Japan’s First Lady Seems To Pretend Not To Speak English To Avoid Talking To Trump


This is glorious. On Wednesday, the New York Times released an interview with President Donald Trump. You may have already seen some head-scratch inducing tidbits from that interview, but here’s another good one.

Based on Trump’s comments to New York Times journalist Maggie Haberman, the First Lady of Japan seems to have spent hours pretending not to speak English just to avoid talking to the belligerent, uncouth U.S. President.

Now, it’s important to note that Trump might just be making stuff up, as he so often does, but he might not be. It’s not really that far fetched to suggest that the First Lady of another country might try and avoid Trump. Props to her for doing so, if what appears to have gone down really did.

Speaking of his experience at a dinner for world leaders held during the recent G-20 world leaders’ summit, Trump said:

‘So, I was seated next to the wife of Prime Minister Abe [Shinzo Abe of Japan], who I think is a terrific guy, and she’s a terrific woman, but doesn’t speak English.’

Haberman quipped to Trump that Akie Abe not speaking English “must make for an awkward seating,” and he agreed that yes, it was “hard.”

He eventually added:

‘There was one interpreter for Japanese, ’cause otherwise it would have been even tougher. But I enjoyed the evening with her, and she’s really a lovely woman, and I enjoyed — the whole thing was good.’

There is one problem with Trump’s account. Journalist Sam Thielman dug up a video of Japan’s First Lady delivering the keynote address at a conference about climate change and “coastal resilience” back in 2014 — in perfect English.

You can watch that video below.

So what’s going on here? Well, as mentioned, Trump could have just completely ignored the Japanese First Lady’s ability to speak English.

Alternatively, it’s not that far of a leap to suggest that Abe actively concealed her English speaking abilities from the U.S. President. Trump has repeatedly shown himself to be anything but a pleasant conversation partner, having, for example, repeatedly commented on various women’s appearances and physiques when there was no place for him to do so.

Thielman, the journalist who posted about the Japanese First Lady’s documented ability to speak English, called Abe his “new hero.”


Check out other Twitter thoughts about the news about Akie Abe below.

Featured Image via Matt Cardy/Getty Images