Trump's 'Crass' Rhetoric Is 'Really Going to Incite al-Baghdadi's Followers,' Says Al Jazeera Reporter

Hours after Donald Trump described in great detail the "whimpering and crying" slain Islamic State leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi did in his final moments before committing suicide this weekend, Al Jazeera reporter Patty Culhane warned that the U.S. president's "crass" rhetoric will likely "incite al-Baghdadi's followers."

During a White House press conference on Sunday morning, Trump announced the death of al-Baghdadi, who detonated a suicide vest as he was being cornered by U.S. forces in a northwest Syria operation on Saturday. In the briefing, the president revealed that three children were with al-Baghdadi when he detonated the vest and said he died "like a dog."

"He was a sick and depraved man, and now he's gone. Baghdadi was vicious and violent and he died in a vicious and violent way," Trump said. "He was whimpering and crying and screaming all the way."

That afternoon, Culhane cautioned Al Jazeera viewers live on air that Trump's "crass language" could motivate al-Baghdadi's followers to commit violent acts against America.

"The president did something that we don't see U.S. president's do," Culhane said. "He used language that is going to really incite Baghdadi's followers if they hear it."

"He called him a dog, said he died whimpering like a coward, said he wished he could show the video so people could see exactly how he died," she explained. "Let's not forget the president saying there were three of Baghdadi's children with him when that vest was detonated. He gave a lot of details about that. He used very crass language, again called him a dog. And then he did say that they took pieces of his body with them, the special forces soldiers when they left."

Culhane goes on to reiterate that "there's some concern by Washington that this is not the kind of language that you want to use unless the goal is to really incite the people who followed him."

"That's been a bit of a concern here in Washington," she concluded. "The president's clearly relishing in what he sees as a good moment in his presidency."

Newsweek first reported on Saturday that Trump ordered the killing of al-Baghdadi, which officials said had been successful. Kurdish General Mazlum Abdi praised the operation hours later, confirming it was successful before Trump gave his press press conference. "Successful & historical operation due to a joint intelligence work with the United States of America," Abdi tweeted.

Al Jazeera
Al Jazeera reporter Patty Culhane on Sunday rebuked President Donald Trump for repeatedly using "crass language" to describe ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi's death. Al Jazeera/Screenshot
Trump's 'Crass' Rhetoric Is 'Really Going to Incite al-Baghdadi's Followers,' Says Al Jazeera Reporter | U.S.