Former New York Times reporter Kurt Eichenwald slammed Melania Trump for renovating the rose garden at the White House on Saturday, saying he was angry because the first lady was a "foreigner" who "had no right to our story to destroy".
The offensive outbreak was pushed back by a number of other journalists, including CNN's Jake Tapper, who accused Eichenwald of being "xenophobic and false".
Eichenwald's outbreak came within hours when Melania unveiled the redesigned rose garden on Saturday afternoon, which was completed in time for her to campaign for her husband's re-election when she spoke at the Republican National Convention there on Tuesday.
"It's a destruction of our history, something that no other first lady could have done," scolded Eichenwald, a New York Times bestselling author, on Twitter.
& # 39; This is the first time I've been mad that @FLOTUS is a foreigner. She has no right to destroy our history. & # 39;
Former New York Times reporter Kurt Eichenwald (left) slammed Melania Trump for renovating the rose garden at the White House on Saturday, saying he was "angry" with the first lady-led makeover for being "a foreigner." " be.
Former New York Times journalist Kurt Eichenwald tweeted about the rose garden on Saturday, highlighting its story
In tweets that have since been deleted, Eichenwald said the foreign-born first lady ruined the garden with her redesign
2007: Tulips are shown in full bloom in the Rose Garden of the White House. Social media users blew up the design of the newly renovated rose garden in the White House
2020: Social media users branded the renovation as a "cemetery" and "parking lot" and criticized it for uprooting cherry trees
The comments came in response to a tweet from FLOTUS expressing their excitement about being part of such a historic project and thanking everyone for making it possible to "renew this iconic and truly beautiful space".
On Sunday, 59-year-old Eichenwald apologized for his tweets, which have now been deleted.
"People may have misunderstood my point that Melania is a foreigner and tearing up plants that were put up by nearly 100 years of first ladies," he tweeted.
& # 39; It was a complex point and I was wrong to say. My point was people who come to America should celebrate its history, not ignore it.
& # 39; But I deleted the tweets. I didn't have the bad intentions they seemed to have conveyed to so many.
“I should be more careful what these types of words seem to mean. We all sometimes fail because of our words, this was one of my times. I apologize. & # 39;
On Sunday, the journalist apologized for his tweets the day before, saying it was "a complex point and I was wrong to say it".
Eichenwald said his tweets had no "bad intentions" but admitted that they were badly judged when the comment was posted
Melania, who grew up in Slovenia but became a US citizen in 2006, posted the tweet the same day the garden was revealed to reporters after more than three weeks of construction.
She said she was hoping to redesign the garden to bring it back to its original 1962 design, which goes back to the administration of John F. Kennedy.
"Preserving the history and beauty of the White House and its grounds is a testament to our nation's commitment to maintaining this landscape and our commitment to American ideals to protect it for our children and their children for generations to come," Melania said .
However, the first lady's feelings about the preservation of history did little to stop the disdain of Eichenwald, who directed a second explosive tweet at Melania on Saturday.
Eichenwald, who was the senior writer with the New York Times for two decades, wrote: “I still find it incredible that @FLOTUS, who has only been a citizen of GW Bush midway through his second term, had the audacity to close the rose garden to destroy. Withdraw history for a lifetime.
"Those trashy, bad, stupid people have to leave our house," he continued. "What GALL does she have."
The second tweet was no longer visible on Eichenwald's timeline from Sunday afternoon.
Both of the author's comments met members of the public with considerable contempt from his media peers.
Mehdi Hasan, a senior columnist for The Intercept and moderator of Al Jazeera, wrote in response to the second message, "This is a terrible attitude towards immigrants, Kurt, and you should delete it and apologize."
Hasan's admonition was confirmed by CNN host Jake Tapper, who replied to Hasan, writing, “Agree. @kurteichenwald that is xenophobic and wrong. It's bigotry. & # 39;
The public agreed, which Eichenwald exclaimed for its hypocrisy, and one user wrote, “It is restoring the original design! And somehow this would be seen as the destruction of history but not demolishing monuments and statues? She's not the one ruining our country, look in the mirror. & # 39;
In a tweet responding to a wave of criticism, Eichenwald doubled: "Someone who has only been a citizen for less than a third of their life should revere American history, honor our history, and not decide that their personal taste rips it up . & # 39;
Melania Trump has not yet responded publicly to Eichenwald's comments.
When asked by DailyMail.com, the White House declined to comment, as did the New York Times.
Born in Texas, Oakwood worked for the New York Times from 1986 to 2006. He wrote mainly about financial scandals, but then moved on to more extensive investigative reporting.
In 2000, he was shortlisted for the Pulitzer Prize for an investigation into medical clinical trials.
He is the author of five books, one of which, The Informant, was turned into a Steven Soderbergh film with Matt Damon in 2009.
He left the Times to join Conde Nast's portfolio magazine, which lasted only two years.
Eichenwald then went to work for Vanity Fair and found out he was no longer an editor in April 2018 when he emailed conservative commentator Ben Shapiro saying that a school shooting survivor in Parkland, Florida was in need of psychiatric help need & # 39 ;.
At this point in time, Eichenwald had not appeared in the magazine's imprint for more than a year. His final track for publication ran online in 2014, according to a source from Vanity Fair.
"Kurt Eichenwald is not an editor at Vanity Fair," a spokesman for the magazine told The Hill in April 2018.
Eichenwald claimed no one had told him.
“A damn good way to find out. I've been an editor – freelancer at Vanity Fair for 6 years, "Eichenwald said in a tweet. & # 39; I live in Dallas and have not had any contact with the new editor in charge. My contract has expired and was not renewed. I called my friends there – they're all gone too. & # 39;
Eichenwald, who suffers from epilepsy, made headlines back in 2016 when he appeared on Fox News opened an animated image sent to him on Twitter in December with the message "You deserve a seizure for your posts" displayed in capital letters along with a blinding flash.
Eichenwald immediately suffered a seizure that left him unable to work for several days, lost feeling in his left hand, and, according to his lawyer, had trouble speaking for several weeks.
John Rayne Rivello, 29, was arrested at his home in Salisbury, Maryland, in March and charged with sending the electronic file. The agency charged Rivello with criminal cyberstalking with the intent to kill or cause assault.
The first lady received her fair share of negative tweets in response to her rose garden reveal, with many comparing it to a "graveyard" and a "parking lot".
The 50-year-old has also been widely admonished for uprooting the garden's historic cherry trees.
The hashtag #MarieAntoinette was trending on Saturday as some compared the first lady to the French ruler by citing her poor timing in throwing money in a garden while millions of Americans lost their jobs and got up amid the coronavirus pandemic the bread line.
Before and after, photos of the garden appeared to show a far-reaching makeover from brightly colored blooms to starkly low-key lawns, and critics accused the government of obliterating the influence of former White House residents
Swaths of Americans used social media on Saturday to express their horror at the rose garden's new look. He pointed to the dramatic shift in color and blooms towards a much more minimalist design and hardly any flowers.
"The Trumps paved paradise and built a parking lot," wrote one person.
"Dried up and colorless, much like the rabble that currently lives within us," tweeted one person.
Another wrote: "What a shame, Melania took something beautiful and made it cold, colorless and boring."
Others described its new look as that of a "graveyard" next to an aerial photo of a bare lawn.
Much of the criticism has also focused on the lack of the cherry blossom trees that once lined the garden.
"And in yet another insult to George Washington and the country, Melania ordered the cherry tree cut down," one person tweeted.
They felled the cherry trees. I'm outraged. Just because you made everything white doesn't clean the inmates, another agreed.
The Americans used social media on Saturday to express their horror at the rose garden's new look. They pointed to the dramatic shift in color and blooms towards a much more minimalist design and hardly any flowers
One critic criticized the move, citing the trees' relevance to America's culture and heritage.
“Who will fall beautiful, historic cherry trees to symbolize our friendship with Japan? Tragic, ”they tweeted.
Some cited the drastic overhaul as a sign of Trump's America, saying that the multicolored flowers that were replaced with white flowers represented a lack of diversity in the White House.
“Chop down the cherry trees because they are symbols of honesty. Replace the colorful flowers because they are symbols of diversity, ”tweeted one person.
& # 39; Sidewalk installed because 45 * cannot walk on grass. I don't want it to fall into the ONLY WHITE flower bed. & # 39;
Another person added that it was "a metaphor for what Trump did to this country".
Melania's renovated rose garden is a metaphor for what Trump did to this country. Removed all the well-established beautiful things, took out all the colors and stained everything white and charged far too much to the American taxpayer to do, ”they tweeted.
The first lady, who was paid for by private donations, said she would bring the garden back to its roots and honor the original design by Bunny Mellon, made at the request of President John F. Kennedy in 1962
Melania Trump and President Donald Trump planned to host a private reception for the donors on Saturday night
Much of the criticism has also focused on the lack of the cherry blossom trees that once lined the garden and others blew the administration for obliterating the influence of former White House residents
Questions were also raised about a political motive for wiping out the legacy of the Trump's predecessors in the White House.
"Jackie Kennedy redesigned the rose garden and planted the trees that were removed," one person tweeted.
“I am indignant that Melania thought it appropriate to clear Jackie Kennedy's garden before they leave.
& # 39; This, of course, after Michele Obama's garden was removed. Clear history. & # 39;
Ten crab apple trees that were part of Jackie Kennedy's original design have been removed from the garden. Officials said the shadow they cast over the garden was affecting the health of the plants.
However, a White House official said the trees had been moved to a greenhouse and would be replanted in other areas of the White House lawn at a later date.
The hashtag #MarieAntoinette was also trending on Saturday as some compared the first lady to the French ruler by citing her poor timing of throwing money in a garden while millions of Americans lost their jobs and found themselves amid the coronavirus pandemic were on the bread line
Aside from the physical appearance of the garden, Melania was also delighted with the look of it, exposing an expensive remodel at a time when the nation is in crisis, millions of people are unemployed, urban homelessness is growing, and more than 176,000 Americans killed by coronavirus.
The first lady was quickly nicknamed Marie Antoinette on Twitter when people compared her to the French ruler who allegedly jokingly said, "Let them eat cake" when told that their subjects did not even have bread to eat.
"The White House is not Versailles, but Melania is very much like Marie Antoinette," tweeted one person.
"I would say that in times of national turmoil, overhauling your garden is a real step by Marie Antoinette, but as far as I know Marie Antoinette didn't make the garden worse," added another.
Another wrote: “If this isn't a Marie Antionette moment, I don't know what it is. Who cares about a redesigned rose garden when we're in the middle of a pandemic, with more than 175,000 people dead and millions unemployed? & # 39;
The newly renovated garden corresponds to the personal aesthetics of the First Lady: clear lines, well-structured and soft, neutral colors
The newly renovated White House rose garden, led by First Lady Melania Trump, was unveiled on Saturday. The First Lady will speak to the Republican National Convention there on Tuesday evening
President Donald Trump speaks about the White House Hispanic Prosperity Initiative in the Rose Garden on July 9, 2020 in Washington, DC
The garden was privately funded, and Melania and President Trump planned to host a private reception in the new rose garden on Saturday night for the donors, whose names will not be publicly disclosed.
The east wing declined to pay for the redesign, which also included much-needed updates such as electrical upgrades for TV appearances, new ADA-accessible walkways, and general repairs in the area.
The garden was closed for about six weeks during the renovation. It's one of the president's favorite places to hold press conferences. The garden is also used for Turkey's annual pardon, state dinners, and other official events.
White is the dominant theme of the new room, including the addition of white JFK roses in honor of President Kennedy who envisioned a large garden outside the Oval Office.
A touch of pink roses and lavender flowers add a touch of color to the diamond-shaped flower beds.
The garden was laid out with the presidency in mind, according to the first lady's office. Removing a holly ledge allows for a better view of the garden as the President walks along the colonnade from the Residence to the Oval Office on his daily walk.
Melania Trump brought the garden back to its roots – its original design by Bunny Mellon in 1962
White is the dominant theme of the new garden, but tiny pink roses and lavender flowers add color to the design
The garden uses a diamond-shaped design in the flower beds – Bunny Mellon's preferred shape
The new limestone trails are ADA accessible
Holly bushes have been removed from the area along the colonnade to give the President a better view of the garden as he walks from the residence to the Oval Office on his daily commute
During the redesign, bushes were removed to open up the colonnade area and highlight the marble columns
A photo of the rose garden in April 2018 before the redesign – the crab apple trees were removed, as well as many of the bushes
One notable change is that Melania Trump has redesigned the portion of the garden nicknamed the "Obama Beer Summit". On July 16, 2009, then-President Barack Obama invited Harvard professor Henry Louis Gates, who had been arrested at an event that sparked allegations of racial profiling, and Sgt. James Crowley, the officer who arrested him, walked in White House to discuss the situation over a couple of beers. Obama, then Vice President Joe Biden, Gates and Crowley sat at a table in the rose garden to chat.
The table has been removed and this area has been replaced with new limestone paving stones and steps. The first lady's office said it will be "the new location for an unannounced art installation".
Bunny Mellon also helped design the Jacqueline Kennedy rose garden outside the east wing
Several bushes were also removed, making the room more open and larger. Removing the bushes opened up the colonnaded area and allowed for a better view of the South Lawn from the White House.
The predominant rose used in the new design is the & # 39; JFK Rose & # 39 ;, a white flower. They fill the entire length of the garden with large white rose plants known as the "Pope John Paul II Rose". These roses were picked in honor of his 1979 visit, the first visit by a Pope to the White House. There is also a selection of "Peace Roses" named to commemorate the end of World War II.
The rose plants are small now, but will grow over the years.
Additionally, the garden is seasonal – which means that the flowers change with the seasons. Tulips were predominant in spring, roses in summer, and mothers in autumn.
"Our country has had tough times before, but the White House and the Rose Garden have always been symbols of our strength, resilience and continuity," said Melania Trump when she announced the redesign earlier this summer.
The rose garden is one of President Trump's favorite places for press conferences. He speaks of the steps shown above
The renovation was paid for by private donations, the names of which have not yet been published
Melania Trump and President Trump will host a donor reception in the rose garden on Saturday night. The media got a preview of the redesign on Saturday morning
The new plants are small at the moment but will get bigger as the season progresses – additional plants can be added in the open spaces to keep the garden seasonal
The rose garden was created at the request of President John F. Kennedy. The renovations included much-needed updates such as providing the ADA paths and laying cables for television appearances
The garden was closed for about six weeks due to construction
Melania Trump, die den Rosengarten zu seinen Kennedy-Wurzeln zurückbrachte, zitiert Jackie Kennedy oft als ihre Inspiration als First Lady
Melania Trump und Präsident Trump reisen im Mai 2019 zum Nationalen Gebetstag in den Rosengarten
Die Vorrenovierung des Rosengartens, als Präsident Trump im März eine Pressekonferenz über die Coronavirus-Pandemie abhielt
Präsident John F. Kennedy im Rosengarten des Weißen Hauses
Melania hat während ihrer Amtszeit im Ostflügel viele Renovierungsprojekte durchgeführt. Sie hat die Neugestaltung der Kegelbahn des Weißen Hauses beaufsichtigt, die Dekorationen in den öffentlichen Räumen im Staatsgeschoss – dem Grünen Raum, dem Blauen Raum und dem Roten Raum – aufgefrischt und installiert einen Tennispavillon auf dem Gelände des Weißen Hauses.
Der Rosengarten des Weißen Hauses – ein Bereich, der 125 Fuß lang und 60 Fuß breit ist – befindet sich vor dem Oval Office im Westflügel des Executive Mansion. Es wird vom National Park Service gepflegt.
Die Präsidenten haben den Garten für eine Vielzahl von Veranstaltungen genutzt, darunter die Ankündigung von Richtern des Obersten Gerichtshofs, Pressekonferenzen, Staatsessen und die jährliche Begnadigung des Thanksgiving-Truthahns. Tricia Nixon war am 12. Juni 1971 im Rosengarten verheiratet.
Es wurde erstmals 1913 von Edith Wilson auf einem früheren Garten errichtet, der 1902 von Edith Roosevelt angelegt wurde. Zuvor befanden sich in der Gegend die Ställe des Weißen Hauses und später ein Garten, in dem Lebensmittel für die erste Familie angebaut wurden.
Bunny Mellon gestaltete den Garten rautenförmig – sie platzierte Hecken um blühende Pflanzen
Präsident Ronald Reagan veranstaltet 1988 im Rosengarten ein Staatsessen für den türkischen Präsidenten Evren
Gäste im Rosengarten zum Staatsdinner der Trumps im September 2019 für den australischen Premierminister Scott Morrison
Präsident Richard Nixon und First Lady Pat Nixon besuchen 1971 die Hochzeit von Tochter Tricia Nixon im Rosengarten des Weißen Hauses
1961 gestaltete Mellon auf Wunsch von Präsident Kennedy den Gartenbereich neu. Bekannt für ihre persönlichen Gärten auf ihrem Anwesen in Virginia, legte Mellon einen klareren zentralen Rasen an, der von Blumenbeeten begrenzt wird, die im französischen Stil gepflanzt wurden, aber amerikanische Pflanzen verwendeten. Rosen machen den größten Teil der blühenden Blumen aus, aber der Garten enthält auch Jonquille, Narzisse, Fritillaria, Traubenhyazinthe, Tulpen, Chionodoxa und Squil.
Mellon starb im Jahr 2014, aber sie erzählte der Historischen Vereinigung des Weißen Hauses im Jahr 1983, dass Präsident Kennedy sie nach seinem Staatsbesuch in Frankreich gebeten hatte, den Bereich außerhalb des Oval Office zu erneuern, um das Äquivalent zu den Gärten zu schaffen, die er in Europa gesehen hatte.
'The President had noted that the White House had no garden equal in quality or attractiveness to the gardens that he had seen and in which he had been entertained in Europe. There he had recognized the importance of gardens surrounding an official residence and their appeal to the sensibilities of all people,' she noted.
She cited magnolia trees as her original inspiration, planting one in each of the four corners of the garden. She left the lawn area in the middle open for events but installed a 12-foot border for smaller trees, roses, and other flowers, noting President Kennedy loved flowers and requested species used in Thomas Jefferson's time.
Using a diamond shape, she boxed in flowering plants among hedges setting the garden up to have a rotation of plants blooming throughout spring, summer and fall.
Mellon, a noted philanthropist, designed the steps coming from the Oval Office to the garden to be used as either steps or a stage. At the east end of the garden is a flagstone terrace for the president to use for private outdoor lunches or meetings.
She recalled the ups and downs of the project, including how 'one day while were removing the old soil and replacing it with new, we cut into a mysterious cable buried in a corner of the garden. It turned out to be the hot line that set off the nation's military alert.' The line had been hastily installed during World War II for President Franklin Roosevelt's use.
President Barack Obama and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau hold a press conference in the White House Rose Garden in March 2016
President Trump has been holding many events in the Rose Garden during the coronavirus pandemic as it is easier to maintain social distance standards
The annual turkey pardoning takes place in the White House Rose Garden as seen above with President Bill Clinton
Rachel Lambert 'Bunny' Mellon looking out at her garden at her Virginia home
Since the Rose Garden was unveiled in 1962, changes in the planting have taken place but Mellon's original design remains largely intact.
Various administrations have made their contributions, such as stone walk ways, new trees, and added flowering plants.
Mellon was also brought in during Lyndon Johnson's presidency to work on a garden outside the East Wing, which was eventually named the Jacqueline Kennedy Rose Garden.
In 1981, Nancy Reagan asked Mellon to return to the garden to help update the plants and design.