Former President Trump Tuesday derided Gen. Colin Powell in death as a turncoat who “made plenty of mistakes.”
Breaking with a near-unanimous chorus of praise for the trailblazing soldier and diplomat, Trump slammed Powell on Tuesday as a “classic RINO,” or Republican in name only, “if even that.”
“He was….always the first to attack other Republicans,” Trump said in an email message. “He made plenty of mistakes, but anyway, may he rest in peace!”
As he often does, Trump sought to turn Powell’s death from complications of COVID-19 into an attack on his own critics.
He sarcastically noted that it was “wonderful” to see the media treat Powell with reverence despite his missteps, especially his checkered role in the launching of the second war with Iraq.
“Hope that happens to me someday,” Trump wrote.
Trump’s classless remarks stood out in stark contrast to the praise for Powell that crossed ideological, racial and partisan political fault lines.
Former Republican President George W. Bush offered fulsome praise for Powell as did former President Barack Obama and President Biden.
Even Trump’s one time lieutenant, Vice President Mike Pence showered Powell with praise, calling him “a true American Patriot who served our Nation with distinction.”
Powell, 84, died Monday of COVID complications despite being fully vaccinated. He was battling multiple myeloma, a blood plasma cancer that can cripple the immune system, leaving him vulnerable to the deadly virus.
A lifelong Republican, Powell apparently irked Trump by endorsing Democrats in recent presidential elections as the GOP swung hard to the right. The retired statesman also slammed Trump as unfit for the White House.
Trump also used Powell’s death to remind his supporters that the general was a prominent architect of the bloody U.S. war in Iraq, which Trump strongly opposed. Powell later admitted his false claims about Saddam Hussein’s weapons programs were a “blot” on his career.
“Powell … made big mistakes on Iraq and famously, so-called weapons of mass destruction,” Trump wrote.
Trump’s tasteless attack on Powell wasn’t the first time he has shown a shocking lack of respect for the dead and America’s military heroes.
After the father of slain Muslim U.S. Army Capt. Humayun Khan spoke at the Democratic National Convention in 2016, Trump bitterly attacked him, suggesting that the hero’s mother was told not to speak because they are Muslims.
“Maybe she wasn’t allowed to have anything to say. You tell me,” Trump said.
In 2018, Trump tarnished the state funeral for former President George H.W. Bush when he pointedly refused to greet former President Bill Clinton and Hillary Clinton, whom he defeated in the 2016 presidential race.
Trump also refused to end his embarrassing public feud with the late Sen. John McCain even after the war hero’s death from brain cancer.
“I was never a fan of John McCain and I never will be,” Trump said after McCain’s death.
During a Trump visit to Japan several month later, Navy officials were even asked to keep the U.S.S. John McCain “out of sight,” apparently for fear of offending the petulant then-president.
Even though he didn’t order the move, Trump said approvingly that it was “well meaning.”
Original Article: Trump derides Colin Powell in death: ‘Anyway, may he rest in peace’