President Donald Trump leaves the U.S. Women’s Open Championship at Trump National Golf Club on July 16, 2017 in Bedminster, New Jersey.
Photo by Matt Sullivan/Getty Images
- Families of 9/11 victims are speaking out against a Saudi-backed golf tournament being held at a Trump golf course.
- One woman whose father was killed in the attack said she was “astounded” by Trump’s support.
- “For it to be taking place in the backyard of Ground Zero…it’s just absolutely shocking,” she said.
A woman whose firefighter father was killed in the 9/11 terrorist attacks slammed former President Donald Trump this week for hosting a Saudi-backed golf tournament at his New Jersey golf course later this month.
Juliette Scauso told CNN that she was shocked and disappointed when she found out the Saudi-financed LIV Golf Invitational Series would be held on US soil. Families of those killed in the attacks have long alleged links between Saudi officials and the 9/11 terrorists, though the Saudi government has repeatedly denied any involvement.
The first stop of the series took place in Portland, Oregon earlier this month. But when Scauso discovered that Trump’s New Jersey resort would be the next site of the sporting event, she said she was “astounded.”
“For it to be taking place literally in the backyard of Ground Zero in a state where there are a lot of 9/11 victims, in New Jersey, New York, it’s just absolutely shocking,” she told CNN. “And for that to be posted by a former president is even more disgusting. It’s just hard to find the words.”
In a Monday Truth Social post, Trump urged pro golfers to join the LIV invitational, further cementing a feud between the former president and the PGA which dates back more than a year, after the golfing body canceled a tournament scheduled to take place at Trump’s Bedminster course after the January 6 Capitol riot.
“All of those golfers that remain ‘loyal’ to the very disloyal PGA, in all of its different forms, will pay a big price when the inevitable MERGER with LIV comes, and you get nothing but a big ‘thank you’ from PGA officials who are making Millions of Dollars a year,” wrote Trump.
The PGA has suspended players from participating in the LIV following allegations that Saudi Arabia is using the flashy tournament to bolster its international reputation after the assassination of dissident Jamal Khashoggi in 2018. The move has prompted an ongoing battle in the golf world as high-profile players choose their sides.
Over the weekend, the advocate group 9/11 Justice penned a letter to Trump asking him to pull his support for the LIV tournament, citing the former president’s own history of suggesting Saudi Arabia’s ties to the 9/11 attacks before he took office.
A spokesperson for Trump did not immediately respond to Insider’s request for comment.
Scauso told CNN that she’s not aware of any response from Trump to the group’s letter as of yet. LIV Gold released a statement responding to the letter on Monday.
“As we have said all along, these families have our deepest sympathy. While some may not agree, we believe golf is a force for good around the world.”
But the pain of 9/11 remains for Scauso and so many others, she said, and she wants Trump to know it.
“There is a family still living with a massive hole in their lives. It doesn’t get any easier. If anything it gets harder,” she said.