Menu

‘I’m Very Worried for Our Agent Trump’: Host on Russian State Media

Claim

A broadcaster on Russian state media said "I'm very worried for our agent Trump" while discussing the FBI's August 2022 search of Donald Trump's Mar-a-Lago home.

Rating

Decontextualized
Like this fact check?

Reporting

On August 17 2022, a post to Reddit’s r/worldnews suggested that a broadcaster on Russian state media had said “I’m very worried about our agent Trump,” during a segment mentioning the August 2022 Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) search of the former United States president’s Mar-a-Lago residence:

Russian State Media Calls Trump ‘Our Agent,’ Believes Mar-A-Lago Raid Is ‘Persecution’ from worldnews

Top comments on the thread initially discussed ancillary investigations into Donald Trump during the course of his presidency. One commenter speculated — correctly — that the purported comment was intended to agitate and divide Americans:

Sounds like something a person of power would say if he wants the people of a certain country to continue being divided.

The best way to destroy a country is not by war anymore. In the age of the internet, propaganda can easily be spread to anywhere in the world. You need to analyze what makes a country divided, and then put out propaganda to make them fight even more. The term “keyboard warrior” might sound laughable in the past as it’s used to describe someone who’s like a tough guy behind a keyboard but a wimp in the real world, but now, you can destroy anyone by just trolling or playing psychological games online with your targets. You put your own workers on all sides of the country’s political and ideological groups, and then your workers would start fights against each other. It’s like starting fires at multiple points at once, hard to stop and continues growing if you don’t manage to put them all out at once.

‘I’m Very Worried for Our Agent...
‘I’m Very Worried for Our Agent Trump’: Host on Russian State Media

In another sub-thread, somebody quipped:

While I had little doubt Trump was a Russian agent previously, Russian state media would never tell the truth about anything, so this is giving me serious doubts.

Directly under that comment, was this reply:

[Russian state media would] be saying it regardless of what’s true because what they want is for American audiences to fight over whether it’s true or not and for Russian audiences to feel like their country is powerful. The trick isn’t to believe the opposite of what they say but to ignore them as a source of information altogether.

Anyways, he’s far too stupid to be an agent. He’d have publicly bragged that he was an agent by now if he were. Rather, he’s an asset to the Russian government; his natural inclinations are what they want to happen and, beyond that, he’s effortlessly manipulatable.

The thread itself was based on an August 16 2022 piece by the International Business Times with a headline matching the thread title. It cited The Daily Beast as the source of the segment’s translation:

A top Russian propagandist and state media host said he is worried about Russia’s “agent” former U.S. President Donald Trump following the FBI’s search of his Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida.

[…]

“I’m very worried for our agent Trump. They found everything at Mar-a-Lago, they got packages of documents. In all seriousness, they say he should be executed as a person that was ready to hand off nuclear secrets to Russia,” Solovyov said in the most recent broadcast of the state TV show, Sunday Evening with Vladimir Solovyov, as translated by The Daily Beast.

On August 16 2022, The Daily Beast’s Julia Davis covered the segment, which aired on August 14 2022, and additional remarks by television presenter Vladimir Solovyov:

Having recovered from their initial shock over the FBI’s search of Donald Trump’s Florida estate [in August 2022], Russian experts and pundits started to dismiss it as much ado about nothing, albeit a convenient tale they could use to smear American democracy. Now they’re singing a different tune. In the most recent broadcast of the state TV show Sunday Evening With Vladimir Solovyov [on August 14 2022], host Vladimir Solovyov remarked, “I’m very worried for our agent Trump. They found everything at Mar-a-Lago, they got packages of documents. In all seriousness, they say he should be executed as a person that was ready to hand off nuclear secrets to Russia.”

Appearing on Solovyov’s show, Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova likewise raged against the alleged persecution of Moscow’s favorite former U.S. president. In a bizarre tirade, she attempted to tie the search of Mar-a-Lago with Trump’s earlier statement that there are only two genders, male and female … Solovyov chimed in: “[He could be declared] a Russian spy… Will we try to exchange him to bring Trump to Russia? Will they include Trump on the prisoner exchange list?”

The translation published by The Daily Beast went beyond Solovyov’s “our agent Trump” remarks. Solovyov was quoted as saying “in all seriousness,” allowing for ambiguity and plausible deniability about whether the word “agent” satirized descriptions of Trump as a Russian asset; Solovyov’s guest purportedly attributed the Mar-a-Lago search to Trump’s “stance on gender identity.”

In the comments of a subsequent, related tweet by Davis, a Twitter account speculated about Solovyov’s references to execution:

Searches for additional coverage returned a seemingly related tweet from Newsweek.com; it was, however, from December 2019. Once again, the statement came from Solovyev’s Sunday night show:

A popular August 17 2022 Reddit thread on r/worldnews suggested that a broadcaster on Russian state television described former United States President Donald Trump as “our agent Trump.” Initial reporting on the segment by The Daily Beast noted that Solovyev followed the statement with another in “seriousness,” implying the “agent” descriptor was perhaps humorous in nature; we have marked the claim Decontextualized due to the nature of the original Russian source. Commenters speculated that the segment was intended to capture media attention in the United States and antagonize Americans.