Politics

Trump Presents Medal of Freedom to Retired Four-Star General

WASHINGTON—Retired four-star Gen. Jack Keane received the nations highest civilian honor Tuesday at a White House ceremony hosted by President Donald Trump, who called the Army veteran a “visionary,” a “brilliant strategist” and a “fearless patriot.”

The crowd in the East Room gave Keane a standing ovation when the medal was placed around his neck.

“In 2006, Jack helped engineer the surge that stabilized the deteriorating situation in Iraq and allowed Iraqis to finally take charge of their own future,” Trump said. “In the years since, Jack has continued to offer his sage counsel to military and policy leaders and to visit our troops on the frontiers. And Jack, I have to say, has given me a lot of good advice too.”

Donald Trump, Jack Keane
Donald Trump, Jack Keane
President Donald Trump presents the Presidential Medal of Freedom to former Vice Chief of Staff of the Army Gen. Jack Keane in the East Room of the White House in Washington, on March 10, 2020. (Patrick Semansky/AP Photo)

Keane has not always agreed with Trump. He thought withdrawing U.S. forces from Syria was a strategic mistake, siding with former Defense Secretary James Mattis, who resigned over Trumps decision. Keane contended that while the ISIS terrorist group was crushed during Trumps presidency, his decision would “lose the peace by withdrawing.”

But Keane agreed with Trumps decision to pull out of the 2015 Iran nuclear deal negotiated during the Obama administration. Keane has felt that former U.S. presidents have coddled Tehran.

“General, you will be remembered as one of the finest and most dedicated soldiers in a long and storied history of the United States military. No question about it,” Trump said.

Donald Trump, Jack Keane
Donald Trump, Jack Keane
President Donald Trump watches after presenting the Presidential Medal of Freedom to former Vice Chief of Staff Army Gen. Jack Keane in the East Room of the White House in Washington, on March 10, 2020. (Manuel Balce Ceneta/AP Photo)

In 2003, Keane was offered the position of Army chief of staff, but Trump said he turned it down and left the army after 38 years to care for his wife, Theresa, who was battling Parkinsons Disease.

Keane, 77, was born in Manhattan, New York. He earned a bachelors degree in accounting from Fordham University and a masRead More – Source

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