Ex-Pentagon official explains Trump's 'inappropriate' Thanksgiving troop call: 'He sees them as an arm of the GOP'
President Donald Trump -- screenshot

A former Pentagon and State Department spokesperson slammed President Donald Trump on Thursday for going off the rails and on a partisan rant during his annual Thanksgiving call with the troops.


Earlier on the holiday, CNN reported that Trump drew a correlation between the military's anti-terrorism activities in Afghanistan to his campaign to stop a caravan of Latin migrants from entering the United States from the south.

He reportedly went on to criticize judges who've ruled against his administration and downplayed the CIA's report claiming Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman personally ordered the assassination of dissident journalist and U.S. resident Jamal Khashoggi.

Ret. Rear Admiral John Kirby, a former Pentagon press secretary, told CNN's Brooke Baldwin that it was "unfair" of the president to put troops stationed abroad in that position, but that they handled it well.

"I wish I could say, Brooke, that I was surprised -- but he did the same thing last year," Kirby noted, adding that it was "completely inappropriate" for the president to politicize the traditional call.

"He just can't help himself," the retired rear admiral said. "I think he actually looks at the military as an arm of the Republican Party or an arm of his on White House. Of course they do report to him as commander in chief but they don't have personality loyalty in the way who expects from other people."

Kirby later touched on Trump's plan to finally go to an active war zone -- and said he wished the president wouldn't do it.

Watch below: