Fake Fox News Twitter Smears Rep. Ilhan Omar

Claim

Rep. Ilhan Omar said on Twitter that she was "ashamed to be called an American" and said "the time for violence is now."

Rating

Not True

Reporting

A short-lived Twitter account impersonating the right-wing Fox News network managed to draw attention to itself on January 5 2020 through the familiar tactic of a made-up smear against Democratic Party Rep. Ilhan Omar of Minnesota.

The account, “@FoxNewsChanUS,” received more than 2,000 retweets for a post claiming, falsely, that Omar tweeted “she’s ‘ashamed to be called an American’ and pleads other nations to ‘stop Trump’ with ‘violence’ Friday afternoon.”

The post, first identified by MediaMatters.com researcher Alex Kaplan, contained a ginned-up photograph made to look like as though it had emanated from Omar’s own account:

It is true that Omar has criticized Trump’s order to assassinate Iranian Gen. Qasem Soleimani on January 3, 2020. But she has never said that “the time for violence is now.”

The tweet smearing Omar was not the only one from the faux Fox account to gain much traction online; prior to that it also pushed the false claim that Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg was “in critical condition”:

It also engaged in fearmongering, with a tweet claiming (again, falsely) that Iran had launched a nuclear missle against Israel:

While the account was removed from Twitter within hours of going live, Kaplan also reported that the fake Omar tweet was also disseminated around Facebook.

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