Friday, October 20, 2017

What did Donald Trump do today?

He was apparently convinced that property crimes going up in Britain were the result of "radical Islamic terror."

At 6:30 A.M. this morning, Trump tweeted, "Just out report: 'United Kingdom crime rises 13% annually amid spread of Radical Islamic terror.' Not good, we must keep America safe!" This is almost precisely the same wording used by One America News Network moments earlier. OANN is a satellite-only channel known for promoting conspiracy theories and as a favorite choice for friendly questions by Trump's press secretaries.

Crime is indeed up in England and Wales (though not the UK as a whole), according to statistics published yesterday that reflect a 13% increase in all crimes reported to the police. About 4.5 million crimes were recorded in the past year. These include everything from fraud to burglary to domestic violence. Virtually none of those millions of crimes had anything to do with terrorism.

British officials were not pleased by Trump's comments, which were not the first time he's suggested that British citizens needed to be more afraid

Why is this a problem?

  • Trying to stoke fear and erode confidence in legitimate governments is the goal of terrorism.
  • A president who copies actual "fake news" rather than get his information from the best law enforcement and intelligence services in the world is either incompetent or too lazy for the job.