Fox News reported Trump 'never said' that dead US troops were 'suckers,' but the network's national security correspondent said ex-officials confirmed he did

  • The Atlantic reported on Thursday that President Donald Trump made derogatory remarks about fallen members of the military, going so far as to call them "suckers" and "losers."
  • Fox News on Friday said the report was fabricated and criticized The Atlantic's use of anonymous sources.
  • However, one of their own — national security correspondent Jennifer Griffin — said parts of the damning report, which cited two ex-Trump administration officials, were verified to her.  
  • "According to one former senior Trump administration official: 'When the President spoke about the Vietnam War, he said, 'It was a stupid war. Anyone who went was a sucker,'" Griffin tweeted.
  • Griffin also reported learning that Trump "just hated" Sen. John McCain and thought it was "not a good look" to include the "wounded guys" in a July 4 military parade.
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Fox News spent a chunk of its Friday coverage dismissing a report in The Atlantic saying President Donald Trump belittled fallen military members by calling them "suckers" and "losers."

Then Jennifer Griffin, a national security correspondent for the network, said former officials confirmed the president's remarks in a lengthy Twitter thread.

The Atlantic article cited anonymous sources — which Fox News said suggested the article had been falsified — but two former senior Trump administration officials verified the president's disparaging comments to Griffin, she said.

"According to one former senior Trump administration official: 'When the President spoke about the Vietnam War, he said, 'It was a stupid war. Anyone who went was a sucker,'" Griffin tweeted.

This source also described "a character flaw" in the president, saying, "He could not understand why someone would die for their country," Griffin added.

Trump made the comments during a 2018 visit to Paris to mark the 100th anniversary of the end of World War I, according to The Atlantic. Griffin said one of her sources told her the president was in a foul mood and asked why he had to visit two cemeteries.

Trump was scheduled to visit Aisne-Marne American Cemetery near Paris that November but said the trip was called off because "the helicopter couldn't fly" and the Secret Service wouldn't drive him to the cemetery. Griffin learned, however, that Trump "just didn't want to go," she wrote on Twitter, citing a source.

One of the sources also confirmed that the president said during a planning session that it was "not a good look" to include the "wounded guys" in a July 4 military parade, Griffin reported. She also said she found out that Trump "just hated" Sen. John McCain.

This corroboration comes on the heels of Trump, his family, and his team staunchly denying The Atlantic piece and framing it as a political attack by an irrelevant and biased magazine.  

"The liberal activists at The Atlantic are uninterested in the truth, and they are only interested in peddling conspiracy-laden propaganda," White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany told reporters on Friday. "No one loves and cares for our servicemen and women as much as President Donald J. Trump."

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