially if it is a belief that is deeply held, like Putin’s beliefs about Ukraine. When it comes to this guy, it’s also clear that the culture of ‘someone is at fault and is going to pay’ is clearly still operative."

"The FSB officer said to be under investigation and house arrest is Col. Gen. Sergei Beseda, head of the intelligence agency’s Fifth Service, also known as the Service for Operational Information and International Communications," the Journal is reporting before adding that the Russian embassy had not responded on Friday when asked about the report.

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