In the wake of a raid this weekend in which longtime ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi died, President Donald Trump and his closest cronies have resorted to repeatedly pointing to how great the raid supposedly makes Trump out to be. As it turns out, Trump may have been golfing when the raid actually started, and a circulated photo showing Trump in the White House Situation Room supposedly monitoring the raid’s progress may have been essentially staged for the camera. The occasion wouldn’t be the first time that a key accomplishment of the Trump team proved hollower than anticipated.
The revealing information was publicized by figures including Pete Souza, who served as official White House photographer when Barack Obama explained it. As he noted, an initially circulated start time of the raid was 3:30 P.M. local D.C. time. According to data embedded in the image, however, the photo that the White House has distributed of the president’s team supposedly hard at work in the Situation Room was snapped at about 5:05 P.M. Eventually, some reporting did suggest the raid was going on around 5.
‘The raid, as reported, took place at 3:30PM Washington time. The photo, as shown in the camera IPTC data, was taken at “17:05:24”.’
For context, when al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden was killed, the raid on his compound took less than one hour, and the initial assault was completed in about fifteen minutes.
In this case, reporter Jennifer Hayden was among those to note that Trump apparently wasn’t just in the other room — he was golfing.
Linking to Trumpgolfcount.com, she shared:
‘According to this website which tracks Trump’s golf outings. He left the club at 3:33pm. He was golfing at the time of the raid.’
According to this website which tracks Trump’s golf outings. He left the club at 3:33pm. He was golfing at the time of the raid.https://t.co/gmuK9vxM81
— Jennifer Hayden (@Scout_Finch) October 27, 2019
None of this has stopped the Trump team from touting the al-Baghdadi raid as supposed evidence of Trump’s greatness or whatever. In a Sunday morning television appearance, Defense Secretary Mark Esper insisted that Trump deserves “credit” for giving the “green light” for the mission.
In his own Sunday press conference about the situation, Trump insisted that the raid made him — wait for it — essentially better than Obama, since bin Laden was supposedly a lesser target.
There are so many other issues at play here. Trump doesn’t seem to care.
Check out Twitter’s response…