US president would be better off consulting the zodiac to reveal any Russia-staged incursion into the Eastern European nation
After reports that Washington had enlisted weather experts to monitor conditions for an invasion of Ukraine, Russia has hit out at the plan, suggesting that US officials would do better to hire astrologists instead.
In a statement published on Wednesday, the Russian Embassy in London shared a recent article from The Telegraph, which claimed US President Joe Biden's administration had hired meteorologists to forecast when Moscow might launch an offensive.
Hitting back at the decision, diplomats poured scorn on the move. "We wouldn't count on meteorologists being 100% accurate. This calls for more potent experts. Astrologists perhaps?" it read.
The statement comes after unnamed US officials told the New York Times that Washington had entrusted a team of specialists to look closely at the weather in Ukraine to weigh up the possibility of a Russian attack.
Due to the relatively mild conditions, a January invasion is now unlikely, they told the media earlier this week. Military analysts had previously speculated that Moscow was mounting troops near the Ukrainian border in November and December to be ready for an offensive once the harsh winter had begun in earnest and the ground was frozen and sufficiently stable to allow for effective tank deployment.
The Telegraph's report comes amid concerns among Western leaders that Moscow is planning to launch a large-scale incursion of Ukraine. Such reports have swirled around anglophone outlets in recent weeks, including America's CBS News, which reported that a military incursion was increasing in likelihood as the weather grew colder.
However, the Kremlin has repeatedly rejected the accusations of an impending attack, with its press secretary Dmitry Peskov describing them as "groundless" and manifestations of "hysteria" circulating in the press.
In November, the Russian official said that the movement of the country's armed forces on its own territory is an internal matter and of no concern to anyone else, insisting that Moscow "poses no threat to anyone."