According to a report from NBC News, President Biden spoke with top administration officials on Friday and said reports in the media about US intelligence sharing with Ukraine have been counterproductive.
The report cited two anonymous administration officials who said Biden spoke with Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin, CIA Director William Burns, and Director of National Intelligence Avril Haines. One source said Biden told them the reports “distract from our objective,” while the other source said he conveyed that the leaks must stop.
This week, US officials claimed to media outlets that US intelligence helped Ukraine kill Russian generals and aided Ukraine in the sinking of the Russian warship Moskva, the flagship of Russia’s Black Sea Fleet. While the claims aren’t confirmed and might not be true, the fact that US officials are making such statements to the media is a major provocation toward Moscow.
Both the Pentagon and the White House wouldn’t outright deny the details of the reports but did downplay them by saying that the US isn’t sharing intelligence with Ukraine on specific targets.
States Sue Biden Administration For ‘Pressuring And Colluding’ With Big Tech To Censor Free Speech
Two Republican-led states have filed a lawsuit against President Joe Biden, White House press secretary Jen Psaki, Dr. Anthony Fauci, and other top administration officials for allegedly pressuring and colluding with social media giants with the aim of censoring and suppressing free speech.
Missouri Attorney General Eric Schmitt and Louisiana Attorney General Jeff Landry filed the lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Louisiana on April 5, they announced in separate statements on Thursday.
The attorneys claim that Biden and other government officials worked with big tech companies like Meta, Twitter, and YouTube to censor conversation around matters relating to everything from COVID-19 and election integrity to the Hunter Biden laptop story, doing so under the guise of combating “misinformation.”
Others named in the lawsuit include Surgeon General Vivek Murthy, DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas, and the executive director of DHS’s newly established “Disinformation Governance Board,” Nina Jankowicz. The CDC, the NIAID, HHS Secretary Xavier Becerra, and Director of the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency Jen Easterly are also listed as defendants.
In announcing the lawsuit on Thursday, attorney Schmitt stressed the importance of freedom of speech which he said is “paramount to a healthy society,” adding that “discourse, debate, and discussion have been the cornerstone of our country since the Founders codified that right in the Bill of Rights.”
Schmitt stated that Americans use social media platforms to discuss an array of topics, noting that those topics have more recently been, in light of the global COVID-19 pandemic, conversations regarding whether or not face coverings are effective in preventing the virus from spreading and whether the virus origins came from a lab leak in Wuhan, China.
“In direct contravention to the First Amendment and freedom of speech, the Biden Administration has been engaged in a pernicious campaign to both pressure social media giants to censor and suppress speech and work directly with those platforms to achieve that censorship in a misguided and Orwellian campaign against ‘misinformation,’” said Schmitt(MO), referencing George Orwell’s dystopian novel about a totalitarian state, 1984. The lawsuit filed on Thursday specifically accuses Biden and other government officials of working with big tech companies to remove “truthful information related to the lab-leak theory, the efficacy of masks, election integrity, and more,” Schmitt said.