Recently, The Atlantic chose to publish a story on the President with anonymous “multiple” sources.
And this article was penned by its editor in chief so there is no ducking responsibility by the magazine itself for this latest version of how to write a narrative rather than reporting the news.
There are three points about the Atlantic story attacking President Trump using anonymous sources that I would like to focus upon.
The first is the “fact” reported that:
When President Donald Trump canceled a visit to the Aisne-Marne American Cemetery near Paris in 2018, he blamed rain for the last-minute decision, saying that “the helicopter couldn’t fly” and that the Secret Service wouldn’t drive him there. Neither claim was true.
The notion that the President could cancel a flight and then flip his choice to driving, notably, on French roads just like that simply is not credible.
Certainly, my combat and political experience does not align with that assertion.
After being medical evacuated from combat bombing Khmer Rouge and sent to Chelsea Naval Hospital Bosto,n I was only allowed to fly co-pilot in a UH-1E with a USMCR squadron flying out of NAS South Weymouth.
In my career, I was fortunate to serve as a Naval Aviator, Marine Pilot, flying in the cockpit continuously for 18 years and to this day the reserve helo squadron HML 771 that I was fortunate to fly with had the most individually decorated group of courageous individuals I have ever known. They were all Vietnam Combat veterans and to a person they had countless Air Medals numerous Purple Hearts, Distinguished Flying Cross, and Silver Stars. And to a person they respected New England weather conditions.
It is from these aviators and future generations of courageous Marine helicopter pilots women aviators now well included , that the President’s crew flying Marine One with HMX-1 is selected.
If a combat Marine pilot determines in peacetime that the weather conditions are not safe believe them.
The mission to visit cemetery by alternative means over land was a non-starter after the weather abort and was brilliantly explained by a very credible former Secreat Service agent, Dan Bongeino as discussed in American Thinker:
Could Trump just have hopped into his limousine and driven the 90 minutes to the cemetery?
No, he could not. You and I could have, but the president can’t drive anywhere unless the Secret Service has had a chance to secure the route.
This means that the president cannot turn on a dime and say, “Heck, if I can’t fly, it’s time for a road trip!”
Dan Bongino worked as a Secret Service agent for Bill Clinton, George W. Bush, and Barack Obama, so he has expertise on the subject. During his Monday show (all of which is worth listening to), Bongino addressed the fallacious claim that Trump could have driven to the cemetery once weather canceled the flight
“Ready Fire Aim” is not a sane military doctrine.
The second point about pile on criticism by individuals that should know better is very obvious and easy to grasp.
Every veteran has a well-earned right to express their opinions; after all they put their life on the line for the blessings of our Constitution, Bill of Rights, and additional Amendments. Consequently they most certainly have every right to say what they think about President Trump.
But here is the problem: if they speak out in anger they are basing their vitriol on anonymous sources.
In other words, until someone comes forward with the courage to offer their name all veteran critics with derivative fake news information, or to put it in military speak they are guilty of; “ready fire aim on roomINT” (rumor intelligence).
I sincerely hope they did not operate in combat with such an attitude in not operating with the best Intel possible.
So far The Atlantic is offering the worst and most dangerous type of information — the only thing worse in combat than no intelligence is bad intelligence.
The practical result of such a “hit piece” is now unleashing true stories about Donald Trump and his life long quiet respect for the Troops:
The third point is simple what is known as “counter-battery fire” someone attacks you fire back.
I believe President Trump calls this counter-punching. Again The Atlantic article has a serious flaw with their BS and it is very simple– defenders of President Trump in the veteran community will now come forth using their name to defend him.
Personally, I take exception to the fact The Atlantic is trying to drive a wedge between President Trump and my fellow veterans.
In very early Reagan 1, I was recruited by the Honorable Tom Pauken Director of ACTION, the national volunteer agency, to help fellow Vietnam Veterans. Tom served with distinction as an Army Intel officer in Vietnam and created the Vietnam Veteran Leadership (VVLP) to reach out to help all Vietnam Veterans.
The VVLP was a truly bipartisan, in fact apolitical endeavor, and very Reagonesque. Our VVLPs nationwide effort (52 total) had the mission to ask successful Vietnam Vets to volunteer to reach out and help our less fortunate sisters and brothers.
Tom following the guidance or President Reagan allowed each VVLP to chart their mission to bring resources to whatever would help in their area of operation. It was a brilliant concept and slowly the horrible treatment and image of our fellow Vietnam Veterans turned around.
All of a sudden it came as a surprise to us in DC to hear of a NYC developer named Donald Trump.
A goal in NYC, beyond just our VVLP efforts, was fellow veterans building a Vietnam Veteran Memorial.
I found out that a fellow New Yorker who was from Queens, I grew up on Staten Island, had quietly given a million dollars to the NYC Vietnam Memorial.
That was Donald Trump and a million dollars in those days was a lot of money.
We were told that the developer Donald Trump wanted nothing in return in fact it was modestly kept rather quiet with little comment even to this day.
The take away lesson learned in my writing this article for Defense.info and I suspect other first person veteran articles prolifiated in what is left of an honest media forum should be to the hack fools at The Atlantic that many veteran defenders of President Trump would have never thought to go on record.
But The Atlantic created the motivation.
All thoughtful Americans who understand that the “truth is the truth” should now welcome The Atlantic to the pantheon of fake news outlets just like The New York Times and The Washington Post all of which are owned by arrogant billionaires.
Enemies of President Trump simply do not understand his unique character trait.
As appropriate and when necessary he can be the personification of either the immovable object and or the irresistible force in one unique personality as the situation dictates.
Not understanding this must drive his critics nuts.
Come at him with BS at your peril.
Editor’s Note: To add to Ed’s point about managing the movement from Normandy, we are talking about France and the French here as well.
No President of the United States is controlling traffic in France, that I can tell you from my own experience.
When the Secretary of the Air Force arranged to go to Normandy to view the various aspects of the D-Day experience, he was escorted by the French police and that was coordinated with the prefects and areas through which he drove.
I know because I was there.
So to add to the comments on an editor of a journal who is mocking the President and his hair, I would add that you obviously have never been involved in the French management of American officials.