- William B. Crews, a press officer at NIAID, has been reportedly moonlighting as an anonymous blogger at RedState, making outlandish claims about Dr. Anthony Fauci, according to a Daily Beast report.
- Crews promoted COVID-19 misinformation and undermining Fauci, calling him a "mask Nazi" and part of a "massive fraud."
- He also reportedly called infectious disease experts like Fauci "fascists" who should be sent to "the gallows and gibbet their tarred bodies in chains until they fall apart.”
- It's unclear if these blog posts were written on government time, but the Daily Beast confirmed Crews' identity via "public records, social media postings, and internal records from the National Institutes of Health, NIAID’s parent agency."
- Crews will be stepping down from his position at the agency, the Daily Beast later reported on Monday.
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A previously anonymous online troll who spread coronavirus misinformation and referred to Dr. Anthony Fauci as a "mask Nazi" was outed on Monday as an employee at Fauci's own agency, according to a new report from the Daily Beast.
William B. Crews' LinkedIn profile listed him as a press officer at the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases since 2007, following a 15-year stint as a US Army infantry officer. But, the Daily Beast reported, he's been reportedly moonlighting as an anonymous blogger at RedState, making outlandish claims about Fauci, the country's leading infectious disease expert.
"When the smoke clears on this Wuhan virus tragedy … one thing will become blindingly obvious: the nation and the Trump administration were failed at every turn by the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, Dr. Anthony Fauci," Crews wrote under his pseudonym, streiff, for RedState in mid-July.
In addition to pushing COVID-19 conspiracy theories, Crews called Fauci a "mask nazi" in another blog post.
"I think we're at the point where it is safe to say that the entire Wuhan virus scare was nothing more or less than a massive fraud perpetrated upon the American people by 'experts' who were determined to fundamentally change the way the country lives and is organized and governed," Crews wrote on RedState in June. He also referred to medical experts as "fascists," who should be sent to "the gallows and gibbet their tarred bodies in chains until they fall apart."
RedState, a longtime conservative blog, has come under criticism on several occasions for factual inaccuracies and derogatory language. The site has also had to take down an op-ed promoting the Seth Rich conspiracy theory following his death, and they published nude photos of former Rep. Katie Hill of California, ultimately leading to her resignation from Congress. Streiff is listed as RedState's managing editor.
It is unclear if Crews was blogging while on the clock for his government agency. Daily Beast reporter Lachlan Markay wrote that he was able to confirm Crews' identity by going through "public records, social media postings, and internal records from the National Institutes of Health, NIAID's parent agency."
Later on Monday, an NIAID spokeswoman told the Daily Beast that Crews will be leaving the agency.
"NIAID first learned of this matter this morning, and Mr. Crews has informed us of his intention to retire," Kathy Stover, an agency spokeswoman, wrote in a statement to the publication. "We have no further comments on this as it is a personnel matter."
Tweets from streiff's account line up with Crews' self-reported military experience in Germany and include multiple references to his work at NIH.
The Daily Beast obtained internal emails from the parent agency showing that Crews shared internal information on COVID-19 with other RedState writers, even prefacing a memo with "from office email."
The news outlet also found articles from Crews' pseudonym on RedState that criticized Fauci during the Ebola outbreak.
Crews' contributions to the site go back to 2004. Just in 2020, he posted more than 400 pieces on RedState, sometimes up to five in a single day, according to the Daily Beast.
Crews and RedState did not immediately respond to Business Insider's request for comment.
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