Trump Says He Will Reverse Pentagon Plan to Close Stars and Stripes Newspaper

But Mr. Trump’s denials are hampered by the fact that he has often disdained veterans who had been captured in war, including John McCain, who served as a Republican senator from Arizona.

Signs of a growing discontent among troops for the commander in chief are starting to show.

A Military Times poll released this week showed a continued decline in active-duty service members’ views of Mr. Trump, and a slight but significant preference for former Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr. in the upcoming election among troops surveyed.

The poll, taken in late July and early August, before the political conventions, found that half of 1,018 respondents surveyed had an unfavorable view of Mr. Trump, compared with 38 percent who had a favorable view. In a poll conducted at the start of Mr. Trump’s presidency, 37 percent of troops had an unfavorable opinion, and 46 percent had a favorable view.

Stars and Stripes first started as a publication for Union troops during the Civil War, when soldiers commanded by Ulysses S. Grant overran Bloomfield, Mo., en route to Cape Girardeau. Former pressmen were among the troops, and they set up shop at a local newspaper office that had been abandoned by its Confederate-sympathizing publisher.

Since then, the paper has been on newsstands in military “PX” shopping areas and command tents in places like Langres, France, during World War II and Afghanistan and Iraq more recently. It has published cartoons that lampooned commanders, as well as news articles and commentary that are often at odds with the official view from the Pentagon or the White House.

Max Lederer, the publisher of Stars and Stripes since 2007, said the administration’s rolling conflict with the news media had given cover to Pentagon officials to move against the publication.

As an example of articles that he said contradicted the administration’s narrative, he cited reporting by Stars and Stripes this year on Fort Hood, Texas, which a recent article called “the Army’s most crime-ridden post” after the killing in April of a soldier there, Specialist Vanessa Guillen.

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