More and more family members of Sgt. La David Johnson speak out and confirm that Trump disrespected them this week with his insensitive comments.
Now, more family members of fallen Army Sgt. La David Johnson are voicing their anger at how Donald Trump has treated the soldier and his relatives, criticizing Trump for the way he spoke to Johnson’s grieving wife, Myeshia Johnson, and to confirm Wilson’s account of the badly bungled call.
The family members' comments completely undercut the White House narrative that somehow Wilson’s criticism of Trump and how he has handled Johnson’s death doesn’t reflect how the family feels.
"I found it very disrespectful of our president we look up to, who is supposed to be a role model for generations to come, to actually say that," Johnson’s sister Angie Ghent told a local reporter in Florida.
The family has dealt with lots of loss over the years. "We lost our mama, we lost our granma, recently lost a baby sister in May and now hit with this bombshell we will never see our brother again," said Ghent.
After a two-week delay, Trump finally called Johnson’s widow Tuesday and told her that the young Army sergeant "knew what he signed up for" when he entered the military.
Wilson, who heard the conversation as it was broadcast on speakerphone, relayed Trump’s words to the press and condemned his wildly insensitive comments. "I asked them to give me the phone because I wanted to speak with him and I was going to curse him out," a furious Wilson told CNN Tuesday night.
Trump initially denied he made those comments to the widow and claimed he had "proof" Wilson was lying. But Thursday, Trump’s chief of staff John Kelly essentially confirmed Wilson’s version of events, yet then went on to criticize her anyway, fabricating a story about her past.
Incredibly, Trump and the White House find themselves ensnared in a running controversy over what should be a solemn, straightforward function of any U.S. president, which is expressing public condolence for members of the military who are killed in action.
Trump to this day has not be able to figure out how to do that for the four Army Special Forces troops who died in Niger on Oct. 4, following an ISIS-led ambush. The event, which stunned military leaders at the time, is being described as a "massive intelligence failure."
One of the reasons it sticks out as such a tactical failure is that Johnson’s body was left behind for 48 hours after the raid, only to be recovered by Nigerien troops.
And the Trump administration has followed that despicable dereliction of duty with nothing but further callous behavior toward a grieving family.