Secretary of Energy Rick Perry thought he was part of an official international conversation, but ended up in a discussion about manure with a pair of Russian pranksters.
Vladimir Kuznetsov and Alexei Stolyarov somehow got on the line with the former Texas governor for more than 20 minutes by pretending to be from Ukrainian Prime Minister Volodymyr Groysman.
The conversation, posted in full by Russian site Vesti, started off with what seemed to be a typical high-level exchange between government figures, talking about plans to develop oil and gas in Ukraine.
But after discussion of the Paris Climate Accord and a Russia pipeline, the pranksters ended the call with talk of a more joke-friendly territory, animal dung.
Kuznetsov and Stolyarov said a new “biofuel” from feces and moonshine alcohol had been invented by Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko.
Perry’s response to the sticky situation was to say he looked forward to being further briefed about the matter.
“I’m sure that will be a highlight of the trip,” he said.
Perry began making his way off the call, though the pranksters got in a few parting shots at Poroshenko, whose country has been in conflict with Russia since the 2014 invasion and annexation of Crimea.
They said beyond his fuel concoctions, the leader also discusses international relations with a squirrel.
After news of the prank reached the U.S., the Department of Energy told Bloomberg “Secretary Perry is the latest target of two Russian pranksters.”
“These individuals are known for pranking high level officials and celebrities, particularly those who are supportive of an agenda that is not in line with their governments. In this case, the energy security of Ukraine.”