The head of France's military intelligence agency has quit over a failure to predict the war in Ukraine, several media outlets reported on Thursday
The head of France’s military intelligence agency has quit over a failure to predict the war in Ukraine, several media outlets reported on Thursday, citing unidentified sources and an internal email announcing his departure.
According to reports, he was blamed for “inadequate briefings” and a “lack of mastery of subjects”.
It is unclear whether the General is resigning or is being fired.
The Defence Ministry did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Eric Vidaud had led the military intelligence agency for seven months but sources told the l’Opinion newspaper and other media that the army had judged his briefings “insufficient” and he lacked “mastery of the subjects”.
The chief of staff of France’s armed forces, Thierry Burkhard, had told Le Monde this month that French intelligence had, unlike their US counterpart, failed to predict Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
Mr Burkhard told Le Monde: “The Americans said the Russians were going to attack, they were right. Our services rather thought that invading Ukraine would have a monstrous cost and that the Russians had other options.”
L’Opinion said Mr Vidaud was told on Tuesday that he would have to leave his post in the summer because of the misses over Ukraine and that he decided to step down immediately.
Mr Vidaud’s failure came as an even bigger embarrassment for Emmanuel Macron and his government as the French leader had held multiple phone calls with the Russian President in the days leading to the invasion.
More to follow…