[There was a video here]
This morning, CNN interviewed Khzir and Ghazala Khan, whose DNC speech about their son Army Capt. Humayun Khan has proven to be the most lasting moment of either convention. With Donald Trump and his surrogates feuding with the Khans, CNN turned to their Trump foot soldier, deposed campaign manager Corey Lewandowski, who, despite being reportedly fired by Trump’s children, may still be quasi-working for Trump while ostensibly neutrally opining about him on television.
In his analysis today, Lewandowski made a bold claim: that Humayun Khan would still be alive if Donald Trump were president because Trump would not have led America into the Iraq War. As CNN’s own Paul Mattingly points out, despite Trump successfully running as an anti-Iraq War candidate, he said multiple times before and during the invasion that he would support intervention in the country. Via BuzzFeed:
For months, Donald Trump has claimed that he opposed the Iraq War before the invasion began — as an example of his great judgment on foreign policy issues.
But in a 2002 interview with Howard Stern, Donald Trump said he supported an Iraq invasion.
In the interview, which took place on Sept. 11, 2002, Stern asked Trump directly if he was for invading Iraq.
“Yeah, I guess so,” Trump responded. “I wish the first time it was done correctly.”
Trump could argue that “Yeah, I guess so” is a fairly benign endorsement, but as BuzzFeed also points out, he made a strong philosophical argument for going to war with Iraq in his book The America We Deserve, published in 2000:
“We still don’t know what Iraq is up to or whether it has the material to build nuclear weapons. I’m no warmonger,” Trump wrote. “But the fact is, if we decide a strike against Iraq is necessary, it is madness not to carry the mission to its conclusion. When we don’t, we have the worst of all worlds: Iraq remains a threat, and now has more incentive than ever to attack us.”
As the Trump camp refuses to concede the Khan family’s point—that their son, who died in June 2004 while attempting to protect his soldiers from a car bomb, sacrificed more than Trump himself—Lewandowski’s argument that he would still be alive if Trump was in office instead of George W. Bush can reasonably be read as a new Trump campaign assault.
Maybe they see it as a more palatable method of countering the Khans, since it attempts to refocus the controversy on Trump’s alleged anti-war stance. But it’s as plainly condescending as everything else offered by Trump and his lackeys since Khan’s speech, and that includes Lewandowski’s second assertion that the Khan family chose to “engage” the Trump campaign by “telling their story” at the DNC. Thankfully, CNN is only paying Lewandowski half a million dollars to smear the family of a dead man.