Trump Adviser Claims Father of War Hero Is a “Muslim Brotherhood Agent”

Roger Stone, an informal adviser to Donald Trump, took to Twitter on Sunday to claim that Khizr Khan, the father of a slain war hero who spoke at last week’s Democratic National Convention, is working for the Muslim Brotherhood.

The link that accompanied Stone’s tweet outlines a conspiracy theory that claims Khan is working to bring radical Muslims to the United States. The article Stone linked to also alleges that Khan’s son, Captain Humayun Khan, was a Muslim martyr who was killed “before his Islamist mission was accomplished.”

The article concludes, threateningly if not quite coherently: “What part of ‘they will be in the House of Islam by force in the near future’ don’t these democrats understand? More dead Americans?”

Of course, as with most low-budget far-right conspiracy sites, no actual evidence is ever presented.

Stone’s shocking tweets come just a day after Trump told ABC News that, like the Khan family, he has made many sacrifices. The Republican nominee also attacked Khan’s wife, who stood alongside her husband during his DNC address, suggesting that perhaps she “wasn’t allowed” to speak because of the couple’s Muslim faith.

(h/t Mother Jones, Slate)

Reality

The Muslim Brotherhood is a conservative Middle Eastern Islamic organization that may have some connections to terrorist activity; in the world of American far-right conspiracy theories, however, the Brotherhood is believed to be seeking to infiltrate and destroy the U.S. government.

Trump Invites Russian Hackers To Influence the American Election

Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump on Wednesday invited Russian hackers to find and publish Hillary Clinton’s emails.

“Russia, if you’re listening, I hope you’re able to find the 30,000 [Clinton] emails that are missing,” Trump said at a press conference. “I think you will probably be rewarded mightily by our press. Let’s see if that happens. That’ll be nice.”

The remarks came after Clinton’s camp said this week that Russian hackers were likely responsible for breaching the computer networks of the Democratic National Committee earlier this year and leaking emails of top officials to WikiLeaks for publication.

The hack, which showed top staffers considering leaking negative information about Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, led to chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz announcing her resignation.

“Russia has no respect for our country,” Trump said at the press conference. “And that’s why, if it is Russia, nobody even knows it’s Russia, it was probably China. … It shows how weak we are. It shows how disrespected we are.”

Trump also slammed the DNC for what was seen as conspiring against Sanders to ensure that Clinton won the Democratic nomination.

“I’m not gonna tell Putin what to do. Why should I tell Putin what to do?” Trump said. “It’s not even about Russia or China or whoever it is that’s doing the hacking. It’s about the things they said in those emails. They were terrible things.”

He also accused Clinton of being in on the conspiracy.

“Believe me, as sure as you’re sitting there, Hillary Clinton knew about it,” Trump said. “She knew everything. Debbie Wasserman Schultz could not breathe without speaking and getting approval from Hillary Clinton.”

Trump doubled down on his Russian hacker comments in a tweet after the press conference, but revised his language to say that if Russia already has emails, they should hand them over:

But his running mate, Indiana Gov. Mike Pence, released a statement after the press conference that discouraged Russian involvement in a US election.

“The FBI will get to the bottom of who is behind the hacking,” Pence said in the statement. “If it is Russia and they are interfering in our elections, I can assure you both parties and the United States government will ensure there are serious consequences.”

A spokesman for House Speaker Paul Ryan issued a statement after the press conference pushing back on Trump’s comments.

“Russia is a global menace led by a devious thug,” Brendan Buck said, according to the statement. “Putin should stay out of this election.”

Clinton’s campaign also responded.

“This has to be the first time that a major presidential candidate has actively encouraged a foreign power to conduct espionage against his political opponent,” senior policy adviser Jake Sullivan said in a statement. “That’s not hyperbole, those are just the facts. This has gone from being a matter of curiosity, and a matter of politics, to being a national security issue.”

(h/t Business Insider)

Reality

This is a curious comment at a time when Trump’s Russian connections are being scrutinized. His campaign manager Paul Manafort, had worked as a consultant for the now-ousted pro-Russian government in Ukraine. And the Trump campaign worked like mad to include a more pro-Russian stance towards arming Ukraine to be added in the GOP platform.

Here’s what Trump is up to with the “Russia, please release Hillary’s 30,000 emails.” He’s intentionally conflating the State Department server with the DNC email hack so that in the minds of Americans, Hillary already had her emails hacked by Russia. But they’re two different email scandals.

Trump is trying to make them into one thing so he can say Hillary endangered national security when Russia hacked her email (which there’s no evidence they did.)

But… But… But… He was just joking!

I mean, this might have been an attempt at humor. At best one could argue Trump was half-joking, since a Russian hack would greatly benefit him and his chances of becoming president.

And if the argument really is that he is joking then to that we would say to even publicly joke that a foreign government spy on his political rival is in poor taste because it is rooting against an American, which is all beneath the office he is seeking.

But in the end… what is the punchline?

Media

Trump: France and Germany May Face More Screening After Terror Attacks

Donald Trump said Sunday he would subject people from France, among other countries, to “extreme vetting” as they seek to enter the United States, a move he says is necessary to deter terror attacks.

The GOP presidential nominee, in an interview that aired Sunday on NBC’s “Meet the Press,” was asked if his proposal might mean that ultimately far fewer people from overseas would be allowed into the U.S.

“Maybe we get to that point,” Trump replied, adding: “We have to be smart and we have to be vigilant and we have to be strong.”

For months Trump has called for a temporary ban on foreign Muslims seeking to enter the United States and criticized the Obama administration for continuing to admit refugees from Syria. In his speech Thursday night at the Republican National Convention, he said the U.S. “must immediately suspend immigration from any nation that has been compromised by terrorism until such time as proven vetting mechanisms have been put in place” — notably leaving out any reference to Muslims or to Syria, Iraq and other Mideast nations.

In the NBC interview, Trump noted “specific problems” in Germany and France — both countries have been rocked by fatal attacks in public places in recent weeks — and “Meet the Press” host Chuck Todd asked if his proposal would limit immigration from France. “They’ve been compromised by terrorism,” Todd said.

Trump replied: “They have totally been. And you know why? It’s their own fault. Because they allowed people to come into their territory.” He then called for “extreme vetting” and said: “We have to have tough, we’re going to have tough standards. … If a person can’t prove what they have to be able to prove, they’re not coming into this country.”

(h/t Fox News, Yahoo)

Media

Trump Shifts on Muslim Ban, Calls for ‘Extreme Vetting’

Donald Trump is once again shifting the parameters of his proposed temporary ban on Muslims entering the country, calling Sunday for “extreme vetting” of persons from “territories” with a history of terror — though not explicitly abandoning his previous across-the-board ban.

In an interview with “60 Minutes” that aired Sunday, Trump zeroed in on people from suspicious “territories” as those who will receive deep scrutiny when trying to enter the United States. He did not directly repudiate his previous call for an outright ban.

“Call it whatever you want,” Trump told CBS when asked if he was changing his previously released policy.

“Change territories, but there are territories and terror states and terror nations that we’re not going to allow the people to come into our country,” he said.

Trump continued: “We’re going to have a thing called ‘extreme vetting.’ And if people want to come in, there’s going to be extreme vetting. We’re going to have extreme vetting. They’re going to come in and we’re going to know where they came from and who they are.”

Syrian refugees, however, appear to still be on Trump’s list of those people not allowed into the country. The presumptive Republican nominee, who heads to the convention this week for his official coronation, remained consistent on his calls to “not let people in from Syria that nobody knows who they are.” This ban appears more country-based than religious-based.

Trump’s initial proposal for a ban came in December of 2015. He called for a temporary yet “total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States until our country’s representatives can figure out what is going on.” The 2015 policy proposed a blanket ban on Muslims based on what Trump called “hatred” of the West he said was innate in Islam.

The language around the ban later shifted when Trump traveled to Scotland, spurring questions when he told a reporter it wouldn’t “bother” him to allow a Scottish or British Muslim to come into the United States in light of his proposed ban. When asked moments later by The Daily Mail to further clarify those remarks, Trump responded: “I don’t want people coming in — I don’t want people coming in from certain countries. I don’t want people coming in from the terror countries. You have terror countries! I don’t want them, unless they’re very, very strongly vetted.”

Asked at the time which countries constitute the “terror countries,” Trump said, “they’re pretty well decided. All you have to do is look!”

He echoed this sentiment in a phone call with NBC News one day later. When asked by NBC’s Hallie Jackson which “terror nations” Trump would focus on, he did not give much by way of criteria for designating these countries. “Terror nations,” Trump repeated. “Look it up. They have a list of terror nations.”

This is the first time Trump himself has articulated the pivot and specification of the ban that many advisors have attempted to spin for him. Still, the businessman has not disavowed his prior plan for a blanket ban or stated that it’s being abandoned in the wake of a new policy that focuses on specific territories.

(h/t NBC News)

Donald Trump Aide Tweets Pic Accusing Clinton of Murder

Twitter

A top Donald Trump supporter on Tuesday tweeted a photo of Hillary Clinton, which featured a written message accusing the former secretary of state of murder.

Michael Cohen, who serves as special counsel at the Trump Organization, tweeted:

The graphic he included in the tweet features a picture of Clinton, with the words, “I presided over $6 billion lost at the State Department, sold uranium to the Russians through my faux charity, illegally deleted public records, and murdered an ambassador. Elect me!”

Messages left with Clinton and Donald Trump’s campaigns were not immediately returned.

CNN anchor Ashleigh Banfield slammed Cohen on her show Tuesday, saying: “This show is called ‘Legal View’ because we know a thing or two about the law, and Michael Cohen is a lawyer. That there is libel.”

“To suggest that a woman murdered an ambassador. Look, it’s not as though Hillary Clinton’s team is about to go and launch some litigation on this, but that’s pretty striking stuff,” she said.

Banfield showed a tweet from 2014 of Cohen with Clinton and her husband, former President Bill Clinton, where he wrote, “#tbt being received by two great Americans…Hillary Clinton and Patrick Kennedy at the Kennedy Compound.”

“Apparently Michael Cohen thought she was a great American two years after Benghazi, and now he does not,” she said. “Let’s just be really frank here, people. Don’t call someone a murderer of an ambassador, for God’s sake. It’s offensive to Americans who really want the truth and what’s going on in politics. Please, give us a break.”

Cohen’s tweet comes the same day as a the House Select Committee on Benghazi released an extensive report on the September 11, 2012, attacks that killed four Americans, including Ambassador Chris Stevens. The report from the House Republicans on the committee argues that intelligence was available suggesting an attack in the area was possible and that Clinton and a top aide, Patrick Kennedy, should have realized the risks.

Cohen’s tweet came after an NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll published Tuesday shows Trump is ahead of Clinton at “being honest and straightforward” 41% to 25% respectively and 44% to 39% on the issue of national security.

(h/t CNN)

Reality

Clinton did not kill Ambassador Stevens and 2 years of 8 Republican-led Benghazi committees found no wrongdoing by then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton or President Obama.

Let’s also review the other claims.

$6 Billion Lost

False – The State Department inspector general discovered $6 billion worth of federal contracts that overlapped with Clinton’s tenure that had either missing or incomplete paperwork. “The failure to maintain contract files adequately creates significant financial risk and demonstrates a lack of internal control over the Department’s contract actions,” the IG’s office wrote in the audit, which did not mention Clinton by name and covers a six-year period that continued well after she left office in early 2013.

Here is the full report. Read it yourself.

Sold Uranium to the Russians

False – This comes from the book “Clinton Cash” where the author falsely claimed Hillary Clinton as Secretary of State had “veto power” and “could have stopped” Russia from buying a company with extensive uranium mining operations in the U.S. In fact, only the president has such power.

Trump Struggles to Explain Clinton Server Hack Evidence

Donald Trump insisted Thursday that the private email server Hillary Clinton used as secretary of state was hacked, but the presumptive Republican nominee couldn’t say where he learned that information.

“But is there any evidence that it was hacked other than — routine phishing –” “NBC Nightly News” anchor Lester Holt asked Trump in a sit-down interview that will air Thursday on “NBC Nightly News.”

“I think I read that,” Trump said. “And I heard it, and somebody–”

“Where?” Holt pressed him.

“—that also gave me that information. I will report back to you. I’ll give it to you,” Trump said.

U.S. officials have told NBC News that there is no evidence that hackers penetrated the server, although there is evidence of phishing attempts. Clinton’s campaign says that there is no evidence that her private server was ever hacked.

Trump’s remark comes a day after he argued that Clinton’s private server left her vulnerable to blackmail if she were president.

“Her server was easily hacked by foreign governments — perhaps even by her financial backers in Communist China — putting all of America in danger,” Trump said Wednesday in a speech that slammed Clinton. “Then there are the 33,000 emails she deleted. While we may not know what is in those deleted emails, our enemies probably do. So they probably now have a blackmail file over someone who wants to be president of the United States. This fact alone disqualifies her from the presidency.”

NBC News fact-checked some of Trump’s claims in the speech.

Trump’s campaign offered alleged examples of attempted hacks from China and other countries in a published version of his Wednesday address, but none of the cited reports say that Clinton’s server was ever successfully penetrated as the candidate argued.

(h/t NBC News)

Media

Donald Trump Pushes Conspiracy Theory That Obama Supports ISIS

Twitter

Donald Trump said he was right to imply that President Obama is an ISIS sympathizer.

In an attempt to defend his controversial claims that the president supports the terrorist group, the presumptive Republican nominee tweeted a story from anti-Obama website Breitbart.com that cites a newly discovered “secret” memo the website says proves Obama is an ISIS supporter.

The memo, as it turns out, is neither secret nor does it demonstrate the administration’s support for ISIS or any other policy. Indeed, it’s a recently declassified and heavily redacted intelligence field report from August 2012 about the worsening security situation in Iraq, obtained by the conservative watchdog Judicial Watch through a Freedom of Information lawsuit.

Breitbart falsely concludes that because the memo mentions that al Qaeda in Iraq (a precursor to ISIS) is fighting against Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, the Obama administration therefore supports ISIS.

The Obama administration, particularly through its State Department, has spoken at length about the complicated process of vetting the array of opposition groups in order to avoid supporting those with ties to extremism.

White House spokesman Josh Earnest Monday responded to a question about Trump’s claims the same day. “Well, I think what is clear is, if you take a look at the president’s record, it speaks for itself,” Earnest said. “And that record includes a lot of dead terrorists.”

(h/t ABC News)

Reality

The Washington Post did an enormous fact-check and came to the conclusion that the Brietbart.com article was a pack of crap. This should come to the surprise of no-one who reads Brietbart.com and can recognize it as dishonest and willfully deceptive. For more information you can read the fact-check here, but in the Washington Post’s expert summary:

“This is what happens when people with little understanding of policy or context choose to willfully misinterpret documents. This is a relatively unimportant memo, with little information not in newspapers at the time. Rather than showing that the Obama administration is supporting terrorist groups, the information in the memo demonstrates why the administration was so reluctant to back rebel groups in Syria, often to the annoyance of Republican hawks.

Moreover, the memo was not sent directly to Clinton’s office, as asserted by Breitbart.

Trump, as a presumptive presidential nominee, really needs to rely on more accurate information when making factual claims.”

This all stems from Donald Trump’s debunked rekindling of the old conservative trope that President Barack Obama is a secret Muslim hellbent on overthrowing the government. Donald Trump said:

Look, we’re led by a man that either is not tough, not smart, or he’s got something else in mind,” Trump said on Fox News. “And the something else in mind — you know, people can’t believe it. People cannot, they cannot believe that President Obama is acting the way he acts and can’t even mention the words ‘radical Islamic terrorism.’ There’s something going on. It’s inconceivable. There’s something going on.

 

Trump Stretches Facts in Fiery Post-Orlando Speech

Donald Trump responded to the worst terror attack since 9/11 with a no-holds-barred attack on Muslims and Hillary Clinton that played loose with the facts and was rife with inflammatory rhetoric.

He claimed Clinton wanted to disarm Americans and let Islamic terrorists slaughter them, while seeming to overinflate the number of Syrian refugees and insinuating the perpetrator of the Orlando attack was a foreigner.

In a speech pulsating with tough talk that will likely please his supporters, the presumptive Republican nominee also renewed his call for a ban on Muslim migration into the United States — and extended it to cover all nations with a history of terrorism. Hinting at a huge expansion of presidential power, he vowed to impose such a system by using executive orders.

“The current politically correct response cripples our ability to talk and to think and act clearly,” Trump said framed by two American flags at Saint Anselm College in New Hampshire. “If we don’t get tough, and if we don’t get smart, and fast, we’re not going to have our country anymore. There will be nothing, absolutely nothing, left.”

Trump’s speech Monday was a clear attempt to use the fallout from Sunday’s attack in Florida that left 49 dead to position himself as a strong agent of change determined to flush out a culture of weakness and incompetence that he said had let terrorism fester and threatened the existence of U.S. culture itself.

It is a strategy that appealed to his base and helped him win the Republican primaries, and he is now deploying it after a rough couple of weeks signifying the start of the general election.

As part of that effort Monday, he delivered some of the most explosive and forceful political rhetoric uttered by a major U.S. political figure in many years, seeming to show little regard for facts.

Trump refused to name Omar Mateen, the killer who went on the rampage in an LGBT nightclub in Orlando, during his speech. But, adding a line not found in his prepared remarks, he said that he was born “an Afghan, of Afghan parents, who immigrated to the United States.” But the perpetrator of the Orlando massacre was born in New York to parents from Afghanistan.

The real estate magnate also appeared to equate all Muslims who seek to come to the United States with the perpetrators of recent terror attacks — another claim that seems to fly in the face of the evidence about a community that has been present in the U.S. for decades.

“We cannot continue to allow thousands upon thousands of people to pour into our country many of whom have the same thought process as this savage killer,” Trump said.

“Remember this, radical Islam is anti-woman, anti-gay and anti- American.”

He also accused Clinton of endangering the country with her plans to bring in more foreigners.

“Hillary Clinton’s catastrophic immigration plan will bring vastly more radical Islamic immigration into this country, threatening not only our society but our entire way of life,” he charged. “When it comes to radical Islamic terrorism, ignorance is not bliss. It’s deadly — totally deadly.”

He accused Clinton of wanting to “allow radical Islamic terrorists to pour into our country. They enslave women and they murder gays. I don’t want them in our country.”

And he repeated an unsubstantiated claim that Clinton wants to deny Americans’ 2nd Amendment rights.

Trump’s rhetoric — which was heavy on toughness but often short on policy details — contrasted sharply with the more nuanced and conventional response to the attack delivered earlier by Clinton, the presumptive Democratic nominee.

But he made a case that the current policies were not working and were leaving America dangerously exposed to a tide of Islamic terror he said was coming its way — an argument that many in the GOP find compelling.

He has pointed to the political benefits of the rising fears of terrorism following other recent attacks.

In each instance, Trump sought to project both strength and a lack of concern for the reaction to his provocative rhetoric, calculating that both would help him rise in the polls during the Republican primary. Indeed, a majority of Republican voters agreed with Trump’s call to temporarily ban all foreign Muslims from entering the United States.

“Whenever there’s a tragedy, everything goes up, my numbers go way up because we have no strength in this country,” Trump said on CNN after last December’s San Bernardino shooting. “We have weak, sad politicians.”

(h/t CNN, NBC)

Reality

Donald Trump’s speech was heavy on inflammatory rhetoric, light on details and facts.

Trump: “The Muslim ban is temporary. We have to find out what is going on?”

There are terrorists running around in Syria and Iraq. They have a book. They think that book is great. The use their book to justify killing others. Why is that so fucking hard to understand? Can he shut up about his stupid ban now?

Plus, aside from being completely and totally xenophobic, there is one major logical flaw with this policy. Meet Omar Mateen, 29 year old who killed at least 50 people in massacre Orlando. An American, born in New York.

Omar Mateen

Meet James Wesley Howell, 20 year old who was caught with cache of weapons, ammunition and explosive-making materials in his car and apparent plans to attend the L.A. Pride festival in West Hollywood. An American, born in Indiana.

James Wesley Howell

Exactly how would banning foreigners from entering the United States have solved the Orlando massacre or helped to prevent another possible shooting in Los Angeles by Americans?

Trump: A “tremendous flow” of Syrian refugees is pouring into the country free of screening also seemed to be an exaggeration.

Since May 1, 2016, 2,019 Syrian refugees have been admitted to the U.S., according to a State Department official, while only 1,736 were taken in over the first seven months of the fiscal year.

Entries have risen in recent months but the process has been painstaking for many of those hoping to win refuge in America and have to submit to a months-long vetting process. Being accepted into the United States as a refuge is the hardest route to enter this country. If a foreign person wanted to do harm here in America there are much easier ways than the hardest route to enter this country.

Trump: “Each year the United States permanently admits 100,000 immigrants from the Middle-East.”

The actual number of immigrants from the middle east in 2014 was 69,000. Trump is off by about 31%, so we’ll call that a ‘D+’ in truth telling.

Interestingly, there are a lot of countries in the middle-east that are our friends, like Israel. So is Donald Trump inferring that Israelis are savages? If we remove our friends from the list of Middle-Eastern countries, like Egypt and Saudi Arabia, then that leaves only 33,000 immigrants who were admitted into the United States in 2014 from the Middle-East. That would mean Trump is off by 67%.

We’ll have to revise Donald’s truth grade to an ‘F’.

Trump: “[Clinton] wants to take away Americans’ guns and then admit the very people who want to slaughter us.”

Clinton has called for universal background checks and stricter controls on firearms, but has never called for the abolition of the 2nd Amendment. Another false statement.

Trump: “Remember this, radical Islam is anti-woman, anti-gay and anti- American.”

You know who has far more effective at being more anti-woman and anti-gay in this country? Republicans.

Media

Links

More fact checking from NBC News.

Donald Trump Connects President Obama to Orlando Shooting

Donald Trump seemed to suggest that President Barack Obama had an ulterior motive concerning how he addresses and handles terror attacks, because he does not say the phrase “radical Islamic terrorism.”

Trump said Monday morning on Fox News’ “Fox and Friends”:

We’re led by a man who is very — look, we’re led by a man that either is not tough, not smart, or he’s got something else in mind. And the something else in mind, you know, people can’t believe it.

 

People cannot believe, they cannot believe that President Obama is acting the way he acts and he can’t even mention the words ‘radical Islamic terrorism.’ There’s something going on. It’s inconceivable. There’s something going on.

Asked earlier why he had tweeted that Obama should resign because he wouldn’t say the phrase “radical Islamic terrorism,” Trump said:

He doesn’t get it or he gets it better than anybody understands. It’s one or the other, and either one is unacceptable.

A Trump spokeswoman did not respond to a request for an explanation of what Trump meant. But asked on NBC’s “Today Show” about the comments, Trump said that “a lot of people” thought Obama does not want to understand terrorism.

Well, there a lot of people who think maybe he doesn’t want to get it. A lot of people think maybe he doesn’t want to know about it. I happen to think he just doesn’t know what he’s doing, but there are many people that think maybe he doesn’t want to get it, he doesn’t want to see what’s really happening.

And later, speaking to Fox News’ Bill O’Reilly, Trump offered yet another explanation when questioned about what he meant.

I can’t define it. Nobody knows what’s going on. Nobody knows why (Obama) doesn’t have more anger, more competitive zeal. It’s almost like he’s falling asleep.

Trump has been on the defense since tweeting Sunday that he did not need congratulations for being “right” about the Orlando nightclub shooting. On Sunday, Trump tweeted that Obama should resign for not using the phrase “radical Islamic terrorism.” Obama dubbed the shooting an “act of terror” and an “act of hate” in his response Sunday afternoon.

Reality

So instead of thinking diplomatically on foreign affairs and having a tangible policy, Trump instead turns to an old baseless conservative political smear from 2007 that Obama is a covert Muslim extremist.

For those who may be too young or have forgotten, Fox News was famous for their political smears against the then-Senator Obama saying things like:

None of these hand any kernel of truth. So it came to no surprise when Fox News defended Trump, writing:

The Washington Post story featured comments Trump made earlier in the day on Fox News, when he made a made a vague statement about Obama interpreted by some as a reference to his sympathies.

Interpreted by some? Excuse me? If Donald Trump was not trying to infer the right-wing conspiracy theory that President Obama does not act because he is an undercover Muslim, can Fox News please try to come up with a plausible explanation of what Trump was actually talking about?

Fact is, this is not the first time Donald Trump has pushed the Muslim Obama conspiracy theory:

Finally, Trump took the opportunity to bring up the old conservative trope that Obama refuses to acknowledge terrorism, and until he does we’ll be vulnerable to terrorists… or something. However there is a very good reason why President Obama, and before him George W. Bush, will not speak the words “radical Islamic terrorism” when referring to terrorist groups like ISIS. They may sound like small words to Republican critics like Donald Trump and Senator Ted Cruz, but they have big meaning. The members of ISIS and other terrorist groups are desperate for legitimacy. This is why ISIS calls themselves the “Islamic State.” They try to portray themselves as religious leaders, holy warriors in defense of Islam. And they propagate the notion that America, and the West, is at war with Islam. For a President of the United States to infer that we are at war with the Islamic religion, it would have immediate consequences from our Muslim allies in the middle-east as well as give terrorist groups the legitimacy they exactly desire.

Media

Fox and Friends:

NBC Today Show:

O’Reilly Factor:

 

Trump Tells California ‘There Is No Drought’

Donald Trump told California voters Friday that he can solve their water crisis, declaring, “There is no drought.”

California is, in fact, in midst of a drought. Last year capped the state’s driest four-year period in its history, with record low rainfall and snow.

Speaking at a rally in Fresno, Calif., Trump accused state officials of denying water to Central Valley farmers so they can send it out to sea “to protect a certain kind of three-inch fish.”

(h/t SF Gate)

Source

Donald Trump’s California drought conspiracy theory comes straight from lunatic Alex Jones’ InfoWars in an article 3 days prior titled, “Environmentalists Caused California Drought to Protect This Fish.

The theory that California’s water shortage is all the fault of the Environmental Protection Agency is, like most conspiracy theories, grounded in an actual fact. The EPA has, in fact, caused 800,000 acre-feet of water annually to be flushed into San Francisco Bay to maintain its marine ecosystem. The program, however, dates to the early 1990s, and California’s water system, all told, manages over 40 million acre-feet a year. The practice that Trump describes so darkly involves 2 percent of that—and an economically vital 2 percent at that. California fisheries produce jobs in the hundreds of thousands. But not in Fresno.

Reality

California is now in its fifth year of drought, which has taken a heavy toll on agriculture in particular. Despite an El Niño event that saw an increase last year in snowpacks that supply about one-third of California’s water, 86 percent of the state is still considered to be in drought.

Trump appeared to be referring to disputes over water that runs from the Sacramento River to the San Francisco Bay and then to the ocean. Some farmers want more of that flow captured and diverted to them.

Politically influential rural water districts and well-off corporate farmers in and around California’s Central Valley have been pushing back against longstanding federal laws protecting endangered fish and other species, saying federal efforts to make sure endangered native fish have enough water is short-changing farmers of the water they want and need for crops.

Water authorities say they can’t do it because of the water rights of those upstream of the farmers, and because of the minimum-water allowances needed by endangered species in the bay and by wildlife in general.

The three-inch Delta smelt is a native California fish on the brink of extinction. The smelt has become an emblem in the state’s battles over environmental laws and water distribution.

The farm lobby, a heavyweight player in California’s water wars, also is seeking federal and state approval for billions of dollars in new water tunnels, dams and other projects.

Trump promised that, if he’s elected, he would put their interests first. “If I win, believe me, we’re going to start opening up the water so that you can have your farmers survive,” he said.

California is the country’s No. 1 agriculture producer. The state’s drought is raising the stakes in water disputes among farmers, cities and towns, and environmental interests.

Media

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