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This transcript appears in the September 30, 2022 issue of Executive Intelligence Review.

[Print version of this transcript]

Col. Richard H. Black

Forbid Unlawful Efforts To Silence American Citizens

This is the edited transcript of the presentation of Col. Richard H. Black as part of Panel 2, “Defend the Right to Deliberate! Speak Out Against Blacklists and the Suppression of the Search for Truth,” of the Schiller Institute’s Sept. 10–11 Conference, “Inspiring Humanity To Survive the Greatest Crisis in World History.” Col. Black was the chief of the U.S. Army’s Criminal Law Division at the Pentagon, and a Virginia State Senator.

The full video of Panel 2 is available here.

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Schiller Institute
Col. Richard H. Black

What we’re going to be talking about is the fact that the U.S. Congress, through its appropriations, has been funding the Ukrainian Center for Countering Disinformation (CCD). They are attempting, by doing this, to be able to control freedom of speech, not directly in this country—which is clearly unlawful—but by having a foreign entity do it, where they can suppress free speech using American dollars to do it overseas.

I’m going to start off because the 71 people who have been put on the hit list by the Ukrainian Center for Countering Disinformation, what I call a hit list, is basically condemning us as war criminals, info terrorists, and Russian propagandists. So, I want to make it clear that that is quite wide of the mark. I’m just going to give myself as an example, but I think everyone who is involved could probably give something similar.

Let me just start by giving you a little of my background, because I want to make it very clear that I love my country; I’ve risked my life for it hundreds of times. I volunteered to fight in Vietnam. Mike Carly and I, two Marine Corps pilots, became the first two volunteers from the East Coast Helicopter Forces to volunteer to join the West Coast chopper pilots who were already in Vietnam.

While I was there, I flew 269 combat missions. My helicopter was hit by ground fire on four of those flights, and in one case, bullets that were aimed directly at me, were just a little too early, and they tore through the cowling of the cockpit just before my head. They very nearly hit me, and were aimed at me, very nearly hitting me. Later, during my tour of duty, I was fighting on the ground, and I heard that Mike Carly was shot through the face and killed as he flew Marine infantry men into battle, not ten miles away from me.

I was flying off the carrier Iwo Jima in the South China Sea, near the coast of the Philippines, when the flight operations officer at the ready room briefed us in the morning. He said that our squadron had been tasked with providing a volunteer to fight on the ground with the First Marine Division, which was heavily engaged in combat at the time. I immediately volunteered, went to work with the First Marine Division, and fought in 70, often bloody, combat patrols. During my final patrol, I was wounded, and both of my radiomen were killed—Corporal Henry Smith and Lance Corporal Dennis Wargo. They died right next to me, after we had launched a rubber boat assault, and successfully landed on the far side of the Hội An River under enemy fire.

I served a total of 32 years in uniform; first as a Marine pilot, and then later as an Army lawyer. I ran legal offices at Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri; Fort Ord, California; and Fort Lewis, Washington. I would typically supervise 25–40 Army lawyers. Finally, I retired as chief of the Criminal Law Division at the Pentagon, where I testified before Congress, advised the Senate Armed Services Committee on issues of national importance, and prepared Executive Orders that were signed by the President of the United States.

All of that said, I am adamantly opposed to our current wars, especially the very dangerous war that we’ve engaged in, in Ukraine. I believe that U.S., UK, and European Union have embarked on an imprudent course of action that carries a significant risk of eventually triggering an all-out nuclear war.

The Dangerous Fraud of ‘Countering Disinformation’

Recently, the Department of Homeland Security tried to establish a domestic center for countering disinformation here in the United States. Fortunately for us, Nina Jankowicz, an outrageous, narcissistic young lady, was the Department of Homeland Security pick to become agency head. Her presentation to the public was so bizarre that Americans simply recoiled at the idea of someone like her censoring their thoughts and expressions. So, the U.S. Center for Disinformation, run by DHS, has temporarily been blocked because of its potential for violating Americans’ First Amendment freedoms. But DHS did not limit their censorship information efforts to the United States. It has exported them into Ukraine.

By the way, Nina Jankowicz is a very accomplished Ukrainian linguist, who is very deeply involved in governmental affairs there, leading up to the war. It is difficult to imagine that she is not really up to her knees in the information suppression efforts of Ukraine.

The Center for Countering Disinformation in Ukraine is financed by the U.S. government under H.R. 7691, which is called the Additional Supplemental Appropriations Act of 2022. This provides funding for the Ukrainian government and for its Center for Countering Disinformation. Many of the people they’ve targeted, including Senator Rand Paul and former Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard, are very patriotic American citizens with strong, well-informed views on foreign policy. It’s the intention of the Department of Homeland Security and the Ukrainian Center for Countering Disinformation, to silence us.

For example, there was a communiqué that came in the other day, relative to a conference September 1–2. This was put on by Ukraine’s National Security and Defense Council, and it’s now-notorious Center for Countering Disinformation. There were representatives from NATO, from the U.S. State Department, and from European nations in attendance. Oleksiy Danilov, the Secretary of the Ukrainian National Security and Defense Council, said, “Today, our goal is to form an international hub for countering information threats at a national and international level. International law must recognize info terrorism as a crime, and that anyone committing such a crime should be declared an ‘information terrorist,’ subject to measures that are applied to actual terrorists,” which presumably includes the death penalty.

Unlawful Acts by U.S. Agencies

It’s unlawful for a U.S. agency to fund a foreign agency in order to censor American citizens. It’s unlawful for the agency to do it here; it’s unlawful for them to fund and pay off another country to do it over there.

The Ukrainian CCD makes available names and personal information to a murderous, Kiev-based website, Myrotvorets, which is suspected of encouraging such killings as the Moscow car-bombing of Darya Dugina, who was the daughter of a prominent Russian activist and journalist. They have also listed on their website—which is very extensive, it includes thousands of people—hundreds of children whose crime is that they posted pro-Russian Facebook entries on their computers.

Also, while the facts remain very speculative, and I want to be clear on that, the Rio Times [in Brazil] now sees links between Ukraine and the attempted assassination of Argentina’s Vice President Cristina Kirchner. Kirchner was criticized early on by Ukrainian sympathizers for refusing to harshly condemn Russia’s special operation in Ukraine, and for calling for peace talks to end the war. Whether the Ukrainian Center for Countering Disinformation is involved or not, these violent acts suggest that the CCD is encouraging them. They may not be behind them, but they are certainly encouraging them.

So, it’s our position that the Congressional appropriations must explicitly forbid Ukraine from using funds to silence patriotic American voices. Thank you.

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