Donald Trump

Biden Honors Fallen Soldiers in France, Contrasting Trump's Actions

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President Joe Biden concluded his five-day state visit to France on Sunday with a poignant visit to an American cemetery. The cemetery, located in Belleau, France, is the final resting place for 2,200 US soldiers who perished during World War I.

Biden laid a wreath at the chapel of the Aisne-Marne American Cemetery, paying tribute to the fallen heroes. He emphasized the importance of remembering their sacrifices and the enduring strength of American alliances. "These soldiers were heroes, just as every American who has served this nation," Biden stated, adding, "The best way to avoid these kinds of battles in the future is to stay strong with our allies."

The visit was widely interpreted as a direct response to former President Donald Trump's controversial actions. Trump had famously skipped a planned 2018 visit to the cemetery, reportedly referring to the buried servicemen as "suckers" and "losers."

Reports surfaced that Trump had declined to attend a commemoration marking the 100th anniversary of WWI at the cemetery, fearing his hair would be affected by the rain. According to The Atlantic, Trump reportedly told those accompanying him, "Why should I go to that cemetery? It’s filled with losers."

While Trump denied making these remarks, John Kelly, a former Marine Corps general and Trump's chief of staff, corroborated the account, confirming that Trump had indeed mocked the deceased American soldiers.

This incident echoed Trump's past controversial comments about Senator John McCain, a former prisoner of war in Vietnam who endured years of torture. Trump had infamously stated, "I like people who weren’t captured."

The Biden campaign, facing a close race against Trump in the 2020 election, strategically highlighted Trump's disparaging remarks about the military. A campaign ad juxtaposed footage of fallen American servicemembers returning home in coffins with Trump's past statements about soldiers.

Beyond the cemetery visit, Biden also commemorated the 80th anniversary of D-Day, the pivotal Allied invasion of Nazi-occupied France. He spoke of the courage and sacrifice of the soldiers who landed on the beaches of Normandy, emphasizing the enduring values they fought for.

Freedom is worth it," Biden said. "Democracy is worth it. America’s worth it, the world is worth it, then, now and always." He also highlighted the success of D-Day as a testament to the "unbreakable unity of allies.

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May 21, 2023 | 05:09