Joe Oltmann, a U.S.-based, far-right conspiracy theorist, hosted Kremlin-backed media outlet RT personality Donald Courter on his podcast, Conservative Daily, where the two pushed Russian propaganda about the war in Ukraine.
Joe Oltmann is a far-right political organizer and influencer known for pushing 2020 election denial conspiracy theories. His political organization, FEC United, campaigns for right-wing candidates in Colorado. On his show, he has pushed violent rhetoric toward individuals he opposes, repeatedly calling for people to be hanged. He stated during the interview with Courter that he has “been on RT several times” and “will stand with Russia every day and twice on Sunday.”
His guest, Donald Courter, is an American citizen living in Russia who appears on RT, a state-controlled publication formerly known as Russia Today. Courter also runs a right-wing content website called The Revolution Report. Courter recently released a film on the Donbas region titled “8 Years Before.” The trailer for the film included Courter calling the Russian invasion of Ukraine “the right thing” and showed footage attributed to RT as well as broadcasts of Vladimir Putin’s speeches.
The trailer claims the film is meant to show the West what the mainstream media haven’t shown them about Ukraine’s involvement in bombing the Donetsk and Luhansk regions. It also claims that “media outlets like RT and Sputnik” (both known for their connections to the Kremlin) tried to change people’s perspectives about Ukraine’s actions but were silenced by liberal democracies. The outlets were banned from broadcasting in the European Union for spreading disinformation.
During the podcast, both Oltmann and Courter pushed pro-Kremlin and anti-Ukraine talking points while discussing Courter’s new film.
Oltmann on Putin’s invasion: “This is him [Putin] making a decision to say look I can’t watch innocent people die any longer”
Courter’s main argument throughout both his film and the podcast appearance was that Russia invaded Ukraine only to end the bombing and destruction of the Donetsk and Luhansk regions. Courter stated that “we can’t just look at it as Russia attacking Ukraine” because Ukraine had supposedly spent the last eight years bombing “peaceful people in Donbas” and had “killed thousands of people.” Courter continued to ignore Russia’s involvement in the conflict in Donbas and its instigation of separatists who began the violence in the region.
Oltmann supported Courter’s false claims, claiming that “here in the U.S. we don’t get a chance to hear truth.” Oltmann also claimed that because of the lies of the Western media, people in the U.S. supporting Ukraine are “standing up for the bad guy and we don’t even know it’s the bad guy.” At one point in the interview after watching clips of Courter’s film, Oltmann also stated, “But everyone in the West, here, is being told that Ukrainians are the good guys.”
Courter also repeated that Russia attempted diplomacy many times but Ukraine refused to comply and “Russia had no choice” to invade. However, following a ceasefire in September of 2014, both the Russian-backed insurgency and Ukrainian forces engaged in armed conflict that resulted in the death of over 300 people.
After Oltmann played a clip of Putin declaring the invasion of Ukraine and pushing the false claim that Putin invaded the country to stop Ukrainian violence, he stated, “This is him [Putin] just making a decision to say, look, I can’t watch innocent people die any longer.”
Oltmann claims Ukraine is getting support from countries like the United States because of corrupt globalists
Before playing a clip of Courter’s film focused on a child’s experience during the war, Oltmann made the absurd claim that U.S. involvement in Ukraine came about because of “the George Soroses of the world, the Bill Gateses of the world, the Bidens, and the Obamas, and really all the people who have been very, very corrupt and stealing not just from the American people but wreaking havoc across the world.”
After the clip, Oltmann doubled down on claims that the Western media are telling the people of the United States false information about the Russian invasion of Ukraine and called it the Russian “liberation.” Oltmann later asked whether the current conflict will escalate to war between Russia and the United States and claimed “we’re fighting a proxy war right now through Ukraine” and asks Courter to confirm that if the United States sends troops to Ukraine it “leaves Putin no choice but to take another escalation against the United States.”
Oltmann connected “massive election fraud in the United States” to “the fixing of elections in Ukraine”
Oltmann brought up the topic of rigging elections, citing a woman from Ohio who he said claims to have been “involved in the fixing of elections in Ukraine.” Oltmann then asked Courter if he believes the Ukrainian elections were fixed and he affirmed that he does. Courter claimed both the European Union and the United States were involved in fixing the Ukrainian elections, though in recent years there has been clear evidence of Russian interference in the Ukrainian elections.
Oltmann also continued his election denial stance, stating that “we face massive election fraud in the United States” and blaming voting machines and mail-in ballots for putting “this illegal and illegitimate regime in power.” There is no evidence the 2020 presidential election was rigged or manipulated.