Former Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI) has hit back at Sen. Mitt Romney (R-UT) for calling her “treasonous” for her suggestion that Russia, Ukraine, and NATO allies work to negotiate a ceasefire around U.S.-funded biological research facilities in Ukraine to prevent outbreaks of deadly pathogens.
Gabbard generated criticism from Democrats and some Republicans when she posted a video of herself warning that between 35 to 40 U.S.-funded facilities in Ukraine are conducting research into “deadly pathogens” that could spark a pandemic or loss of life if Russia and NATO do not work to contain them amid the ongoing crossfire.
“Like COVID, these pathogens know no borders,” Gabbard said. “If they are inadvertently or purposely breached or compromised, they will quickly spread all throughout Europe, the United States, and the rest of the world, causing untold suffering and death.”
“These labs need to be shut down immediately and the pathogens that they hold need to be destroyed,” she added.
Gabbard was subsequently accused of parroting Russian propaganda by inadvertently accusing the United States of creating bioweapons in Ukraine by Sen. Mitt Romney — a charge pushed by the Kremlin following Vladimir Putin’s invasion of the neighboring country.
“Tulsi Gabbard is parroting false Russian propaganda. Her treasonous lies may well cost lives,” the senator said.
Tulsi Gabbard is parroting false Russian propaganda. Her treasonous lies may well cost lives.— Mitt Romney (@MittRomney) March 13, 2022
.@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, …— Tulsi Gabbard 🌺 (@TulsiGabbard) March 14, 2022
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.— Tulsi Gabbard 🌺 (@TulsiGabbard) March 14, 2022
#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…— Tulsi Gabbard 🌺 (@TulsiGabbard) March 14, 2022
#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…— Tulsi Gabbard 🌺 (@TulsiGabbard) March 14, 2022
#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 https://t.co/oIPROY43l6— Tulsi Gabbard 🌺 (@TulsiGabbard) March 14, 2022
#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.”— Tulsi Gabbard 🌺 (@TulsiGabbard) March 14, 2022