X.com (formerly Twitter)
An American man serving as a Ukrainian military spokesperson infamously declared last week that war dissidents would be “hunted down,” sparking an internet firestorm, with some demanding answers about broader American support for the war effort.
Today, in a video posted on X.com (formerly Twitter), that man appeared to confirm that he is an asset of the American government, before posting another video denying his statement.
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Responding to an inquiry form Senator JD Vance of Ohio, Sarah Ashton-Cirillo — born Michael John Cirillo — declared that he answers to three people: “my Ukrainian commanders, the Ukrainian people, and the American taxpayer.”
An hour later, Cirillo posted a video backtracking on the previous statement, insisting that the U.S. government is not funding his Ukrainian military media operation overseas.
The Dossier has previously reported on Mr. Ashton-Cirillo, who, before heading to Ukraine, was a left wing activist who had worked with the FBI in sting operations against Republican candidates for political office.
Today, Mr Cirillo is a spokesperson for Ukraine's Territorial Defense Forces, the military reserve arm of the Armed Forces of Ukraine.
In videos presented to the public, the 46 year old man appears on camera in a stained wig while sporting some form of prosthetic breasts, sitting in front of a Ukrainian flag.
Last week, Cirillo posted a video message stating that “the Russians and their supporters are gnashing their teeth as predicted,” adding that they will “all be hunted down.” The video appeared to be in reference to the arrest of a Chilean-American journalist named Gonzalo Lira, who is not a Russian national, leading many to interpret Cirillo’s statement to a threat of violence against anti-war voices.
This led Senator Vance to send a letter to Secretary of State Antony Blinken, Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin, and Director of National Intelligence Avril Haines, requesting any information about his ties to the U.S. Intelligence Community.