Former President Donald Trump launched into a vile tirade about a disabled war hero who sang about the appearance of the IED victim at a military event, an explosive report says.
The alleged incident surfaced in a lengthy report in The Atlantic about outgoing Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Mark Milley, a frequent Trump critic.
It is alleged that during Milley’s welcoming ceremony at Joint Base Myers, Virginia, after assuming the top military post in 2019, Army Captain Luis Avila had difficulty moving after the ground was soaked from overnight rain.
Avila was a five-tour veteran who was blown up in an IED attack in Afghanistan and was chosen by Milley to sing “God Bless America” at the event. Avila is an amputee who has suffered a stroke, a heart attack and brain damage – and Milley chose him to sing because he believed he was a true American hero.
But after the veteran’s wheelchair almost fell over, Trump reportedly told Milley – within earshot of several witnesses – “Why do you bring people like that here?” Nobody wants to see that, the wounded man.’
The outburst is among reported incidents in which Trump has shown a lack of respect for the armed forces, including allegations that he called fallen soldiers “losers” and “idiots.” The former president famously avoided the draft for the Vietnam War by obtaining a doctor’s note claiming he was suffering from “bone spurs.”
President Donald J. Trump greets Army Capt. Luis Avila during the Armed Forces Welcome Ceremony honoring the 20th Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Mark Milley at Joint Base Myer in Virginia, U.S., Sept. 30, 2019
A shocking report claimed that after warmly greeting the Army captain, Trump berated Milley for inviting the disabled war hero and said, “Why do you bring people like that here?” Nobody wants to see that, the wounded.
The claims appeared in a wide-ranging profile of outgoing Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Mark Milley (pictured September 19, 2023).
The tirade reportedly occurred shortly after Milley accepted the post of chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, the highest-ranking officer in the US military and the president’s top military adviser.
At his welcoming ceremony at Joint Base Myer Henderson Hall in Arlington, Virginia, the profile details how Milley received “an early and disturbing glimpse into Trump’s attitude toward soldiers.”
According to the report, Milley chose Avila to sing “God Bless America” because he “represented the heroism, sacrifice and dignity of wounded soldiers.”
The Army captain lost his leg in an IED attack in Afghanistan before suffering two heart attacks, two strokes and brain damage as a result of his injuries.
As Avila struggled to move through the grass at the Arlington base, Milley’s wife, Hollyanne, and Vice President Mike Pence raced to keep his wheelchair from tipping over.
But as Avila finished the song, Trump could be seen in footage from the event warmly greeting the war hero before reportedly turning to Milley and launching into an outrageous tirade.
“Why do you bring people like this here? “No one wants to see that, the wounded,” he reportedly said.
Army Captain Luis Avila served five tours and was chosen to sing at the event in question because he “represented the heroism, sacrifice and dignity of wounded soldiers.”
Avila lost his leg in an IED attack in Afghanistan before suffering two heart attacks, two strokes and brain damage as a result of his injuries
The alleged outburst ended with Trump berating Milley for inviting Avila and warning him never to let the veteran appear in public again.
But Milley, who was portrayed as he was preparing to retire, reportedly invited Avila to sing at his retirement ceremony again this year, four years after the reported incident.
The article addressed Milley’s dislike of Trump during his time in the White House, a theme echoed by several other military commanders close to the former president who claimed Trump had no respect for the troops.
That includes retired Marine general and Trump’s chief of staff from 2017 to 2018, John Kelly, who said Trump was “the most flawed person” he had ever met, as CNN first reported.
Esteemed four-star general and Trump’s defense secretary from 2017 to 2019, James “Mad Dog” Mattis, felt similarly, writing in 2020 that Trump was “more dangerous than anyone could ever imagine.”
The report said Milley was angered by Trump’s treatment of Avila because “Trump’s attitude toward the uniformed forces appeared superficial, callous and repugnant at the deepest human level.”
Trump has a history of clashes with senior military chiefs, including Marine General and his former chief of staff John Kelly, who called Trump “the most flawed person” he has ever met
In a scathing report that same year, Trump also reportedly branded soldiers who died in action “losers” and “idiots” and opposed the participation of wounded soldiers in military parades “on the grounds that spectators would be in attendance.” amputees would feel uncomfortable”.
The then commander-in-chief also said, “No one wants to see that,” during the alleged rant about injured soldiers, similar to the reported outbreak over Avila the year before.
As detailed in his profile, this alleged antipathy toward veterans led to a strained relationship between Milley and Trump because “such moments, increasing in intensity and speed, were disturbing to Milley.”
“A veteran of multiple combat tours in Iraq and Afghanistan, he had buried 242 soldiers who served under his command.
“Milley’s family adored the military, and Trump’s attitude toward the uniformed forces seemed superficial, callous and repugnant at the deepest human level.”