The military and the soldiers within it are one of Donald Trump’s favourite topics when addressing a crowd. He often references soldiers in the US military when criticising his opponents or people he disagrees with, knowing that accusing Colin Kaepernick – the NFL player who has been without a side for over a year since beginning his protest against racism and police brutality in the country – of disrespecting “the troops” will be a surefire winner with the heaving mob hanging feverishly on his every word.
Every love has its limits however. We all love things in our lives, or claim to, but at a certain point that love becomes tested. For the American president, Donald J. Trump, that test – that limit – appears to be the rain.
Trump is currently in France alongside a number of world leaders including Theresa May for the 100th anniversary of the end of the First World War, a trip started off by calling French president’s discussions of a European army “insulting”.
After meeting Macron, Trump was due to travel to travel to Belleau Wood, a battlefield where US troops had a key breathrough against a German advance trying to enter Paris.
It was this battle which is said to have proven to Allied troops that the US troops – fresh to the war efforts after entering it in 1917 – were capable of fighting alongside them.
The battle has become a key piece of lore for the US Marine Corps, and is presumably something that a US president would be keen to commemorate with a visit. Unless it is raining of course, in which case it’s a real no-go.
That was the case for Trump, who rather than visit the battlefield, opted instead to send Chief of Staff General John Kelly and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff General Joe Dunford in his stead, citing “scheduling and logistical difficulties caused by the weather”.
In Trump’s defence, rain is very wet, leaving those who stand underneath its path just as wet, and often damp for time to come. That, it would appear, is just too much of a risk for the troop-loving but rain-hating Donald Trump.