Trump tweets John McCain insult, saying Vietnam POW "emboldens the enemy"
President Donald Trump hit back at prominent Senate Armed Services Committee chair John McCain for his criticism of a controversial covert-operation in Yemen that left a Navy Seal and little girl dead.
President Donald Trump has defended a US raid on a Yemeni village that resulted in the death of at least 23 civilians and a US Navy Seal.
White House press secretary Sean Spicer upbraided McCain earlier in the week and called on the senator to apologize.
"I think anybody who undermines the success of that [raid] owes an apology ... to Chief Owens", he said.
This is not the first time Trump has attacked McCain. As part of their running feud, during the Republican presidential primary, Trump questioned McCain's military service during the Vietnam War.
"I don't give a damn what the president of the United States wants to do", McCain boldly told reporters.
Trump himself then joined the fray, accusing John McCain in a tweet of emboldening the enemy and suggesting he'd "been losing so long he doesn't know how to win anymore". "I like people who weren't captured", Trump said.
Trump wasn't done criticizing senators Thursday morning, using another Vietnam flashback to ridicule a senator who relayed private comments from by Trump's nominee for the Supreme Court that Trump's recent attacks on judges were "disheartening" and "demoralizing".
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He said reports that Yemen has demanded a halt to US special operations are "not true".
He called Navy SEAL Ryan a "hero" who "died on a winning mission ( according to General Mattis), not a 'failure.' Time for the U.S. to get smart and start winning again!"
As a result of the local outrage caused by the civilian deaths, Yemen announced that it will no longer give the US permission to conduct ground missions in the country, reports The New York Times.
McCain also said that "We must continue to take the fight to our enemies wherever they are while recognizing that risk is inherent in war".
McCain described the raid as a "failure" although later terming it "not a success".
Owens, 36, from Peoria, Ill., was the first known USA military combat casualty since President Donald Trump took office January 20.
Trump also took aim at Sen.
Sens. Chris Murphy (D-Conn.), Rand Paul (R-Ky.), Al Franken (D-Minn.) and Mike Lee (R-Utah) requested "a classified briefing regarding our actions and objectives" in Yemen, citing concerns about a recent call by Yemen's foreign minister for a "reassessment" of US counterterrorism operations. "American lives will be saved because of it".
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