The GOP presidential candidate’s statement came during a Q&A at the Retired American Warriors PAC. Some of the questions were about the suicide epidemic in the military and criticism of the Veterans Administration (VA) for falling short on providing veterans with the mental health treatment they need.
After saying there are around 22 veteran suicides a day, Trump explained to the room of veterans what PTSD was.
“When people come back from war and combat and they see maybe what the people in this room have seen many times over, and you’re strong and you can handle it, but a lot of people can’t handle it,” Trump said. “They see horror stories, they see events that you couldn’t see in a movie, nobody would believe it.
There was a silence in the room after his statement, and people on social media were quick to express anger.
Jon Soltz, a veteran of the Iraq war and the chairman of the Vote Vets organization, sent BuzzFeed News a statement calling Trump’s remarks “horrible” but “not shocking.”