President Donald Trump has nothing but respect for the troops. Unless it’s sprinkling. Trump and First Lady Melania Trump were scheduled to appear at the Ainse-Marne American Cemetery and Memorial in northern France, the site of one of the bloodiest World War I battles, but cancelled allegedly due to weather.
Trump was supposed to attend the event along with French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Angela Merkel, who did attend, but the president decided not to go because it was raining in Paris. The White House said Trump’s helicopter could not take him to the battle site, more than 50 miles outside of France’s capital city, where the president was staying. Trump is in France to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the end of the first World War.
The White House issued the following statement explaining Trump’s absence at Saturday’s event: “The President and First Lady’s trip to Ainse-Marne American Cemetery and Memorial has been canceled due to scheduling and logistical difficulties caused by the weather. An American delegation led by Chief of Staff General John Kelly and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff General Joe Dunford will attend on their behalf.”
Many were skeptical at the president’s excuse. After all, this is the White House. Surely they have backup plans. As former Obama advisor Ben Rhodes tweeted, “I helped plan all of President Obama’s trips for 8 years. There is always a rain option. Always.”
Macron sent a single, pointed tweet with a photo of him and Merkel at the event with the word “unis,” which means united in French.
— Emmanuel Macron (@EmmanuelMacron) November 10, 2018
British politician and grandson of Winston Churchill, Nicholas Soames, also tweeted his disappointment in the American president, calling him “pathetic” and “inadequate.”
— Nicholas Soames (@NSoames) November 10, 2018
But maybe the real reason Trump played hookie was because he just needed more “executive time” (aka TV and Twitter). Or perhaps the president cancelled purely to avoid another embarrassing incident with an umbrella.