Intelligence provided by the United States has helped the Ukrainian military target several Russian generals since Moscow’s invasion, US media reported. Citing multiple senior US officials, The New York Times said that of the approximately dozen Russian generals killed by Ukrainian forces, “many” had been targeted with the help of US intelligence. The US National Security Council slammed the assertion that the United States was helping Ukraine kill Russian generals as “irresponsible”. “The United States provides battlefield intelligence to help the Ukrainians defend their country,” NSC spokesperson Adrienne Watson told AFP “We do not provide intelligence with the intent to kill Russian generals.” The Pentagon did not immediately respond to the report. On Monday, a Pentagon official said Russia’s top general, Valery Gerasimov , visited the Donbas front in the Ukraine war last week, but reports that he was injured in a Ukrainian attack could not be confirmed. Second Russian general killed in war, Ukraine claims According to reports citing Ukraine officials, on Saturday Ukraine forces shelled a command centre in Izium, where Gerasimov, chief of general staff of the Russian armed forces, visited to meet with top field commanders. But he had apparently left the site before the shelling took place. Gerasimov was believed to be touring the front to better understand field conditions and rally his troops as Russian forces, after failing to capture Kyiv in the north, attempt to take control of the Donetsk and Luhansk regions of the east. On Saturday, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said some 23,000 Russian soldiers have died in Ukraine since the conflict began just over two months ago. Top Russian military leaders who have reportedly been killed include Vladimir Petrovich Frolov, the deputy commander of the 8th Army; Vitaly Gerasimov, the first deputy commander of the 41st Army; and Sergei Sukharev, a top paratroop commander of the 331st Guards Parachute Assault Regiment. Russia appoints new Ukraine war commander, says US official The heavy loss of high-ranking Russian military officers has stunned Western security officials, who last confirmed an official tally of seven generals in late March, though Ukraine has since announced more. In March, Western officials had cited low morale as a reason Russian generals would be so close to the front. They also pointed to potential communications and logistics issues on the Russian side, which could lead senior officers to use unencrypted channels and expose themselves to Ukrainian forces. But the report by The New York Times points to direct assistance from the United States and other Western intelligence services as a major factor in the Ukrainian success. The daily said the United States had provided details on the Russian military’s mobile headquarters, which frequently change location, and that Ukrainian forces used that information in tandem with their own to conduct attacks on senior Russian officers. Hero ‘Ghost of Kyiv’ fighter pilot is a myth, Ukraine admits US President Joe Biden’s administration has kept the military intelligence it is providing to Ukraine under wraps out of concern it could compromise its sources as well as be taken as a sign by Russia of direct hostility. Earlier in the conflict, the Pentagon was similarly cautious about noting that only “defensive” weapons and equipment were being provided to Ukraine. But it has since announced shipments of offensive weapons like heavy artillery, helicopters and attack drones. It has also talked of training Ukrainian troops, including in Germany, to use the weapons they are receiving. And instead of saying, as it did in February, that it wants only to help Ukraine survive, Washington now says its goal in the war is to debilitate Russia for the long term. “We want to see Russia weakened to the degree that it can’t do the kinds of things that it has done in invading Ukraine,” US Secretary of Defence Lloyd Austin said after a visit to Kyiv in late April.