A new piece by The Atlantic Editor in Chief Jeffrey Goldberg attacking President Trump is already being assumed completely factual by Democrats and the media, who are already using it for their own purposes.
Here are the big items that everyone is and will be discussing from of the article:
When President Donald Trump canceled a visit to the Aisne-Marne American Cemetery near Paris in 2018, he blamed rain for the last-minute decision, saying that “the helicopter couldn’t fly” and that the Secret Service wouldn’t drive him there. Neither claim was true.
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.
Belleau Wood is a consequential battle in American history, and the ground on which it was fought is venerated by the Marine Corps. America and its allies stopped the German advance toward Paris there in the spring of 1918. But Trump, on that same trip, asked aides, “Who were the good guys in this war?” He also said that he didn’t understand why the United States would intervene on the side of the Allies.
Trump finds the notion of military service difficult to understand, and the idea of volunteering to serve especially incomprehensible.
“He can’t fathom the idea of doing something for someone other than himself,” one of Kelly’s friends, a retired four-star general, told me. “He just thinks that anyone who does anything when there’s no direct personal gain to be had is a sucker. There’s no money in serving the nation.”
“Friend of Kelly,” who is no friend of Trump’s, is the closest anyone gets to being on the record. What are the ethics of doing such a major hit piece without a single on-the-record source? It’s not even clear that he has more than one source for the specific allegations above.
And, given that he’s the editor in chief, did anyone at the magazine seriously question his sources or bother to find out who they were?
These are the kind of statements which, if they were made, can be taken out of context and given more significance than they are worth. What’s more, several people have gone ON the record rebutting the account.
But Biden is already using it to attack Trump. Surely, just as planned by whoever spoke with Goldberg.