Former President Donald Trump unleashed a vicious tirade about a disabled war hero who sang during the IED victim’s appearance at a military event, a bombshell report claims.
The alleged incident was covered in a wide profile The Atlantic Ocean about outgoing Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Mark Milley, a frequent Trump critic.
It is alleged that during Milley’s welcome ceremony at Joint Base Myers, Virginia, after he took the top military job in 2019, Army Capt. Luis Avila’s wheelchair struggled to move after the ground was soaked by 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, heart attack and brain damage, with Milley choosing him to sing, believing him to be a true American hero.
But after the veteran’s wheelchair nearly fell over, Trump — within earshot of several witnesses — reportedly said to Milley, “Why do you bring people like that here?” Nobody wants to see that, the wounded.’
The outburst is among a number of reported instances in which Trump showed disrespect for the armed forces. including accusations he labeled soldiers who died as “losers” and “suckers.” The former president famously dodged the Vietnam War draft by receiving a doctor’s note claiming he was suffering from “railroad marks.”
President Donald J. Trump greets Army Captain 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., September 30, 2019
A bombshell report claims that after Trump warmly greeted the Army captain, he berated Milley for inviting the disabled war hero, saying, “Why do you bring people like that here? No one wants to see that, the injured.”
The claims emerged in a wide-ranging profile of outgoing Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Mark Milley (photo September 19, 2023).
The tirade, it is alleged, occurred shortly after Milley accepted the position of chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, the highest-ranking officer in the U.S. military and the president’s top military advisor.
During his welcome ceremony at Joint Base Myer Henderson Hall in Arlington, Virginia, the profile describes how Milley “gained an early and troubling insight 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 across the grassy area of the Arlington base, Milley’s wife Hollyanne and Vice President Mike Pence ran to keep his wheelchair from tipping over.
But as Avila finished the song, Trump was seen in footage of the event warmly greeting the war hero before reportedly turning to Milley and launching into an outrageous tirade.
“Why do you bring people like that 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 allow the veteran to appear in public again.
But Milley, who was profiled as he prepared for his retirement, reportedly invited Avila to sing again at his retirement ceremony this year, four years after the reported incident.
The article addressed Milley’s disdain for Trump during his time in the White House, a theme echoed by several other military commanders in the former president’s inner circle who claimed Trump has no respect for the troops.
This includes retired Navy general and Trump’s chief of staff from 2017 to 2018, John Kelly, who said Trump is “the most flawed person” he has ever met, first reported by CNN.
Esteemed four-star general and Trump’s Secretary of Defense from 2017 to 2019, James “Mad Dog” Mattis, felt the same way: to write in 2020 that Trump was “more dangerous than anyone could ever imagine.”
The report claims that Milley was upset by Trump’s treatment of Avila because “Trump’s attitude toward the uniformed services seemed superficial, insensitive and, at the deepest human level, abhorrent.”
Trump has a history of clashes with top military chiefs, including Navy General and his former chief of staff John Kelly, who Trump called “the most flawed person” he had ever met
In a damning report That same year, Trump would also label soldiers killed in action as “losers” and “suckers,” and argued against including wounded soldiers in military parades “because spectators would feel uncomfortable in the presence of amputees.”
In the alleged rant about wounded soldiers, the then commander-in-chief also said that “no one wants to see that,” similar to the reported outburst over Avila the year before.
As described in his profile, this perceived distaste for veterans led to a strained relationship between Milley and Trump, as “moments like this, which would increase in intensity and speed, were unsettling for Milley.”
“A veteran of multiple combat tours in Iraq and Afghanistan, he had buried 242 soldiers who had served under his command.
“Milley’s family revered the military, and Trump’s attitude toward the uniformed services seemed shallow, insensitive and, at the deepest human level, repugnant.”