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Fake News, crooked Hillary and rocket man: Donald Trump's long list of foes

Friday November 3 2017

Donald Trump

US President Donald Trump. PHOTO | SAUL LOEB | AFP 

By AFP
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WASHINGTON

US President Donald Trump makes no bones about calling out his perceived foes, most frequently using Twitter.

From the moment he launched his campaign for the White House, the New York real estate tycoon has embraced a no-holds-barred style which includes flinging insults at those he sees as his opponents.

Trump's thin-skinned displeasure has focused on targets far and wide, from the "fake news" media to fellow politicians — both Republican and Democrat — to Hollywood celebrities and star athletes.

Here is a non-exhaustive list of subjects of Trump's ire:

'FAKE NEWS MEDIA'

Trump's most frequent target of complaint is the mainstream media — particularly CNN and The New York Times — which he claims treat him unfairly.

"Wow, so many Fake News stories today. No matter what I do or say, they will not write or speak truth. The Fake News Media is out of control!" he tweeted in October.

In February, Trump went so far as to call the press the "enemy of the American people."

"The FAKE NEWS media (failing @nytimes, @CNN, @NBCNews and many more) is not my enemy, it is the enemy of the American people. SICK!" he said in a tweet.

Trump removed that tweet but reposted it soon afterward adding another two broadcasting outlets — @ABC and @CBS — which he had apparently initially overlooked.

Trump has also called out members of the media individually, describing MSNBC's Mika Brzezinski as "dumb as a rock" and dubbing her co-host Joe Scarborough "Psycho Joe."

CROOKED HILLARY

Trump's attacks on Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton were relentless during the 2016 campaign, during which he would refer to her as "Crooked Hillary."

But even now that he is ensconced Trump has not stopped firing jabs at Clinton.

"Crooked Hillary Clinton now blames everybody but herself, refuses to say she was a terrible candidate," Trump tweeted in May.

He mocked her again in October saying: "I was recently asked if Crooked Hillary Clinton is going to run in 2020? My answer was, "I hope so!"

'Witch hunt'

The FBI — and now special counsel — investigation into whether members of Trump's campaign colluded with Russia to get him elected has been a frequent target of the president's fury.

He has repeatedly derided it as a "witch hunt," a "hoax" and a "charade."

"The story that there was collusion between the Russians & Trump campaign was fabricated by (the Democrats) as an excuse for losing the election," he tweeted in May.

"You are witnessing the single greatest WITCH HUNT in American political history — led by some very bad and conflicted people," Trump tweeted in June.

Two Republican senators — Bob Corker of Tennessee and Jeff Flake of Arizona — have come out strongly against Trump and have been targets of his Twitter tirades.

Trump has referred to Corker, who is not particularly tall, as "liddle' Bob Corker," dismissed him as a "lightweight" and claimed he "couldn't get elected dog catcher in Tennessee."

"People like liddle' Bob Corker have set the U.S. way back," he said last month.

As for Flake, Trump said he's "toxic" and "WEAK on borders, crime and a non-factor in Senate."

'Little Rocket Man'

Trump has lashed out repeatedly at North Korea's Kim Jong-Un over his country's missile tests and nuclear program, calling him a "madman" and "Little Rocket Man."

"Kim Jong Un of North Korea, who is obviously a madman who doesn't mind starving or killing his people will be tested like never before," he said in September.

In October, Trump said Secretary of State Rex Tillerson was "wasting his time trying to negotiate with Little Rocket Man.

"Being nice to Rocket Man hasn't worked in 25 years, why would it work now? Clinton failed, Bush failed, and Obama failed. I won't fail," he said.

MERYL STREEP

Hollywood stars and other entertainers critical of the president have also been in his crosshairs.

Such was the case in January with multiple Oscar-winning actress Meryl Streep, who criticised Trump at an awards show. Trump struck back by calling Streep "over-rated" and a "Hillary flunky."

Trump has not been impressed either by actor Alec Baldwin's impersonation of him on the NBC television show "Saturday Night Live."

"Just tried watching Saturday Night Live - unwatchable! Totally biased, not funny and the Baldwin impersonation just can't get any worse. Sad," he said.

PROFESSIONAL ATHLETES

Trump has been engaged in an ongoing spat with the National Football League over players kneeling during the national anthem, a protest started by former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick to protest police brutality and racial injustice.

Trump said NFL owners should fire any "son of a bitch" who takes a knee during the anthem and made not-so-veiled threats against the league.

"Why is the NFL getting massive tax breaks while at the same time disrespecting our Anthem, Flag and Country? Change tax law!" he tweeted.

Trump also told the National Basketball Association champion Golden State Warriors, whose star player Stephen Curry has been critical of the president, that they were not welcome at the White House.

"Going to the White House is considered a great honour for a championship team," Trump tweeted. "Stephen Curry is hesitating, therefore invitation is withdrawn!"