Dems claim POW/MIA flag’s move from atop White House to on-site memorial dishonors troops

President Trump is under fire this week from Democrats who claim he’s disrespected veterans by moving a POW/MIA flag from atop the White House to an on-site memorial.

At issue is the implementation of S.693 — the National POW/MIA Flag Act — which was signed into law in November and increases the frequency and locations the POW/MIA flag is flown on federal properties.

Bill sponsor Sen. Elizabeth Warren and other colleagues signed a letter framing the move as a sign of disrespect toward the military community.

“This decision to abruptly move the POW/MIA Flag from atop the White House to an area that is apparently not visible to the public may violate federal law and does not appropriately honor the service and sacrifices of American prisoners of war, missing servicemembers, and their families,” the letter read, Reuters reported Friday.

Rhode Island Sen. Jack Reed, a co-sponsor of the bill, also lambasted the decision.

“It’s part of a pattern of disrespect by President Trump toward those who honorably served our nation,” the Democrat said.

Their protest comes in the wake of an Atlantic article in which an anonymous source claimed Mr. Trump called fallen military personnel “losers” and “suckers.”

The president has denied the claims.

Multiple witnesses to the alleged conversation — including former national security adviser John Bolton — have publicly rejected the story.

“President Trump dedicated a POW/MIA memorial site earlier this year on the White House grounds to forever remember our heroic service members who were prisoners of war or missing in action,” White House spokesman Judd Deere told Reuters. “The president selected a site on the Southwest corner of the South Lawn for this prominent and sacred memorial, which is visible to all those who visit the White House, that features the POW/MIA flag.”

Mr. Trump also proclaimed Sept. 20 to be National POW/MIA Recognition Day last year.

“My Administration is dedicated to locating and identifying the more than 81,000 American service members unaccounted for — many of whom were former prisoners of war — to help alleviate the grieving and prolonged uncertainty of their families,” he wrote. “We vow to pursue the fullest possible accounting of these gallant patriots.”

“I call upon the people of the United States to join me in saluting all American POWs and those missing in action who valiantly served our country,” he continued. “I call upon Federal, State, and local government officials and private organizations to observe this day with appropriate ceremonies and activities.”

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Former White House Staffer Zach Fuentes’ Denial Trump Called Fallen Troops ‘Losers’ Earns President’s Praise

President Donald Trump considers himself at the forefront of respect for service members and expressed gratitude to former White House Deputy Chief of Staff Zach Fuentes for denying a report that the president called fallen military members “losers.”



Donald Trump wearing a suit and tie: President Donald Trump delivers remarks during a news conference at the North Portico at the White House on Monday in Washington, D.C. During the briefing, Trump thanked former White House deputy chief of staff Zach Fuentes for denying a story published in The Atlantic that said Trump called fallen service members "losers."


© Tasos Katopodis/Getty
President Donald Trump delivers remarks during a news conference at the North Portico at the White House on Monday in Washington, D.C. During the briefing, Trump thanked former White House deputy chief of staff Zach Fuentes for denying a story published in The Atlantic that said Trump called fallen service members “losers.”

Fuentes’ denial countered a story published in The Atlantic that Trump canceled a 2018 visit to Aisne-Marne American Cemetery in France because he didn’t consider honoring fallen war veterans as important. After having thanked Fuentes on Twitter, Trump told reporters during Monday’s briefing that he was “very happy” that the former White House staffer said the story wasn’t true.

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“Who would say a thing like that? Only an animal would say a thing like that,” Trump said. “There’s nobody that has more respect for not only our military but people who gave our lives in the military.”

Fuentes, who worked for former White House Chief of Staff John Kelly, told Breitbart on Monday that he didn’t hear Trump say the cemetery, which is dedicated to Americans killed during World War I, was “filled with losers.” Declaring himself to be on the record, Fuentes told Breitbart he wasn’t one of the people who spoke to The Atlantic for the story and said Kelly wouldn’t have tolerated the comment.

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“Honestly, do you think General Kelly would have stood by and let ANYONE call fallen Marines losers?” Fuentes said.

This is a developing story and will be updated as more information becomes available.

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