Marjorie Taylor Greene and Mike Lee spread anti-Ukraine disinformation with edited video
U.S. Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) and U.S. Senator Mike Lee (R-UT) are actively spreading anti-Ukraine disinformation, posting to Twitter a deceptively-edited video of Volodymyr Zelenskyy, which they falsely claim means the Ukrainian President wants America's "sons and daughters" to die defending Ukraine.
Senator Lee complained his personal Twitter account was suspended at some point after he retweeted the video. It was recently restored and his post with the deceptively-edited video has not been removed.
The original Twitter sources of the video have warning labels that Greene and Lee appear to have ignored before posting. Greene posted it to her official U.S. government Twitter account.
That warning, in the form of a readers' note, says: "This quote is taken out of context. The full quote is :'If Ukraine loses, Russia is going to enter Baltic states, NATO states, then the U.S will have to send their sons and daughters exactly in the same way as we are sending our sons and daughters to war'."
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The Associated Press also published a fact check on Wednesday noting the deceptively-edited video is "missing context." The AP states: "He was not suggesting Americans would have to fight in Ukraine."
But in the deceptively-edited video Greene and Lee tweeted, Zelenskyy (via an interpreter) says, "the U.S will have to send their sons and daughters exactly in the same way as we are sending our sons and daughters to war."
Zelenskyy goes on to say, "and they will have to fight because it's NATO that we're talking about. They will be dying, God forbid, because it's a horrible thing."
In the full video from February 24, Zelenskyy is urging Americans to not give up on Ukraine. The most important portion of Zelenskyy's remarks have been edited out in Greene's and Lee's version: "If Ukraine loses, Russia is going to enter Baltic states, NATO states."
Greene tweeted, "There's not a parent in America that wants their son or daughter dying defending Ukraine's border. When have Ukrainian & NATO sons and daughters died defending America's border?"
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Lee tweeted, "Zelensky has no right to presume that our sons and daughters will fight his war. Shame on him. We've somehow sent the message that we work for him. Shame on us!"
The 19-second deceptively-edited video has been viewed nearly 400,000 times.
Zelenskyy's full remarks (via interpreter):
"I would like to thank the American people. I would like to thank all of the American people that are supporting Ukraine, the Congress, the President, the TV channels, the journalists, and everyone that has been supporting us, and that percentage of Americans, as you've mentioned is increasing. I can tell them only one thing. If they do not change their opinion, if they do not understand us, if they do not support Ukraine, they will lose NATO, they will lose the clout of the United States, they will lose the leadership position that they are enjoying in the world, that they are enjoying for a very fair reason, and they will lose the support of the country with 40 millions of population, with millions of children. Are American children any different than ours? Don't Americans enjoy the same things as we do? I don't think we're that different. And I'm actually very happy that we have bipartisan support, but we keep hearing those messages from time to time and they’re dangerous. There are political leaders that are elected by people. And if this issue is raised, those political leaders need to be responsible and cautious because people are looking at them. Who wants a third world war? Would anyone risk would anyone be willing to accept that risk? The US is never going to give up on the NATO member states. If it happens so that Ukraine, due to various opinions and weakened and depleting of assistance, loses, Russia is going to enter the Baltic states, NATO member states, and then the US will have to send their sons and daughters exactly the same way as we are sending their sons and daughters to war and they will have to fight because it's NATO that we're talking about and they will be dying, God forbid because it's a horrible thing."
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