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OpEdNews Op Eds    H2'ed 10/18/15

Fox News: Giving the Nod to a Wannabe CIA Con Man

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Terrorism Expert ARRESTED For Pretending To Be CIA
Terrorism Expert ARRESTED For Pretending To Be CIA
(Image by The Young Turks, Channel: TheYoungTurks)
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The latest Foxy howler, L'Affaire Wayne Shelby Simmons, convinced Fox News and defense contractors that he was part of CIA's "outside paramilitary special operations group," and had led "Deep Cover Intel Ops."
Alas, the "credentials" Simmons claimed proved as hard to verify as claims of WMD in Iraq. On Thursday he was accused of making false statements and major fraud against the United States, arrested, and jailed. I was in downtown Washington on the 16th, when RT International called for a 5-minute interview. Fun. Watch it below:

Those who watch the above video will learn that, by happy coincidence, a day earlier I had my own personal encounter with Fox. That experience offered some rich material pointing to how carefully some Fox personalities, like Sean Hannity, vet their guests, while other Foxy folks -- well, not so much.

According to the Washington Post, Senior Fox News War-on-Terrorism promoter/commentator, retired Army Gen. Paul Vallely, has spoken highly of colleague Simmons, describing him as "very knowledgeable," and "able to talk in depth about CIA operations, covert operations especially." Vallely added that Simmons "came off to me as a very honest, down-to-the-earth guy."

As for other endorsements of Simmons, none other than former defense secretary Donald Rumsfeld commended him for a spy thriller Simmons wrote: "He doesn't just write it. He's lived it, and that's why he ... can tell this spy thriller in such an engrossing way." Rumsfeld, of course, is second to none in spinning a yarn. Indeed, his fulsome memoir (726 pages) titled Known and Unknown belongs in the "fiction" section of bookstores. In fairness here, it is an unknown known how known Simmons actually was to Rumsfeld.

L'Affaire Wayne Shelby Simmons is a helpful reminder of the kind of things CIA con men can get away with (ask Nancy Pelosi or Dianne Feinstein). And this guy was just a wannabe. For further amusement, click here for a report by Matt Zapotosky, that was front-paged in the Washington Post on Oct. 16. His tongue must have been buried deeply in his teeth, but for the most part he succeeds in writing it with a straight face.

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Ray McGovern works with Tell the Word, the publishing arm of the ecumenical Church of the Saviour in inner-city Washington. He was an Army infantry/intelligence officer and then a CIA analyst for 27 years, and is now on the Steering Group of Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity (VIPS). His (more...)
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