Donald Trump is being mocked after he reportedly asked whether the independent nation of Finland was a part of Russia.
In a highly anticipated memoir by the president's former security adviser, John Bolton, it is revealed that Trump has a pretty poor understanding of European history and geography.
Thanks to a New York Times report on the book titled The Room Where It Happened many of Trump's bizarre questions and directions are revealed by Bolton, who was ousted from his position in September 2018.
Amongst the many stories, the most alarming was Trump's apparent ignorance of the history or sovereignty of Finland. This dates back to a 2018 summit that he held with Russia president Vladimir Putin in Helsinki. According to Bolton's book, the president had to ask his advisers about Finland and whether it was part of Russia or "a kind of satellite of Russia."
Finland had once been part of the Russian empire but that ended in 1917. The nation also fought against the Soviet Union in the early years of World War II but eventually signed an armistice with the Soviets. Although it's very possible that Trump got confused, this is perhaps a sign that they should update the history books in the White House.
This small anecdote about Trump has caught people's imaginations and the jokes and mockery of the president were soon awash on social media.
The strange revelations and utterances from Trump's mouth didn't end there either. According to Bolton during a meeting with the then British prime minister Theresa May, Trump expressed complete ignorance about the UK having any nuclear weapons. Bolton writes:
Trump asked, 'oh, are you a nuclear power?,' which I knew was not intended as a joke
Elsewhere, he apparently asked if Venezuela was part of the United States and had also expressed a desire to invade the South American nation. A particular shocking revelation was that Trump had apparently asked president Xi of China to help in his reelection bid in November by investing in some American agricultural products as Trump believes that farmers in the midwest are key to him winning the election.
This would hardly be the first time that Trump's apparent lack of geography knowledge has become a story. There are many examples of him not knowing where certain countries were and if they belonged to anyone else such as the time he thought Belgium was a city and whether the US could buy Greenland from Denmark.