President Trump responded to the father calling for an investigation of his Navy SEAL son's death in a Yemen military raid, with the president expressing sympathy for the service member's family but defending the mission as a single "that started just before I got here."
"This was a mission that started prior to I got right here," the president mentioned.
The January raid in Yemen resulted in the death of Navy SEAL William "Ryan" Owens, 36, and injuries to 3 other Navy SEALS. Fourteen militants had been killed in the raid. U.S. Central Command also said in early February that "civilian noncombatants most likely were killed," which may have included youngsters.
Owens' father, Bill, told the Miami Herald in a current interview that he did not want to meet Trump when the president attended Owens' dignified transfer at Dover Air Force Base in Delaware on Feb. 1.
“I told them I didn’t want to make a scene about it, but my conscience wouldn’t let me talk to him,” Bill Owens told the Florida newspaper on Friday.
Owens also called for an investigation into his son's death and moreover stated he was troubled by Trump's treatment of the Khans, a Gold Star family of a Muslim soldier killed in Iraq.
Trump mentioned Tuesday, "I was at the airport when the casket came in, the body came in and it was a extremely sad with the family and it really is a good family -- incredible wife and children. I met most of the household," Trump recalled in the Fox interview.
"And I can have an understanding of people today saying that. I would really feel -- I would feel, what is worse? There is nothing at all worse," Trump mentioned.
White Home press secretary Sean Spicer stated through Monday's press briefing that the administration continues to be "quite comfortable" with the Yemen raid.
"We're extremely comfortable with how the mission was executed and, you know, we'll let the Division of Defense go by way of that critique procedure," Spicer mentioned.
Spicer added there will be a three-pronged investigation done by the Department of Defense.
U.S. Central Command confirmed Sunday that what is known as a 15-six investigation into Owen’s death is underway, which is standard when a deployed U.S. military service member dies. U.S. Central Command is also conducting a assessment recognized as a credibility assessment into civilian casualties through the raid.
The president in the Fox News interview on Tuesday went after Arizona Sen. John McCain for his criticism of the Yemen mission.
“I felt badly when a young man dies, and John McCain mentioned that was a failed mission,” Trump said. “I thought it was inappropriate that he goes to foreign soil and he criticizes our government.”
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