Donald Trump Rails Against Apple, Says Tech Company Must Help Government

While the lion’s share of Donald Trump’s public persona these days is that of a steadfast crusader for laissez-faire capitalism, the Republican candidate is now speaking out against one of the country’s most profitable and well-known companies, urging them to fall in line with the United States government. Sounding off on a recent court decision that will ostensibly compel Apple to assist the FBI in their investigation regarding the San Bernardino terror attacks, Trump was indignant at the notion that the tech company had been reluctant to get involved this far.

“Who do they think they are?” Trump said in comments transcribed by Politico. “They have to open it up.”

The FBI has struggled to crack security features in an iPhone 5c that was previously owned by Syed Rizwan Farook, one of the San Bernardino terrorists. As reported by the New York Times, a judge recently ordered Apple to help the FBI in unlocking the phone, but the company insists that such a move would jeopardize the security of millions of customers. Moreover, Apple CEO Tim Cook maintains that the situation would create a precedent for security breaches, hinting that government abuse of authority could follow in the future.

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“The FBI may use different words to describe this tool, but make no mistake: Building a version of iOS that bypasses security in this way would undeniably create a backdoor,” Cook said in excerpts republished by Politico. “And while the government may argue that its use would be limited to this case, there is no way to guarantee such control.”

For his part, the GOP frontrunner is unimpressed with such concerns, reducing the discussion to one of the most crucial talking points of his campaign, the war against terror. Trump’s comments on the matter were posted as part of an article by Politico.

“I agree 100 percent with the courts. In that case, we should open it up,” Donald Trump said of the aforementioned court decision. “I think security, overall, we have to open it up and we have to use our heads. We have to use common sense… Somebody the other day called me a common-sense conservative. We have to use common sense.”

san bernadino terror

The attacks in San Bernardino occurred on December 2, 2015, when Syed Rizwan Farook and Tashfeen Malik killed 14 people and injured 22 at the city’s Inland Regional Center. A report by the Los Angeles Times indicates that the couple planned the attack for up to a year beforehand. Farook is believed to have conspired with his former friend, Enrique Marquez, in planning the attacks. Marquez is currently in custody. Farook and Syed were killed in a shootout with police shortly after the attacks.

The present hullabaloo about the iPhone case is not the first time that Donald Trump has spoken out on the San Bernardino terror attacks. In the wake of the situation, he publicly accused both the mother and sister of Farook of complicity in the case, ostensibly based solely upon his viewing of a televised interview.

“I believe the that the sister of the killer, I watched her interview, I think she knew what was going on,” Trump said, according to the Hill. “I think his mother knew what was going on.”

As mentioned above, the continued threat of terrorism has been a linchpin of Donald Trump’s presidential campaign. In discussing military strategy, Trump has called for resumption of waterboarding and an air campaign to “bomb the s**t” out of ISIS forces. Donald Trump has also called for a temporary ban on Muslims entering the United States, prompting criticism from both sides of the political spectrum.

[Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images]