President Trump openly disrespects prominent American veterans whose opinions differ from his own. The consequence for political conversations of all Americans is a crippled dialogue such as this:

Michael R. May

Michael R. May

(7) comments

Michael R May

The dialogue with Mr. Bohlken ends with Mr. Bohlken's name calling ("screed").

The end of the dialogue -- which never began due to Mr. Bohlken's refusal to engage with the facts presented and the consequences of those facts about the threat to America's security posed by the ongoing Russian cyber-attack,on our voting system -- proves a larger point about the Trump regime and its supporters such as Mr. Bohlken. Specifically, Candidate Trump marveled at, and understood the power of, this truth: Trump said he could shoot someone on Fifth Avenue in New York and his supporters would still vote for him.

Let none of Mr. Bohlken's comments distract any reader from the principle I defend: "Unless there is specific, verifiable evidence directly proving lack of integrity, incompetency or specific instances of disloyalty to America by the veteran, the opinion of the veteran is entitled t be respectfully heard and thoughtfully considered."

Bohlken1

Merriam-Websters defines "screed" as:

Definition of screed

1a: a lengthy discourse

b: an informal piece of writing (such as a personal letter)

c: a ranting piece of writing

It is telling that Mr. May chose the last definition instead of the first.

It is amazing that Mr. May did not mention Hillary Clinton's assertion, without evidence, that Tulsi Gabbard, combat veteran and Democratic candidate for President, was a "Russian agent". This echoes the nonsense that Clinton uses to attack President Trump and Green Party candidate Jill Stein. Does Mr. May believe that Hillary Clinton's accusation that Tulsi Gabbard is a Russian agent violate his rule?

By the way, would you agree that a veteran whose mental capacity has diminished with age should not be called to testify before Congress if those calling him knew that the only result of such testimony would be to put that veteran's diminished capacity on public display, even if such a display is part of a campaign against President Trump?

Michael R May

Mr. Bohlken is unable to contest the facts cited in my column. Instead, Mr. Bohlken attempts make the facts disappear by claiming they are "supposed" examples of disrespect for veterans. "Supposed"? "Supposed" penned by Mr. Bohlken who tirelessly reminds all that he is of a judicious, fact finding mind yet views a veteran being called the "world's most overrated general" NOT asn example of disrespect?

Mr. Bohlken ignores the even more important point for the survival of our great nation. Specifically, defaming Bronze Star winner Robert Muller's integrity and loyalty to America disables many from considering the evidence complied in the Mueller Report of Russian interference in the 2016 election -- Russian interference that is being repeated and daily strikes at the heart of our republic which is that voting truthfully represent the will of the People.

Lastly, it is definitive of Mr. Bohlken's mind set that he would in any way oppose a rule that seeks to have the opinions of veterans "respectfully heard and thoughtfully considered." It is a rule that the President should have honored even when he first became a candidate for President.

Bohlken1

Mr. May’s screed is not entirely factual. Although I also disagree with President Trump’s statements about John McCain (I don’t have to pretend he’s perfect), President Trump denied making any request to shield the USS John McCain (or at least the name of the ship) from his view. It appears that some official at the White House made this ridiculous request and the Navy complied.

Mr. May confuses disagreement or disrespect for an individual who happens to be a veteran with disrespect for veterans per se. President Trump’s criticism of Robert Mueller is completely understandable when all the facts are considered. Does any sane person think that the criticism of Mueller was based on his veteran status? The investigation focused on false allegations that Trump was a “traitor” in “collusion” with the Russians. Democrats from Adam Schiff to Eric Swalwell howled about how they had conclusive proof of the President’s guilt. The administration was crippled by this investigation for two years. Mueller hired a group composed primarily of donors to Hillary Clinton’s campaign, which made the impartiality of the investigation suspect. The investigation ultimately concluded that, while the Russians attempted to interfere in the election, no American, including the Trump campaign, cooperated with that effort. That is a rather amazing conclusion when one considers that the DNC and Hillary Clinton’s campaign paid for Christopher Steele, a foreign agent and employee of Fusion GPS, to create a dossier, based on information provided by Russian intelligence, to smear Donald Trump in the campaign. When Mueller was asked about this he claimed he did not know who Fusion GPS was and, upon explanation, that it was beyond his purview! In other words, investigating false allegations of Russian interference through the Trump Campaign was within his purview. Investigating well-established Russian interference through the Clinton Campaign was not within his purview! And you wonder why he is criticized?

You claim that I “oppose a rule seeks to have the opinions of veterans ‘respectfully heard and thoughtfully considered.’ “ Could you please quote to me precisely where I stated my supposed opposition to that rule?

My point was that the treatment of General Flynn and the Obama attempt to have the wounded pay for their own care showed far greater disrespect of veterans than anything done by Trump.

President Trump’s criticism of General Mattis reminds me of President Truman’s criticism of General MacArthur. President Harry Truman, a veteran, fired General Douglas MacArthur because of their public disagreement over the conduct of the Korean War. Truman said, “I fired MacArthur because he wouldn’t respect the authority of the president. I didn’t fire him because he was a dumb son of a b*tch, although he was.” Did Truman violate your rule? Harsh criticism of an advisor or subordinate who happens to be a veteran doesn’t necessarily equate to the proposition that the subordinate’s views were not seriously considered. They may have been so considered and vehemently rejected by the President.

President Eisenhower, a veteran, warned against the unwarranted influence of the military-industrial complex, which undoubtedly includes many veterans, as a threat to our liberties. President Kennedy, a veteran, rejected the advice of his military advisers, many of whom were veterans, to bomb Cuba during the Missile Crisis. He became so distrustful of the military experts, including veterans, that he later encouraged Fletcher Knebel, the author of Seven Days in May, to make it into a movie because he was concerned about a military takeover of the United States. These concerns, while painting a very negative image of some who happen to be veterans, does not represent a disrespect of all veterans or disrespect because of their veteran status.

Bohlken1

It is fascinating to see this account of President Trump’s supposed disrespect for veterans. If one reads President Trump’s remarks on Veterans Day or on the killing of al-Baghdadi, one will get a true picture of his attitudes towards our country’s military.

When it comes to disrespect for the military, Mr. May should have mentioned that, in 2009, Democrat President Obama attempted to require our wounded warriors to use their own private health insurance to pay for the treatment of their wounds. The plan was only stopped after a public outcry.

President Trump is known for hitting back against criticism, regardless of who it comes from, veteran or not. But his worse misbehavior pales in comparison to what was done to veteran Lieutenant General Michael Flynn by holdovers from the Obama Administration who hated Trump and had an “insurance policy” to damage the Trump administration if Trump were to be elected.

General Flynn played a key role in destroying terrorist networks in Iraq and Afghanistan. He became President Trump’s national security adviser.

The FBI director James Comey, ultimately fired for just cause by President Trump, became aware that Flynn had certain conversations with Russian Ambassador Kislyak, which he wanted to investigate. Since the Trump Administration was just getting organized, Comey bragged that he saw he could get away with directly contacting Flynn for an interview instead of following the usual procedure of contacting the White House Counsel to arrange the interview. Such an arrangement would have ensured that Flynn had legal counsel. Instead, Flynn was informed by the FBI that he did not need counsel and was encouraged to appear without counsel. Flynn agreed.

The trap was set.

Although the FBI agents interviewing Flynn, including Trump hating Peter Strozk, agreed that General Flynn was not lying, Flynn was informed that he was going to be prosecuted for lying to the FBI. It now appears that Peter Strozk, at the direction of agent Lisa Page, his lover and fellow Trump hater, altered the FBI 302 notes in order to make it appear that General Flynn was culpable.

General Flynn was under enormous emotional pressure, and financial pressure from legal bills, due to the investigation. He had to sell his house to pay legal bills. Later, the prosecutors threatened to prosecute his son, whose wife had just given birth to General Flynn’s first grandson, for failure to register as a foreign agent, unless General Flynn pled guilty to one count of making false statements.

It appears that, to protect his son, General Flynn pled guilty.

We need a General Flynn Rule: Democrats in the federal bureaucracy should refrain from using their power to entrap members of a Republican administration, whether veterans or not, even if they hate the Republican president.

Bboop64

Mr May, I thoroughly agree with you. Trump has disrespected the military. He has also said he has done more for the military by his deferral than serving. As an Air Force veteran I find this appalling. He is also taking money away from military reconstruction projects to repair military family quarters for no other reason than he wants it for his wall!

Michael R May

Thank you for your military service.

Thank you as well for continuing your service by voicing your opinion on this issue of vital importance for all Americas.

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