Trump sets social media in Finland ablaze with forest remarks

Trump's comment about raking in Finland has left people confused

While visiting California's wildfire zones on Saturday, Trump told reporters that Finland spends "a lot of time on raking and cleaning and doing things" to clear forest floors, citing his discussions with Finnish President Sauli Niinisto.

"You gotta take care of the floors".

The president then recounted an alleged conversation with Finnish President Sauli Niinistö in which he was told about the benefits of raking. "And when they do, it's a very small problem".

Trump has said that while climate change may contribute "a little bit" to the wildfires, "The big problem we have is management". "The president came, he saw and I'm looking forward over the next month and beyond to really understand this threat of fire, the whole matter of drought and all the rest of it".

An army of Finns posted photographs showing how they spent their weekends, rake in hand, working to prevent forest fires, and the liberal New York Daily News headlined its front page "Make America rake again", in a play on Trump's election slogan. "Very important", said Mr. Trump.

He also visited Southern California, where firefighters were making progress on a wildfire that tore through communities west of Los Angeles from Thousand Oaks to Malibu, killing three people.

The Finnish President told the newspaper that he meant to convey that although Finland is covered by forests, the nation has a good monitoring system which has helped to prevent catastrophic wildfires.

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"Look at other countries they do it differently".

Nevertheless, Trump was trolled with pictures of rakes, and pictures of Finns raking.

He said: "I was watching the firemen the other day, and they were raking areas, they were raking areas where the fire was right over there".

Chiming in on the trolling, many Finnish people pictured their rakes helping them get through everyday activities.

Finnish President Sauli Niinisto said in an interview published Sunday in the Ilta-Sanomat newspaper that he spoke briefly with Trump about forest management on November 11, when they both were in Paris for Armistice Day events.

He was accompanied by the state's outgoing and incoming governors, both Democrats, who have traded barbs with the Republican administration - often on climate change.