Fox News gets conned by their “terror analyst” who was was actually a con man
For 13 years, Fox News presented Wayne Simmons as a CIA officer. He’s now indicted as a fraud.
Wayne Simmons, a recurring guest on Fox News who claimed to have 27 years of experience with the CIA, was arrested Thursday after being indicted by a federal grand jury on charges that he lied about his service.
Simmons is accused of falsely claiming that he worked as an “outside paramilitary special operations officer” for the CIA from 1973 to 2000. On Fox, this was often shortened to “former CIA operative.”
He was also indicted for using that false claim to gain government security clearances and an assignment as a defense contractor, where he advised senior military personnel overseas.
Simmons made his initial appearance in court on Thursday afternoon. If convicted, he could face up to 35 years in prison on charges of major fraud against the United States, wire fraud, and making false statements to the government.
Let’s recap his lies
In 2011, Simmons insisted on Fox News that the U.S. government should racially profile people from Muslim-majority countries. Calling himself a “pro-profiler,” Simmons proclaimed “I am just adamant about profiling, and we need to do it.”
When Senator John McCain proposed, in Fox’s words, “banning some immigrants from radical countries,” Simmons replied “I think it’s a great idea; should have been done years ago.”
Muslim paramilitary camps
Simmons claimed on Fox News in early 2015 that there are “at least 19 paramilitary Muslim training facilities in the United States,” where Muslims are being trained to carry out terrorist attacks on Americans. As a source, he cited Islamophobic right-wing propaganda outlet the Clarion Project.
While spreading flagrantly false rumors about supposed “no-go zones” in Europe in which non-Muslims are not allowed to enter, Simmons warned viewers “We are in a global war, a global war against Islamic jihad.”
Assassinating democratically elected leaders
Simmons called for the U.S. government to assassinate democratically elected Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez in 2005. “If a stray bullet from a hunter in Kentucky should find its way between this guy’s eyes, no American should lose any sleep over it,” Simmons quipped.
Fox News hosts Sean Hannity and Alan Colmes egged him on. “Do you want him dead?” Colmes asked, referring to Chávez — who was democratically elected numerous times and was, by far, the most popular leader in Venezuela’s history. “Absolutely,” Simmons replied. “He should have been killed a long time ago… It doesn’t matter to me who kills this guy. He’s to go.” Simmons even went so far, at the nudging of Hannity and Colmes, to compare the Venezuelan president to Hitler.
Simmons frequently called for bloodletting on air. On Fox News in 2005, he asserted that American “traitors” should be executed by “firing squad.”
Fox host Alan Colmes asked “You want America to have firing squads?” Simmons replied “You doggone right I do, for traitors, that’s absolutely what they should have.”
Whistleblowers as ‘terrorists’
On Fox’s Freedom Watch in 2010, Simmons called whistleblowing journalism organization WikiLeaks “a terrorist organization.” Simmons accused WikiLeaks of “hiding behind” the First Amendment in order “to come against the national security of the United States.”
The list goes on but you get the point!