This article may lack focus or may be about more than one topic. Please help improve this article, possibly by splitting the article and/or by introducing a disambiguation page, or discuss this issue on the talk page. (January 2021)
TruNews
Type of site
Available inEnglish
OwnerRick Wiles
URLtrunews.com
RegistrationNone
LaunchedSeptember 1998; 23 years ago (1998-09)[1][2]
Current statusActive

TruNews is an American far-right[3] conspiracy theory[4] and fake news website owned by Rick Wiles. The website frequently publishes racist, homophobic, antisemitic, and Islamophobic content. It has been designated a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center, an American civil rights organization that specializes in monitoring extremist organizations.[5]

History

Wiles founded the organization as America's Hope in September 1998 as a Christian ministry based in the Dallas–Fort Worth area. In the following months, Wiles toured the U.S. speaking of moral decline as he aimed to prevent "economic collapse" and "war on American soil". On May 24, 1999, the organization made its first radio broadcast. After five years of regular broadcasts, the news station briefly changed its name to America Freedom News, before settling on TruNews in 2004.[1]

In February 2020, TruNews was permanently banned from YouTube.[6]

Controversies

In October 2014, TruNews urged that the spread of Ebola "could solve America's problems with atheism, homosexuality, sexual promiscuity, pornography and abortion".[7][8] In late January 2020, he said COVID-19 was God's "death angel" and "plagues are one of the last steps of judgment."[9]

TruNews is known for promoting racist and antisemitic conspiracy theories. TruNews frequently described President Barack Obama as a "demon from hell".[3] Obama, he claimed while the former president was in office, was the "jihadist-in-chief" who was "waging jihad against the United States from inside the White House" and murdered Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia as a "pagan sacrifice".[10]

In 2017, Wiles' guests included someone who claimed President Bill Clinton is a flesh eating cannibal leading to his contraction of related diseases.[11] Another asserted that Queen Elizabeth II of the United Kingdom is a "lizard person" who had Diana, Princess of Wales murdered because the Princess was in the process of revealing that the Royal Family was involved in satanism.[12] He has also asserted that Israel and the "Jewish mafia" had President John F. Kennedy assassinated. Another edition of Wiles program claimed Israel and the "synagogue of Satan" are pushing the United States to fight wars on their behalf.[4]

Wiles has asserted that the effects of Hurricane Harvey upon the city of Houston, Texas, in September 2017 resulted from Houston's "LGBT devotion";[13] has described Judaism and Islam as "the Antichrist"; has called Central American immigrants a "brown invasion" being used by God to punish White Americans for legal abortion;[12] has claimed that the 2017 Las Vegas shooting was conducted by government death squads from a "gay/lesbian Nazi regime";[3] and, in July 2018, predicted an imminent coup (led by CNN's Anderson Cooper and MSNBC's Rachel Maddow) that would result in the nationally televised decapitation of the Trump family on the White House lawn.[12][14]

Wiles promoted antisemitic conspiracy theories of Jewish world domination while discussing the 2019 AIPAC conference.[15] He said on TruNews in November 2019 that the congressional hearing concerning the impeachment of Donald Trump are "infested with Jews" and constitute a "Jew coup".[16] He claimed: "That's the way the Jews work. They are deceivers. They plot, they lie, they do whatever they have to do to accomplish their political agenda" and asserted the United States would reach a state of civil war before Christmas. Millions of Christians would be murdered by Jews as a result.[17] Of the hoax Protocols of the Elders of Zion, Wiles said the authors had "accurately predicted what was going to happen in the world."[16] TruNews and Wiles have also claimed that the transgender rights movement is a Zionist plot to make all of humanity androgynous, that this supposed plot was inspired by Talmudic and Kabbalistic doctrines, and that it involves "putting specific things in food, in drink".[18][6]

In November 2019, TruNews was temporarily suspended from YouTube for violating its rules on promoting hate speech.[19][16] Wiles has denied his rhetoric has antisemitic intent: “It’s hard to say. I don’t know. I can tell you from my heart there is no ill will toward the Jewish people, with all sincerity.” He blamed George Soros for organizing a campaign against him.[20] In February 2020, TruNews was permanently banned from YouTube.[6]

References

  1. ^ a b "About TruNews". TrueNews. Archived from the original on May 14, 2019. Retrieved June 28, 2019.
  2. ^ "Whois Lookup Captcha". whois.domaintools.com. Retrieved Jun 7, 2021.
  3. ^ a b c Thebault, Reis (March 29, 2019). "News outlet that covered 'lizard people' and called Obama a demon just interviewed Trump Jr". The Washington Post. Retrieved November 27, 2019. The TruNews archive reads like a greatest hits collection of far-right conspiracy theories, a veritable potpourri of Nazi references and fear mongering about secret cabals.
  4. ^ a b "TruNews and Rick Wiles: 'End Times' Anti-Semitism and Anti-Zionism". Anti-Defamation League. January 13, 2020. Retrieved February 7, 2020. TruNews is a fundamentalist Christian streaming news and opinion platform that has increasingly featured anti-Semitic and anti-Zionist content, and also has a long record of disseminating radical Islamophobic and anti-LGBTQ messages.
  5. ^ https://www.splcenter.org/hate-map
  6. ^ a b c Slisco, Aila (February 20, 2020). "YouTube Bans Anti-Semitic Channel TruNews After Founder Calls Trump Impeachment 'Jew Coup'". Newsweek. Retrieved February 21, 2020.
  7. ^ Martinez, Michael (October 18, 2014). "What's more disturbing than Ebola? The outrageous commentary". CNN. Retrieved November 27, 2019.
  8. ^ Stein, Nat (2014-10-16). "Statetap: Evangelicals for Ebola; Snoop Dogg for Dunafon". The Colorado Independent. Retrieved 2021-01-30.
  9. ^ Lemon, Jason (January 28, 2020). "Christian Pastor Claims Coronavirus is God's 'Death Angel,' Blames Parent's 'Transgendering Little Children'". Newsweek. Retrieved February 7, 2020.
  10. ^ Malaea, Marika (November 18, 2019). "Florida Pastor Rick Wiles Claims Barack Obama is Anonymous Author of 'A Warning'". Newsweek. Retrieved November 27, 2019.
  11. ^ May 8, Kyle Mantyla |; Am, 2017 11:24. "Just Another Day On Trunews: Queen Elizabeth Is A Satanist Lizard And Bill Clinton Is A Cannibal". Right Wing Watch. Retrieved 2021-01-30.CS1 maint: numeric names: authors list (link)
  12. ^ a b c Elfrink, Tim (September 27, 2018). "Trump Takes Question From Racist, Homophobic Florida Conspiracy Website". Miami New Times. Retrieved November 27, 2019.
  13. ^ Pasha-Robinson, Lucy (September 6, 2017). "Gay people to blame for Hurricane Harvey, say evangelical Christian leaders". The Independent. London. Retrieved November 27, 2019.
  14. ^ Williams, James (July 23, 2018). "Florida Talk Show Host Rick Wiles 'We Are 72 Hours Away From An Attack On The White House.'". News Talk Florida. Retrieved November 30, 2019.
  15. ^ Jensen, Tasia (March 28, 2019). "Far-Right Show TruNews Fearmongers: You're Going to See 'Christianity Become Criminalized'". Daily Beast. Retrieved April 5, 2019.
  16. ^ a b c MacGuill, Dan (November 27, 2019). "Did Pastor Rick Wiles Call Trump Impeachment a 'Jew Coup'?". Snopes. Retrieved December 9, 2019.
  17. ^ "'There Will Be a Purge:' U.S. Pastor Warns of 'Jew Coup' to Impeach Trump". Haaretz. November 27, 2019. Retrieved November 27, 2019.
  18. ^ February 14, Kyle Mantyla; Am, 2020 11:03. "TruNews: Zionism Is Using the Transgender Rights Movement to Make All of Humanity Androgynous". Right Wing Watch.CS1 maint: numeric names: authors list (link)
  19. ^ Rudoren, Jodi (November 27, 2019). "Far-Right Pastor Calls Impeachment A 'Jew Coup,' Begs Trump To 'Wake Up'". Forward. Retrieved November 27, 2019.
  20. ^ Grynbaum, Michael M. (January 26, 2020). "Site That Ran Anti-Semitic Remarks Got Passes for Trump Trip". The New York Times. Retrieved February 7, 2020.