A former InfoWars staffer said the conspiracy theory outlet fabricated stories about a Muslim community in New York to push host Alex Jones’ threat of Shariah law.
Former InfoWars video editor Josh Owens wrote at The New York Times that he regretted helping Jones spread lies that Owens said he made up about Islamberg, a Muslim community just outside of New York City.
Owens said that he was told in interviews that the people in the community were “kind, generous neighbors.”
“The information did not meet our expectations, so we made it up, preying on the vulnerable and feeding the prejudices and fears of Jones’s audience,” he wrote. “We ignored certain facts, fabricated others and took situations out of context to fit our narrative.”
Owens wrote that he quit shortly after publishing reports with headlines like “Shariah Law Zones Confirmed in America,” “Report: Obama’s Terror Cells in the U.S.,” and “The Rumors Are True: Shariah Law Is Here!”
Owens reveals more Jones lies:
Owens said he became enamored with Jones during the George W. Bush-era and fell deep into the conspiracy theory wormhole.
“I had my limits,” he added. “I can’t say I ever believed his avowed theory that Sandy Hook was a staged event to push for gun control; to Jones, everything was a ‘false flag.’ I didn’t believe that Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama smelled like sulfur because of their proximity to hell or that Planned Parenthood was run by ‘Nazi baby killers.’ But it was easy to brush off these fever dreams as eccentricities and excesses — not the heart of the Alex Jones operation but mere diversions."
“Once I started working there, however, it became obvious that one was impossible to separate one from the other,” he explained. He recalled how he was tasked with making videos “stoking fears that radiation from Fukushima was drifting across the Pacific Ocean.”
Jones was prone to angry outbursts:
“The blinds stuck, so he ripped them off the wall. A water cooler had mold in it, so he grabbed a large knife, stabbed the plastic base wildly and smashed it on the ground,” Owens wrote. “Headlines weren’t strong enough; the news wasn’t being covered the way he wanted; reporters didn’t know how to dress properly. Once a co-worker stopped by the office with a pet fish he was taking home to his niece. It swam in circles in a small, transparent bag. When Jones saw the bag balanced upright on a desk in the conference room, he emptied it into a garbage can. On one occasion, he threatened to send out a memo banning laughter in the office. ‘We’re in a war,’ he said, and he wanted people to act accordingly.”