Did an organization named "Islamia Coexistence Embassy" (ICE) claim they would leave America if pork wasn't banned? No, that's not true. The story was published by a liberal satire website that tries to fool Trump supporters and Republicans into sharing made up stories that are clearly marked as satire when you actually click them. Articles from the site are frequently copied by foreign-run fake news websites. The people liking and sharing these stories are enriching foreign website operators (or a liberal from Maine) via the ad revenue generated with the content which is probably not what they expected or wanted.
The story originated from an article published by Taters Gonna Tate on August 1, 2019 titled "'If Pork Isn't Banned, We'll Have To Leave America' -Muslamian Council" (archived here) which opened:
The prominent Muslammic-American relations group, "Islamia Coexistence Embassy", has been bemoaning the American diet for years, claiming that it is "in direct confrontation with their desires." ICE feels that the United States should adapt to their wishes by promoting a nationwide ban on the slaughter and consumption of pork products.
ICE spokesperson Mustafa B'Jaii explained more:
"Americans are filthy pigs. And yet they eat pigs. That's cannibalism and cannibalism is against god.
Users on social media only saw this title, description and thumbnail:
'If Pork Isn't Banned, We'll Have To Leave America' -Muslamian Council
The prominent Muslammic-American relations group, "Islamia Coexistence Embassy", has been bemoaning the American diet for years, claiming that it is "in direct confrontation with ...
The story was posted under a category named "Muslammicy Bacony Goodness Satire, Satire and/or Conservative Fan Fiction" and of course there is no "Islamia Coexistence Embassy" (the name was likely made up to have the same acronym as the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, namely "ICE"). The words "Islamia", "Musslamic" and "Muslamia" are made up too. And the picture of the spokesperson seems to be from India as it features in this gallery with a caption that reads "Photos of men in turbans taken at the Dera Radha Soami Colony in Beas, Punjab, India in December 1989.":
Tofu photography showcases my favourite photos, all taken by me. I am passionate about photography and add new photos regularly so bookmark me and come back often! The photographs and text on this site are Copyright of Tofuphotography, ©2004 - 2019 For digital licenses and to purchase high resolution images at competitive prices with a fast turnaround (direct deposit or PayPal), please contact me at [email protected]
The story seems to echo an old hoax story that has a "muslim figure" making similar claims:
Fake News: Muslim Figure Did NOT Say "We must have Pork-Free Menus Or We Will Leave U.S." | Lead Stories
Did a "Muslim Figure" demand pork-free menus and did she threaten to leave the U.S. if the request wasn't complied with? No, that's not true: the story has been repeated over and over again by dozens of websites using pictures of several different muslim women but none of them have made this demand.
The site that posted the new pork story is part of the "America's Last Line of Defense" network of satire websites run byself-professed liberal troll Christopher Blair from Maine along with a loose confederation of friends and allies. Blair has been in a feud with fact checking website Snopes for some time now and has also criticized other fact checkers in the past who labeled his work "fake news" instead of satire. In reaction to this he has recently rebranded all his active websites and Facebook pages so they carry extremely visible disclaimers everywhere.
Every site in the network has an about page that reads (in part):
Before you complain and decide satire is synonymous with "comedy":
The use of humor, irony, exaggeration, or ridicule to expose and criticize people's stupidity or vices, particularly in the context of contemporary politics and other topical issues.
Everything on this website is fiction. It is not a lie and it is not fake news because it is not real. If you believe that it is real, you should have your head examined. Any similarities between this site's pure fantasy and actual people, places, and events are purely coincidental and all images should be considered altered and satirical. See above if you're still having an issue with that satire thing.
Articles from Blair's sites frequently get copied by "real" fake news sites who often omit the satire disclaimer and any other hints the stories are fake. Blair has tried to get these sites shut down in the past but new ones keep cropping up.
Here is a BBC video of Blair explaining how his process works:
If you are interested in learning more about Blair and the history of his sites, here is something to get you started:
The Ultimate Christopher Blair and America's Last Line of Defense Reading List | Lead Stories
STORY UPDATED: check for updates below. Yesterday Eli Saslow at the Washington Post wrote a fantastic article about Christopher Blair, a man from Maine who has been trolling conservatives and Trump supporters online for years and occasionally even made a living out of it.
If you see one of his stories on a site that does not contain a satire disclaimer, assume it is fake news. If you do see the satire disclaimer it is of course also fake news.
NewsGuard, a company that uses trained journalist to rank the reliability of websites, describes tatersgonnatate.com as:
A site that publishes false stories and hoaxes that are often mistaken for real news, part of a network named America's Last Line of Defense run by hoax perpetrator Christopher Blair.
According to NewsGuard the site does not maintain basic standards of accuracy and accountability. Read their full assessment here.
We wrote about tatersgonnatate.com before, here are our most recent articles that mention the site:
- Fake News: Rashida Tlaib NOT Under Investigation For Election Fraud For Making Sure Her Name Was A Voting Option
- Fake News: Minnesota Schools Did NOT Make Arabic Classes Mandatory
- Fake News: Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Did NOT Say 'We Pay Soldiers Too Much'
- Fake News: Trump Administration Did NOT Start Deportation Proceedings Against AOC and Omar
- Fake News: David Hogg, Protest Group NOT Blocking Washington Parade