Did Antifa Start The West Coast Wildfires?
A viral Facebook post has been making the rounds claiming that the recent wildfires occurring on the West Coast have been started by members of Antifa. The post has over 600 shares and contains various screenshots of social media posts that claim that the fires are the result of arson. One post even claimed that several Antifa members had been arrested for starting the fires in Douglas County. Katie Daviscourt, a video journalist and Turning Point USA representative, tweeted that multiple sources confirmed the fires are the result of arson and that they may be linked to Antifa.
However, the claims are not supported by official sources. Medford police made a Facebook post to debunk a false claim and clarify that they had not arrested any person affiliated with Antifa concerning the fires. Other police departments have also made similar posts regarding the situation. The Douglas County Sheriff’s Office directly responded to the claim that six Antifa members had been arrested in a Facebook post and confirmed that this was not true. The Molalla Police Department Facebook page made a post confirming that no Antifa activity had occurred.
The official FBI Portland twitter account also made a tweet clarifying that they had received reports of arsons and wildfires but that after investigations the reports were found to be untrue. A spokesperson for the Oregon Department of Forestry, Joy Krawczyk, stated that they had not seen any indications of ”a mass politically influenced arson campaign”, as reported by the New York Times.
While several of the fires are under investigation currently, there is no evidence to suggest that any of the wildfires were related to or started by Antifa. Moreover, official statements made by the relevant authorities disprove this claim even further. Hence, the claim in the original post is hereby declared as false.