While he awaits sentencing for lying to the FBI, former national security advisor Michael Flynn will take his awards where he can get them—even if that means appearing alongside Pizzagate pushers and racist YouTubers.
Flynn, a former lieutenant general who resigned as Trump’s national security adviser after he was revealed to have lied about his contacts with Russia’s ambassador, could spend up to six months in prison for lying to the FBI. That hasn’t stopped The Gateway Pundit, a far-right, conspiracy-mongering news outlet, from presenting Flynn with a “Award for Service to America” at its upcoming conference this weekend. The conference features Pizzagate conspiracy theorists, an alt-right YouTuber accused of leading a “cult,” and members of far-right European parties.
Flynn is scheduled to appear Friday night, following a series of speeches on why “President Trump Is #Winning.” Flynn, whose contacts with Russian and Turkish officials have brought scrutiny on the Trump administration, is arguably not the best spokesperson for #Winning.
But The Gateway Pundit has a history of playing loose with facts. The website falsely named a young Michigan man as the killer who drove a car into a crowd of anti-racist demonstrators in Charlottesville, Virginia last year. Gateway Pundit smeared the man as an “anti-Trump druggie” before the actual driver was revealed as neo-Nazi James Fields Jr. The Michigan man and his family are suing The Gateway Pundit, as is a man who uploaded a video of the car attack. The Gateway Pundit accused him of being a deep state plant who orchestrated the attack. After the smear campaign, conspiracy theorists harassed the man’s family and mailed him white powder, he alleges. The Gateway Pundit responded to the second lawsuit by calling the plaintiff an “unhinged leftie hack.” Both cases are ongoing.
The outlet’s conference is shaping up to be just as conservative and conspiratorial. The three-day lineup includes Pizzagate pushers Mike Cernovich and Jack Posobiec, conservative sting videomaker James O’Keefe, Turning Point USA talking heads Candace Owens and Charlie Kirk, and racist YouTuber Stefan Molyneux, who has been accused of luring followers into a “cult” that encouraged them to cut ties with their families—claims he denied when they first surfaced in 2008.
Also in attendance will be two members of far-right European political parties, as the activist news site It’s Going Down first noted. Conference speaker Dominik Tarczynski is a member of Poland’s far-right Law and Justice party, and has made international headlines bashing immigration.
Fellow conference speaker Petr Bystron is a member of Alternative for Germany (AfD), a hard-right party tied to neo-fascist groups like Europe’s Pegida. AfD members have recently defended demonstrators who led violent anti-immigrant and anti-Semitic rallies in Chemnitz, Germany this month. The rallies, whipped up over conspiracy theories in the wake of the murder of a German man, have seen demonstrators throwing Nazi salutes and chanting “national socialism, now.” Bystron has previously made overtures to English-speaking media, telling Breitbart that he was trying to arrange German asylum for far-right British troll Tommy Robinson, claiming that Robinson’s life was at risk during his brief jail stint because “he’s going to be in prison with 80 percent Muslims.”
The Gateway Pundit conference will feature events with titles like “The Fraud of Transgenderism,” “Authentic Abstinence: It Works Every Time!!” and “Inconvenient Facts: How rising temperatures and increasing CO2 are benefiting the Earth and humanity.” Flynn’s award will be followed by a talk titled “They’re Back! The Ten Commandments as the Foundation of Law” and a showing of a Cernovich movie.
The event’s two other awards are the “Full-time Homemaker of the Year Award,” and the “Phyllis Schlafly Award for Excellence in Leadership,” which will go to Rep. Steve King, the anti-immigrant Iowa Republican who retweeted a white nationalist yesterday.