After Donald Trump’s Secretary of Defense resigned in protest, and just as confirmation was surfacing that Trump really did fake bone spurs to dodge the Vietnam War draft, he suddenly showed up in Iraq last night to do something he’s always tried to avoid: visiting with U.S. troops in the field. The stunt was an insult to the military to begin with – and that was before Trump opened up his deranged mouth.
Donald Trump told the troops in Iraq that he had somehow landed them a big pay raise, saying this to them: “You haven’t gotten [a raise] in more than ten years. More than ten years. And we got you a big one. I got you a big one. I said no, make it ten percent. Make it more than ten percent, because it’s been a long time.”
For the record, every word of this is a lie, and no one can even seem to figure out what Trump is even talking about. The U.S. military receives cost of living raises on a regular basis, and it has nothing to do with anything that Trump has ever said or done. Nor can anyone figure out why Trump is claiming to have somehow managed to land the troops a major pay raise while he has the federal government shut down.
This can only serve to backfire. When the news first broke that Donald Trump had visited the troops in Iraq, some (though not all) major news outlets ran with the obligatory feel-good narrative, while ignoring the shady context and timing of his visit, as well as his historically poor record of visiting the troops. But because Trump said something asinine to the troops, it’ll change the mainstream media narrative.
Also, the troops surely know they haven’t received any such raise, and that Donald Trump is simply lying to them. Or if they haven’t figured it out, they will when the raise never shows up in their paychecks. So now the troops in Iraq know with absolute certainty that Trump is indeed the dishonorable jackass that General James Mattis recently accused him of being.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report