President Trump refused to visit a First World War cemetery in France because he said dead US soldiers were “losers” and “suckers”, it has been claimed.
The allegations, first reported in The Atlantic, contain multiple instances of Mr Trump making disparaging remarks about members of the US military who have been captured or killed, and claim that the president refused to attend a service at the Aisne-Marne American Cemetery in France in 2018.
Mr Trump said on Thursday that the story is “totally false.”
The Associated Press said that a senior Defense Department official with knowledge of events and a senior US Marine Corps officer who was told about Mr Trump’s comments confirmed some of the remarks, including the 2018 cemetery comments.
A senior Marine Corps officer and The Atlantic also reported that Mr Trump said he did not want to support the August 2018 funeral of Senator John McCain, a decorated Navy veteran who spent years as a Vietnam prisoner of war, because he was a “loser”.
It was also claimed that Mr Trump was angered that flags were flown at half-mast for McCain, saying: “What the f*** are we doing that for? Guy was a f***ing loser.”
Mr Trump posted a long denial on Twitter on Thursday evening, insisting that he would only ever refer to veterans as “heroes”: