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.
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:
- Obama had attended a radical Islamic madrassa when he was a child in Indonesia.
- Obama supported the release of the “Lockerbie Bomber” Abdel Baset al-Megrahi.
- When Obama was a community organizer he was training for a radical overthrow of the government.
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:
- Trump Does Nothing As Questioner Says Obama Is Muslim
- Trump Pushes Origin of Birther Claim on Hillary
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.
Fox and Friends:
NBC Today Show: