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President Donald Trump found an unlikely ally Friday in former White House national security advisor John Bolton, who challenged a report from The Atlantic that Trump once insulted dead American soldiers.
The report, which was released Thursday, claimed, citing anonymous sources, that in 2018, Trump referred to American soldiers buried in France as “losers” and “suckers.”
Trump, who has been a proponent of the military throughout his presidency, issued a strong statement condemning the report.
Other Trump officials who were present at the 2018 European visit have also said that the remarks were never made.
Bolton, who is in the midst of a tour attacking his former boss after he was fired by Trump last year, came to the president’s defense on the matter.
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“I didn’t hear that,” Bolton told The New York Times.
Bolton added, ”I’m not saying he didn’t say them later in the day or another time, but I was there for that discussion.”
The comments from Bolton further damage the credibility of the report, as Bolton has become one of the president’s biggest enemies in Washington since Trump terminated him in September.
Bolton, of course, recently published a book titled “The Room Where It Happened,” in which he relentlessly attacked the president who fired him.
The two have since publicly traded barbs.
The report from The Atlantic claimed that Trump refused to appear at Aisne-Marne American Cemetery in Belleau in 2018 over concerns that it might rain.
“Why should I go to that cemetery? It’s filled with losers,” the report claimed Trump said, adding he allegedly called fallen Marines “suckers” for getting killed.
The Atlantic also claimed Trump made disparaging comments about late Republican Sen. John McCain of Arizona.
Trump attacked the report in a Facebook post.
“I was never a big fan of John McCain, disagreed with him on many things including ridiculous endless wars and the lack of success he had in dealing with the VA and our great Vets, but the lowering of our Nations American Flags, and the first class funeral he was given by our Country, had to be approved by me, as President, & I did so without hesitation or complaint,” Trump wrote.
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“Quite the contrary, I felt it was well deserved. I even sent Air Force One to bring his body, in casket, from Arizona to Washington. It was my honor to do so. Also, I never called John a loser and swear on whatever, or whoever, I was asked to swear on, that I never called our great fallen soldiers anything other than HEROES,” he added.
“This is more made up Fake News given by disgusting & jealous failures in a disgraceful attempt to influence the 2020 Election!” the president concluded.
He later posted, “The Atlantic Magazine is dying, like most magazines, so they make up a fake story in order to gain some relevance. Story already refuted, but this is what we are up against. Just like the Fake Dossier. You fight and and fight, and then people realize it was a total fraud!”
Trump has been defended by numerous administration officials who were reportedly present in France in 2018, with former White House press secretary Sarah Sanders tweeting that the story is “total BS.”
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