Former President Trump derides Colin Powell a day after his death

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Colin Powell , dead at 84.The first Black US secretary of state died on Monday due to complications from Covid-19.The first Black US secretary of state died on Monday due to complications from Covid-19.His family confirmed the news on Facebook.General Colin L. Powell, former U.S. Secretary of State and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, passed away this morning due to complications from Covid 19, Powell family, via Facebook.We have lost a remarkable and loving husband, father, grandfather and a great American, Powell family, via Facebook.His family noted that he was fully vaccinated ….… and was treated at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center.The four-star general was born in Harlem, New York, in 1937. .Powell served in several Republican administrations, helping to shape America’s foreign policy over the last years of the 20th century. .Powell served in several Republican administrations, helping to shape America’s foreign policy over the last years of the 20th century. .He was the first Black national security advisor under Ronald Reagan's presidency. .He was the first Black national security advisor under Ronald Reagan's presidency. .Powell was also the first and youngest Black chairman of the Joint Cheifs of Staff under President George H.W. Bush. .Powell was also the first and youngest Black chairman of the Joint Cheifs of Staff under President George H.W. Bush.

‘He made plenty of mistakes, but anyway, may he rest in peace!’ Trump writes in email

Former President Donald Trump on Tuesday derided late Gen. Colin Powell as a turncoat who “made plenty of mistakes” — one day after the former secretary of state died from complications of COVID-19.

Breaking with a near-unanimous chorus of praise for the trailblazing soldier and diplomat, Trump slammed Powell as a “classic RINO,” or Republican in name only, “if even that.”

ExploreColin Powell had mixed legacy among some African Americans

“He was....always the first to attack other Republicans,” Trump said in an emailed statement. “He made plenty of mistakes, but anyway, may he rest in peace!”

Trump appeared to turn Powell’s death into an opportunity to attack his own critics.

He sarcastically noted that it was “wonderful” to see the media treat Powell with reverence despite his missteps, especially his checkered role in the launching of the second war with Iraq.

ExploreFormer Secretary of State Colin Powell dies of COVID complications

“Wonderful to see Colin Powell, who made big mistakes on Iraq and famously, so-called weapons of mass destruction, be treated in death so beautifully by the Fake News Media. Hope that happens to me someday,” Trump said in the statement.

The former president’s remarks stood out in stark contrast to widespread praise for Powell that crossed ideological, racial and political fault lines despite Powell’s well-known complicity for then 2003 invasion of Iraq in which he presented questionable intelligence to the United Nations to justify the war.

“Wonderful to see Colin Powell, who made big mistakes on Iraq and famously, so-called weapons of mass destruction, be treated in death so beautifully by the Fake News Media. Hope that happens to me someday."

- former President Donald Trump

Former Republican President George W. Bush offered fulsome commendation for Powell as did former President Barack Obama and President Joe Biden.

Powell was deeply critical of Trump following the Jan. 6 riot at the U.S. Capitol, saying he could “no longer call myself a fellow Republican.”

“I do not know how he was able to attract all of these people. They should have known better, but they were so taken by their political standing and how none of them wanted to put themselves at political risk. They would not stand up and tell the truth or stand up and criticize him, or criticize others,” Powell said earlier this year after endorsing Biden during the 2020 election.

Powell, 84, died Monday of COVID despite being fully vaccinated. He was battling multiple myeloma, a blood plasma cancer that can cripple the immune system, leaving him vulnerable to the deadly virus.

ArLuther Lee edited and contributed to this report for The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.