Gen. Mike Flynn, President-elect Donald Trump’s pick for national security adviser, has quietly deleted a tweet that linked to a fake news story spreading baseless conspiracy theories about Trump’s presidential rival Hillary Clinton.
On Nov. 2, Flynn tweeted a story referencing Clinton’s alleged “sex crimes.” The tweet gained renewed attention last week, as it resembled a different right-wing conspiracy theory that claimed Clinton and her campaign chairman John Podesta were running a child sex trafficking operation at a Washington, D.C., pizzeria.
In 2014, he was forced out of his job as director of the Defense Intelligence Agency for making controversial comments and clashing with the Obama administration on how to combat terrorism. Even then, he often disregarded facts. According to the New York Times, employees who worked with him at the Pentagon often referred to his ideas as “Flynn facts,” because he based them on falsehoods, like claiming that Sharia law was on the rise in the U.S.
Flynn’s son, Michael Flynn Jr., was fired from Trump’s transition team last week after continuing to peddle the “Pizzagate” conspiracy theory, even after a gunman attacked the popular D.C. restaurant because he said he intended to “self-investigate” the baseless allegations.
Flynn is not the first right-wing figure to scrub evidence of promoting conspiracy theories. Alex Jones, of the right-wing website InfoWars, which often promulgates such stories, has reportedly removed a video about Pizzagate from his site, after an FBI criminal complaint revealed that the gunman in last week’s incident learned of the conspiracy theory on the site and sent the video to a friend before the incident.