Kellyanne Conway, a senior advisor to President Donald Trump, has baffled audiences by blaming Iraqi refugees for a terrorist attack that never happened.
*logs in— Hend Amry (@LibyaLiberty) February 3, 2017
*wonders why everyone is disrespectfully mocking something called the Bowling Green massacre
(9 seconds later) 😐
Conway, who was Trump’s election campaign manager, was being interviewed on MSNBC about the new president’s travel ban when she cited the “Bowling Green massacre” as a reason for the original selection of the 7 nations on the list, by President Obama.
“Most people don’t know, because it didn’t get covered”, Conway declared. In fact, most people don’t know about the Bowling Green Massacre because it didn’t happen.
Two Iraqi men indeed lived in Bowling Green, Kentucky in 2011. They were even convicted of terrorism offences, and are serving life terms. However, their crime was not targeting the US, and they did not kill anyone.
Mahanad Shareef Hammadi and Waad Ramadan Alwan were both convicted of attempting to “send weapons and money to Al-Qaeda in Iraq”.
Terrorists? Arguably. Masterminds of a “massacre” on US soil? Not quite.
Conway was attempting to defend the controversial executive order that Trump signed to stop refugees and nationals of 7 Muslim-majority nations (including Iraq) entering the US for at least 90 days.
The order is intended to protect “the nation from foreign terrorist entry”, which is why Conway wanted to link terrorists from outside of the US with terrorist attacks on US soil.
However, the Cato Institute – a public policy think tank in Washington DC – says that between 1975 and 2015 foreign nationals from the seven countries named killed no Americans in the US.
This is not the first time Conway has been criticised for her relationship with the facts.
In January she told NBC’s Chuck Todd that what journalists had referred to as “falsehoods” were actually “alternative facts”.
As with almost any political misstep since the advent of social media, internet users have been quick to ridicule Conway.
Some saw the similarities to an unfortunately unsuccessful college American football team:
This is the only Bowling Green Massacre I have ever heard of: pic.twitter.com/27M7SIRL3g— Jen Myers (@downhiller1976) February 3, 2017
Others took an altogether more British look at the situation:
Never forget the Bowling Green Massacre
KellyannePolls</a> <br><br>These are the real terrorists, travel ban on old people... <a href="https://t.co/I9xJ9plR8H">pic.twitter.com/I9xJ9plR8H</a></p>— The First Hostage (Mel_Needs_Help) February 3, 2017
One of the terrorists making his escape after mowing down everyone on the Bowling Green during the Bowling Green Massacre! pic.twitter.com/sva42khVla— Peter Langdale (@peterlangdale) February 3, 2017
And 2015’s #JeSuis movement was also sardonically included: