THE United States’ Republican nominee, Donald Trump, has accused President Barack Obama of founding the Islamic State group that is wreaking havoc from the Middle East to European cities.
Trump said this on Wednesday during a raucous campaign rally outside Fort Lauderdale, Florida, adding that “He is the founder of ISIS. In many respects, you know, they honor President Obama.”
The Republican presidential nominee, who repeated the allegation three more times for emphasis, also pointedly referred to the president by his full legal name: Barack Hussein Obama.
Trump in the past has accused his opponent, Democrat Hillary Clinton, of founding the militant group, but he has now shifted the blame to Obama during his campaign on Wednesday, saying, “crooked Hillary Clinton” was actually the group’s co-founder.
He has long blamed Obama and Clinton for pursuing Mideast policies that created a power vacuum in Iraq that was exploited by IS, another acronym for the group. He has sharply criticized Obama for announcing he would pull U.S. troops out of Iraq, a decision that many Obama critics say created the kind of instability in which extremist groups like IS thrive.
However, the White House declined to comment on Trump’s accusation.
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