Fifteen months after he ordered the Russian military to invade Ukraine, there is no sign of weakening Russian President Vladimir Putin, at least as Germany’s intelligence service sees it.

There are no discernible cracks in what BND chief Bruno Kahl called Mr Putin’s system on Monday during a speech at the Federal Academy for Political Security (BAKS) in Berlin.

Russia is still always in a position “to wage a long-term war”, thanks in particular to the hundreds of thousands of conscripts who have joined its armed forces, Mr Kahl warned, which also applies to the country’s production of weapons and ammunition.

Asked when exactly the BND knew that Russia would launch a war against Ukraine, its head said that “about 14 days before the start of the conflict, we were seeing phenomena for which there was absolutely no other explanation.”

Russia invaded on February 24, 2022.

Mr Kahl rejected criticism that the US and British intelligence services had predicted the attack earlier than Germany’s, explaining that such estimates were made after analyzes of each other’s observations.

The BND, for its part, emphasized the fact that the decision on the attack would be made by President Putin. The Kremlin’s occupant made his decision by weighing many factors, Mr. Kahl summarized, adding wryly that they probably did not include sitting around “counting missiles and tanks.”