Donald Trump insists that Muslims celebrated and cheered the fall of the Twin Towers on September 11, 2001, and says he will not rescind the claim under any circumstance because he believes the statement to be true.
The accusation made by the Republican frontrunner sparked widespread outrage from Muslims and the bewilderment of many non-Muslims who could not recall such an event occurring on the day of the terrorist attacks.
“I’ve had hundreds of people call in and tweet in on Twitter saying that they saw it and I was 100 percent right”, Trump explained in a phone interview from a CNN video report.
Trump told NBC’s “Meet the Press” host Chuck Todd in an interview that he has good memory, that he saw it on television “somewhere many years ago” and that he never forgot.
I have a very good memory, Chuck. I’ll tell you, I have a very good memory. I saw it somewhere on television many years ago and I never forgot it — and it was on television, too.
In response, Daily Beast contributor Rick Wilson wrote a rebuttal to Trump’s claims about Muslims, saying that while it’s possible that some American Muslims celebrated 9/11, “there are (expletive) in every walk of life”, implying that the actions of a minority don’t necessarily represent everyone else.
Trump claims his staff is searching for television clips depicting the “celebrations” he claims occurred after the World Trade Center towers fell. “But I saw it on television, I saw clips, and so did many other people — and many people saw it in person”, Trump said. “I’ve had hundreds of phone calls to the Trump organization saying, ‘We saw it. There was dancing in the streets.'”
Trump says that the celebrations occurred in the predominantly Muslim communities of Paterson and Jersey City, which have “an unbelievable, large population” of those who practice Islam, further adding that Muslim celebrations took place around the globe.
This isn’t the first time the real-estate mogul has found himself in hot water over comments generalizing an entire group of people. Not too long ago, Trump found himself coming under fire after making hurtful comments about illegal Mexican immigrants, though his stance on deporting them clearly resonated among some U.S. citizens, as indicated in a recent CNN poll.