Trump Addresses ABC's Fake Syria Video: 'A Real Disgrace'


President Donald Trump issued a strident rebuke of the mainstream media Monday after ABC News aired fake video in its coverage of the Turkish invasion into northern Syria.

The outlet had shown supposedly exclusive footage of a massive bombing carried out by the Turkish military in Tal Abyad, Syria, Sunday night on “World News Tonight” and Monday morning on “Good Morning America,” according to Breitbart News.

Technology news publication Gizmodo would later reveal, however, that ABC had actually attempted to pass off footage of a massive, staged 2017 explosion at Knob Creek Gun Range in West Point, Kentucky, as evidence of shocking battlefield carnage in Northern Syria.

Following the report, Trump did not waste an opportunity to hammer the media outlet as “a real disgrace” for broadcasting the “FAKE footage.”

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“A big scandal at @ABC News,” the president tweeted. “They got caught using really gruesome FAKE footage of the Turks bombing in Syria.

“A real disgrace,” he added.

“World News Tonight” anchor Tom Llamas had introduced the footage saying, “This video, right here, appearing to show Turkey’s military bombing Kurd civilians in a Syrian border town. The Kurds who fought alongside the U.S. against ISIS.”

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“Now, horrific reports of atrocities committed by Turkish-backed fighters on those very allies,” he added.

After the news outlet received backlash for the video, it apologized and said that an investigation into how the footage was played on-air would be conducted.

“We’ve taken down video that aired on ‘World News Tonight Sunday’ and ‘Good Morning America’ this morning that appeared to be from the Syrian border immediately after questions were raised about its accuracy,” a spokesman told Mediaite. “ABC News regrets the error.”

Turkey began its military assault on Northern Syria last week, just two days after the Trump administration carried out its plan to withdraw all United States troops from the region.

Politicians on both sides of the aisle have demonstrated strong distaste for the decision, claiming even before the Turkish assault that the U.S. withdrawal would remove a key tripwire preventing a Turkish invasion of the region to inflict heavy losses on Kurdish natives, Newsweek reported.

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The Kurds — an ethnic minority in Syria — are a longtime U.S. ally that has organized a strong rebel force, which lost 11,000 soldiers battling the Islamic State group alongside American special forces since 2014, according to NBC News.

The Turkish invasion has, in large part, gone as forecast, taking the lives of more than 100 Kurds already and resulting in widespread destruction along the Turkish-Syrian border.

Trump stands by the U.S. withdrawal, however, making good on campaign promises to put “America first” and keep troops out of harm’s way by removing them from long-standing military positions abroad.

It is the responsibility of the Syrian government and the Kurdish people to defend their homeland, Trump argued Monday on Twitter, not the American military.

“Anyone who wants to assist Syria in protecting the Kurds is good with me, whether it is Russia, China, or Napoleon Bonaparte,” Trump wrote. “I hope they all do great, we are 7,000 miles away!”

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Andrew J. Sciascia was the supervising editor of features at The Western Journal. Having joined up as a regular contributor of opinion in 2018, he went on to cover the Barrett confirmation and 2020 presidential election for the outlet, regularly co-hosting its video podcast, "WJ Live," as well.
Andrew J. Sciascia was the supervising editor of features at The Western Journal and regularly co-hosted the outlet's video podcast, "WJ Live."

Sciascia first joined up with The Western Journal as a regular contributor of opinion in 2018, before graduating with a degree in criminal justice and political science from the University of Massachusetts Lowell, where he served as editor-in-chief of the student newspaper and worked briefly as a political operative with the Massachusetts Republican Party.

He covered the Barrett confirmation and 2020 presidential election for The Western Journal. His work has also appeared in The Daily Caller.