Twelve days after two Green Berets and two support members died while under attack in Niger, Donald Trump had not acknowledged the incident. The president stood in the Rose Garden and lied before God and country about how he responded to veterans. The families of the fallen say otherwise.
When 45 was caught before the group of reporters in an impromptu press briefing, he went on the defensive, saying President Barack Obama and other presidents didn’t do as much as he did for families of the fallen. The Associate Press (AP) reported that Trump boasted:
‘I think I’ve called every family of someone who’s died.’
Then, Trump politicized the death of his Chief of Staff John Kelly’s son, Robert Kelly. The Marine died in Afghanistan in 2010. The president said reporters should ask John Kelly whether President Barack Obama had called him. Actually, his predecessor invited the Kellys to the White House for a dinner honoring Gold Star families. The AP reported that the current president pressed on:
‘You could ask General Kelly, did he get a call from Obama?’
Congresswoman Frederica Wilson was riding with the family of one of the soldiers who died in Niger, Sgt. La David Johnson, when Trump phoned the grieving widow. Myeshia Johnson has a two-year-old and a six-year-old, and she is with child now. She put the call on speakerphone.
The president’s job is to comfort the American people in times of crises. Yet, his cold words beat against the young widow. According to the AP, he said:
‘(He) knew what he signed up for.’
Maybe, that is why Trump took five deferrals during the Vietnam War. Four of them were educational deferrals. The fifth was for alleged bone spurs.
Miami station WPLG asked Wilson if Trump actually said that. The congresswoman replied:
‘Yeah, he said that. To me, that is something that you can say in a conversation, but you shouldn’t say that to a grieving widow. That’s so insensitive.’
Trump took strong issue with Wilson’s response to his words early Wednesday via Twitter:
‘Democrat Congresswoman totally fabricated what I said to the wife of a soldier who died in action (and I have proof). Sad!’
So far, about two dozen soldiers have died while on duty during the the Trump presidency. The AP discovered three families of fallen soldiers who received no calls from the man in the Oval Office. The third family did get a letter.
Co-founder and executive director of Vietnam Veterans of America, Rick Weidman, spoke about the two previous presidents:
‘I don’t think there is any president I know of who hasn’t called families. President Obama called often and President Bush called often. They also made regular visits to Walter Reed and Bethesda Medical Center, going in the evenings and on Saturdays.’
Sheila Murphy has not had a word, written or spoken, from the president since her son died when an armored vehicle rolled over in Syria last May. She wrote to Trump:
‘Some days I don’t want to live.’
The grieving mother got nada from Trump. We welcome your thoughts in the comment section below. T.Y