'Friends, you're going to love Greenland. I was there on 9/11'

Lawrence Douglas and Nancy Pick
Photograph: Nicholas Kamm/AFP/Getty Images

Donald Trump tweeted today he had purchased Greenland from the Kingdom of Denmark for $15bn plus Kanye West and the state of Massachusetts.

Related: No thanks, we're not for sale, aghast Greenland tells Trump

Still, the announcement has been questioned abroad. Prime minister of Greenland Kim Kielsen, reached this morning before the sun set for the winter, commented: “Clearly, the president’s mind is melting faster than our ice sheet.”

Danish prime minister Mette Frederiksen tried to strike a diplomatic note, saying: “May God deliver us from this delusional maniac.”

These comments did not stop the president taking a victory lap before an enthusiastic audience at a campaign-style rally in West Virginia.

A partial transcript of the president’s remarks follows:

Friends, trust me, you’re just going to love Greenland. I’ve been there, many times. I was there on 9/11, trying to stop the planes. It’s all true, not that you’d ever read it in the failing New York Times.

[Chorus of boos]

I’ve heard the critics on the socialist left. They say $15bn, that’s a lot of money that we could better spend sending hate mail to children in Israel. Well, I have a surprise for you. Guess how much this is going to cost the American taxpayer? The answer my friends – zero! Nothing! Nada! All costs will be paid for by tariffs on CHINESE dumplings! It’s true, not ONE CENT!

[Cheers and chants of “Not ONE CENT!]

The Green people – such fine, wonderful upstanding people. They’re all eager to become Americans – not like Democrats! And the country – so clean. Reykjavik, what a city. Not like Londonstan and Stockholmbad. No crime, no rats, no dwarf Islamist mayor! And don’t let that name confuse you, Greenland. The fact is, my friends, it’s not very Green. In fact, it’s white – very, very white.

[Cheers]

Whiter than white! Green is the new white!

[More cheers and chants of “Green is the new white!”]

And what a land mass! It’s the world’s biggest island, my friends! I bet you didn’t know that – larger than Australia and India put together! And we won’t need to build a wall there. Those waters are cold.

[Laughter and applause]

People are calling it the greatest deal in American history – maybe all of history. People are saying that only Trump could have made this deal. Maybe so, I don’t know. I guess it’s true, if everyone is saying it, I mean, I suppose it’s true. All I know is the Dutch paid, what, 60 guilders for Manhattan? I could have gotten it for 30 with Staten Island thrown in.”

[Laughter and chants of MAGA! MAGA!]

And the Louisiana purchase? Napoleon fleeced Jefferson! 512 million acres for $15m? It sounds like a great deal, but I could have done better, I could have done better. Could have got Texas, too, for not another penny.

Now there is one deal I feel bad about. Alaska. Folks, I hate to say it, but we kind of stole it from the Russians. They needed our dollars back in 1867 so we got a lot of land for what – two cents on the acre. That’s not a deal my friends, that’s robbery. Now you know I’m a good guy, a great guy – [wild cheers] – and frankly that deal troubles me. It does. So today, I called my friend Vladimir Putin and said, ‘Vlad, you can have it back. You can have Alaska back.’”

[Cheers and chants of “No collusion, no obstruction!”]

But I’ll tell you something. Crooked Hillary –

[chorus of boos]

– Crooked Hillary, know what she wanted to buy? Haiti! She wanted to make Haiti the 51st state in America. And then she wanted to buy Africa, too, the whole continent. So sad. And criminal.

[Chants of “Lock her up!]

But does the fake news report on this? No. All they say is Trump wants Greenland for its coal. Well, I say to you tonight, “Coal is not a four-letter word!”

[Cheers and chants of “Drill, baby, drill”]

And the fake news – they never stop. They say Trump hates the environment. Maybe they should look at my golf courses, the most beautiful courses in the world. I’m probably the biggest environmentalist ever. What did Obama do for Greenland’s penguins? Nothing! I’m going to change all that. I’m going to make sure that nothing happens to so much as one penguin in Greenland. Not one. No one loves the environment like Trump!

[Cheers and chants of “Penguins! Penguins!]

  • Nancy Pick is a writer based in western Massachusetts.