Former congresswoman and presidential candidate Tulsi Gabbard unleashed one hell of a tweet storm on Senator Mitt Romney (R-UT) for calling her a “treasonous” Russian propagandist over the weekend.
“Tulsi Gabbard is parroting false Russian propaganda. Her treasonous lies may well cost lives,” Romney tweeted.
Well, Tulsi didn’t take too kindly to that —and went on to destroy old Mitt on Twitter (tweets compiled below):
@MittRomney, you have called me a ‘treasonous liar’ for stating the fact that “there are 25+ US-funded biolabs in Ukraine which if breached would release & spread deadly pathogens to US/world” and therefore must be secured in order to prevent new pandemics. Bizarrely, you claim that securing these labs (or even calling for securing these labs) is treasonous and will lead to a loss of life, when the exact opposite is obviously true. The spread of pathogens is what will cause the loss of life, not the prevention of such spread.
Senator Romney, please provide evidence that what I said is untrue and treasonous. If you cannot, you should do the honorable thing: apologize and resign from the Senate.
Evidence of the existence of such biolabs, their vulnerability, and thus the need to take immediate action to secure them is beyond dispute:
1. State Department’s Victoria Nuland acknowledged such labs containing dangerous pathogens exist in Ukraine in her testimony to the US Senate (March 8, 2022): “Ukraine has biological research facilities which, in fact we are quite concerned that Russian troops may be seeking to gain control of. We are working with the Ukrainians on how they can prevent any of those research materials from falling into the hands of Russian forces should they approach.”
2. Pentagon Fact sheet (March 11, 2022) has numerous statements directly & indirectly confirming the existence of such biolabs. “The United States, through BTRP, has invested approximately $200 million in Ukraine since 2005, supporting 46 Ukrainian laboratories, health facilities, and diagnostic sites.”
3. CBS Face the Nation (March 13, 2022) correspondent David Martin said a Pentagon official told him they’re concerned about the existence of such biolabs in Ukraine: “The concern is that the Russians will seize one of these biomedical research facilities that Ukraine has where they do research on deadly pathogens like botulism and anthrax, seize one of those facilities, weaponize the pathogen, and then blame it on Ukraine and the US, because the US has been providing support for some of the research being done in those facilities.”
4. In April 2020, in refuting Russia’s accusation that U.S. is using biolabs in Ukraine to develop biological weapons, U.S. Embassy in Ukraine acknowledged there are U.S. funded labs in Ukraine working with pathogens for vaccine & other peaceful purposes.
5. CNN fact-check (March 10, 2022): “There are US-funded biolabs in Ukraine, that much is true.”
6. Furthermore, according to the DoD there are two biolabs in Ukraine that have been under Russian control for some time: “Russia illegally took possession of two Ukrainian-owned laboratories that BTRP upgraded in 2014 and continues to deny Ukrainian access to these facilities.”
So, Senator Romney, you have a choice: out of pride, continue to deny the truth or admit you are wrong, apologize, and resign.
And remember that without the truth, we can be neither safe nor free.