William Crews, a public affairs specialist for the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, is retiring after he was identified as the culprit behind conservative blog posts criticizing top U.S. officials fighting COVID-19.
More recently, Crews has “been contributing to the very same disinformation campaign that his superiors at the NIAID say is a major challenge to widespread efforts to control a pandemic that has claimed roughly 200,000 U.S. lives,” the outlet reported.
Through his anonymity, the press officer frequently criticized his colleagues as part of “a left-wing anti-Trump conspiracy,” The Daily Beast said, including calling Dr. Anthony Fauci a “mask nazi” who is “attention-grubbing” and “media-whoring.”
“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 in a June RedState post, the outlet continued.
“If there were justice, we’d send and [sic] few dozen of these fascists to the gallows and gibbet their tarred bodies in chains until they fall apart.”
Following The Daily Beast’s reporting, NIAID has since announced Crews retirement.
“NIAID first learned of this matter this morning, and Mr. Crews has informed us of his intention to retire,” a spokesperson wrote to The Daily Beast. “We have no further comments on this as it is a personnel matter.”
Here’s what you need to know about William Crews:
1. Crews Posted a Majority of His Writings During Normal Business Hours, The Daily Beast Claimed
Crews posted a “vast majority of his writing” this year on the RedState during normal business hours, according to The Daily Beast.
Although the outlet could not “definitively determine whether Crews was writing for RedState, or posting to his Twitter account, while on the clock at his government job,” it expressed that the timing of “streiff’s” posts “raise questions about the ethical use of taxpayer resources.”
2. Crews has Worked in the NIAID’s Communications Department Since 2007
According to LinkedIn, Crews has worked as a press officer with NIAID since 2007.
Internal NIH employee directory records obtained by The Daily Beast also confirm the information, the outlet said. The documents show that Crews operates out of the agency’s Rockville, Maryland offices, it continued.
The Daily Beast stated that Crews’ LinkedIn associates with “streiff’s” Gmail account, as well as shares “connections” with several RedState “founders and its former editor, Erick Erickson.”
“Streiff has frequently called himself a Marylander as well and even helped start a conservative blog about state politics called Red Maryland,” the outlet reported.
3. Crews Did a 15-Year Stint With the U.S. Army
Crews’ LinkedIn indicates that he worked as an officer in the U.S. Army’s Berlin Brigade — the 4th Battalion, 6th Infantry Regiment — from 1977 to 1992.
It also notes later service in the 3rd Infantry Regiment, as well — which coincides with a tweet by Streiff’s account, The Daily Beast reported.
“Streiff tweeted that he was a veteran of the unit during a 2019 exchange,” the outlet said.
Crews obtained an education from Old Dominion University and Webster University, his LinkedIn adds.
4. Crews Shared Internal NIH Information With Other RedState Writers, The Daily Beast Said
In late 2016, Crews sent out an email from his “streiff” account to “current and former contributors” featuring an agency memo from NIH Director Francis Collins, The Daily Beast reported.
“He also sent the list of internal NIH emails regarding the government shutdown of 2013, and even suggested that RedState writers cover various NIH-funded studies,” the outlet said.
“In one case suggesting that another contributor write up a particular study because ‘I’m conflicted out.'”
5. Crews is an Avid Trump Supporter
Crews is a “die-hard supporter” of Trump, according to The Daily Beast — although he was a former “critic” during the president’s 2016 campaign.
In several RedState writings, Crews condemned the closures of businesses and practices of social distancing as hindering American’s rights and attempts to hurt Trumps chances at re-election, the outlet reported.
“This whole thing has been a total fraud, insofar as the policy response to Wuhan virus, from day one,” Crews wrote in June, The Daily Beast said. “There has never been a need for a lockdown. There has never been a need for wearing masks.”