J.D. Vance, Matt Gaetz Seek Answers on State Department-Linked Ukrainian Site that Lists Trump, Vance, Vivek, Breitbart on ‘Enemies List’

Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL), who led the ouster of Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) as speaker, arriv
J. Scott Applewhite/AP

Sen. J.D. Vance (R-OH) and Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL)  requested information on Wednesday from Secretary of State Antony Blinken about a State Department-linked Ukrainian outlet that published an “enemies list” that includes politicians, media personalities, and activists who oppose aid to Ukraine.

Breitbart News’s Kurt Zindulka reported:

A report published by the Ukraine-based DATA Journalism Agency (TEXTY), titled: “Roller Coaster: From Trumpists to Communists. The forces in the U.S. impeding aid to Ukraine and how they do it” has accused numerous figures on the populist right and anti-war left in the United States of echoing “key messages of Russian propaganda aimed at depriving Ukrainians of the ability to defend themselves with Western weapons and funds.”

The website claims to be “independent” and that its project into supposed anti-Ukrainian sentiment in America was funded “exclusively by the readers”. However, TEXTY is listed as a partner of the Transparency and Accountability in Public Administration and Services (TAPAS) Project in Ukraine, which is funded by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and UK International Development (UK Dev).

TEXTY’s co-founder and current deputy editor, Anatoly Bondarenko, is also listed as a trainer for the American State Department’s “TechCamp” program, which claims to provide “hands-on, participant-driven workshops that connect private sector technology experts with key populations — journalists, non-governmental organisations, civil society advocates, and more — to explore and apply innovative tech solutions to global issues.”

Although the Ukrainian site denied publishing an “enemies list,” some conservatives, such as Rep. Jim Banks (R-IN), have characterized it as such:

The two lawmakers wrote in their letter to Blinken:

If this were merely some random news outlet in a foreign nation, such a hit piece would be easily ignored. But the founder of the group itself, Anatoly Bondarenko, is listed on a U.S. government website as supported by the United States Department of State, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs.

 Vance and Gaetz informed Blinken that, to determine if there “is a violation of U.S. law,” they want him to provide:
  • All material related to State Department support for Anatoly Bondarenko, or Texty.org, or Texty.org.ua
  • A list of any grants or other awards by the State Department to Anatoly Bondarenko, or Texty.org, or Texty.org.ua
  • Answers as to whether the State Department is making any investigation into “violations of departmental policy regarding this matter”

“Needless to say, whatever one thinks of American foreign aid or support for Ukraine, all Americans can agree that our tax dollars should not be supporting direct attacks on U.S. persons based upon reasonable political disagreement,” Vance and Gaetz added, “and especially not direct attacks on U.S. legislators based solely upon their vote.”

Sean Moran is a policy reporter for Breitbart News. Follow him on Twitter @SeanMoran3.


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