Twitter has been flooded with outrage after US President Donald Trump reposted Islamophobic videos from Jayda Fransen, deputy leader of Britain First. Many accused Trump of promoting far-right extremism and supporting anti-Muslim rhetoric.
The three videos are captioned as follows: ‘VIDEO: Muslim migrant beats up Dutch boy on crutches!’ ‘VIDEO: Muslim Destroys a Statue of Virgin Mary!’, ‘VIDEO: Islamist mob pushes teenage boy off roof and beats him to death!’. The content of the videos or their origin could not be independently verified.
Most on social media assumed at first Trump had been hacked. He had not, however, and Britain First was thrilled with the endorsement. Britain First’s leader, Paul Golding, tweeted: “THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES, DONALD TRUMP, HAS RETWEETED THREE OF DEPUTY LEADER JAYDA FRANSEN’S TWITTER VIDEOS! DONALD TRUMP HIMSELF HAS RETWEETED THESE VIDEOS AND HAS AROUND 44 MILLION FOLLOWERS! GOD BLESS YOU TRUMP! GOD BLESS AMERICA! OCS [Onward Christian Soldiers].”
Meanwhile, Fransen tweeted: “Donald Trump retweets hate messages from Britain First deputy leader.”
Britain First leader Paul Golding has asked Trump for “help.” He said Fransen “is facing prison for criticism of Islam … she needs your help!” He called MPs asking for Trump’s state visit to be cancelled “morons.”
Others were concerned with Trump’s response. Mayor of London Sadiq Khan said: “Britain first is a vile, hate-fuelled organisation whose views should be condemned, not amplified.”
Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn called on the government to condemn the tweets, calling them “abhorrent, dangerous and a threat to our society.”
I hope our Government will condemn far-right retweets by Donald Trump. They are abhorrent, dangerous and a threat to our society.
— Jeremy Corbyn (@jeremycorbyn) November 29, 2017
Former Liberal Democrat leader Tim Farron tweeted: “So the finger that retweeted a British fascist, is the same finger on the nuclear button. Happy days!”
So the finger that retweeted a British fascist, is the same finger on the nuclear button. Happy days!
— Tim Farron (@timfarron) November 29, 2017
Piers Morgan, who has been a supporter of Trump in the past, tweeted:“Good morning Mr President – what the hell are you doing retweeting a bunch of unverified videos by Britain First, a bunch of disgustingly racist far-right extremists? Please STOP this madness & undo your re-tweets.”
Good morning, Mr President @realDonaldTrump – what the hell are you doing retweeting a bunch of unverified videos by Britain First, a bunch of disgustingly racist far-right extremists?
Please STOP this madness & undo your retweets.
— Piers Morgan (@piersmorgan) November 29, 2017