President Donald Trump’s speech to mark the 75th anniversary of D-Day on June 6 drew surprise praise from several of his most outspoken critics, including CNN’s Jim Acosta and MSNBC’s Joe Scarborough.
Trump made his remarks at the Normandy American Cemetery in France for a ceremony commemorating the anniversary of the Normandy landings; the largest joint naval, air, and land assault ever undertaken, and which helped free Europe from Nazi rule in World War II.
Following the president’s remarks, White House correspondent Acosta praised Trump during one of the network’s broadcasts, albeit in a backhanded way.
“This is perhaps the most on-message moment of Donald Trump’s presidency today,” he said. “We were all wondering if he would veer from his remarks, go off of his script but he stayed on script, stayed on message and, I think, rose to the moment and as he was talking about those men gathered behind them he described them as being among the greatest Americans who have ever lived,” Acosta said.
“It was really one of those moments that I think Donald Trump needed to rise to in order to, I think, walk away from the cemetery, walk away from this hallowed ground and have people back at home saying, you know what, no matter what I think about the current president of the United States, he said the right thing at Normandy,” the CNN reporter continued. “He did the right thing at Normandy.”
On another network, MSNBC’s morning host Joe Scarborough, shared similar sentiments about Trump’s speech.
“I’m also glad the president chose to have the discipline to stick to script and delivered what, again, I believe is the strongest speech of his presidency,” Scarborough said, reported the Daily Caller.
“There was one especially beautiful moment and I loved the thought because–any World War II documentary you see, any Vietnam documentary you see, when the interviewer starts talking about them being heroes, they will tear up and they’ll say ‘the heroes were the ones that never came back.’ Well Trump said that that’s what these heroes were saying,” he added.
NBC News special correspondent Tom Brokaw also offered rare praise to the president, saying the speech was well written and well delivered, reported Mediate.
The president was joined by First Lady Melania Trump, French President Emmanuel Macron, and Brigitte Macron, the first lady of France, at the ceremony. In his speech, President Trump honored the 60 American veterans on the stage.
“You are the pride of our nation, you are the glory of the republic, and we thank you from the bottom of our hearts,” Trump said, as the crowd stood to applaud.
American soldiers “came from the farms of a vast heartland, the streets of glowing cities and the forges of mighty industrial towns. Before the war, many had never ventured beyond their own community. Now, they had come to offer their lives halfway across the world,” he said, after recognizing Polish, Norwegian, Australian, and French fighters.
The president described the 130,000 service members who fought as the “citizens of free and independent nations, united by their duty to their compatriots and to millions yet unborn.”
“The blood that they spilled, the tears that they shed, the lives that they gave, the sacrifice that they made, did not just win a battle. It did not just win a war. Those who fought here won a future for our nation. They won the survival of our civilization. And they showed us the way to love, cherish, and defend our way of life for many centuries to come,” he said.
“Today, we pause to remember and honor all of the brave soldiers, sailors, and airmen whose selfless sacrifices catalyzed the deliverance of oppressed people and secured freedom for decades to come.” #DDay75 https://t.co/7FxY1nlYQl
— The White House (@WhiteHouse) June 6, 2019
Following the ceremony, Trump and Macron traveled separately to Caen, France, for a meeting and lunch before Trump returned to his golf course in Ireland.
On the same day, the president also issued a proclamation to commemorate the 75th anniversary of D-Day.
NTD reporter Zachary Stieber and the Associated Press contributed to this report.