Farage has recently faced questions over his six appearances on the notorious American conspiracy theory show InfoWars, hosted by Alex Jones, who has been described as “the most prolific conspiracy theorist in contemporary America” by the Southern Poverty Law Centre (SPLC).
However, links between the Brexit Party and InfoWars run much deeper. Michael Heaver, Farage’s former press aide and Brexit Party MEP, and Farage’s current press aide Dan Jukes, are close associates of Jones’ protégé and InfoWars Editor-at-Large Paul Joseph Watson, who has a history of racism.
Heaver and Jukes appear to be personal friends of Watson, and have been photographed socialising with him on numerous occasions. Watson provided Heaver a rare lengthy interview for his website Westmonster in 2017, Heaver returning the favour and appearing on InfoWars in 2018, jokingly introduced by Watson as “the future Prime Minister of Britain”. Watson has even written an article for InfoWars that consists almost entirely of simply repeating Heaver’s quotes.
HOPE not hate analysis shows that Heaver has retweeted Watson a staggering 695 times, and Jukes 151 times. Farage himself has retweeted Watson 31 times, including a post claiming “The “refugee crisis” is now almost entirely a giant, criminal, illegal immigration racket. Those involved need to be prosecuted”, and posted links to Watson’s InfoWars articles. Heaver has since deleted hundreds of these retweets.
This is all the more concerning as, despite recent attempts to remake his image, Watson has long made his living spreading fringe conspiracy theories. Admitting that “it was David Icke who woke me up”, Watson has claimed that the US government was behind 9/11 and various mass shootings, that British government was behind the 7/7 bombings, suggested that far-right Norwegian mass murderer Anders Breivik was “a patsy” and authored YouTube videos with titles such as the 2012 video “How The Illuminati Controls The Music Industry”.
The 37-year old Watson recently stated “I hate conspiracy theories”, admitting that he believed them when he was “a kid, like fifteen years ago”. However, he has continued to spread dangerous untruths into his 30s, writing in 2013 of the “involvement of the Royal Family in the murder of Princess Diana”, describing the 7/7 bombings as a “false flag event”, and filming a ludicrous series of videos outside the annual Bilderberg conference in Watford the same year.
Watson also has a history of racism and Islamophobia. Media Matters have uncovered Watson’s 2017 claims that liberals are anti-science for rejecting the notion that African and Middle Eastern people are more aggressive because they have lower IQs, stating “You can’t deny that there are differences between races when it comes to IQ”. Among his numerous instances of Islamophobia is his 2015 claim that “there’s no such thing as moderate Islam. Islam is a violent, intolerant religion which, in its current form, has no place in liberal western democracies.” Watson has also posted images of golliwogs online.
Watson has also praised Bilderberg conspiracy theorist Jim Tucker, claiming that he “met and travelled” with Tucker in 2011 and “found him to be humble, charming and incredibly funny”, remarking that “the truth movement has lost a legend” upon his death in 2013. Tucker published his Bilderberg theories through The Spotlight, a notorious antisemitic magazine published by the quasi-nazi Liberty Lobby. Tucker also worked for The Spotlight’s successor magazine, American Free Press (AFP), which, like The Spotlight, was founded by veteran far-right Holocaust denier Willis Carto. Watson wrote in 2010 that “American Free Press muckraker Tucker has proven routinely accurate with the information he obtains from sources inside Bilderberg”.
Farage and Jukes have also been photographed with American far-right conspiracy theorist Jack Posobiec. A former host for the Canadian far-right platform Rebel Media who has been linked to white supremacists, Posobiec was a key promoter of the “Pizzagate” conspiracy theory, which alleged that a Washington DC pizzeria was a front for a paedophile ring that stretched to the top of the Democratic Party.
Farage has retweeted content from Posobiec, as has Jukes and MEPs Heaver, Nathan Gill and Martin Daubney. Heaver has currently purged his account of 29 of these 30 retweets.
HOPE not hate has exposed multiple links between Brexit Party officials and extreme figures and conspiracy theorists. See also: