During a rally at the BB&T Center in Sunrise, Florida on August 12, 2016, Republican Presidential candidate Donald Trump told the audience of thousands gathered:
“ISIS is honoring President Obama. He is the founder of ISIS. He is the founder of ISIS, okay? He is the founder. He founded ISIS. And I would say the cofounder would be crooked Hillary Clinton.”
This is not the first time that Donald Trump has imputed the formation of ISIS to Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton. In January at a campaign rally in Mississippi, Trump said from the podium:
“They’ve created ISIS. Hillary Clinton created ISIS with Obama.”
During an interview with 60 Minutes that aired July 17, 2016, Trump again reiterated his claim:
“Hillary Clinton invented ISIS with her stupid policies. She is responsible for ISIS. She led Barack Obama, because I don’t think he knew anything. I think he relied on her.”
Trump surrogate Kayleigh McEnemy, er, McEnany appeared on CNN attempting to defend Donald Trump’s claim that Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton created ISIS.
“Well, look, he opened up room for ISIS to grow, by not leaving a stay-behind force in Iraq, by invading Libya, invading Syria, allowing ISIS to grow from a small contingency to 40,000 strong. So, in that sense he is. And let’s not forget when Hillary Clinton called Donald Trump an ISIS propagandist. So, you know the other side isn’t completely innocent of throwing around ISIS accusations, but I think in this case, this accusation is far more accurate than Donald Trump being an ISIS propagandist.”
Guest host John Berman wasted no time setting the record straight.
“ISIS was Al Qaeda in Iraq, which was founded after 2003, 2004, before Barack Obama was president. You know, Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi is the founder of ISIS, in fact, not President Obama.”
Of course, nothing could be further from the truth than the silly idea that Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama created ISIS. Neither are Muslim. They are Protestant Christians, and more specifically, Hillary Clinton is a Methodist. Moreover, Islamic jihadism in the Middle East – making up only about seven percent of Muslims throughout the world – has existed before Barack Obama’s time in the White House or Hillary Clinton pursuing her political ambitions. It resulted from a number of factors – the colonialistic meddling on the part of the United States since shortly after World War II, the venal way that has been conducted, the resultant death and destruction, and jihadist groups such as Al Qaeda being influenced by the writings of Sayyid Qutb, an Egyptian writer who studied the educational system in the United States from 1948 to 1950 and viewed American culture as crass and replete with materialism, racism, superficiality in interpersonal relationships and lack of artistic feeling.
Besides, what the world now knows as ISIS began in 1999 as Jama’at al-Tawhid wal-Jihad, Arabic for the Organization of Monotheism and Spiritual War. At the time, Hillary Clinton was in the twilight of her service as First Lady of the United States and had recently begun a successful campaign for a seat in the U.S. Senate, representing New York, and Barack Obama was serving as a Senator from Illinois. Neither one created jihadism in the Middle East, but each in their own way inherited an obligation to run damage control against the same, only have the Republicans make them into scapegoats for the problem, regardless of the role they have taken in aggravating it since the Reagan years.
Featured image courtesy of AMC News.