More than a hundred people were killed and thousands wounded on Tuesday in the wake of a massive explosion in Beirut, Lebanon.
President Donald Trump was asked about the explosion during his White House press briefing on Tuesday afternoon, and he raised eyebrows when he referred to the explosion as an "attack." Trump was asked to elaborate on the claim and he doubled down.
Without providing any specifics, President Trump says the incident in Lebanon was an attack. He said that's what he is hearing from senior US military officials. pic.twitter.com/I5fjfKq12s
— Josh Campbell (@joshscampbell) August 4, 2020
"It seemed like [an attack], based on the explosion. I met with some of our great generals and they just seem to feel that it was. This was not some kind of a manufacturing explosion type of event. This was a—seems to be, according to them, they would know better than I would, but they seem to think it was an attack. It was a bomb of some kind, yes."
But according to a new report from CNN, there's no basis for the claim that it was an attack.
Three Defense Department officials told the media outlet that they had no idea what Trump was talking about.
According to one of the officials, evidence that the explosion was premeditated or deliberate would've automatically triggered force protections for troops in the region, which has yet to happen.
It appeared to many that Trump had absentmindedly called the explosion an attack without evidence before doubling down.
SHOCKER: Trump's a liar and an idiot.
Pentagon Officials Say Trump Was Talking Nonsense When He Called Beirut Explosion an Attack https://t.co/txh9a2uRuo via @thedailybeast
— Holly Figueroa O'Reilly (@AynRandPaulRyan) August 5, 2020
It seemed Trump was spitballing idea that Lebanon explosion was attack.
Hugely irresponsible if he had no firm basis for that claim.
Three DOD officials: “there was no indication" explosion was an attack.https://t.co/jnmGEbjhGq
— Ryan Goodman (@rgoodlaw) August 5, 2020
How much trouble did Trump stoke for the region and the world by his (apparently baseless) speculation that the devastating explosion in Beirut was an "attack"?
— David Frum (@davidfrum) August 5, 2020
Before the explosion, Lebanon was already in dire crisis, with a collapsed economy and sectarian tensions at a boiling point.
I can't imagine anything worse right now than Trump making unfounded claims of an “attack". Could set off something truly awful in Lebanon. https://t.co/6sl8UVMR50
— Chris Murphy (@ChrisMurphyCT) August 5, 2020
Trump says Beruit explosion was from an attack, likely a bombing.
This appears to be likely false.
To say Trump is dangerous is an understatement.
— Mabel Hams MD ME JD Ret. (@Mabeltooted) August 5, 2020
Trump, re: the explosion in Beirut:
“It was an attack. it was a bomb of some kind."
No. It wasn't.
Trump is an imbecile. pic.twitter.com/uN4XNC5r5k
— Roshan Rinaldi (@Roshan_Rinaldi) August 5, 2020
Trump's critics routinely emphasize that Trump's relationships with foreign nations frequently endanger both the United States and the countries with which it interacts.
Please mute Trump on Lebanon.
Find Lebanese people and experts that are on the ground.
— Karen Attiah (@KarenAttiah) August 4, 2020
Trump just said in his press briefing that Lebanon was attacked. There are no reports of this and coming from him that is very dangerous.
— Shannon FM (@Katpa73) August 4, 2020
Trump stands in front of the cameras in a press conference and says the explosion in Lebanon was an "attack." He doesn't know ANYTHING about what cause it, he has no evidence, no conclusions made by authorities there. No, he just assumes that's what it was. Christ! WTF!!??
— tim russ (@timruss2) August 5, 2020
Investigations into the cause of the explosion are still ongoing.