Former 'disinformation czar' fundraises to launch defamation suit against Fox News

In a Thursday video uploaded to YouTube with an accompanying GoFundMe page, the former "Ministry of Truth" head announced the lawsuit.

Nina Jankowicz, the former Biden administration official who was slated to head the Department of Homeland Security's (DHS) Disinformation Governance Board to fight "misinformation" before resigning a month after taking the position, is pleading for financial support to sue Fox News for their alleged "their malicious reckless lies" about her.

In a Thursday video uploaded to YouTube with an accompanying GoFundMe page, the former "Ministry of Truth" head announced the lawsuit. 

"My name is Nina Jankowicz. I'm asking for your financial support of a lawsuit I want to bring against Fox News for their malicious reckless lies against me," she began. "A year ago today I realized a lifelong dream and entered public service as a US government official. I spent the better part of a decade working on both sides of the aisle to counter disinformation. I've published two books. And I've always been an advocate for free expression." 

She continued, arguing that her "main thesis" in her work is "we can't fight disinformation simply by removing content or restricting speech."

The ex-"disinformation czar" went on to explain her job within the administration, making it sound like an innocuous role focused on "privacy" and "civil liberties."

"On March 2 2022, I began a job leading a new entity within the Department of Homeland Security, called the Disinformation Governance Board," Jankowicz said. "My role was to make sure different entities across DHS were coordinated to bring the latest research to bear in the department and to help the department ensure that its policies about its existing counter disinformation work were grounded in American values, privacy, civil rights and civil liberties." 

"That's all the board was," she claimed. "It didn't have the ability or the authority to act on its own."

She went on to blame Fox News coverage for spreading "conspiracy theories" about her to "tens of millions" of people.

"After my position was announced, baseless claims that the board was an Orwellian Ministry of Truth, and I was President Biden's chief sensor, spread. Even though the board had nothing to do with arbitrating or restricting speech. Fox News launched overly personalized, false and incendiary coverage of me, mainstreaming online conspiracy theories to tens of millions of Americans," Jankowicz said.

In a May 2022 appearance on CNN, DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas argued that the comparisons of the Disinformation Governance Board and the Ministry of Truth of the dystopian George Orwell novel Nineteen Eighty-Four were false, claiming that "It works to ensure that the way in which we address threats, the connectivity between threats and acts of violence are addressed without infringing on free speech — protecting civil rights and civil liberties, the right of privacy."

According to Mayorkas, while "we probably could have done a better job of communicating what it does and does not do," the criticisms of the board "are precisely the opposite of what this small working group within the Department of Homeland Security will do."

The program was put on an indefinite pause that month, just weeks after it was announced, prompting Jankowicz to resign.

"They lied about my role," she continued in the video before clips of Fox News hosts criticizing her were shown.

"... was hired to police domestic social media use, period," Tucker Carlson could be heard saying. 

Sean Hannity was seen calling Jankowicz "the administration's official purveyor of truth."

Jankowicz cut in, "They lied about and completely manufactured my past statements."

A clip from Fox & Friends then played, featuring the host calling it "chilling" that "that this disinformation czar thinks it's okay for her to edit your speech."

"They called me a liar," Jankowicz continued, before playing several more criticism of her from Fox News. 

"They called me crazy… and they told their audience I was evil," she said. 

"I quickly started receiving violent threats as a result of this coverage… I was weeks away from becoming a mom. Fox didn't seem to mind."

"I resigned from my position on May 18. Fox seemed happy about that," she continued. "... But they still continued to lie about me, mentioning me in most weeks for the rest of 2022."

"Fox News irrevocably changed my life when they force fed lies about me to tens of millions of their viewers. Tens of thousands have harassed me online, hundreds have violently threatened me," Jankowicz complained. "In addition to the deferral of my dream of serving my country, I've lost something irreplaceable — peace with my son during his first year in the world. Fox can't keep getting away with targeting Americans with their hateful rhetoric and lies. Trying to silence professionals doing their jobs is not journalism, it's vigilantism and it's ruining lives. That's why I'm seeking justice. So please, donate what you can and share this with anybody who believes in fighting for the truth. Thank you so much for any help you can give."

In August, the Disinformation board was formally terminated, reported CNN

The GoFundMe created by Jankowicz has garnered $6,921 out of her $100,000 goal so far. 

"Any funds raised in excess of protecting me and my family will be used to support other women and people of intersectional identities who find themselves in situations similar to mine," she added to the description.

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