WASHINGTON, D.C. — An explosive new story in The Atlantic has put Trumplandia — the Republican media figures who defend the president non-stop — on high-alert. It didn’t take long for the story, published yesterday, to cause quite a stir. While the president and his most frequent defenders have tried to paint it as “fake news,” the central themes in the story have been confirmed by multiple outlets.
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In a blistering article, Trump is accused of calling fallen U.S. soldiers, buried in a cemetery, “losers” and “suckers.” In 2018, there was a planned trip for Trump to visit the Aisne-Marne American Cemetery in France, in celebration of the anniversary of D-Day. However, Trump canceled those plans, and the administration said it was an issue of not being able to find a safe landing area for the president’s helicopter. But the story in The Atlantic paints a much, much different picture.
Trump rejected the idea of the visit because he feared his hair would become disheveled in the rain, and because he did not believe it important to honor American war dead, according to four people with firsthand knowledge of the discussion that day. In a conversation with senior staff members on the morning of the scheduled visit, Trump said, “Why should I go to that cemetery? It’s filled with losers.” In a separate conversation on the same trip, Trump referred to the more than 1,800 marines who lost their lives at Belleau Wood as “suckers” for getting killed. (The Atlantic)
It didn’t take long for the people in Trump’s camp to come out and lambast the story. Surprising literally nobody on Earth, the term “fake news” was applied by the pro-Trump factions of social media to The Atlantic story, and big efforts were made to cast doubt on the piece. The president himself tried to swipe at the story, reverting to his old bag of tricks and accusing the outlet who ran a negative story about him of going out of business and publishing the story purely for financial reasons.
On Twitter, Trump attacked The Atlantic and tried to draw comparisons between its story and the infamous Steele Dossier, which Trump surrogates often bring up when trying to pillory the press.
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!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 4, 2020
However, within hours of sending that tweet, it appeared that the president was ready to change his tune, and at least on some level admit that the Atlantic story had some merit. Though, as he admitted to some key details of the story, he denied others and made one very clear distinction between the story as reported and what he says is the “real truth” of the matter. In the end, it was one omitted word from what he said that made President Trump so irate about the story.
“I didn’t say that, okay? I would never say it like that,” Trump insisted as he hurried out of the White House to get into a limousine to take him to McDonald’s for a Happy Meal. “I didn’t call killed soldiers losers! I actually called them FUCKING losers. I wish you assholes would get your facts straight before you printed these stories, too.”
Trump warned the press that if he wins re-election and they don’t start “treating [him] nicely,” that he’ll consider revoking the entire First Amendment.
“Billy Barr told me that when I’m president anything I say goes, so I’ll do it,” Trump said as he closed the limo door. “Now, leave me alone. I’m gonna go get nuggies and berders!”
The president’s limousine sped away as reporters went to file their reports.
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Writer/comedian James Schlarmann is the founder of The Political Garbage Chute and his work has been featured on The Huffington Post. You can follow James on Facebook, Spotify, and Instagram, but not Twitter because Twitter is a cesspool.