After news broke that a UFO whistleblower’s PTSD history was going to be the subject of a news article, people on social media began posting “I stand with David Grusch” messages to show their support. The article that was later published was a highly skeptical piece, focusing on quotes from people who did not believe the UAP allegations or the House hearing were legitimate.
However, the Intelligence Community Inspector General found Grusch’s claims to be credible and urgent, and others have also vouched for his allegations. And Sen. Chuck Schumer has even included a UAP disclosure bill as part of National Defense Authorization Act. None of this was included in the Intercept piece.
To review a comprehensive, in-depth breakdown of all of Grusch’s claims, with citations, see our story here.
Grusch Openly Shared His Struggles with PTSD, Which Many Veterans Also Face
On August 8, 2023, The Intercept posted an article about UFO whistleblower David Grusch’s history with PTSD, a struggle that many veterans share. However, the article appeared to take on a scathing tone the deeper it went, not only painting some of Grusch’s allegations in a spurious light, but going on to only quote people who were highly critical of the House’s UAP hearings. The article did not appear to provide balanced viewpoints from people who felt the hearings were credible. In fact, the article did not even include the Intelligence Community Inspector General’s assertion that Grusch’s allegations were credible and urgent.
Grusch has alleged that the U.S. has a secret UAP retrieval and reverse engineering program, and that he has heard 40 firsthand accounts from credible witnesses. But Grusch is not the only person to assert these claims. Sen. Marco Rubio has said that multiple people with firsthand knowledge of the program have also come forward to him with the same allegations.
The Intercept’s article noted that they obtained police records from Virginia’s Freedom of Information Act about two incidents involving Grusch in 2014 and 2018. Before the story was published, journalist Ross Coulthart — who interviewed Grusch previously — told NewsNation that the documents about the PTSD incidents were on file with a local county sheriff’s office. However, he said that the sheriff told Grusch the information didn’t come from his office, so Coulthart speculated that the source was a leak from Grusch’s medical files. The Intercept stated they got the files from a Virginia FOIA, and NewsNation later reported that the documents were, indeed, obtained via FOIA.
Whatever the source of the information, Grusch has been open about his PTSD struggles, speaking about it during his initial interview with Coulthart. Those clips were not included in NewsNation’s original report, but the clips were shown during Coulthart’s interview on August 8. You can watch in the video below at around the 5-minute mark.
Grusch told Coulthart, “I served in Afghanistan and … I had a friend that committed suicide after I got back… I dealt with that for a couple years. I’m proud as a veteran that I did not become a statistic. Totally took care of that issue in my life. And it doesn’t affect me anymore.”
Coulthart clarified that he was speaking about PTSD, and Grusch confirmed it.
“I’m very proud to admit that was an issue in my life, and I encourage veterans watching here to get help so they’re not a statistic like a good friend of mine.”
Grusch was allowed to keep his security clearance despite the incidents.
In a statement after The Intercept approached him, Grusch wrote: “I was personally affected again years later when a close friend of mine, an intelligence officer who was serving in Air Force Special Operations Command at the time, took his own life shortly after we last spoke. I am proud to be transparent on this matter and am glad I got the help I needed to continue my intelligence career.”
Coulthart published Grusch’s full statement on Twitter (which is currently called X), which you can read below. Please note that we will refer to the social media site as Twitter throughout this story, just for simplicity.
The Intercept’s story quotes an anonymous former colleague who says they were “shocked” that Grusch kept his clearance, and goes on to share details about the incidents. It then quoted Rep. Mike Turner saying “there’s no evidence” of Grusch’s claims, but did not quote the Inspector General who said his allegations were credible and urgent.
Rubio said: “I will say there are people who have come forward to share information with our committee over the last couple of years. I would imagine some of them are potentially some of the same people that perhaps he’s (Grusch’s) referring to. I want to be very protective of these people. A lot of these people came to us even before these protections were into law for whistleblowers to come forward.”
Rear Adm. Tim Gallaudet has also said the three House witnesses were credible (including Grusch,) and his quotes were also not included in the Intercept piece.
People on Social Media Are Standing in Solidarity Behind Grusch
Meanwhile, many people on social media are standing in solidarity behind Grusch by sharing “I stand with David Grusch” photos that showcase a teal ribbon, which is used for PSTD awareness.
The original “I Stand with Grusch’ photo appears to have been created by The UFO Rabbit Hole Podcast, who tweeted that people were free to steal the image and use it on their own timelines.
West Decker replied to UFO Rabbit Hole’s tweet, writing: “Thank you for creating this for people to show their support! @WhiteHouse @DoD_AARO @DeptofDefense @ODNIgov we support David Grusch and all of our veterans with PTSD. Maybe you should too?”
Alien Love replied, “Look at it this way. If the only way there’s going to be news coverage on the subject is if it’s cast in a negative light, then, so be it. People can and will read between the lines.”
Ed Parnell wrote, “How dare they say the man is a patriot one minute and then try and destroy his credibility the next. Cheap and tacky. What he said stands, regardless. Who doesn’t have issues or incidents in their past? And how exactly does that lessen what they have to say? Shameful.”
Another account tweeted photos of Grusch with a similar message.
I STAND WITH DAVID GRUSCH
— mind of MOTTRAM (@MindofMottram) August 9, 2023
Adam Goldsack wrote, “I stand with David Grusch and all veterans who have served.”
— Adam Goldsack (@AdamGoldsack) August 9, 2023
The Intercept Story Quoted People Who Disagreed with the House Hearing & UAP Theories, Without Balancing Quotes From Those Who See the Allegations as Credible
The Intercept story could be read as an attempt to discredit the UAP allegations, although the story did not come out and say this was the intention. It only quoted people who disagreed with Grusch and the House hearings, rather than also including quotes from people with other opinions to provide more balance.
Steven Aftergood, director of the Federation of American Scientists’ Project on Government Secrecy, was quoted as saying: “The recent UFO hearing is an embarrassment to everyone involved. It’s a symptom of the broader degradation of congressional discourse.”
The article also went on to talk about Jesse A. Marcel, a military intelligence officer who said the Roswell debris was extraterrestrial but “it later became clear that it was actually the remains of a weather balloon.” The article did not provide details about Marcel’s son, Jesse Marcel Jr., who steadfastly claimed the wreckage was alien in origin. When he died, The Guardian reported that Marcel Jr. — who was 10 when the crash occurred — saw debris that included a piece with “purple hieroglyphics” on it. The article notes that Marcel Sr. also maintained that the debris was not of Earth origin and was told to keep things quiet.
Stanton Friedman told The Guardian: “His legacy is that he had the courage to speak out when he didn’t have to about handling wreckage that his dad brought home… He could have kept his mouth shut. A lot of people did.”
However, The Intercept article did not include any of those details.
The Intercept article also quoted a June 6 tweet from Jack Murphy writing: “I’d like to point out that finding a decorated veteran who believes all sorts of insane conspiracy theories is not remarkable. I know many, and some would love it if I wrote stories.”
But it did not include Rubio speaking of firsthand witnesses who corroborated Grusch, as Post Apocalyptic Media has reported on.
Rubio said the witnesses “have firsthand knowledge or firsthand claims of certain things. Some are public figures, you know, and we’ve heard from them in the past. Others, umm, you know, have not shared publicly… And the reason why I’m being cautious, I’m not trying to be evasive, but I am trying to be protective of these people. Some of these people still work in the government. And frankly a lot of them are very fearful: fearful of their jobs, fearful of their clearances, fearful of their career, and some frankly are fearful of harm coming to them.”
Rubio also noted: “I will say, I find most of these people — at some point or maybe even currently — have held very high clearances and high positions within our government. So you start, you do ask yourself, what incentive would so many people with that kind of qualification — these are serious people — have to come forward and make something up?”
The Intercept piece ends with another quote from Aftergood saying: “The embarrassment of the House hearings stems not so much from the issue itself but from the failure to distinguish what is real from what is fantasy.”
The article neglects to include any quotes from numerous people who believed the hearing was legitimate, or listing the evidence provided by firsthand witnesses Ryan Graves and David Fravor. A lot of was left out, replaced only with skepticism and doubt.