President Trump stunned the world this afternoon when he publicly advocated for American soldiers to put pig’s blood on their bullets in order to offend Muslim militants.
Following the tragic terrorist attack in Barcelona today, Trump tweeted that the United States should “study” what General Pershing did to “terrorists” when he caught them.
Study what General Pershing of the United States did to terrorists when caught. There was no more Radical Islamic Terror for 35 years!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 17, 2017
It appears the President of the United States is now making policy based on a horrifying hoax chain email myth designed to rile up gullible senior citizens.
He’s referring to U.S. General John Joseph “Black Jack” Pershing, who served in America’s turn-of-the-century colonial wars in the Philippines and in particular, led the brutal repression of the Moro Rebellion, an insurrection by ethnic Filipino Muslims against their American occupiers.
This isn’t the first time Trump has brought up General Pershing. Last February, Trump told the extremely fake news tale of Pershing at one of his rallies.
“He was a rough guy!” said Trump, before telling the audience that:
He caught 50 terrorists who did tremendous damage…and he took the 50 terrorists and he took 50 men and dipped 50 bullets in pig’s blood. You heard about that? He took 50 bullets and dipped them in pig’s blood [which is considered haram]. And he has his men load up their rifles and he lined up the 50 people and they shot 49 of those people. And the 50th person, he said, you go back to your people and you tell them what happened. And for 25 years there wasn’t a problem.
There are so many problems with this statement it’s hard to know where to begin.
Firstly, they weren’t “terrorists,” the Moro were fighting for their independence against a colonial power who had “won” the islands as part of a settlement from a separate war.
Secondly, the whole story is an utter myth that was widely circulated among the inboxes of terrified conservatives after the September 11th terrorist attacks but has been discounted as a ridiculous legend by fact-checking website Snopes.
Thirdly, a cursory look at a history book will tell you that far from 25 years of peace, the Moro Rebellion continued until the outbreak of the Second World War, when the islands were seized by Japan.
In the space of a few hours, Trump has gone from defending racist violence to calling for it. It goes without saying that this is abhorrently offensive and is extremely counterproductive to our efforts to combat terrorism.