Trump

President Donald Trump speaks during a news conference in the James Brady Press Briefing Room at the White House, Friday, Sept. 4, 2020, in Washington. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

(CNN) -- President Donald Trump referred to fallen US service members at the Aisne-Marne cemetery in crude and derogatory terms during a November 2018 trip to France to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the end of World War I, a former senior administration official confirmed to CNN.

Trump was supposed to go to an event at the cemetery during the trip, but rain and fog were blamed for him not being able to helicopter to the site. The White House then determined he could not motorcade to the location -- 50 miles outside of Paris -- because it would be too hard to try to secure the roads.

The former official, who declined to be named, largely confirmed reporting from Jeffrey Goldberg in The Atlantic magazine, which cited sources who said Trump rejected the idea of a cemetery visit and proceeded to refer to the fallen soldiers as "losers" and "suckers."

Trump has forcefully denied the report in The Atlantic.

Trump referred to Marines buried at cemetery in France in crude and derogatory terms, a former senior administration official says

President Donald Trump referred to fallen US service members at the Aisne-Marne cemetery in crude and derogatory terms during a November 2018 trip to France to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the end of World War I, a former senior administration official confirmed to CNN.

Speaking to reporters after returning from a rally in Pennsylvania on Thursday, the President said the report was "a disgraceful situation."

"To think that I would make statements negative to our military when nobody has done what I've done, with the budgets and the military budget. We're getting pay raises for the military. It is a disgraceful situation, by a magazine that is a terrible magazine, I don't read it," he said.

The Atlantic specifically reported that Trump didn't want to attend a ceremony at the Aisne-Marne American Cemetery in France in 2018 because he was concerned that the rain would dishevel his hair.

CNN reporters in France during the President's visit reported that local weather reports indicated there was a low ceiling and heavy rain in the area of the cemetery, and authorities at the time said there was not time to organize French security to cover a long motorcade route.

Trump insisted Thursday evening that the Secret Service had prevented him from attending the ceremony.

"I was ready to go to a ceremony. I had two of them, one the following day, it was pouring and I went to that. The reason it couldn't fly because it was raining about as hard as I've ever seen, and on top of that it was very, very foggy and the helicopter was unable to fly," he said.

The Secret Service, Trump recounted, "told me you can't do it. I said I have to do that, I want to be there."

This story has been updated with additional background.

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