Donald Trump took to Twitter Monday night to suggest that Iran executed Shahram Amiri — a nuclear scientist accused of providing the United States with information on Tehran’s nuclear program — because he was apparently referenced in emails on the private server Hillary Clinton used for official State Department business.
“Many people are saying that the Iranians killed the scientist who helped the U.S. because of Hillary Clinton’s hacked emails,” Trump tweeted.
Many people are saying that the Iranians killed the scientist who helped the U.S. because of Hillary Clinton’s hacked emails.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 8, 2016
On CBS’ “Face The Nation,” Arkansas Sen. Tom Cotton initially floated the idea behind Trump’s tweet.
“I’m not going to comment on what he may or may not have done for the United States government, but in the emails that were on Hillary Clinton’s private server, there were conversations among her senior advisers about this gentleman,” Cotton said. “That goes to show just how reckless and careless her decision was to put that kind of highly classified information on a private server.”
But critics quickly pushed back to debunk the Trump’s claim.
— Josh Rogin (@joshrogin) August 8, 2016
“Despite what you might read on Donald Trump’s twitter feed,” the Washington Post’s Josh Rogin wrote, “the Iranian execution of a nuclear scientist who defected to the United States and then changed his mind was not caused by Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server. The scientist outed himself; it wasn’t Clinton’s fault.”
On Sunday, an Iranian judiciary spokesman said Amiri, who defected to the United States in 2009 but returned to Iran, had been executed for treason. But there is no evidence that his execution was related to Clinton’s emails.
Cotton’s appearance led to a headline on the Drudge Report and Trump’s subsequent tweet, which inspired a hashtag #ManyPeopleAreSaying mocking his approach to pushing conspiracy theories without explicitly endorsing them.
Many people are saying Antonio Sabàto Jr. deserves an Oscar.
— (((Harry Enten))) (@ForecasterEnten) August 8, 2016
#ManyPeopleAreSaying The Iranian scientist would give up the Trump hair secret.
— Justin (@SputnikAZ) August 8, 2016
— Karen J (@KaJo503) August 9, 2016
#ManyPeopleAreSaying that Donald Trump is an elaborate Illuminati plot
— Paul Szoldra (@PaulSzoldra) August 8, 2016
#manypeoplearesaying that Trump stole the idea of the wall from Pink Floyd.
— Jesse Barnett (@rightarmjesse) August 8, 2016
— Mehdi Hasan (@mehdirhasan) August 9, 2016
Many people say Vladimir Putin replaced Donald Trump’s fillings with mind controlling Russian microchips. Not me, but many people say it.
— Tom Nichols (@RadioFreeTom) August 9, 2016
— darth™ (@darth) August 9, 2016
— Just Maybe (@ShomahKhoobi) August 9, 2016
— Laurel Davila, CPA (@laureldavilacpa) August 9, 2016
— Peace Is Active (@peaceisactive) August 9, 2016
At a rally in North Carolina on Tuesday, Trump used the “many people” line yet again, this time to illustrate the threat of ISIS facing Europe.
In Wilmington, North Carolina, Trump drops another “many people are saying…” pic.twitter.com/byZ75qkLp8
— Sopan Deb (@SopanDeb) August 9, 2016
The real estate mogul has a history of using that phrase to fuel to his controversial claims.
Many people are saying it was wonderful that Mrs. Obama refused to wear a scarf in Saudi Arabia, but they were insulted.We have enuf enemies
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 29, 2015
Many people are equating BREXIT, and what is going on in Great Britain, with what is happening in the U.S. People want their country back!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 24, 2016
So many people have told me that I should host Meet the Press and replace the moron who is on now. Just too busy, especially next 10 years!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 27, 2015
Many people think that WM23 @WrestleMania “the battle of the billionaires” was the greatest of all time—set all records
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) March 25, 2015
@PhilStephen The Scotland golf course in Aberdeen is open & packed—really cool to see & many are saying the greatest golf course ever built.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) April 24, 2013
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 29, 2014
But this one, many people might say, is the most controversial.
Many people have said I’m the world’s greatest writer of 140 character sentences.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 21, 2014