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‘This Never Happened’: Sources Close To Trump Rally To His Defense Over Atlantic Story


President Donald Trump was quick to deny a recent report from The Atlantic, which alleged that he had said a number of disrespectful things about fallen American service members — and in the days that followed, a number of others have gone on record to support him.

Trump claimed that the story had been invented to help The Atlantic “gain some relevance.”

First Lady Melania Trump made a rare public statement as well, saying that the story was “not true” and adding, “It has become a very dangerous time when anonymous sources are believed above all else, & no one knows their motivation. This is not journalism – It is activism. And it is a disservice to the people of our great nation.”

Former White House press secretary Sarah Sanders noted that she was there at the time Trump was supposed to have made the reported comments — and she said simply, “This never happened.”

Dan Scavino also said that he was with President Trump in France and called the report “complete lies.”

General Keith Kellogg, national security adviser to Vice President Mike Pence, also defended the president, saying, “The Atlantic story is completely false. Absolutely lacks merit. I’ve been by the President’s side. He has always shown the highest respect to our active duty troops and veterans with utmost respect paid to those who have given the ultimate sacrifice and those wounded in battle.”

Veterans Affairs Secretary Robert Wilkie joined CNN’s Dana Bash and offered his own defense of the president Sunday, saying that he had not heard Trump disparage American service members and adding, “I would be offended too if I thought it was true. Again, I think ‘anonymous’ are the same people that brought you fake heart attacks, fake strokes, Russian collusion.”

WATCH:

Former National Security Adviser John Bolton — who left the White House and the president’s favor in very public fashion — said in his book that weather and security were the primary factors that ultimately canceled Trump’s visit to Belleau Woods in France.

Bolton also told Fox News White House correspondent John Roberts that if the canceled trip had been the result of a presidential temper tantrum, he would have given it a full chapter in his book.

The Federalist’s Ben Domenech acknowledged the many hurtful things President Trump had said about his late father-in-law — Republican Arizona Sen. John McCain — but also noted that The Atlantic had not exactly “clothed itself in glory” with regard to journalistic integrity.

WATCH:

Domenech tweeted a similar sentiment when the story broke, saying, “I’m confident I have better sources within this White House than @JeffreyGoldberg, and I expect that upon investigation his anonymously sourced story will live up to the quality we can expect from The Atlantic under his leadership.”

White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany called the story “garbage,” adding, “the liberal activists at The Atlantic are uninterested in the truth and they are only interested in peddling conspiracy laden propaganda.”

And they were not alone.

Fox News reporter Jennifer Griffin said that she was able to corroborate some details of The Atlantic’s story — but her sources were kept anonymous as well.

COLUMN BY

VIRGINIA KRUTA

Associate Editor.

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EDITORS NOTE: This Daily Caller column is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved.

Fred Fleitz: Inside the CIA, National Security and Iran Nuclear Crisis

I have a fascinating discussion with Fred Fleitz about the CIA, National Security and the Iran Nuke Crisis.

Mr. Fleitz served in U.S. national security positions for 25 years at the CIA, DIA, Department of State and the House Intelligence Committee staff. During the administration of President George W. Bush, Mr. Fleitz was chief of staff to John Bolton, then Under Secretary of State for Arms Control and International Security.

During his tenure with the House Intelligence Committee, he was the staff expert on the Iranian and North Korean nuclear programs and briefed key National Intelligence Estimates on these issues to committee members. After he left government in 2011, he founded and served as Director of the Langley Intelligence Group Network (LIGNET), Newsmax Media’s global intelligence and forecasting service. Fleitz is a regular commentator on Secure Freedom radio and has appeared on the Fox News Channel.

Mr. Fleitz is the author of Peacekeeping Fiascoes of the 1990s (Praeger) and is working on books on intelligence reform and the Iranian nuclear program. Mr Fleitz holds an MA in Political Economy from Fordham University and a BA in Politics from Saint Joseph’s University.

Learn more at: www.centerforsecuritypolicy.org

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Ambassador John Bolton’s Super PAC Announces First Independent Expenditure Critiquing Baffled NH Congresswoman Ann Kuster

WASHINGTON, July 17, 2014 /PRNewswire/ — Ambassador John Bolton’s Super PAC today released its first advertisement featuring troubling video of New Hampshire Representative Ann Kuster (NH-2) avoiding questions about the Benghazi tragedy and stating that Benghazi is not part of the Middle East.

The digital ad buy is for an initial $30,000 and will run for at least two weeks throughout New Hampshire. To date, the Super PAC has raised a record $3 million and has over $2.5 millioncash on hand.

The ad features Congresswoman Kuster at a town hall meeting in Manchester, New Hampshire, responding to a constituent’s question about House Resolution 36, which at the time would establish a select committee to investigate and report on the Sept. 11, 2012 terrorist attack in Benghazi with, “I don’t have it … It’s a Senate … We’re certainly not here to talk about it. We’re here to talk about the Middle East.” House Resolution 36 was indeed in the House of Representatives, subsequently the House set up a Select Committee on Benghazi.

“That she unable to address her constituents’ questions about the Benghazi tragedy is shocking at best,” said Ambassador John Bolton. “Having a basic understanding of the Middle East and America’s security concerns in Benghazi should be a fundamental qualification to be in Congress and Ann Kuster should know better. New Hampshire deserves an informed representative who isn’t afraid to take a lead on both domestic and foreign affairs.”

The online ad is expected to be viewed by tens of thousands of New Hampshire residents and found across online news sources in NH including the Union Leader and WMUR websites. This is the first of what will be many independent expenditures by the John Bolton Super PAC to ensure that American security is a central factor in the 2014 midterm elections. The Ambassador has not yet endorsed a Republican candidate running in the primary election that is scheduled for September 9, 2014.

In addition to the John Bolton Super PAC, Ambassador Bolton’s PAC has already contributed to U.S. Senate candidates Tom Cotton (AR), Joni Ernst (IA), Terri Lynn Land (MI), and Mitch McConnell (KY), along with U.S. House of Representatives candidates Martha McSally (AZ-2), Barbara Comstock (VA-10), Adam Kinzinger (IL-16), Robert Dold (Il-10), and Mike Pompeo (KA-4). The combined money raised for the two PACs is $4 million to date with nearly $3 million cash on hand.

About John Bolton Super PAC: 

The John Bolton Super PAC will aim to make America’s defense and national security significant factors in federal elections through independent expenditures, campaigns, and issue-oriented education. The Super PAC will not make contributions to candidates, parties, or PACs.