"Every time he puts something out there he gets criticized by the media. All day, every day," Trump Jr. said. "And guess what, he's been proven right about it, every time. We keep saying, "it's going to be great," and 'hold fast,' 'we're going to keep calm and carry on.' Maybe we have to keep calm and actually do something. And I think that's what he's trying to say because he's been proven right about it every time."
Junior's comments come in the wake of his father's most recent Twitter feud – one that threatens to have geopolitical implications. Khan and Trump have clashed in the past: during the 2016 US presidential election, Khan said he hoped Trump's opponent Hillary Clinton would "trounce him." But things have intensified since the London Bridge terrorist attack on June 3.
That evening, a trio of men attacked pedestrians on London Bridge with a white van, before exiting the vehicle at nearby Borough Market and assaulting more people with knives. Police shot dead the three assailants, who were later identified as radical Islamists. Daesh claimed responsibility for the attack that killed seven and injured 48.
Since then, London police have come under fire for failing to anticipate the attack, as well as for injuring a civilian with a stray bullet. This is also the third terrorist attack in England in the last three weeks.
"Rather than the mayor of London attacking, maybe he should do something about it," Trump Jr. said in the interview. "Maybe he should do something to fix the problem rather than just sit there and pretend there isn't one. I think that's an important message."
"We will never let [terrorists] win, nor cower in fear," Khan said in an interview the morning of June 4. "Londoners will see an increased police presence today and over the course of the next few days. There's no reason to be alarmed."
"At least 7 dead and 48 wounded in terror attack and Mayor of London says there is 'no reason to be alarmed!'" Trump tweeted that same day. Mainstream outlets and British officials criticized him for taking Khan's comments out of context, as well as accusations of racism as Khan is a practicing Muslim.
At least 7 dead and 48 wounded in terror attack and Mayor of London says there is "no reason to be alarmed!"— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 4, 2017
Khan himself did not respond to the president, instead dispatching a spokesperson to say that the London mayor "has more important things to do than respond to Donald Trump's ill-informed tweet that deliberately takes out of context his remarks urging Londoners not to be alarmed when they saw more police – including armed officers – on the streets.
Trump was undeterred. "Pathetic excuse by London Mayor Sadiq Khan who had to think fast on his 'no reason to be alarmed' statement. MSM is working hard to sell it!" he tweeted the next day.
Pathetic excuse by London Mayor Sadiq Khan who had to think fast on his "no reason to be alarmed" statement. MSM is working hard to sell it!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 5, 2017
Offended, Khan called for UK leadership to refuse to welcome Trump for a planned October state visit. "[Trump's] policies go against everything we stand for," Khan said to Channel 4 on Monday.
Conservative Prime Minister Theresa May made no reference to Khan's call to cancel Trump's visit, but did distance herself from his comments in a Tuesday campaign speech. "I think Donald Trump was wrong in the things that he has said about Sadiq Khan. In the aftermath of the London Bridge attack, we have been working with Sadiq Khan; party politics has been put to one side."
May's political rival, Labour party PM candidate Jeremy Corbyn, has gone further. He announced his intentions, if elected, to phone Trump and "ask him if he would kindly reconsider that. It is not acceptable to make those sort of remarks about someone who has been elected to be mayor of our biggest city."
Boris Johnson, the outspoken UK Foreign Secretary, said he saw "no reason" to withdraw the invitation to Trump.
"I don't wish to enter into a row between those two individuals who I think are perfectly able to stick up for themselves. But Sadiq was perfectly right to reassure the public about the presence of armed officers on the street."