Many of us were critical of President Donald Trump’s statement that he told U.S. soldiers to shoot migrants who throw stones. It took little time for authoritarian figures to latch on to the statement. Nigeria’s army played the video of Trump to justify its shooting of protesters resulting in as many as 49 deaths. In the meantime, National Security adviser John Bolton gave a speech in which he praised Jair Bolsonaro, Brazil’s new president, as a “like-minded” leader. The incident is reminiscent of Trump’s praise for Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte who is an international pariah for his orders to police to murder drug suspects and his bragging about his own killings. Bolsonaro is a notorious figure who is a demonstrated racist, sexist, and homophobe who praises military dictatorship as well as torture. He also said that he would prefer his son be dead then gay.
Nigeria simply showed the tape with the instructions of “Please watch and make your deductions.”
The video shows Trump saying “We’re not going to put up with that. They want to throw rocks at our military, our military fights back . . . I told them (troops) consider it (a rock) a rifle. When they throw rocks like they did at the Mexican military and police, I say consider it a rifle.”
Nigerian troops opened fire on protesters. Muslim groups say dozens were killed while the government claims 6.