Toronto - In a gaffe heard round the world, U.S. President Donald Trump used a terror attack in Sweden Friday night to bolster his immigration policies during a rally in Melbourne, Florida on Saturday.
Toronto – In a gaffe heard round the world, U.S. President Donald Trump used a terror attack in Sweden Friday night to bolster his immigration policies during a rally in Melbourne, Florida on Saturday.
The problem was that there was no such attack.
After more than 24 hours of social media uproar, Trump took to Twitter to offer an explanation. “My statement as to what’s happening in Sweden was in reference to a story that was broadcast on Fox News concerning immigrants and Sweden.”
My statement as to what’s happening in Sweden was in reference to a story that was broadcast on @FoxNews concerning immigrants & Sweden.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 19, 2017
According to a CTV News report, White House spokesperson, Sarah Huckabee Sanders, explained further that Trump had been referring to an apparently general bad state of affairs existing in Sweden, presumably as a result of immigration.
Although he mentioned no program by name, it’s being speculated on that Trump could be referring to aFriday night broadcast on Fox News’ Tucker Carlson Tonight.
During the program, a report aired regarding 2016 immigration figures for Sweden revealing that only 500 immigrants out of 160,000 had successfully obtained employment. The report also drew a connection between the recent immigration figures and statistics showing an increase in gun violence and rape.
In fact, Sweden has enjoyed a long history of welcoming refugees and immigrants. The country has recently made moves, however, to lessen the number of migrants allowed into the country. The last incidence of terrorist-related violence came back in 2010 when an Iraqi-born Swede set off two explosive devices. His was the only death recorded.
According to the same source, immediately after hearing the statements Trump uttered during the rally on Saturday, Sweden’s former Prime Minister Carl Bildt, tweeted his own response; “Sweden? Terror attack? What has he been smoking? Questions abound.”
Sweden? Terror attack? What has he been smoking? Questions abound. https://t.co/XWgw8Fz7tj
— Carl Bildt (@carlbildt) February 19, 2017
Following this on Sunday, Bildt had more to say on the way that Trump processes and then disseminates facts. “If we are in a situation where there is tension in the world, we stand between war and peace. If we have a president who spreads lots of false rumours, it can be truly dangerous.”