A terror attack on the EU capital of Brussels in Belgium on Tuesday morning has left nearly 30 people dead, and many more injured. As the world comes together to mourn the loss, Donald Trump issued a response that makes his unfitness for the Presidency abundantly clear.
As the BBC reports:
Belgian Prime Minister Charles Michel told a press conference “scores” of people had been killed or injured in the attacks at the airport and Maelbeek metro station.
The Belgian government has not confirmed casualty numbers. Brussels transport officials said 15 died at Maelbeek and media have reported up to 13 dead at the airport terminal.
As Republican frontrunner and a potential President-in-waiting, Donald Trump would have been expected to send his thoughts to those who lost their lives, and all those grieving the sudden and tragic loss. Instead, he took the moment to double down on his racist war against all Muslims.
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 went on to call in to Fox News to bash the besieged Belgian city too.
“I’ve been talking about this for a long time. Brussels was a beautiful place,” Trump said to Fox’s Steve Doocy, Ainsley Earhardt, and Brian Kilmeade.
“Zero crime, and now it’s a disaster city. It’s a total disaster and we have to be very careful… as to who we allow into this country.”
This is the kind of scapegoating that will no doubt fuel a rash series of hate crimes against Muslim Europeans and Muslim Americans, or anyone who appears to be a Muslim – i.e. mixed race people, Sikhs, Hindus and other non-whites.
Trump’s biggest cheerleader, conservative columnist Ann Coulter, also failed to show the basic courtesy of expressing her respects to the dead, or their loved ones.
Dozens of ppl being carted out on stretchers from Brussels airport & on CNN they're talking @ how Belgium hasn't made Muslims feel "welcome"
— Ann Coulter (@AnnCoulter) March 22, 2016
Trump’s closest competitor, Senator Ted Cruz of Texas, did exactly the same.
We will name our enemy — radical Islamic terrorism. And we will defeat it. https://t.co/Z7YTgUg3AA
— Ted Cruz (@tedcruz) March 22, 2016
To put these comments in perspective, we should compare them to those of other world leaders and commentators.
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau issued a strong condemnation of the attacks, together with moral and practical support to the victims.
I strongly condemn today's deplorable terrorist attacks in Brussels. My thoughts are with the victims as we stand with Belgium & the EU.
— Justin Trudeau (@JustinTrudeau) March 22, 2016
— Embassy of Canada (@CanEmbBeLux) March 22, 2016
The Prime Minister of Australia was also quick to come forward with a statesman-like response to the tragedy.
Deeply concerned by the attacks in Brussels. Australians' thoughts, prayers & solidarity are with the people of Belgium.
— Malcolm Turnbull (@TurnbullMalcolm) March 22, 2016
The Chief of Staff of German leader Angela Merkel also issued a stirring message on the attacks in English.
All solidarity now with EU, Belgium, #Brussels! Terrorists will never win: Our European values much stronger than hate, violence, terror!
— Peter Altmaier (@peteraltmaier) March 22, 2016
All leaders are calling for a calm and effective response to the immediate threat, solidarity in confronting the threat of terrorism in the longer term, and genuine compassion for those who have lost their lives or loved ones. The appalling behavior of the American right in the midst of this grief is a great embarrassment. If Mr. Trump cannot elevate himself to the level of statesman at a moment of crisis like this, he truly has no place near, let alone in, the White House.
Featured image via Flickr/screengrab