Who is Charles Bausman? A closer look at the pro-Putin blogger who moved to Lancaster | PA performance and policy

Charles Bausman, whose family traces their presence in Lancaster County back to the 18th century, made their first permanent permanent home in Lancaster City in 2018.

Bausman, 57, grew up in Greenwich, Connecticut, and spent part of his childhood abroad, including when his father worked as a journalist in Moscow.

“My father was born here. He grew up here. My grandparents lived here, ”Bausman said in an October 2020 interview of Lancaster. “It’s a wonderful part of the country, and I was so happy when it worked out a few years ago that I was actually able to move here.”

Last year Bausman’s estate hosted a group of white nationalists who were forming a new political party. Although Bausman initially denied it, he admitted earlier this month that his barn on Millersville Pike in Lancaster Township was the site of an August 2020 rally at which a group called the National Justice Party announced it would be formed and said it would stand for such as international Jewish oligarchy ”and ensuring America retains a“ white majority forever ”.

[A group of notorious white nationalists met secretly in historic Lancaster County barn last year. Why here?]

Bausman spent much of his adult life in Europe, mostly Russia, and initially worked as a businessman in Russian agriculture. In 2014 he founded an online publication called Russia Insider and started a second career as a media entrepreneur.

Russia Insider has been focused on providing pro-Russian coverage to Western audiences from the start, starting with its defense of the Russian conquest of Crimea from Ukraine in 2014. Articles on the site attempted to argue that America’s leaders drew from hatred of the Russian governments were so blinded that they misled Americans about the commonality of the nations. A 2018 report by the US State Department on rising anti-Semitism in Russia described Bausmans Russia Insider as “linked to pro-government oligarchs.”

Reports from The Interpreter, an online publication on the Russian government and foreign policy, indicated that he was seeking funding for Russian Insider from Russian oligarch Konstanin Malofeev, who has ties to European far-right extremists.

In January 2018, Bausman published an essay entitled “It’s Time to Drop the Jewish Taboo” on Russia Insider, which attracted international backlash. The essay argued that Israel and the Jewish people led efforts to undermine Russia’s place on the world stage. In order to ward off any criticism, said Bausman, Jews use memories of the Holocaust to portray critics as anti-Semitic.

Jewish elites, Bausman wrote, are responsible for many of the evils of society: “The evidence suggests that much of the human enterprise dominated and shaped by Jews is an abyss of trouble with a peculiar tendency towards mendacity and cynicism, hostility towards Christianity and Christian values ​​is. and in geopolitics a clear thirst for blood. “

The essay was so reprimanded that Russia Today – the Russian state television on which Bausman appeared as a guest – disavowed it.

Speaking to LNP | LancasterOnline in October 2020, Bausman said that his willingness to criticize Jews was heightened by his own conviction that the Holocaust never happened, which he pointed to reading materials in denial of the Holocaust made by alternatives Media and researchers put online.

According to the National Holocaust Memorial Museum, “Holocaust denial and distortion are forms of anti-Semitism, prejudice against Jews, or hatred of Jews. … These views perpetuate longstanding anti-Semitic stereotypes … (and) undermine the truth and our understanding of history. “

Charles Bausman, who runs a pro-Russian blog, speaks to LNP at his Lancaster home on Thursday, October 8, 2020.

Move to Lancaster

Ten months after his anti-Semitic essay was published, Bausman bought a house on West Chestnut Street in town for $ 440,000. In early 2020, he bought nearly 5 acres at 1630 Millersville Pike in Lancaster Township for $ 450,000. This parcel, which includes a historic barn and house, is on property that once belonged to one of Bausman’s ancestors and is adjacent to a subdivision that bears the family name.

This barn was the location of the meeting of the National Justice Party on August 15, 2020. It was also at various times the address of William Von Deiz, a former leader of the white supremacy group Identity Evropa; Norman “Trey” Garrison, the former editor of The Lancaster Patriot, reported on by LNP | LancasterOnline last year, hosted a white nationalist podcast; and is currently the home of Greg Conte, a founding member of the National Justice Party, according to Bausman.

[How we confirmed a barn in Lancaster County was used for a 2020 white nationalist rally]

Bausman, who told LNP | LancasterOnline that he is essentially fueled by his Christianity, also spoke of attending the 2019 conference on the future of Christianity that was held at the Lancaster County Convention Center, saying he and his family visited two Orthodox churches – Annunciation Greek Orthodox in Lancaster and the Russian Orthodox Church of St. Nicholas in Reading.

In October 2020, the Southern Poverty Law Center released a report detailing Bausman’s connections with white nationalists, his history of writing and promoting pro-Putin propaganda, and soliciting Russian oligarchs to fund his media property. The report also specifically linked Bausman’s websites to Garrison’s, whose blog, the SPLC said, shared computer code with Bausman’s websites and a server operated by a Russia-based web development company.

Bausman was interviewed by two Pennsylvania newspapers according to the SPLC report and spoke to an LNP | LancasterOnline reporter around the same time. In these talks he berated the SPLC as a disreputable organization and denied any links with the Russian government.

In an October 2020 interview with LNP | LancasterOnline, Bausman said: “This place (Lancaster) is very important to me and I want it to be a better city. And I don’t think it’s managed very well. “

In the days after January 6, Bausman was working on a Russian newscast on a report on American politics and the attack on the U.S. Capitol by pro-Trump rioters.

He also left the country. Bausman and his family have lived in Moscow since mid-January.

COMING MONDAY: A look at the pro-Russian blogger’s activities, online and in person, between the 2020 elections and the Capitol riots.

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