(National Sentinel) Set-up: White House Chief of Staff John Kelly, a former four-star Marine general who himself lost a son in Afghanistan in 2010, defended President Donald J. Trump’s phone call to a Gold Star mother earlier this week while blasting a Florida congresswoman for politicizing the call.
Trump had telephoned the family of Sgt. La David Johnson, a U.S. Army special forces soldier who was killed in an ambush in Niger last week, and was criticized by the family and Democratic Rep. Frederica S. Wilson, a cowboy hat-wearing goofball who claimed that Trump was “insensitive” during the conversation.
“There’s no perfect way to make that phone call,” Kelly said. “If you’ve never worn the uniform, if you’ve never been in combat, you can’t even imagine how to make that call but I think he very bravely does make those calls.”
Kelly said he actually advised Trump not to make the calls because it was so hard to deliver that kind of message.
But the president, he said, insisted that he thought it was the right thing to do.
”He said to me, ‘What do I say?’ I said to him, ‘Sir, there’s nothing you can do to lighten the burden on these families,” he said.
Per the New York Post:
He then said a military friend had told him how he handled the calls, and he shared the advice with the president.
The friend, he said, would tell loved ones that the deceased “was doing exactly what he wanted to do when he was killed. He knew what he was getting into by joining that 1 percent. He knew what the possibilities were.”
That phrasing is similar to what Johnson’s family said Trump told them, that the sergeant “knew what he signed up for.”
Kelly then took aim at Wilson for listening in to the call and then claiming the president was somehow insensitive.
“It stuns me that a member of Congress would have listened in on that conversation. Absolutely stuns me,” said Kelly, adding that the death of someone serving their country in the military was sacred.
“I just thought the selfless devotion that brings a man or woman to die in the battlefield, I thought that might be sacred. And when I listened to this woman and what she was saying and what she was doing on TV, the only thing I could do to collect my thoughts was to go and walk among the finest men and women on this earth,” he said.
“And you can always find them. Because they’re in Arlington National Cemetery. Went over there for an hour and a half, walked among the stones some of whom I put there because they were doing what I told them to do when they were killed,” Kelly said.
Wilson had been appearing on cable and network news programs to launch tirades against Trump, and also engaged him in a war of words on Twitter, in what can only be described as classless act of stupidity.
Kelly also said he was not criticizing former President Obama when he told Trump that the previous commander-and-chief did not call when Kelly’s son was killed.
For his part, former Fox News host Bill O’Reilly said yesterday following Wilson’s brouhaha that he believed it was all a political set-up.
“I don’t know what was said, and neither does any other member of the press. But this whole thing has the look of a setup, does it not?” he asked on Twitter.
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