A secret trip to share Christmas love with the troops in Iraq took the media by surprise.
While the media was gleefully chastising President Trump for sitting at the White House on Christmas day, while other presidents have made a point of visiting wounded soldiers around Washington, the president was making other plans.
NBC was positively joyful on Christmas to publish this story (which they later had to amend): "Trump becomes first president since 2002 not to visit troops at Christmastime."
"Based on a check of NBC logs, President Barack Obama visited troops at Marine Corps Base Hawaii, in Kaneohe Bay, every Christmas he was in office, from 2009 to 2016." Of course he did. The media worships Obama, even when he vacationed in Hawaii, disrupting weddings, clearing golf courses, and generally making life on the islands a pain in the backside by his presence there.
Just after midnight, Trump left Washington on Air Force One, with a disguised callsign and a faked identifier code, headed to share the love in Iraq. Some aircraft spotters in the U.K. caught on, but not in time to spoil the surprise.
And Trump arrived in Iraq to a love fest, letting everyone know we're not going anywhere (from Iraq at least).
"I made it clear from the beginning that our mission in Syria was to strip ISIS of its military strongholds," said Trump, who wore an olive green bomber style jacket as he was welcomed by chants of "USA! USA!" and speakers blaring Lee Greenwood's song, "God Bless the USA."
"We'll be watching ISIS very closely," said Trump, who was joined by first lady Melania Trump, but no members of his Cabinet or lawmakers. "We'll be watching them very, very closely, the remnants of ISIS"
As he hobnobbed with the troops 10,000 miles away, taking selfies and showing off First Lady Melania, the Trump-hating media over here, was not satisfied. They're never satisfied with this president.
On December 16, the New York Times editorial board opined "Put Down the Golf Clubs, Visit the Troops."
"This holiday, it would be heartening to see the president himself deliver the same sentiment to America’s troops on the front lines, in his own words."
So he did.
And today, the NYT couldn't bring itself to say one positive word about it--they got trolled and had to practically spit the words onto the page to report it.
Mr. Trump, who had been scheduled to leave for a 16-day vacation in Palm Beach last Friday, instead has complained on Twitter in recent days that he is “all alone (poor me) in the White House waiting for the Democrats to come back and make a deal on desperately needed Border Security.”
But they did publish these stories in the sidebar: "Trump Imperils the Planet" by the same editorial board; and "Donald Trump is bad for Israel" by Bret Stephens. Of course, Israel doesn't necessarily agree that Trump is bad for it, but Americans like to pontificate on what's best for Israel minus their own opinions.
The media got trolled again by the president, again. While Trump was in Iraq, the market rebounded, with its best day in a decade.
Trump got his backdrop with the troops, something to crow about on the way home, and the media got to eat crow.