Trump adviser Robert O’Brien denies the police are racist and blames ‘radical’ protesters instead

Sanjana Varghese
Monday 01 June 2020 10:30
news

One of Trump’s senior advisers has denied that there is any systemic racism within the police force.

As protests around the country erupt after the death of George Floyd, a black man in Minneapolis, at the hands of police officers, the White House has been curiously silent and absent on the issue.

Robert O’Brien, the White House’s National Security Adviser, has since made a statement on CNN’s State of the Union program, where he denied that there was a problem with police forces.

In the clip, speaking to Jake Tapper, he says: “I don’t think there’s systemic racism.”

He admits that there may be “some bad apples in there”, and says that this is a matter of not having the right training, and that those cops need to be “rooted out”.

O’Brien went on to say that he thinks 99.9 per cent of law enforcement are “great Americans”.

Minutes before, O’Brien had admitted that legitimate protesters have a right to be on the streets, but blamed "Antifa radical militants" who are using "military tactics" to kill and hurt police officers.

This is despite the fact that multiple police forces have called in backup from military personnel stationed around their state, and there is footage demonstrating the use of military level equipment by police forces to monitor and suppress protestors.

Trump has said that he will be designating Antifa as a terrorist organisation – but it's not an organisation. Loosely defined, Antifa is the common term for anti-fascists, but there is no coherent organised Antifa group, and people of all political persuasions may call themselves "Antifa".

"Antifa" has become a rallying cry for many people within the Trump administration, as well as outside of it.

O’Brien also said on CNN’s State of the Union that the tweets which Trump had sent over the weekend, where he called protestors thugs, were meant to ‘de-escalate’.

Footage from protests around the US show police officers using tear gas, rubber bullets and arresting protesters and journalists, often in view of cameras.

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