Russia probably delayed announcing its withdrawal from Kherson in order to avoid a political victory for the administration of US President Joe Biden on the eve of the midterm congressional elections. This is reported by CNN, citing four people familiar with US intelligence.
It is reported that Russian officials discussed the US midterm elections as a factor in the decision to leave Kherson. One intelligence official said that the anticipation of the US election was «a pre-planned condition» Russia's withdrawal from Kherson. However, sources note that the election was far from the only factor in Russia's retreat.
While the intelligence data is not an official assessment of Russia's intentions, it is a sign that the Russian Federation is interested in influencing the US political landscape, although sources say Russia likely miscalculated the impact of such a decision on the election.
Intelligence also suggests that Russia is betting that the Republican-led US will provide less support to Ukraine.
Researchers note that Russian operatives also used far-right media platforms to vilify Democratic candidates in several states in the week leading up to the midterms.