Administration

Trump rips Kelly after confirmation of ‘suckers’ remark about war dead

Former President Trump ripped John Kelly, his former White House chief of staff, after he confirmed Trump called dead U.S. service members “suckers” in 2018.

“John Kelly, by far the dumbest of my Military people, just picked up the theme of the Radical Left’s lying about Gold Star Families and Soldiers, in his hatred of me,” Trump said in a Truth Social post Wednesday. “He was incapable of doing a good job, it was too much for him, and I couldn’t stand the guy, so I fired him like a ‘dog.'”

His comments come days after Kelly confirmed several details included in a 2020 article from The Atlantic, including remarks made during a visit to France in 2018.

“A person that thinks those who defend their country in uniform, or are shot down or seriously wounded in combat, or spend years being tortured as POWs are all ‘suckers’ because ‘there is nothing in it for them,’” Kelly told CNN anchor Jake Tapper. “A person that did not want to be seen in the presence of military amputees because ‘it doesn’t look good for me.’” 

Kelly added that Trump showed an “open contempt” for all Gold Star families.

Multiple senior staffers told The Atlantic at the time that Trump did not want to visit the graves of the American soldiers buried at Aisne-Marne American Cemetery in France and said, “Why should I go to that cemetery? It’s filled with losers.”

The outlet was also told that the former president referred to the 1,800 U.S. Marines killed in World War I’s Battle of Belleau Wood as “suckers” for getting killed. 

Calling Kelly a “lowlife with a very small brain and a very big mouth” in his post Wednesday, Trump claimed Kelly “made up fake stories” about him or confirmed these fake stories to the “Dems and Radical Left,” after having previously gone on the record defending his former boss.

“Interestingly, before firing him, his wife, who suffered a lot, told me he would never speak badly about ‘President Trump,’ Trump wrote in another Truth Social post Wednesday.

“Numerous people are angry and upset because they know they will never be in a new Trump Administration, but only for one reason, they’re not nearly good enough. Kelly would be among those at the top of the list!” he added.

The comments from Kelly, who was the longest-serving chief of staff in the Trump administration, follow a series of former Trump staffers who have called out the former president in recent years.

Meanwhile, Trump also called out the former White House for potentially lying about Rep. Frederica Wilson (D-Fla.), an apparent reference to a conflict between Kelly and Wilson in 2017.

“Did he totally lie about another Lowlife, Congresswoman Frederica Wilson?” Trump said. “Let them fight that one out themselves.”

Kelly came under fire for his criticism of the Florida Democrat in 2017 after a released video showed he misrepresented her remarks from a FBI building dedication in 2015.

Tags Donald Trump Frederica Wilson John Kelly service members Trump administration

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