The president of the United States, Donald Trump, has circulated a false image that represents the leaders of the Democrats of Congress in traditional Muslim clothing in front of the Iranian flag, which generated criticism that he was promoting Islamophobic troops.
The manipulated photo retweeted by Trump showed the House of Representatives president, Nancy Pelosi, and the Senate minority leader, Chuck Schumer, in Muslim attire with the legend: “Corrupt Democrats do everything possible to help rescue of Ayatollah #NancyPelosiFakeNews “.
Trump, a Republican, had previously criticized Democrats for criticizing the selective killing of his administration of Iranian General Qassem Soleimani, but his use of Muslim images as part of that effort led to the rejection of American Muslim defenders.
“The image is a hodgepodge of anti-Muslim tropes and outfits of many traditions, including some that are frequently used to stereotype and attack Muslims,” said Madihha Ahussain, special advisor to the Muslim Advocates nonprofit group, in a release.
“It is disappointing but not surprising that the president uses his huge Twitter platform to spread this kind of harmful, ignorant and anti-Muslim intolerance.”
Wa’el Alzayat, CEO of the American Muslim group Emgage Action, named for his mission to involve American Muslims, also criticized Trump’s decision to expand the manipulated photo of Mrs. Pelosi and Mr. Schumer.
“There is no place for that, regardless of political differences,” he said in an interview.
Schumer tweeted his own rejection of Trump, asking: “How low can you go?”
The image Trump retweeted has been circulating on the Internet for a few days. The Twitter account Trump got it from has a history of tweets in English and Persian on Iranian issues, promoting pro-Trump content and criticizing US Democrats.
White House press secretary Stephanie Grisham defended Trump’s retweet of the image, and told Fox News on Monday that the tweet was intended to show that Democrats “have been chattering Iranian conversation topics, and they almost side with the terrorists and those who tried to kill the Americans. “
Democrats have raised questions about the Trump administration’s justification for ordering the murder of Soleimani, warning of the resulting increased tensions with Iran. But no Democrat has praised Soleimani, and Pelosi herself described him last week as a “terrible person” who “did bad things.”