Donald Trump denies calling fallen US soldiers 'losers and suckers'

4 September 2020, 05:40 | Updated: 4 September 2020, 06:23

Donald Trump has denied calling fallen US soldiers "losers" and "suckers"
Donald Trump has denied calling fallen US soldiers "losers" and "suckers". Picture: PA

By Kate Buck

Donald Trump has denied US media reports he called fallen soldier "losers" and "suckers"

According to a report by The Atlantic, Trump allegedly told aides: "Why should I go to that cemetery? It’s filled with losers," after a planned trip to the Aisne-Marne American Cemetery near Paris was cancelled in 2018.

At the time, Trump claimed the trip was cancelled due to bad weather grounding his helicopter.

Citing four unnamed sources within the US military, the magazine claimed Trump said 1,800 soldiers who lost their lives and were buried at the cemetery were "suckers" for getting killed.

The Atlantic and a senior Marine Corps officer also claimed Trump did not support flags being flown at half-mast for Republican Senator John McCain - a vocal opponent of the President - when he died in 2018.

McCain was a decorated war veteran who spent several years as a prisoner of war in Vietnam.

Trump is claimed to have said: "What the f*** are we doing that for? Guy was a f***ing loser."

Donald Trump had held a campaign event at Latrobe, Pa, before issuing his denial
Donald Trump had held a campaign event at Latrobe, Pa, before issuing his denial. Picture: PA

But taking to Twitter on Thursday night, Trump issued a long denial of the story, saying he had never called fallen soldiers as anything other than 'heroes'.

His post said: "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.

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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.

"This is more made up Fake News given by disgusting & jealous failures in a disgraceful attempt to influence the 2020 Election!"

He also took the time to speak to reporters as he returned from a campaign rally in Latrobe, Pennsylvania, saying: "What animal would say such a thing?

"And especially since I've done more, I think more than almost anybody to help our military to get the budgets, to get the pay raises for our military. So, I just think it's a horrible thing that they are allowed to write that. We can refute it. We have other people that will refute it."

He added that he thought The Atlantic is a "terrible magazine," and those who wrote the story were "a couple of people that have been failures in the administration."