responded with dignified outrage after U.S. presidential candidate Donald Trump
described the city as a “hellhole.”
“You go to
Brussels. I was in Brussels a long time ago -- 20 years ago -- so beautiful,
everything’s so beautiful. It’s like living in a hellhole right now,” Trump
CBS News reports that Belgians took to social media, posting delightful pictures of
their city to show the Republican what he’s missing, using the hashtag
#hellhole. Others were less polite, with one person tweeting side-by-side
photos of Brussels and Trump, with the former labelled ‘hellhole’ and the
The Belgian city
has struggled with its public image since the November 15 attacks in Paris,
thoughtto have been partly planned in the city.
The district of
Molenbeekmade headlines as a supposed hotbed of radical Islam.
Brussels has since
launched a PR offensive to dispel negative impressions of the city, with
a January campaign allowing would-be
visitors to call random locals and ask what life is like in the city.
The home of frites
and moules and chocolate and beer isn’t the first European city Trump has
enraged. After he claimed that parts of London were so radicalized that police
officers feared for their lives, London’s police force said he “could not be
more wrong.” U.K. Prime Minister David Cameron also criticized his comments.
One American commenter to the CBS News story on the
issue attempted to reassure Europeans: “Don't worry, Europe. We will not let
this madman be President. I speak for all of the sane people in the USA.”