Open letter: Military veteran goes where few dare – to support Trump in Khan kerfuffle

A U.S. military veteran went where some have feared to go in the Khan controversy with GOP presidential nominee Donald Trump.

In an open letter, former Marine scout and sniper Chris Mark criticized Khizr Khan’s hypocrisy in supporting and being used by the Democratic Party, whose members booed the military at their convention. Mark also clarified that it was Khan’s son who was the hero and deserving respect, not the family or any political candidate.

Mark wrote:

“As a veteran, I watched your comments at the Democratic National Convention with a mixture of sadness, and anger. The United States has a military comprised of volunteers. Every single member has made the conscious choice to join the military and serve. There is not a single service member who has been forced into service. It is important for all service members (and apparently, their families) to understand that service to this great nation does not imbue one with special privileges or rights. I found your comments troubling when you said: “Have you ever been to Arlington cemetery? Go look at the graves of brave patriots who died defending the United States of America. You will see all faiths, genders and ethnicities. You have sacrificed nothing and no one.”

Does it matter whether Mr. Trump has sacrificed “… nothing and no one?”… has Ms. Clinton “… sacrificed” for this nation? How about Mr. Obama?  Your comment stating that Mr. Trump “… has sacrifice no one” is alarming. Are you intimating that YOU sacrificed? Sir, your son willingly sacrificed himself. As a father I cannot imagine the pain you must feel but his sacrifice is his own. He was not forced to serve.”

The combat veteran blasted Khan for aligning himself with a party that was so disrespectful of the military and law enforcement.

He said in the blog post:

“I am troubled that you would allow a party that has little more than contempt for the US Service Member to parade you into the DNC to denounce Donald Trump. Did you watch when protesters at the DNC booed and heckled Medal of Honor recipient Capt. Florent Groberg? Did you notice your party interrupting the moment of silence for slain police officers? Your own hypocrisy in not denouncing these acts and instead using the DNC as a platform to make a political point is disgraceful.

Your condemnation of one person for a statement while standing idly as your party disparages veterans and police officers is the height of hypocrisy.”

Mark then defended Trump’s proposed ban on immigrants coming from countries with known links to terrorism as a temporary measure to defend Americans from the same people who killed Khan’s son.

“The irony of your son’s own death at the hands of these very people in Iraq should not be ignored,” Mark said. “I have little doubt that your son would have recognized the need to protect our country from these very people.”

Mark reiterated his views in an interview with Fox News’ Megyn Kelly on “The Kelly File” on Tuesday, but said after reviewing everything, he no longer believed the Khans were “paraded” at the convention. He did, however, question the “exploitative” use of the family by the DNC.

Mark also posted a revised letter on Wednesday, issuing an apology to the Khans and other Gold Star families.

“While I personally do believe Captain Khan’s sacrifice was his own, I have learned that my own position on this issue does not reflect the views of many Gold Star Families,” Mark wrote.

“I should have been more circumspect in my comments and taken more time to understand the feelings of those families before opining. There is no other way to say it: I am sorry and I have learned.”

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Frieda Powers

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