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June 08, 2023


Aaron Maté:

The Federal Bureau of Investigation has aided a Ukrainian intelligence effort to censor social media users and obtain their personal information, leaked emails reveal.

The FBI is doxing American citizens and giving their information over to a foreign power.

What do you call it when you sell out your own country to aid a foreign country?

Maybe those sterling-silver patriots at the FBI can remind me.

In March 2022, an FBI Special Agent sent Twitter a list of accounts on behalf of the Security Service of Ukraine (SBU), Ukraine's main intelligence agency. The accounts, the FBI wrote, "are suspected by the SBU in spreading fear and disinformation." In an attached memo, the SBU asked Twitter to remove the accounts and hand over their user data.

The Ukrainian government's FBI-enabled targets extend to members of the media.

The SBU list that the FBI provided to Twitter included my name and Twitter profile. In its response to the FBI, Twitter agreed to review the accounts for "inauthenticity" but raised concerns about the inclusion of me and other "American and Canadian journalists."

The FBI's attempt to ban Twitter accounts at the request of Ukrainian intelligence is among the most overt requests for censorship revealed to date in the Twitter Files, a cache of leaked communications from the social media giant.

The FBI's censorship request was relayed in a March 27th, 2022 email from FBI Special Agent Aleksandr Kobzanets, the Assistant Legal Attaché at the US Embassy in Kyiv, to two Twitter executives. Four FBI colleagues were copied on the exchange.

"Thank you very much for your time to discuss the assistance to Ukraine," Kobzanets wrote. "I am including a list of accounts I received over a couple of weeks from the Security Service of Ukraine. These accounts are suspected by the SBU in spreading fear and disinformation. For your review and consideration."

List of targeted accounts provided to Twitter by the FBI on behalf of Ukraine's SBU.

The listed Twitter profiles, the SBU alleged, have been "used to disseminate disinformation and fake news to inaccurately reflect events in Ukraine, justify war crimes of the Russian authorities on the territory of the Ukrainian state in violation of international law."

In order "to stop Russian aggression on the information front," the SBU continued, "we kindly ask you to take urgent measures to block these Twitter accounts and provide us with user data specified during registration."

The SBU expressed its "gratitude for the existing level of interaction."

In a memo forwarded by the FBI, Ukraine's SBU asks Twitter to "block" the listed Twitter accounts "and provide us with user data specified during registration."

If granted, the users on the list would not only have been banned from Twitter but had their phone number, date of birth, and email address disclosed to both the FBI and SBU.

Twitter's former head of "brand safety" or whatever, Yoel Roth, actually resisted the FBI's demands. He pointed out that the FBI was asking about bona-fide American journalists. He agreed that he would examine the list for "inauthenticity" -- that is, check if they're bot accounts or cases of many accounts managed by a single propaganda-manager -- and would only consider blocking real journalists if it could be proven that they were acting at the behest of a foreign government.

In his reply, Kobzanets did not directly acknowledge Roth's concerns about Ukraine's FBI-abetted effort to censor journalists. "Understood," Kobzanets told Roth. "Whatever your review determines and action Twitter deem[s] is appropriate." He also indicated that the FBI would not meet Roth's request for any "context" that might establish ties between journalists and a foreign government: "Unlikely there will be any additional information or context."


The FBI's National Press Office also declined to answer questions. Among several queries, I invoked Twitter's warning that the FBI's "assistance to Ukraine" entailed censoring journalists, and asked if that has prompted any changes to the bureau's collaboration with Ukrainian intelligence.

"While we appreciate your inquiry, as a matter of practice we do not confirm, deny, or otherwise comment on specific interactions nor confirm the veracity of correspondence," an FBI spokesperson wrote.

Guess who was copied on these emails? Elvis Chan, the agent in the San Francisco office who was the pointman for demanding censorship of accounts that disputed the US's official narrative on covid, transgenderism, Ukraine, Hunter Biden's laptop, and all other matters.

I'm not willing to turn over my rights to the Ukraine intelligence services. And if this is what they're asking, then I'd like to ask Russia to bomb them out of existence.

BTW, I have known Ukrainians who fled the then-Soviet Union, of which Ukraine was an occupied province. They were rock-ribbed anti-communists and Reaganites. One guy I remember introducing me to Full-On Right Wing Extremism -- just kidding, I mean he liked Reagan and Rush Limbaugh -- when I was still a stupid, soft-headed liberal.

I do not wish Ukrainians ill. But I simply will not put the interests of Ukraine over the interests of America. We are not going to turn America into Russia to save Ukraine from Russia.

But that's what we're doing.

We need to start using the criminal law to make sure that our "civil servants" understand that the country they serve is America, not Ukraine.

We are being ruled by a Ruling Class of outright traitors (and thieves; don't forget the bribes).

This cannot be allowed to go on.

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