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President Donald Trump’s administration continued their ongoing use of “alternative facts” this weekend by citing a mysterious incident in Sweden that apparently never happened. One of the highlights of Trump’s campaign-style rally Saturday was a defense of his controversial Muslim travel ban by mentioning the impact of similar refugee policies in European countries.
“We’ve got to keep our country safe,” Trump said. “You look at what’s happening in Germany, you look at what’s happening last night in Sweden. Sweden, who would believe this?”
Swedish tabloid Aftonbladet wouldn’t believe it. The Stockholm-based paper essentially trolled Trump by running a summary of the nondescript crimes that happened Friday in Sweden between 3:24 pm and midnight. A man set himself on fire in a plaza in Stockholm, Swedish singer/songwriter Owe Thörnqvist experienced some technical difficulties during a performance, storms shut down a major road, another man died after a workplace accident, and police chased a suspect through Stockholm during a DUI-related car theft. None of the incidents could be classified as acts of terrorism, and none are believed to be related to Sweden’s immigration policies.
Trump supporters point to a Fox News profile of Ami Horowitz, which aired Friday. In the profile, Horowitz links Sweden’s policy on foreign immigration with an increase in crime rates.
As for Trump, the hashtag #swedenincident began trending Sunday morning, and the 45th President continued to take Ls.
Look Donald, we've all gotten lost in an IKEA and couldn't figure out where the exit is...but calling it the #SwedenIncident is a bit much.— Frederick Douglass (@HITEXECUTIVE) February 19, 2017
It's all becoming clear. The nonexistent people of the Bowling Green Massacre got lost in an IKEA, thus creating the #swedenincident.— Ricky Davila (@TheRickyDavila) February 19, 2017
Authorities have released the victims names in the #SwedenIncident— Jordan Uhl (@JordanUhl) February 19, 2017
-A coffee table you got from IKEA in '06
-Two Nokia phones
Trump's camp would be wise to stop inventing tragedies to support his policy-making.