Throughout history, many soldiers have died in war with their remains being unidentified. In Arlington National Cemetery, there is the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier which contains the remains of a dead soldier(s) who is unidentified, “known but to God.”
The anonymity of the entombed soldier is the key symbolism of the monument; it could be the tomb of anyone who fell in service of our nation, and therefore serves as a monument symbolizing all the sacrifices of those who served.
We honor our living and our dead.
Today our unpatriotic president has contempt for past, present and future soldiers, sailors and air personnel.
Between 1964 and 1972, Donald Trump claimed deferments for mysterious “bone spurs” to get out of serving in the Vietnam War.
In an interview with Howard Stern In 1997, Trump laughed that avoiding sexually transmitted diseases felt like his “personal Vietnam.” “I feel like a great and very brave soldier.”
Draft-dodging Donald “Bone Spurs” Trump treats military personnel like a spoiled toddler playing with toy soldiers that won’t do what he commands.
He insults war heroes and their parents, lambasts generals as “dopes and babies,” and makes fun of soldiers with traumatic brain injuries.
He has pardoned a convicted war criminal against the objections of those he served with, who described him as “freaking evil.”
He forced West Point cadets to come back so he could give a commencement address, needlessly endangering them during a pandemic.
He has scoffed at Putin’s bounty on our troops, abandoned the Kurds, our staunch allies, allowing Russia to have its way in the Middle East.
He wants to spend defense dollars on a parade with tanks, missiles, and thousands of soldiers “goose-stepping” down Pennsylvania avenue, reminiscent of Putin’s Russia and Xi’s China.
Trump said of Sen. John McCain, “He’s not a war hero… I like people who weren’t captured.”
Capt. John McCain, a Navy pilot, spent five-and-half years in a North Vietnamese prison known as the “Hanoi Hilton.”
Trump suggested veterans suffering from PTSD are not “strong” and “can’t handle” the stresses of war.
Iraq veteran Jon Soltz responded, “The fact is, dealing with the mental wounds from war has nothing to do about someone’s strength.”
Unlike Trump – who seldom writes to families of slain soldiers, especially minorities – Presidents Obama and Bush wrote letters and made calls to families of killed Americans.
I’m reminded of the Bixby letter probably written by John Hay, one of Lincoln’s secretaries:
“I pray that our Heavenly Father assuage the anguish of your bereavement and leave you only the cherished memory of the loved and lost, and the solemn pride that must be yours to have laid so costly a sacrifice upon the altar of freedom.”
Lydia Bixby had lost five sons during the Civil War.
Draft-dodging Donald “Bone Spurs” Trump would scoff at Mrs. Bixby’s loss as “suckers and losers,” and would ask “what was in it for them?”
Trump’s disrespected Army Captain Humayun Khan and family, who died in a suicide attack in Iraq in 2004 and received a Bronze Star.
Trump compared the murder of Capt. Khan to “sacrifices” he made as a businessman. But his multiple bankruptcies, unpaid bills, and small businesspeople he destroyed are his real record.
On Memorial Day 2017, on a visit to Arlington National Cemetery, Trump was accompanied by Gen. John Kelly, then Secretary of Homeland Security. Kelly’s son, Marine Lt. Robert Kelly killed in Afghanistan, is buried in Section 60. According to multiple sources, Trump turned to Gen. Kelly and said, “I don’t get it. What was in it for them?”
In France, Trump canceled a planned visit to the WWI Aisne-Marne American Cemetery to memorialize the 100th anniversary (2018) of the Battle of Belleau Wood. He told aides, “Why should I go to that cemetery? It’s filled with losers.”
During that same trip, Trump called the war dead “suckers” for getting killed.
Last week in a video response, retired Maj. Gen. Paul Eaton held up the war-tattered dog tag of his father, Col. Norman Dale Eaton, who was killed in action (KIA) during Vietnam. “My father was a patriot.”
We are the “suckers and losers” for letting this contemptuous con, grifter get anywhere close to the presidency.
Vote him out!
Marshall Ward is a Murray resident who is a member of the Democratic Party. He may be reached at email@example.com.
Editor’s Note: Opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect the editorial opinion of the Murray Ledger & Times.