- There’s a wild conspiracy theory that first lady Melania Trump is a Russian spy.
- The only “evidence” internet commenters seem to have is that she speaks six languages and met Russian Vladimir Putin at the G-20 Summit last year.
There’s an outlandish conspiracy theory floating around that first lady Melania Trump is really a Russian spy.
As “evidence,” internet commenters pointed to a chat she’d had with Russian President Vladimir Putin at a dinner for last year’s G-20 Summit.
While Trump doesn’t speak Russian, she does know English, French, German, Italian, and Serbian, in addition to her native Slovenian – more languages than any previous American first lady.
Many saw her engaged in conversation at dinner with Putin, and reports described the two as friendly during the meal.
But there is no proof that Trump and Putin have had any other interaction, and no reason to think she has performed any work as a Russian spy beyond the occasional satire piece.
- Getty Images
Trump was born and raised in Slovenia before she moved to New York in 1996 when she was 26. She speaks with a Slovenian accent. Slovenia is part of the European Union and NATO.
This isn’t the first conspiracy theory about the first lady. Since the 2016 presidential campaign season, she’s been accused of having a body double and not living in the White House, both claims her staff have flatly denied.
The slew of similarly shaky conspiracy theories seem to thrive on the first lady’s private, steely public persona.
But Trump is slowly stepping into the spotlight as she becomes a more visible figure in her husband’s administration, and people who have close personal relationships with her describe her personality very differently.
French first lady Brigitte Macron said she gets along well with Trump, whom she called “really fun.”
“We have the same humor; we both laugh a lot,” Macron said in April. “She is a woman who has a lot of character but who is keen to hide it. She laughs very easily about everything, but she shows it less than me.”
Correction: An earlier version of this article misstated Slovenia’s history. Slovenia used to be part of the former Yugoslavia, a communist state, from which it separated in 1991.