By Jamal Whiteman
President Donald Trump confounded the world when he used the word “covfefe” in a late-night tweet storm.
Who can figure out the true meaning of "covfefe" ??? Enjoy!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 31, 2017
The typo has generated lots of jokes, with even Hillary Clinton chipping in. But right-wing conspiracy theorist Alex Jones saw something sinister at work.
“Convfefe is not a known word,” said Jones on his show “InfoWars.” “I think it’s an alien word, that Trump’s replacement accidentally slipped in. This shows the shape-shifting alien who replaced him is struggling with English.”
Other right-wingers also tried to explain away Trump’s mistake. White House press secretary Sean Spicer claimed certain people understood the word. According to NPR, some Trump supporters believed it meant “I will stand up” in Arabic. But this was disproven by the New York Times, who spoke to Ali Adeeb Alnaemi, a professor of Arabic at New York University.
“Honestly when I heard that some writers thought Trump was speaking Arabic I said to myself, ‘Wow, they know Arabic more than I do,’” said Alnaemi, “Because I cannot think of a word that would mean the equivalent of ‘covfefe.’”“Honestly when I heard that some writers thought Trump was speaking Arabic I said to myself, ‘Wow, they know Arabic more than I do,’” Mr. Alnaemi, who was born and raised in Iraq, said. “Because I cannot think of a word that would mean the equivalent of ‘covfefe.’”