Actors like Morgan Freeman and Rob Reiner, as well as politicians Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and the late Senator John McCain, are among the 963 Americans who are included on Russia’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs blacklist of those whom the nation is “permanently closed.”
The document, published by official authorities on Saturday, was accompanied by a statement from the ministry saying the reason behind the list was “anti-Russian sanctions” and is likely directed at people who have spoken out against the country in the past. Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, Hunter Biden, Sen. Lindsey Graham, journalist George Stephanopoulos, film producer Jeffrey Katzenberg and others made the cut.
“We emphasize that the hostile actions undertaken by Washington, which boomerang back to the United States itself, will continue to receive a proper rebuff,” the statement read. “Russian counter-sanctions are necessitated and aimed at forcing the ruling American regime — which is attempting to impose a neocolonial “rules-based world order” on the rest of the world — to change its behavior, recognizing new geopolitical realities.”
It continued, “Russia is not searching for control and is open to honest, mutually respectful dialogue, separating the American people — who we invariably respect — from the US authorities who are stoking Russophobia, and those who are serving them. It is the latter people who are included in the Russian ‘blacklist.’”
Reiner and Freeman notably launched a nonprofit called the Committee to Investigate Russia in 2017, following suspected interference from the country in the 2016 election.
Greene’s inclusion on the list is a bit more peculiar, considering she was one of eight legislatures (including AOC) who opposed the seizure and redirection to Ukraine of assets controlled by Russian oligarchs who were tied to President Vladimir Putin. She has also voted against every legislative effort to support Ukraine. By contrast, AOC has been vocal about her condemnation of the war.