Trump skips WW I cemetery visit due to weather, kicking up a storm of its own

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The White House’s decision on Saturday to scrap President Trump’s visit to a cemetery for fallen American soldiers due to weather irked more than a few observers, including those who have served their country in the military.

Trump, who is in France to commemorate the end, 100 years ago, of World War I, was scheduled to take a 30-minute helicopter ride from Paris to the Aisne-Marne American Cemetery and Memorial in Belleau, France. But a rainy forecast for the area made it too risky for him to safely fly there, the White House said a couple hours before the president was to arrive at the ceremony.

Read: Trump, France’s Macron discuss European security before WW I ceremony

“The President and First Lady’s trip to Aisne-Marne American Cemetery and Memorial has been canceled due to scheduling and logistical difficulties caused by the weather,” the White House announced.


‘An unforced error… the military could have made this happen… there’s always a Plan B.’

Retired Adm. James Stavridis


White House chief of staff John Kelly and Gen. Joseph Dunford, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, made the roughly 50-mile long trip to the cemetery in a small motorcade of vehicles, ABC News reported. The drive took about 90 minutes each way.

Separately, French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Angela Merkel traveled a similar distance by car to a World War I commemorative event in northern France, according to several media reports.



On Sunday, Trump is scheduled to visit American graves at Suresnes, and will give remarks, Bloomberg White House reporter Jennifer Jacobs tweeted.

But as for Saturday’s miss, “an unforced error… the military could have made this happen… there’s always a Plan B,” said retired Adm. James Stavridis, in an interview on MSNBC, citing the poor optics around Trump’s cancelation.

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Most of the criticism stressed the rough conditions suffered by soldiers and sailors in the Great War — which claimed an estimated 40 million military and civilian casualties — and in all conflicts before and since.






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