Senator J.D. Vance (R-OH) has written to top Biden administration officials demanding the White House reveal if Sarah Ashton-Cirillo, a transgender individual claiming to be a spokesperson for the Ukrainian military, has ties to American intelligence services and if U.S. funds are currently subsidising Ashton-Cirillo’s apparent role in Ukraine after the personality went viral vowing that Russian “propagandists will be hunted down”.
In a letter, seen by Breitbart News, to Secretary of State Antony Blinken, Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin, and Director of National Intelligence Avril Haines, Ohio Senator J.D. Vance has requested any information the U.S. government has on apparently American-born former freelance journalist Sarah Ashton-Cirillo — born Michael John Cirillo — who reportedly became a spokesperson for the Ukrainian military earlier this year.
Appearing before a backdrop featuring the logo for the Territorial Defence of Ukraine (TDF) — a branch of Kyiv’s military — Ashton-Cirillo posted a video message earlier this week on social media declaring that Ukraine will “hunt down” alleged allies of the Kremlin operating in Ukraine as “propagandists”.
“Next week, the teeth of the Russian devils will gnash ever harder, and their rabid mouths will foam an uncontrollable frenzy as the world will see a favourite Kremlin propagandist pay for their crimes. And this puppet of Putin is only the first. Russia’s war criminal propagandists will all be hunted down, and justice will be served as we in Ukraine are led on this mission by faith in God, liberty and complete liberation,” the apparent Ukrainian spokesman warned.
Since there are several people asking for this video and many discussing it on Telegram and across social media channels, here is my latest episode of Russia Hates the Truth.
The russians and their supporters are gnashing their teeth as predicted.
— Sarah Ashton-Cirillo (Ukrainian TDF Media) (@SarahAshtonLV) September 13, 2023
The ominous message, which quickly went viral, has sparked many questions about Ashton-Cirillo’s background and alleged current role with the Ukrainian military, including from Sen. Vance.
“In recent days, a video has circulated of an individual who claims to be an English-speaking spokesperson for the Ukrainian military. In the video, this individual, Sarah Ashton-Cirillo, looks directly into the camera and threatens physical violence to anyone who circulates ‘Russian propaganda’,” he wrote in a letter to Sec. Blinken, Sec Austin, and Director Haines.
“A number of reports purport to offer additional information, much of it unconfirmed, regarding Ashton-Cirillo. I’ve seen claims this individual is an American, a former intelligence operative in the United States, and an employee of the Ukrainian government. Others have argued Ashton-Cirillo is pulling an elaborate prank. If so, kudos for the delivery of high quality humor,” Vance continued in an apparent reference to Ashton-Cirillo’s reported direct lobbying of the U.S. Congress for military aid to Ukraine last December.
The Ohio freshman Senator went on to request information from the White House, questioning:
- “Is this individual employed by the Ukrainian military, and do we have reason to believe the are compensated using American resources?
- Is this individual an American citizen? Did they ever serve, in any capacity, American intelligence services?
- Do we have reason to believe Ukrainian forces or intelligence services are planning to commit acts of violence against those who engage in ‘Russian propaganda’?”
The Republican lawmaker went on to express concerns that U.S. taxpayer dollars are supporting violence or the threat of violence against people for speaking their minds, noting that American journalists and even current presidential candidates have been “slandered” as propagandists for Russia.