President Donald Trump's trip to the UN has been everything from downright frightening to farcical. On Wednesday it was more the latter. Following his provocative speech to the General Assembly on how best to stop "Rocket Man" Kim Jong-Un and the "rogue nation" of Iran, he sat down with African leaders to remind them where they rank in his foreign-policy priorities: low.


President Trump's tightly-scripted speech attempted to laud the collective progress of the African continent, applauding that "six of the world’s ten fastest-growing economies" were African.

(Though, according to the World Bank, only three are: Ethiopia, Tanzania, and Djibouti.) He also commended their actions against Islamist terrorism and promised more help from America. He went on to remind them, however, that they must, to paraphrase, clean up their own messes (in reference to ongoing conflicts in South Sudan and the DR Congo). Ostensibly his message was one of hope, peace, and cooperation. It was also a blatant display of disinterest.

There was no clearer signal exemplifying his monumental apathy towards Africa than his opening paragraph. Clearly reading word-for-word, the leader of the free world managed to mispronounce Namibia as "Nambia".

One could be forgiven for what might have easily been an honest mistake.

Only it happened again later in the speech.

Twitter, of course, reacted accordingly:

Geography lessons of history

As another consequential and geographically-challenged American president once said, "Fool me once, shame on you.

Fool me, can't get fooled again." (Translation: Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me.)

Donald Trump, alarmingly, has been fooled three times.

Earlier in the year during a foreign policy speech, he referred to the east-African country of Tanzania as "Tanzaynia". In Trump's defense, he wasn't elected by having the most advanced vocabulary.

George W. Bush, the previously quoted American president, led the country guns blazing into two wars, in Iraq and Afghanistan. He did so despite failing to know the difference between Sunni and Shia Islam, according to a former American ambassador. Almost two decades and millions of lives lost and displaced later, those conflicts continue to rage.

Donald Trump quite clearly cares little about Africa beyond it being a place for his "friends" to go "get rich", something he proudly mentioned in his speech. Perhaps his indifference is not the worst thing for a continent long subjected to foreign intervention. However, his seemingly inconsequential "Nambia" gaff is a stark reminder of the catastrophic damage an uninformed American president can have on a region.