Is Donald Trump Right About Brussels? He Didn't Say Nice Things After The Bombings
Another day, another insensitive comment from Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump. Trump spoke to a number of media outlets Tuesday following the terrorist attacks in Brussels, and naturally he was asked to comment on the situation. He responded by more or less blaming the problem on Belgium’s government not doing enough to protect its borders, telling Matt Lauer and Savannah Guthrie in an interview with Today that "Brussels is a total mess,'' and that "[it] used to be...one of the most beautiful and one of the safest cities in the world, and now it's a...very dangerous city where the police have very little control." Is Donald Trump right about Brussels?
Trump isn’t the only one discussing stricter border security following the Brussels attacks — French Prime Minister Manuel Valls called for more vigilance across the entire European Union, for one, according to Politico — and obviously the reality of terrorist violence needs to be taken seriously. But, as with many of Trump’s opinions, anything of value that he did say was quickly overshadowed by the way he chose to say it: as an insult.
As someone who has spoken unabashedly in the past about wanting to ban Muslims from the country as a terrorism prevention technique, Trump was clearly not going to provide reporters with the usual refrain of sending thoughts and prayers. But in the wake of tragedy and innocent lives lost, it would have been nice to see some kind of humanity from the outspoken billionaire. Instead, he opted to kick Brussels when it was already down, telling Lauer and Guthrie that, even before the attacks, the city was a “total mess,” and “a horror show.”
Do you all remember how beautiful and safe a place Brussels was. Not anymore, it is from a different world! U.S. must be vigilant and smart!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) March 22, 2016
Trump’s comments weren’t isolated only to Today, though. In an interview with Fox and Friends, Trump said the attacks in Brussels further proved why his long-held opinion about closing off America’s borders is the right one:
As for his view on Salah Abdeslam, the leader of the Paris attack who was recently arrested in Brussels? According to CNN, Trump said that waterboarding is the answer — despite it being a torture technique and therefore illegal:
Unsurprisingly, both of Trump’s Democratic rivals, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, and Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, spoke out against Trump’s position. According to Us Weekly, Clinton also spoke to Today via a phone-in interview following Trump’s segment, and insisted that closing the borders is not the answer:
Sanders also disagreed with Trump’s comments, according to Us Weekly, arguing on Jimmy Kimmel Live! that condemning ISIS does not mean condemning all Muslims:
The threat of ISIS-led terrorism is one that is frightening to everyone, pretty much everywhere. And, just like the Paris attack before it, the attacks in Brussels are another example to the rest of the world that the danger is very real. But, instead of coming together to support each other in the fight against terrorism, Trump is choosing to cast judgement and reinforce his own agenda (which likely wouldn't work if it became policy). And, given that he could be President, that's pretty scary too.