Alex Jones claims Orlando was "false flag" attack due to Muslim migration, yet shooter was born in U.S.

Everything far-right website InfoWars claims about the Orlando shooting, Muslim refugees and Arab Spring is false

Published June 13, 2016 7:30PM (EDT)

Alex Jones   (AP/Tony Gutierrez)
Alex Jones (AP/Tony Gutierrez)

Far-right conspiracy theorist and Donald Trump supporter Alex Jones claims the massacre at a gay club in Orlando, Florida on Sunday that left 49 civilians dead was "a false flag terror attack" and a consequence of Muslim migration, even though the shooter was born in the U.S.

The right-wing pundit published a video to YouTube shortly after the attack in which he claims the U.S. government purposefully let the shootings in Orlando and San Bernardino happen in order to impose restrictions on free speech and take away Americans' guns.

"Our government and the governments of Europe allowed these huge hoards of radical jihadis in, and even allowed them in without vetting them on record, landing in airports and not even checking their passports, IDs or visas," he said.

"Our governments are bringing these people in and they're allowing them to operate in our society, so they can attack us and then have our freedoms taken," Jones continued.

Orlando shooter Omar Tareen was actually a U.S. citizen, however, not a refugee or migrant. He was born in New York in 1987.

The exact opposite of what Jones claims about Muslim refugees and migrants is true. Western governments have been very antagonistic, not welcoming, to asylum-seekers fleeing wars they have fueled in the Middle East, North Africa and South Asia.

In Europe, governments are forcing refugees into squalid camps and subsequently deporting them to Turkey, where their lives may be endangered, in a deal that experts say is illegal and immoral.

Former Greek Finance Minister and left-wing leader Yanis Varoufakis has even gone so far as to call these militarized, cramped refugee camps "concentration camps."

The U.S. has been particularly unwelcoming. In September, the White House pledged to admit 10,000 Syrian refugees over the next year. As of May, seven months into its pledge, the Obama administration had resettled just 1,736. Germany, which has one-quarter of the U.S. population, took more than 1 million refugees in 2015 alone.

Moreover, when refugees are even allowed to enter the U.S., they face an incredibly long, intensive and bureaucratic vetting process.

The Refugees Welcome Index, a survey commissioned by Amnesty International, found that nearly two-thirds, 63 percent, of Americans think the U.S. government should do more to help refugees.

In the video, Alex Jones also calls Islam "a civil war religion of destabilization and slavery" and claims the "globalists" "funded the Arab Spring," referring to the 2011 uprisings across the Middle East and North Africa.

In reality, the U.S. and Western allies opposed the pro-democracy uprisings in allied countries in the region.

In Egypt, the site of the largest revolt, the Obama administration continued backing its allied 29-year dictator Hosni Mubarak until his last days in power. In 2013, the U.S. then supported the military coup (although it refused to call it a coup) that toppled Egypt's first democratically elected government, and is now closely allied with the new Egyptian dictator Abdel Fattah al-Sisi.

In Tunisia, where the Arab Spring began, the U.S. sided with its longtime ally, dictator Zine al-Abidine Ben Ali. International law professor Richard Falk characterized Ben Ali's Tunisia as the model U.S. client state.

In Saudi Arabia, the U.S. backed the regime, which brutally repressed protesters. When Western allies Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates invaded neighboring Bahrain to crush the pro-democracy uprising there, the U.S. again supported it.

At the same time, the U.S. backed and intervened on behalf of uprisings in countries it was not allied with, namely Syria and Libya, the latter of which it bombed in the 2011 NATO war.

Jones' far-right website InfoWars advances a variety of extreme right-wing conspiracies. He claims the 9/11 attacks and Sandy Hook shooting were also "false flag" operations condoned by the U.S. government, and insists climate change and the United Nations are communist conspiracies to take over the world.

Jones has spoken very highly of presidential candidate Donald Trump, who has appeared on InfoWars before, dubbing him a contemporary George Washington.

You can watch the video below:

By Ben Norton

Ben Norton is a politics reporter and staff writer at AlterNet. You can find him on Twitter at @BenjaminNorton.

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