Donald Trump recited a laundry list of recent horrendous crimes to set the mood for his important foreign policy speech in Youngstown, OH yesterday. To promote his bleak view of a world under attack by “radical Islam,” he listed terrorist attacks carried out against the US by people of Muslim faith. He got his facts wrong about the San Bernadino shooters however. He made the following statement at 38:00 in the above video.
Finally, we will need to restore common sense to our security procedures.
Another common feature of the past attacks that have occurred on our soil is that warning signs were ignored…
The female San Bernardino shooter, here on a fiancé visa from Saudi Arabia, wrote of her support for Jihad online. A neighbor saw suspicious behavior – bombs on the floor and other things – but didn’t warn authorities, because said they didn’t want to be accused of racially profiling – now many are dead and gravely wounded.
None of these claims are substantiated, and Trump has never provided evidence while voicing them in the past.
The female shooter, Tashfeen Malik did not make public posts online about jihad. The FBI said that all jihad material was based in private messages and email only, and that the messages were sent under a psuedonym. It is hard to call an private message written under a false name a “warning sign.”
FBI Director Comey stated unequivocally that “So far in this investigation we have found no evidence of the posting on social media by either of them at that period of time and thereafter reflecting their commitment to jihad or to martyrdom.”
Politifact, Factcheck.org, Slate, ABC News and others couldn’t find any evidence of any of the neighbors claiming to see “bombs on the floor.” This is a favorite claim of Trump’s, and he has stated it almost as often as it has been debunked.
A man named Aaron Elswick claimed to be friends with a neighbor who said shortly after the attack that the couple were “receiving quite a number of packages and they were also working a lot in their garage.” Even this bland statement is hearsay.
The FBI did find a large cache of weapons and bombs in the couple’s home after the fact, but no neighbor has come forward and admitted to having actually seen anything before the shooting.