The White House made a bizarre request ahead of President Trump's visit to a naval base in Japan this week, according to an email seen by the Wall Street Journal. In the May 15 email a US Indo-Pacific Command official told US Navy and Air Force officials that the USS John McCain "needs to be out of sight" during Trump's visit to the Yokosuka base, according to the Journal. When one official expressed surprise, the Indo-Pacific Command official reportedly said "First I heard of it as well" and promised to get more information from White House Military Command. The Journal's sources say sailors from the ship, who usually wear hats bearing its name, were given the day off when Trump visited.
The USS John McCain is being repaired and could not be moved, though a tarp was placed over its name last Friday, the Journal reports. Navy officials tells the AP that the tarp was removed before Trump's visit. Acting US Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan said Thursday that he didn't authorize any such action and would never dishonor the memory of Sen. John McCain. Trump disputed the Journal's report, tweeting: "I was not informed about anything having to do with the Navy Ship USS John S. McCain during my recent visit to Japan." Meghan McCain, however, found it easy to believe that the president wouldn't want to see the name of his frequent critic, the Arizona Republic reports. "Trump is a child who will always be deeply threatened by the greatness of my dads incredible life," she tweeted. (Earlier this week, she asked Amy Klobuchar to leave her father's legacy out of presidential politics.)