President Trump shared D-Day veteran Ray Lambert’s World War II story. Lambert was in attendance to commemorate the 75th anniversary of D-Day.
USA TODAYCOLLEVILLE-SUR-MER, France – Capping off a week in which he drew London protests and reopened a feud with a member of the British royal family, President Donald Trump delivered one of his most well-received speeches in Normandy, France, on Thursday.Speaking on the 75th anniversary of the D-Day landings in France during World War II, Trump honored the dead and paid tribute to survivors, a solemn duty of American presidents.The address near Omaha Beach won praise from allies and critics alike. “He knew the importance of the occasion,” said James Carafano, vice president of national security and foreign policy at the right-leaning Heritage Foundation, noting that Trump has also delivered good speeches previously on topics like Afghanistan and Iran, and at venues like the United Nations.Trump is an “unconventional statesman,” he said, “but he can be a statesman.”‘You’re the pride of our nation,’: Donald Trump praises veterans on 75th D-Day anniversary in Normandy’We changed the world’: Now in their 90s, WWII veterans gather in Normandy for D-Day anniversaryIan Bremmer, president of the Eurasia Group consulting firm and a frequent Trump critic, tweeted that D-Day was the “best speech of Trump’s presidency. Kept to script, not about him, maintained dignity and honor of the occasion.”Other critics also gave Trump high marks, though some were grudging.MSNBC host Joe Scarborough, who was covering the speech from France, called it the strongest speech of Trump’s presidency, and cited in particular the president’s kind words for allies. “I hope he means it,” Scarborough said.Attorney George Conway – another critic and the husband of White House adviser Kellyanne Conway – tweeted: “Occasionally he’ll read lovely words off a TelePrompTer that someone else wrote but he doesn’t understand, and then within days he’ll say something that will remind us … he was just reading words off a TelePrompTer that someone else wrote but he doesn’t understand.”The speech: 8 memorable moments from Trump’s D-Day address in NormandyThank you! You’re almost signed up for Keep an eye out for an email to confirm your newsletter registration.The allies: European allies made the D-Day landing at Normandy possible. 75 years later, Trump questions those bondsNo political storms in NormandyThe last time Trump visited France for an historic ceremony – in November for the 100th anniversary of the end of World War I – he and French President Emmanuel Macron argued publicly about Trump’s “America First” foreign policy.On Thursday, both presidents stuck to the central theme of the soldiers’ sacrifices and their role in changing history with the defeat of Nazi Germany.A day after tweets attacking singer-songwriter Bette Midler and Democrats in general, Trump’s social media posts Thursday dealt mostly with D-Day. He did veer off that message once: Attacking media coverage of his trip to Great Britain earlier this week.President Donald Trump and French President Emmanuel Macron talk to World War II veterans Thursday during a ceremony to mark the 75th anniversary of D-Day. (Photo: Alex Brandon, AP)The personal touchPresident Donald Trump first lady Melania Trump visit graves after a French-US ceremony at the Normandy American Cemetery and Memorial in Colleville-sur-Mer, Normandy on June 6, 2019. (Photo: MANDEL NGAN, AFP/Getty Images)Some of the most memorable parts of Trump’s speech were not rhetorical flourishes or stirring proclamations; they were the hugs and handshakes Trump gave to elderly veterans, many using wheelchairs to get around, after he spoke about their stories.”Private Pickett, you honor us all with your presence,” Trump said after describing the heroism of Russell Pickett, a member of the fabled 29th Infantry Division that was among the first wave of soldiers to land on Normandy.The speech: 8 memorable moments from Trump’s D-Day address in NormandyPresident Donald Trump and French President Emmanuel Macron, left, greet a U.S. veteran during a ceremony to mark the 75th anniversary of D-Day in Normandy. (Photo: Ian Langsdon, AP)AutoplayShow ThumbnailsShow CaptionsLast SlideNext SlideRead or Share this story: https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/2019/06/06/d-days-takeaways-donald-trump-praises-allies-veterans/1365156001/