President Donald Trump retweeted some anti-Muslim videos Wednesday, some of which may or may not have been real.
Whether the videos show real actions by Muslims or they’re Islamophobic propaganda peddled by a far-right British activist is beside the point, according to White House spokeswoman Sarah Huckabee Sanders.
What matters is that Trump wants to “promote strong borders and strong national security.”
“Whether it’s a real video, the threat is real, and that is what the president is talking about,” Sanders said.
The three videos, originally posted by Jayda Fransen of Britain First, a right-wing political party that some condemn as an extremist group, claim to show the following:
- “Muslim migrant beats up Dutch boy on crutches!”
- “Muslim destroys a statue of Virgin Mary!”
- “Islamist mob pushes teenage boy off roof and beats him to death!”
The Netherlands Embassy seemed to confirm that one of the videos showed a real event, but debunked the claim that the perpetrator was a “Muslim migrant.”
“Facts do matter,” the embassy wrote to Trump. “The perpetrator of the violent act in this video was born and raised in the Netherlands. He received and completed his sentence under Dutch law.”
@JaydaBF @realDonaldTrump .@realDonaldTrump Facts do matter. The perpetrator of the violent act in this video was b… https://t.co/0ldaTkUQaq— Netherlands Embassy 🇺🇸 (@Netherlands Embassy 🇺🇸) 1511983586.0
The retweets also got the attention of British Prime Minister Theresa May, whose office issued a statement condemning Trump’s sharing of the content.
“British people overwhelmingly reject the prejudiced rhetoric of the far-right which is the antithesis of the values that this country represents: decency, tolerance and respect,” the statement read.
May’s office also accused Britain First of using falsehoods to “stoke tensions.”
Bringing the whole thing full circle, Trump sent a tweet directly to May on Wednesday evening in response.
“@Theresa_May, don’t focus on me, focus on the destructive Radical Islamic Terrorism that is taking place within the United Kingdom. We are doing just fine!”
.@Theresa_May, don’t focus on me, focus on the destructive Radical Islamic Terrorism that is taking place within th… https://t.co/d5BTTYaALh— Donald J. Trump (@Donald J. Trump) 1512003726.0