Last week The Atlantic ran a piece alleging that President Donald Trump, who among his other responsibilities is the commander in chief of the US armed forces, has repeatedly disparaged the intelligence of the men and women who serve in those forces, especially those who go missing; who are injured, or who die in combat.
The new story confirms and extends a picture of President Trump’s attitudes that has long been fixed in the minds of much of the public. Trump avoided the draft with a claim that he suffers from bone spurs, a malady of which there is no other evidence. He once described his sexual adventures during the era of AIDS as his “personal Vietnam.” Those and other indications of disregard for the military life are all matters of public record.
The Thing to Know:
The new allegations go far beyond the previously established record, describing for example a moment when Trump, standing at a deceased marine’s grave in Arlington Cemetery, said to that marine’s father, “I don’t get it. What was in it for them?” Likewise, after hearing a briefing from a General, Trump allegedly turned to his aides and said, “This guy is smart. Why did he join the military?”