Donald Trump’s Quotes On The September 11 Attacks: A Retrospective

Mark WilsonGetty Images

President Donald Trump is widely recognized as a man who does not mince his words. Trump doesn’t shy away from hyperbole, and loves to exaggerate.

Georgetown University’s Department of Linguistics, as the Washington Post reports, has studied the way Trump speaks for two years. In Georgetown’s assessment, Donald Trump’s speech patterns include simple vocabulary, casual tone, hyperbole, and sudden topic shifts.

“I know words,” Trump once bragged, “I have the best words.”

Some political commentators have accused Trump of degrading the country’s highest office with his behaviour, and comments. CNN‘s Chris Cillizza, for instance, wrote about “Donald Trump’s unpresidential presidency.”

According to media outlets critical of the current administration, it appears that the president doesn’t shy away from making misleading, or flat-out false claims either. A Washington Post analysis, Published August 1, concluded that President Trump has managed to make 4,229 false or misleading claims in 558 days.

Over the years — while on the margins of American politics as a private citizen — Donald Trump has promoted a slew of presumed conspiracy theories. He has, for instance, promoted inaccuracies about former President Barack Obama’s birth certificate via Twitter, alleged that vaccines cause autism in a 2014 tweet, and accused the Chinese of “inventing” the concept of global warming to make U.S. manufacturing “non competitive,” also via Twitter.

Given Trump’s history of making shocking and inflammatory statements, it comes as no surprise that the current President of the United States has also made a slew of questionable — for want of a better term — claims in relation to September 11 attacks.

Today — on the 17th anniversary of the tragic terrorist attack that toppled the twin towers comprising the World Trade Center in New York City — the Independent published a compilation of Trump’s quotes about one of the greatest tragedies in the history of the United States.

“Forty Wall Street actually was the second-tallest building in downtown Manhattan… And now it’s the tallest.”

Then-real estate mogul Trump spoke to WWOR — a New York radio station — on September 11 2001, asserting that his 71-storey skyscraper was now — in the aftermath of the terrorist attack — the tallest building in lower Manhattan.

Donald Trump marked the September 11 2013 anniversary on Twitter, mentioning his “haters.” He went back and forth between deleting, and retweeting the tweet, according to the Independent.

“I would like to extend my best wishes to all, even the haters and losers, on this special date, September 11th.”

“I watched when the World Trade Center came tumbling down, and I watched in Jersey City, New Jersey where thousands and thousands of people were cheering as that building was coming down.”

When it comes to Trump’s controversial quotes about the September 11 attacks, one of the quotes that has been repeatedly featured in the press is the statement given above — Trump’s anecdote about watching “thousands” of people cheering as the twin towers were falling down.

As the Independent pointed out in their story about Trump’s quotes on the September 11 attacks, these claims were denied by Jersey City Mayor Steven Fulop, and by the police. Still, Trump has not hesitated to repeat the claim numerous times — at rallies, and during interviews.

“The World Trade Center came down during the reign of George Bush. He kept us safe? That is not safe. That is not safe”

Donald Trump infamously accused former President George Bush of failing to protect America from terrorists, claiming that the World Trade Center “came down” because Bush failed to keep America safe. This was, as the Independent noted, a hot topic during Republican primaries, when Marco Rubio and Jeb Bush debated Trump.

“The World Trade Center came down because Bill Clinton didn’t kill Osama bin Laden when he had the chance to kill him. And George Bush — by the way, George Bush had the chance, also, and he didn’t listen to the advice of his CIA.”

The current President of the United States also claimed that former presidents Bush, Obama, and Clinton had the chance to kill Osama Bin Laden much earlier, but failed to do so.

“I lost hundreds of friends.”

President Trump claimed to have lost hundreds of friends during the September 11 attacks. This, according to the Independent, means that Trump would have had to have known about one in 10 of the victims for his claims to be true.

“Those people that knocked down the World Trade Center most likely under the Trump policy wouldn’t have been here to knock down the World Trade Center, just so you understand.”

At a 2016 campaign event, Trump insisted that he would have been able to protect the World Trade Center from terrorists, bragging about his administration’s policies and alleged ability to stop terrorist attacks. However, as the Independent noted, one of President Trump’s most controversial policies, the so-called Muslim ban, does not include citizens of Saudi Arabia. 15 of the 19 September 11 plane hijackers were Saudi Arabian.

“It’s the highest [ratings] for Face the Nation since the World Trade Center. Since the World Trade Center came down. It’s a tremendous advantage.”

President Donald Trump is infamously preoccupied with ratings, popularity, and celebrity — in addition to turnout at rallies, the Independent noted. His obsession with fame is responsible for one of the president’s most controversial quotes about the September 11 attacks. Rather, his preoccupation with ratings birthed one of the President’s off-the-wall quotes about the September 11 attacks.

In an interview about his first 100 days in office, Trump boasted that his “ratings” on shows like Face the Nation were higher than those for broadcasts during the September 11 attacks.