COMMENTARY: Trump Plays Politics with Dead CIA Heroes, Anonymous Wall Stars

January 21, 2017
By


COMMENTARY


There are no words to express the appropriate level of shock and revulsion at new President Donald Trump’s Saturday (1/21/17) appearance and speech, using the hallowed ground of the CIA’s tribute wall to the anonymous heroes who sacrificed their lives in service to the nation, as a political prop to launch yet another attack on the media, his critics and anyone who might disagree with his rhetoric or policies.

It is as though someone stood over a grave at Arlington National Cemetery and launched a political campaign, with lots of rhetoric, campaign signs and banners, and no respect for the gravesite of the hero he is stepping on.

In our previous life as a Washington reporter, we visited the hallowed ground that is the entry to the Central Intelligence Agency building, where over 100 stars provide anonymous tribute to members of the intelligence community who died in service to our nation. Anyone, other than Trump, who sees that wall and is informed about its historical significance, cannot help but be moved and silenced in humble gratitude.

We also met the family of a fallen CIA officer who took great comfort from their silent, secret star on that wall—it was all they had to try to make sense of the sacrifice their loved one had made in service to this nation.

So many families cannot even say how their loved one died, or may not even know how or where, because of the super secrecy surrounding the covert missions that claimed the lives of patriots who died in service to the nation but whose names or bravery cannot ever be known in public.

Other than less than a sentence noting where he was on Saturday as Trump stood in front of the star wall at the CIA, our new president delivered what was yet another political campaign speech: attacking his enemies, the media, and touting his own ego-centric views of his own abilities. This from a president-elect who has attacked the intelligence community non-stop because of inquiries into hacking of the Democratic National Committee and the campaign manager for his election opponent—which all national security agencies have concluded have Russian government fingerprints.

Trump has insulted the intelligence community for months, with unfounded name-calling against the agents and operatives who risk their lives to serve the national interest and the agencies for which they work. He has even compared the intelligence community to “Nazis.” Some of those stars on the CIA wall no doubt belong to American heroes who fought against the Nazi atrocities in World War II.

Crass, ego-centric politics should stop at what amounts to the gravesites of fallen US heroes. It is an unseemly outrage and insult for Trump to have used the silent stars on the wall of the Central Intelligence Agency as a mere prop for his own political agenda.

Patriotic Americans should offer prayers and tributes to the silent CIA star heroes, and repudiate a politician who would denigrate their deaths and use their virtual gravesites as a political prop.

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6 Responses to COMMENTARY: Trump Plays Politics with Dead CIA Heroes, Anonymous Wall Stars

  1. BobbyG on January 21, 2017 at 6:27 pm

    Thank you for mentioning about President Trumps visit to the CIA building. I knew it was scheduled for today so he could introduce the new secretary after he was confirmed. Since the democrats held this up he still held to his plan. I was able to go back and listen to his speech and I thought he did a nice job in keeping it light but still giving his confidence and backing to the people at the CIA. As far as the honor wall, I would be shocked if the CIA did not give there okay to where they would end up speaking. Now I know of the honor there since not everyone has the chance to make the trip. I actually heard what he expects in the future fights where the CIA would involved and he had the folks there sounding pretty agreeable in their applause and yes laughter. Hope everyone actually takes the time to listen to the 15 minute speech.

    • Jeanne Deeming on January 24, 2017 at 5:21 pm

      Bravo Bobby G. If one had been watching live, one would know that it was mentioned that the room used was the only room that could hold that many people. It was not Trump’s choice. Naysayers will always be naysayers. Agents of the CIA gave him a long standing ovation. Finally a President who does what he says.

      • dw senn on January 27, 2017 at 8:45 am

        Maybe if Trump hadn’t felt the need to bring his own cheering section, there would have been more room for the agents. Sad.

  2. Andrew Boyd on January 22, 2017 at 10:19 am

    Wow! Your brain is obviously under control of the space aliens also. There is no reason to believe any of the nonsense aimed at the President. You people need to wake up and smell the reality.

  3. Mary Kay on January 23, 2017 at 1:26 pm

    Why not place a wreath at the wall of stars? Why not say a few words to take real notice of the meaning of the wall? Why not asking for a moment of silence to honor the dead? That’s what you do when you go to a veteran’s memorial. The man does not show respect for anyone but himself.

  4. scott carlson on February 4, 2017 at 9:51 pm

    Well stated Nancy.

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