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02 July 2017

Donald Trump unleashes on ‘Fake News’ CNN with bizarre wrestling video

US President Donald Trump has tweeted a mock video, tackling a man with a CNN logo super-imposed on his head

Donald Trump posted a video of him tackling US TV network ‘CNN’. Picture: Twitter/Donald Trump

US PRESIDENT Donald Trump has taken his “war on the media” to a bizarre new level, tweeting a doctored, 10-year-old video of him “body slamming” CNN.

The US leader on Sunday shared the strange video of him launching at a figure whose face was obscured by a CNN logo.

Mr Trump pinned the figure to the ground and punched him repeatedly next to a wrestling ring.

The president tweeted the bizarre edit job with the hashtags #FraudNewsCNN and #FNN, apparently his new name for the network. He previewed the name in another tweet on Saturday.

The original, unedited clip was filmed at WrestleMania 23 in 2007. It showed Mr Trump pummelling World Wrestling Entertainment Chairman Vince McMahon during a “Battle of the Billionaires” stunt.

Mr McMahon is the husband of Linda McMahon, who heads Mr Trump’s Small Business Administration.

The doctored clip was first shared on Reddit, before being tweeted out by Mr Trump.

In a statement on Twitter, CNN recalled comments from White House spokeswoman Sarah Huckabee Sanders last week that the president doesn’t condone violence against the media.

“‘The President in no way form or fashion has ever promoted or encouraged violence. If anything, quite the contrary.’ – @SHSanders45 6/29/17,” the CNN tweet said.

CNN’s Jim Acosta immediately hit out at Mr Trump’s video, tweeting: “Isn’t pro wrestling fake?”

Donald Trump Jr. retorted: “Yes, just like your coverage.”

White House homeland security adviser Thomas Bossert said he didn’t think President Trump’s video tweet could be considered a threat.

“So I’m proud of the president for developing a Twitter and a social media platform where he can talk directly to the American people,” he told ABC’s This Week in the US.

“In fact, he’s the most genuine president and the most non-politician president that we’ve seen in my lifetime.”

He added: “I do think that he’s beaten up in a way on cable platforms that he has a right to respond to.”

Mr Bossert praised Mr Trump for his ability to communicate with the American people.

“He’s the most genuine person and the people that see politicians and then see him find him to be someone that they can understand and relate to,” he said.

The president frequently takes aim at CNN and The New York Times, often referring to the TV network as “fake news” and the newspaper as “failing”.

Three CNN staffers resigned last week after the network retracted a story linking a Trump ally to a Russian investment bank, as well as potential lay-offs at The New York Times.

It comes a day after Mr Trump raged on Twitter that his use of social media was “modern day presidential”.

The New York businessman drew broad condemnation for his Thursday tweets in which he called female TV anchor Mika Brzezinksi “crazy” and saying she was “bleeding badly from a face-lift” when he saw her at his Florida estate, Mar-a-Lago.

The vicious personal attack was slammed as sexist and vulgar by many Democrats and Republicans.

RELATED: Trump’s Twitter rap sheet

President Donald Trump has escalated his attacks on the media. Picture: AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster

President Donald Trump has escalated his attacks on the media. Picture: AP Photo/Carolyn KasterSource:AP

While such tirades may not be associated with traditional standards of presidential statesmanship, Mr Trump insists it’s all part of his plan to make America great again.

He used his first Fourth of July speech on Saturday to continue his assault on the media.

“The fake media tried to stop us from going to the White House, but I’m president and they’re not,” Mr Trump said, headlining the Celebrate Freedom Concert at the Kennedy Centre in Washington, D.C.

“The fact is the press destroyed themselves because they went too far. Instead of being subtle and smart, they used the hatchet and the people saw it right from the beginning.

“The dishonest media will not stop us from accomplishing our objectives on behalf of the American people. Their agenda is not your agenda,” he said, rallying his supporters.

While the White House backed Mr Trump’s bizarre video tweet, celebrities slammed him on Twitter.

Meanwhile, White House aide Sebastian Gorka has claimed that mainstream news media are losing influence, citing the CNN resignations.

“To those supporters of the Trump administration who are worried by all the fake news reporting of the last 23 weeks, I can assure you, just ignore it,” Mr Gorka, who serves as deputy assistant to President Trump, said in a radio interview on Sunday,

“The fake news complex is collapsing in on itself. We see that with the massive scandal at CNN, having to fire people who were generating totally false stories about the administration. We see that with the severe personnel cuts at The New York Times.”

President Donald Trump talks about his first 100 days in office in his White House address this week. Listen in to what he thinks he accomplished. This is the White House Weekly Address from April 28, 2017.

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