Scott Ritter: Chuck Schumer’s War on Free Speech – Scheerpost.com

By Scott Ritter / Consortium News
In May, Rand Paul, the junior senator from Kentucky, held up a vote on a bill which sought to approve some $40 billion in aid for Ukraine. Paul wanted language inserted into the bill, without a vote, that would have an inspector general scrutinize the new spending.
“This would be the inspector general that’s been overseeing the waste in Afghanistan,” Paul said, “and has done a great job.”
While senators on both sides of the aisle bristled at Paul’s delay tactics, Christopher Tremoglie, a commentary fellow for The Washington Examinerquestioned the fact that:
“[w]hile much attention has been placed on Paul holding up the aid legislation, the more important issue is why are so many senators against ensuring that billions of taxpayer dollars aren’t being misused?”
One of the senators who took umbrage over Paul’s actions was the senate majority leader, Chuck Schumer. Speaking from the floor of the Senate chamber, the senior senator from New York declared that “it is repugnant that one member of the other side, the junior senator from Kentucky, chose to make a show and obstruct Ukraine funding.”
Schumer added that Paul’s actions served to “strengthen [Russian President Vladimir] Putin’s hand.”
What Schumer didn’t say was that an inspector general, mandated to oversee how U.S. taxpayer money authorized under the bill in question (the Additional Supplemental Appropriations Act of 2022, which became Public Law 117-128 on May 21), would have exposed the role that U.S. funds played to exact political revenge on the man who tried to inject a modicum of accountability into how monies appropriated by Congress are spent, namely Rand Paul.
‘Countering Disinformation’
Some three weeks after Schumer helped push the bill into law, on July 14, Andriy Shapovalov, a Ukrainian civil servant whose salary was paid for by U.S. taxpayer monies, convened a “round table” in Kiev on “countering disinformation.”
Shapovalov, in his role as the acting head of Ukraine’s Center for Countering Disinformation, published a list of the names of 72 people whom he accused of deliberately spreading disinformation about Ukraine. Shapovalov labelled them “information terrorists,” adding that Ukraine was preparing legislation so that such people can be prosecuted as “war criminals.”
The “round table” was organized by the U.S. Civil Research and Development Fund (CRDF Global Ukraine), an ostensible nonprofit organization authorized by U.S. Congress to promote “international scientific and technical collaboration.” It is supported by the U.S. State Department, some of whose officials sat in attendance.
One of the people singled out by Shapovalov as an “information terrorist” targeted for criminal prosecution as a “war criminal” was none other than Rand Paul.
To recap: Chuck Schumer, the Senate majority leader, angered by Rand Paul daring to ask for accountability over how $40 billion in U.S. taxpayer money was going to be spent in Ukraine, accused Paul — for doing his duty as a senator — of strengthening Putin’s hand, before allowing this very money, being doled out with zero oversight, to underwrite a Ukrainian entity which, with the active support of the U.S. State Department and U.S.-funded NGOs, labels Paul an “information terrorist” and threatens the Kentucky senator with prosecution as a “war criminal.”
If this doesn’t sicken you, you’re not much of an American.
There can be little doubt that a case can be made that Public Law 117-128, in so far as it finances and facilitates ongoing violations of individual civil liberties of American citizens and constitutes an ongoing effort to intimidate lawmakers from carrying out their legislative responsibilities under the Constitution, has, through the State Department-supported, Ukrainian Center for Countering Disinformation, created an ongoing criminal organization which is carrying out acts against U.S. citizens for which it should be held criminally and civilly liable.
Whether the Justice Department would ever bring an investigation into this criminal enterprise is doubtful. After all, Schumer was able to shut down the creation of an inspector general capable of carrying out the required investigations.
But there is more.
Diane Sare
On May 31, Diane Sare, a LaRouche candidate challenging Schumer for his Senate seat in November, filed 66,000 signatures — well over the 45,000 required by law — with the New York State Board of Elections, thereby getting her name on the ballot.
Commenting on this achievement, Sare noted that “The successful petitioning campaign constitutes a major breakthrough, given that the new requirements were designed to prevent independent and minority party candidates from being able to comply.”
Diane Sare was singled out by the Schumer-funded, State Department-supported Center for Countering Disinformation as an “information terrorist” who should be prosecuted as a “war criminal” because of her public stance challenging the narrative about the Ukraine conflict.
That’s right — Chuck Schumer helped create the organizational structures which have attacked the reputation of a challenger for his Senate seat, threatening her with political violence and more for the “crime” of challenging Schumer on the issue of Ukraine.
This is the same Chuck Schumer who advocated impeaching President Donald Trump for a phone call Schumer claimed sought to pressure Ukraine into carrying out investigations that could have been damaging to the candidacy of Joe Biden in the 2020 presidential election. The same Chuck Schumer who once proclaimed from the Senate floor:
“I strongly disagree with those who advocate harassing folks if they don’t agree with you. No one should call for the harassment of political opponents. That’s not right. That’s not American.”
I couldn’t have said it any better — what Chuck Schumer has done in using U.S. taxpayer money to attack his political opponents is un-American. One can only hope that the New York voters see it the same way come November.
It also appears to be illegal. As such, I hope that both Rand Paul and Diane Sare pursue whatever legal recourse is available to them to expose and shut down a Schumer-supported law that allows U.S. taxpayer money to underwrite a campaign targeting U.S. citizens, including serving senators and political challengers, with intimidation and more for the “crime” of exercising their First Amendment right of free speech.
Scott Ritter is a former U.S. Marine Corps intelligence officer who served in the former Soviet Union implementing arms control treaties, in the Persian Gulf during Operation Desert Storm and in Iraq overseeing the disarmament of WMD. His most recent book is Disarmament in the Time of Perestroika, published by Clarity Press.
Shuck Chuck !!
Always the assumption that the Russians are wrong, while the Empire of Hate and Lies are the real criminals.
Julian Assange summed it up ;
They want a “war” they can’t win so as to continue the money laundering through a corrupt Ukraine. That’s why Assange is destined to rot in some hole in the corrupt declining Emoire that is the U.S.
I quite liked Gore Vidal’s take {who was awake to the corrupt empire 40 years ago} ;
“Perpetual war for perpetual peace”
The Empire is corrupt, decadent, bankrupt & in terminal decline. Nothing can stop that train now.
Mr. Ritter
thank you for you well written and thoughtful article.
The Democratic Party and fake socialists Bernie Sanders and the Squad media stars have handed the antiwar movement to deranged loonies like Rand Paul. This is the triumph of liberal interventionism, a vile corruption and puppet show for the military/industrial complex.
Trump derided our “forever wars” not because he has any systematic approach to geopolitics, but because he grasps that the American people are, soundly and reasonably — “isolationist.” They see billions being poured into rat holes in other places and object.
The liberal establishment is rife with these Hillary-esque warmongers and Zionists like Schumer — who told a cheering AIPAC rabble that the Palestinians are dumb because they do not accept the Torah. That’s just like the Christianist bigots who say they haven’t accepted Christ. They are all part of the same inherently racist, imperial trash heap.
Once a force for radical change, it’s morphed into a tool of the imperialist and backs the shipment of arms and billions to Ukraine. They need to go bankrupt.
Want a REAL revolutionary force to assist?
Here’s a good one, the publication that hosted this perceptive and far-seeing thinker.
I deleted my Daily KOS bookmark, its nothing but a neocon warmongering blog.
The making of a conspiracy theory
If Rand’s ‘amendment’ is, and everyone seem to agree on that, only a “delay tactic”, how can the overwhelming majority of opposition to such cynical obstructionist tactic suddenly become opposition to oversight on spending? And why doesn’t Ritter present or demand evidence that supports the claim on the reason why senators opposed Rand’s delay games?
Then there is the bizarre attempt to concoct a connection between Schumer’s support of the bill and an Ukrainian effort to combat Russian disinformation campaign that (rightfully) named several US citizens as spreaders of said campaigns.
Again, Ritter fails to provide any evidence that associates Schumer and the Ukrainian efforts, let alone that he somehow have access or control over the names mentioned in the “information terrorists” list.
The attempt to connect Schumer’s legislative efforts as motivated by an impulse to take down a (supposed) Senate challenger is a classic conspiratorial move which requires the following convoluted chain: Schumer, afraid of Sare’s challenge in the coming Senate election supports an effort to arm Ukraine against Russian imperialist aggression in order to form an Ukrainian drive to combat Russian disinformation that would name his ‘challenger’ an “information terrorist”.
New York is a solidly Democrat state, with a solid lead of 24% of the vote (D 60%, R 36%, oth 4%) where Schumer is 99% projected to win.
Schumer is a senator (i.e., of the legislative branch), with 0 control on how the government (i.e., the executive branch) elects to spend what Congress allocates (this presumed Senate ‘control’ over actual spending is particularly bizarre in a context of the lack of any Congress oversight on that spending, which was what Rand’s delay ‘amendment’ was supposed to be about).
The conspiratorial demagogic text above doesn’t even attempt to connect the necessary dots: it provides no evidence on connection between Schumer and Ukraine, or even between the US and the Ukrainian efforts to battle Russian propaganda, or about the independent candidate’s chances of challenging Schumer.
While Ritter’s conspiratorial nonsense above is far from ‘information terrorism’, it comes dangerously close. More important, it is typical of contemporary left-ish, Neo Progressive material, and while it might explain the left’s political impotence, it is primarily just sad.
To DemGone,
” …. opposition to such cynical obstructionist tactic suddenly become opposition to oversight on spending?
The bigger ? is why the cynical opposition to oversight spending by Schumer, why didn’t he agree to, even support, such an amendment instead of attacking the one who proposed it – gee, maybe he knew that the funding would be/was being used to smear his opponents and was afraid of such oversight discovering that …
Rand’s proposal was not meant to add oversight, but to delay the bill, to which he opposed, saying “we cannot save Ukraine by dooming the U.S. economy.”
Incidentally, Schumer actually was in favour of voting immediately on the changes offered by Rand, but the rest of the senators involved refused.
As to the ” smear his opponents” nonsense, there is 0 corroborating data, other than the paranoid, conspiratorial infestation prevalent withing contemporary left-ish, Neo Progressive (propaganda) narrative.
What you are peddling in your comment is in fact bunch of straw-man arguments Ritter never made. He claimed no conspiracy at all. Your further assertions are mostly wrong on content and/or context. The rest of your accusations is just hot air of demagogy, bizarre subjective reasoning and clear political biases.
The main point of this article is not any conspiracy theory but the hard fact that US taxpayer money designated for Ukraine is not being accounted for.
US Congress in contrast to your wrong assertion has a power of oversight (not necessarily control) of all US government spending in all three branches. They can investigate everyone and everything they want and there are no laws against it as law doesn’t apply to US Congress.
Ritter asserts hard fact that we do not know how money is being spent in Ukraine. Pentagon admitted they don’t know where is military supplies they sent to Kiev. That’s a fact not conspiracy. Live with it.
And more importantly Congress has responsibility to know if such money is used in efforts that are against US law and fundamental interest of American people. Pentagon openly expressed concern that supplied ATGM systems can be used by terrorists against Americans. Threat is real.
The complete accountability should be job number one of all US senators. Anything short of that is reckless and irresponsible.
Ritter did not speculate but outright proved that US taxpayer money are being used against US public figures, like a Paul and many others infringing on their constitutional rights. No senator voted for Ukraine bill to be smeared by Kiev propagandists or to insinuate lies about other US public figures.
And that is why accountability for how US taxpayer money is spent in Ukraine was required.
The Paul’s demand for accountability was not obstructionist, or conspiratorial or delaying tactic but doing business of government oversight protecting taxpayers from fraud and misuse of US funding.
This is not academic concern of Paul. The fraud and misuse of funds is no conspiracy but hard fact in Pentagon and Department of State spending as Afghanistan and Iraqi disasters proved unequivocally.
Where is $21 trillions wrongly accounted or missing from DOD in last three decades? Still nobody by knows while national debt is mounting.
There is strong and legitimate imperative for accountability of DOD, and DOS funding of wars. And such accountability does not cause any delay in dispersing the funds as it is done post facto. What it is good for is to identify misappropriation and thieves who stole the funds.
Who but 99 senators taking money from lobbyists of MIC corporate thieves of US government funds would oppose catching thieves of taxpayer money spent for Ukraine. Kiev should have insisted on it.
And lastly, in case of Orwellian listing of Schumer’s electoral opponent as “information terrorist” whatever it means beyond obvious smear, you seem to suddenly lose your IQ and pretend you never heard of political quid pro quo which is not a direct conspiracy but implicit understanding of imperative of paying for favors as Chuck was leading proponent of sending money to Ukraine. That’s what Ritter meant.
Calling electoral contender as a terrorist, Putin stooge is symbolic least Ukrainian propagandists can do to thank Schumer for support.
If you tried to insinuate Schumer overwhelming support among New Yorkers and hence that he does not care about opponents I must admit that Schumer 99% chances to be re-elected are higher than members of Soviet communist party politburo. Congratulations, America finally matched Soviet democracy.
According to you saying anything else about Soviet or American “democracy” would have been peddling a conspiracy theory.
So many words, and not a single statement that is not conspiratorial, alt-fact BS or utter nonsense…
Just W O W ! ! !
Ritter’s post is nonsense which I have commented on in another post.
By the way, the Communist party gets about 10% of the vote in Russian elections and the Politburo is long gone.
reality incomprehensible in USA; Mills perceived US a military dictatorship 60 years ago…after examining Soviet media and school curriculum Geoffrey Gorer described the censorship in UD media/school curriculum—“ludicrous”
Give it up, you are an awful writer.
Schumer is a schmuck
Interesting. The rape of the average American citizen by the oligarchs and their bought and paid for political toadies continues unabated.
And the rape and.pillage will continue until.we are all dead along with our only planet.
Sadly probably true
We are deeply entrenched in the garden of good & evil
Nothings what it seems.
Spiritual warfare of other principalities.
What appears as pure…. truthful is illusory.
I fear for the future of our children’s children.
The dark energy of the warmonger, war profiteer neocons/neolibs kicked off the new millennium with illegal, immoral wars in the Middle East. Look how low we’ve fallen.
Yet, these same neolibs have taken over for Perle, Kagan, Feith….and drive the propaganda for O.I.L.: OIL, ISRAEL, LOGISTICS.
THE Likudniks, AIPAC , Run our country.
Of course the offensive weapons makers love it$$$$.
God help us take back our country from…evildoers.
If Chuck Schumer is conducting a war on free speech, this article doesn’t prove it.
The author’s primary contention is that funds in a May, 2022 bill to assist Ukraine are being used by Schumer to target Rand Paul as an “information terrorist” presumably because he held up the bill for a week because he wanted a spending watchdog to be part of the bill.
The Schumer proxy in this war is supposedly a Uranian governmental agency whose task is to counter Russian disinformation.
It would have been helpful if Mr. Ritter had mentioned any verifiable facts to support his argument.
First, under the Constitution, all revenue bills originate in he House, not with Chuck Schumer. The bill passed 86-11 in the Senate and 368-57 in the House.
Mr. Ritter could have attached his unsubstantiated allegations against any member who voted for the bill. He offers no proof that Schumer is involved is some conspiracy to get Ukraine to target Paul.
Ritter says the $40 billion will be spent with no oversight. What’s his evidence for this. There is no provision in the bill which says that the DOD’s auditors are forbidden from examining where the funds go.
Where is the proof that the U.S. is paying the salary of this acting director of the Ukrainian Center for Countering Disinformation who supposedly put Senator Paul on a terrorist list.
Can Mr. Ritter produce the list of the 72 information terrorists that was issued by this Ukranian Agency. (There is a Link to some site but it is in Ukranian)
Whatever the case, funds from this appropriation we’re approved May 21, 2022 so it was unlikely that they were used in Ukraine a few weeks later for a Ukrainian governmental agency to put Senator Paul on a terrorist list to be prosecuted by the Ukranian government, as Mr. Ritter suggests.
Mr. Ritter loses all credibility when he poo poos Trump’s “perfect call” to Zelenskyy. Is there any other reasonable interpretation of Trumps words on that call except that Trump wanted Zelenskyy to find Dirt on Biden in exchange for military aid. “I would like you to do us a favor though.”
never permitted to learn symbolic or doxastic logic obviously—cannot distinguish necessary from sufficient condition—your comic book reactionary response farcical
Mr. Giligan. I will confess to not being versed in Doxastic philosophy and would guess neither is Mr. Ritter.
However, I do discern when a point is well made and none was made by Mr. Ritter in his post.
Stop back and consider for a moment. One contention of Ritter was that Schumer pushed through a $40 billion military aid bill for Ukraine so as to assist his re-election this fall against a fringe candidate who will not break double digits after the final vote is in.
Aside from Ritter offering no evidence to support this insanely wild allegation, the contention is not logical, doxastically or otherwise.
more evidence liberals more fascist than conservatives in USA
What evidence of liberals being more fascist than conservatives? There was none in Ritter’s post.
Schumer “pushed” through a bill that passed 86-11?
That was some real hard pushing!
“the monolingual inevitably confuses style wit content”. George Simmel
“american radicals both black and white adopted radical style without any radical content”. Christopher Lasch
“the american liberal wants to preserve the essence of the past; the American conservative wants more and more progress. the European radical wants to hasten he transformation of the future; the European conservative wants to preserve the essence of the past”. Geoffrey Gorer
obviously “progressive ” is a fake label that means liberal
Schumer and Pelosi – two peas in a pod. They both need to sit the fuck down and shut the hell up! I’m sick to death of all the grandstanding and gaslighting by these morons!
Absolutely agree!! And I was a lifelong Democrat! They’ve spoiled the brand!
Both parties complicit in our downfall. Two rapacious phony parties against the people
Remember PropOrNot.com website located in US in 2016-17 on that accused long list of independent or non-MSM. websites including (TD) SP and CN, antiwar.org as well as Breitbart of being Putin agents was paid by Ukrainian lobbyists with US government money.
Later even Hedges was personally targeted by this secretive group with links to warmongering US think tanks in US and abroad.
Next step was Ukrainian doxing site (2018+) that lists Ukrainian Enemies in Russia and Donbas, one of the enemies whose murder is being encouraged was at the time fourteen years old ethnic Russian girl from Donetsk for her reporting for children publications about Donbas war and child victims including child-PTSD because of ukroNazi shelling.
Now Ukrainian fascists are doxing high profile US citizens suggested as targets for UkroNazi death squads outside of Ukraine.
Similar propaganda attacks as Ritter is experiencing now Hedges was subjected to in 2002-03 where he publicly declared himself against US invasion in Iraq and was forced to resign effectively threatened by dismissal from NYT staff as ..Saddam agent.
Later Hedges explain his opposition by pointing out almost two decades of his work as NYT reporter in various wars from ME to Europe’s to Central America. Wars instigated directly by US foreign policies and economic blackmail.
He said it changed his perspective to much more balanced, much more informed much less US centric about devastating impact of US policies worldwide.
Ritter woke up (no pun intended) from his own “America the greatest” torpor exactly by learning more about Russia and her people including Russian military that together with US military combat experience and his international experience as UN weapon inspector gave him a new perspective most American are ignorant about.
And it is proliferation of such informed perspective from experts that has become direct threat to US propaganda narratives and that is why Ritter and Hedges are subject to strictest censorship that according to Chomsky exceeds that of Soviet Union.
We are paying for censorship of our own thoughts and opinions expressed among seemingly open American society that no longer exists.
“america is not a nation for dissidents”. Richard Hofstadter
“I know of no nation where there is no independence of mind nor any real freedom of debate except America”. Tocqueville
“the men Americans most admire dare to tell them the most extravagant lies; the men they most despise try to tell them the truth”. HL Menkhen
“obama’job is to lie to a nation of liars”.Prof. Kiese Laymon—
Might as well not single Obama out.
They all work 4 the richest 3%. Who only want more & more$$.
Roosevelt’s Pearl Harbor. Truman’s turning on the Russians who helped us possibly defeat Nazi fascism. Not really, but close. AZOV Battalion comes quickly to mind.
Whitewashed of the Israelis attempted sinking of USS Liberty, June 67.
Nixons: ” if elected, I’ll end this GD WAR!
Julian Assange, Edward Snowden, Chelsea Manning, etc
Jeez, 9/11!?
Neocons project for a New American Century: Page 1: but to accomplish these goals we may need a ‘Pearl Harbor ‘ type attack”.
Lies Dubbya & Liz’s dad propagated re Iraq, Syria, 🇱🇾 Libya, etc.
It’s time for goodness, truth, civility to return.
Return to Love.
Dissolve the special interest lobbying groups who have the best interests of foreign governments, but not us.
Using us, our tax $$ like a cheap whore.
End the 2 party charade for Wall Street, Blue Chips
I’m out
Absolutely spot on Mr.Ritter.
As you know, there are very few ethical truth tellers in positions of power.
Your voice, with impeccable insight, wisdom & first hand experience gives us some hope that not all is lost.
Praise be to Robert Scheer for reposting your commentary
Don’t forget the cover-ups of TWA Flight 800 and the controlled demolitions on 9/11.
chuck cheese Joe McCarthy Schumer exposed by Ritter
There should be no multi-million $$ aid, to say nothing of $billions in aid, to anyplace for any reason without accounting oversight, ever. It should be normal business.
Paul is on a personal level a freak/loon and Schumer is a creep/criminal, which should not enter into the equation. To think we give power to these sorts of men in a time where billions are blown like dessert money is mind boggling. Living in American is like being far out at sea on an unfit ship with a crew of escapees from an insane asylum. Where are the populist assassins?
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