A US official told the Wall Street Journal of the White House concern that Russian leader Vladimir Putin was able to hide his intentions towards Crimea from the National Security Agency.
The official said that the Obama administration is “very nervous” about Russia’s successful subterfuge; taking over Crimea and bringing troops to the Ukrainian border and hiding it from US eavesdropping equipment. “This is unchartered territory,” he said.
According to the WSJ US officials are in the dark about how Russia was able to hide its plans from the NSA, which spies on digital and electronic communications.
Apparently, says the Journal, Russian leaders either “deliberately avoided communicating about the invasion or simply found a way to do so without detection by the U.S.”
Another worry for US deterrence is whether this new secrecy is part of a wider trend in which Russia can act without US foreknowledge.
“All military combat operations depend on NSA contributions,” said former assistant command security manager in the US Navy, and consultant Robert Caruso during a discussion about documents potentially accessed by Edward Snowden. “[The Department of Defense] depends on NSA and the Defense Information Systems Agency to secure all its networks and others networks too.”