Inside Trump’s White House

Now Available For Pre-Order

Inside Trump’s White House:
​The Real Story of His Presidency

Includes Extensive Material from Exclusive Interviews, Stories Never Before Reported

Historian Doug Wead's, Newest Book, on Presidential History, about President Donald Trump, called Inside Trump's White House, The Real Story of His Presidency

New York Times bestselling author Doug Wead offers a history of the Trump White House with the President and his staff talking openly and on the record.

Inside Trump’s White House: The real story of his presidency (to release on November 26) is written by Doug Wead, a former adviser to two American presidents and an authority on the lives of First Families. Wead offers a sweeping, eloquent history of President Donald J. Trump‘s first years in the White House, covering everything from election night to the news of today.

While other books rely on anonymous sources, Inside Trump’s White House features exclusive interviews with the President, and White House insiders, including chief of staff Mick Mulvaney, the Trump family: Jared and Ivanka Kushner, Donald Trump Jr., Eric and Lara Trump and Tiffany Trump, along with never-before-reported stories and scoops.

This book describes how Donald Trump defied the predictions of the most famous economists in the world to keep his promise of becoming “the greatest jobs president God ever created”, and what he did differently that spelled doom for the ISIS Caliphate. 

Trump reveals who he thinks was behind the Russian Collusion accusations, and the author tells how foreign intelligence services were able to solve the riddle within days while it took the Mueller investigation two years. Read Donald Trump’s never before published private thoughts about many of the world’s leaders: Xi Jinping, Boris Johnson, Angela Merkel, Kim Jong-un and others.

Inside Trump’s White House also offers the reader an intimate view of life inside the Trump family bubble: How the various family members text each other daily. How they help each other survive the criticism.  Their goal is the president’s goal: to bring America back to greatness and to help all Americans, even those who attack them. Read endearing accounts of how the President and First Lady rely on each other to endure the false stories that bombard the White House daily.

While other books are built on second and third hand information this book taps into first person, primary sources, making it a valuable work of history as well as an entertaining read. The author takes us from the inauguration day preparations and festivities to the family’s first night in the White House, where the grandchildren played hide-and-seek on the State Floor while some of the Trump ladies removed their high heels and soaked their feet. Most of the Trump family had never been in the White House before that night, and Tiffany had never seen it, even as a tourist. 

Inside Trump’s White House gives all Americans a glimpse into the world of their president and his family through a clear lens, as told to the author by all of the key players.


Dexter Yager: The World’s Greatest Networker!

Dexter Yager died on January 6, 2019. He was 79 years old. Some of you have emailed, asking me to write about Dex but his passing hit me pretty hard and it is difficult to capture his extraordinary life in a few words.

Dexter was the world’s greatest networker and one of its greatest dreamers. He was also one of the greatest Christian evangelists of his generation, and that includes Billy Graham.

From humble beginnings to friendships with presidents, Dexter never forgot his roots and always looked for others he could help inspire to follow him up the ladder of success. His greatest joy was in reliving his own success through someone else who had turned their life around.

It was my privilege to write many of his books, including his first, “Don’t Let Anyone Steal Your Dream.” And to see the beginnings of his massive worldwide “tape business.” At the time, it all took place on a pool table in the basement of his Charlotte, North Carolina home. There, his daughter, April, was tasked with running copies on a cheap Wollensak duplicator with a couple of additional slaves. It would soon become a multi-million dollars business.

Dexter loved seeing his own story repeated in others and would spend endless hours coaching and encouraging anyone who was willing to follow his advice. This led to coliseums full of thousands of people. On any given weekend, many of the largest hotel ballrooms in America would be filled with Dexter’s “distributors.” And soon the world. It’s very possible that Dexter Yager helped produce more millionaires than any other person alive.

Dexter, and his wife, Birdie Yager, were devout Christians and used their large Stadium-coliseum events to share their faith. Yager “altar calls” ran into the hundreds of thousands. At first this was criticized and met with resistance but soon it became a staple of international events that filled the largest venues in the world. After trial and error, other large American motivational events followed suit, bringing on a religious chaplain as part of their regular weekend program.

At one time, I had a contract with Bantam Books to write his story. This led to long interviews with Dexter, with him reliving his remarkable story.

I will read through these pages and find some great “Dexter stories” and share them in the months to come.

“Good bye Dexter Yager. You are admired and loved by so many of us whose lives you touched for the better. You will never be forgotten.”

Jared Kushner for Chief of Staff

Jared Kushner would have been the best chief of staff.

       By the time this piece is posted we should already know who President Trump’s choice  will be for his new chief of staff. If we don’t here is a thought that intrigues me. The rumored possibility that it will be the president’s own son in law, Jared Kushner.
      There is one big reason mitigating against it. The national media would be outraged. And that is a big reason to consider, although, the national media is not likely to be pleased no matter what Donald Trump does or who he names to any position. They want him out.
      Which brings me to the reasons behind Kushner.
      First. He is loyal. It is the most important trait in a senior staffer at the White House. And it will be needed now more than ever. Follow the steps of Alexander Haig during his last days in the White House and you can appreciate why the presidency needed someone loyal.
      Second. Kushner is competent, even brilliant. He is the man behind some of the most spectacular achievements of this administration. He helped orchestrate the famous Trump speech before the Joint Session of Congress. He was the genius behind the masterful Middle East trip early in the President’s tenure. And next to Donald Trump, himself, he is the man most credited with helping to pull off the President’s upset victory in 2016.
      Who better to guide the White House through the partisan challenges that will come from the House of Representatives than a man who is loyal, competent and who knows where the votes are to bring those Senators into line?
      Which brings us to this historical precedent.
      If it were to happen you will see a raft of news articles proclaiming how unprecedented such a move would be. And they will be wrong.
      Eighteen sons and daughter’s of the president have served on staff at the White House before Donald Trump assumed office. Most of them served as the White House Secretary, which was the most important position and actually evolved into the chief of staff’s office of today.
      Webb Hayes, a Medal of Honor winner, ran the White House for his father, President Rutherford B. Hayes, and was so valuable that the next president called on him often during the first year in office. Webb went on to found what is today the Union Carbide Corporation.
      John Adams, II held the job. So did Ulysses Grant, Jr.
      Anna Roosevelt helped run the White House during FDR’s last year in office. And there were good reasons why president’s picked their own sons and daughters.
      They could be trusted.

George H.W. Bush – His Rank in History?

Last night, President George H.W. Bush died.

In a hundred years George H.W. Bush will be ranked among America’s greatest presidents. Maybe in the top five, with Washington, Lincoln, Franklin D. Roosevelt and, yes, his predecessor, Ronald Reagan.

It will be said that Lincoln saved the union but Reagan and Bush saved mankind.

It is hard to remember how dangerous the times were. In the Netherlands a school teacher told her class that it didn’t matter what university they chose because the world wasn’t going to last that long. Today we worry about what would happen if nuclear weapons fell into the hands of terrorists. In the Reagan-Bush years that had already happened. Both the Soviet and Chinese government’s had nuclear weapons and both sponsored communist regimes that were barbaric.

President George H.W. Bush sits at desk in White House across from Chief of Staff, John Sununu sitting in chair and special advisor, Doug Wead standing
President George H.W. Bush with Chief of Staff, John Sununu and Special Advisor, Doug Wead.

Pol Pot, who ruled Cambodia practiced the most virulent form of Marxism. He targeted for execution anyone in academia, medicine, the military, government bureaucracies, and private business. He marked for execution anyone who wore eye glasses. His thinking was that if they wear eye glasses they can probably read and if they can read we must eliminate them to restart our nation without contamination from the West.

President George H.W. Bush kept one of the escapees from the Cambodian killing fields on his senior White House staff as a reminder of what he was facing down.

Reagan started the process that ended the Cold War but it finally ended on the watch of George H.W. Bush. Reagan called for the Berlin Wall to come down. But it finally happened under the patient, brilliant guidance of George H.W. Bush who not only knew when to act but also understood the value of restraint and who knew when to remain silent.

Special Advisor, Doug Wead sits facing President George H.W. Bush in the White House
President George H.W. Bush and Doug Wead

During the unraveling of the Soviet Union, advocates for Freedom for the Baltic States and Eastern European countries begged Bush to attack. They said that there might not be another chance in 100 years. But he had Moscow and the whole USSR in checkmate, he was not going to let them go to pick up a pawn. And eventually, the whole thing came undone and all of them got their freedom.

When Saddam Hussein invaded Kuwait, Bush united the world against the action. When he led the Gulf War, the invasion against Iraq, his allies, Saudi Arabia, and Kuwait paid for half of the cost.

Within three months, allied forces defeated Saddam Hussein and drove the Iraqi army out of Kuwait. President George H.W. Bush called an end to the hostilities.

It is true that George H.W. Bush allowed Hussein to remain in power in Baghdad. He was heavily criticized for his decision.

Others advocated eliminating the Saddam Hussein government altogether, while we had the chance. But Bush Sr. feared that it would destabilize the region and upset the delicate Sunni-Shiite balance of the Mideast.

It’s not very often in history that we get to see what would have happened if a leader made a different decision but in this case we can. Years later, Bush’s son, President George W. Bush would be confronted with the same choice and he would topple Saddam Hussein. The region was plunged into chaos, hundreds of thousands lost their lives, millions were uprooted, Christian communities dating their history back to the apostle Thomas were exterminated, wars spread across the Mideast, and the U.S.  — who borrowed the money from world banks to fight their war — was plunged into its second worst economic crisis in history.

Someday, a hundred years from now, when historians catch up to all of these details, there will be marble statues of George H.W. Bush. And when they pass by parents will tell their children, it is not only what you do that makes you great, sometimes, it is what you don’t do. It is when you stay calm, or stay silent, or as another president, Theodore Roosevelt, once said, “Speak softly and carry a big stick.”

What Ever Happened to Russian Collusion?

It had been the hot story for two years. Donald Trump had conspired with the Russians to steal the 2016 presidential election. He had snatched it right out of the jaws of Hillary Clinton.

Trump was called a traitor. The national media insisted, night after night, with billions of dollars of television time, that the conspiracy was all around us. Hyperventilating, breathless reporters on NBC, CBS, ABC, and CNN insisted that more and more information was imminent. Trump, they insisted, had committed treason.

So surely, the people in the 2018 midterm election would rise up to take revenge? They would take America back from the Russians.


The issue of Russian Collusion that had dominated media news for two years simply melted like snow on a warm day. Instead, the issues that dominated the midterm elections were healthcare, immigration, the economy, gun policy, and 24 other topics that registered less than 1 percent each in the voters mind. But Russian Collusion was not among them. Russian Collusion was zero. Zip. Nothing.

Apparently, nobody has ever really believed in Russian Collusion, not Don Lemon, Chris Matthews, Joe Scarborough, or Jack Tapper. Nobody. They just hoped that other people would be stupid enough to do so. They confidently kept pushing it down the track. This was scary stuff. It felt good for the Democrats to be on the side of patriotism for a change.

Nighttime television comics made jokes about Trump and treason and Russia, night after night. And the people who snatched up tickets to be in their live audiences all laughed uproariously. Yes, our president was really working for the Russians. What a riot. Very funny.

Surely the young people on campuses, the ones who now advocate socialism and block free speech, surely they believe that Trump is a Russian puppet?

But apparently not. Nor did any of those people who laughed at the nighttime television comics. They would vote about healthcare, immigration, the economy, they would even vote about Donald Trump, his outrageous tweets. But none of them really believed in Russian Collusion. It was a device to leverage stupid people and it turned out on Election Day that there weren’t any stupid people at all. Everybody knew it was a hoax.

Make no mistake. Robert Mueller’s report is coming. It will be written by lawyers who worked for Obama and Clinton. Their careers in future Democratic administrations will depend on what they write and what they conclude. It may even be an opportunity for them to show off. If they can make something out of nothing imagine what they could do inside the Justice Department, where no one would ever see and where there are no longer any checks and balances?

And make no mistake, this Mueller report will be hyped by the media big-time. They have too much money and time and pride invested in their phony story. They will declare victory, point to crimes Paul Manafort committed 12 years before he ever met Donald Trump and we will all pretend that it was really something.

But no one can erase what just happened. No one can erase the midterm elections. And why the people voted. And the fact that nobody really believed the months and months of fake news stories that poured out of the mouths of fake journalists, on fake news channels.

Author of Op-Ed is the Idiot, Not Trump.

I’m sorry, but the person who wrote the anonymous op-ed for The New York Times is the idiot — not Donald Trump. Obviously, the system for vetting such a piece broke down and is leaving “The Gray Lady” exposed. It all fails over the ridiculous assertion that “there were early whispers within the cabinet of invoking the 25th Amendment.”

Now stop and think about that for a moment. Under the 4th section of the 25th Amendment, the vice president of the United States and a majority of cabinet officers and agency heads, and two thirds of the Senate and the House, must agree to remove the president. Huh? Really? There was talk about this?

Impeachment in the House and conviction in the Senate is a walk in the park by comparison.

Keep in mind, all of this supposedly happened without the president or the media being tipped off for the last two years. No opportunist among the conspirators could try to get rid of a rival by spilling the beans. Or gain some advantage by leaking it prematurely. This piece of dynamite just sat there, an early point of discussion, “within the cabinet,” until anonymous chose to mention it in his op-ed.

“Hi Betsy, this is Mad Dog Mattis. A bunch of us are organizing to remove President Trump from office. As you may know, we need the Vice President and a majority of the cabinet to get this thing started. I want you to think about this and then get back to me.”

“Oh, I will. I will.”

“And needless to say Betsy, don’t talk about this with anyone. It could hurt the country if it got back to the President, himself. No one should use this information for personal advancement. No leaks whatsoever. And Betsy, don’t even tell Dick.”

“Of course, of course. I understand, Mad Dog. Not a word. I think you know that I will be loyal to the resistance. Oh Mad Dog … I should alert you that Dana is on the line with me but she is very, very discreet. You know Dana?”

Imagine. For two years, through all of the transitions, from Rex Tillerson to Steve Bannon and all of the books, from Michael Wolf to Bob Woodward, no one knew about this early conspiracy until this “high level” figure reported it in an anonymous, New York Times-vetted, op ed.

Here are some simple guidelines to help you identify “the idiot.” It is like an Agatha Christie who dunnit?

#1) It can’t be vice president Pence or anyone in his office.

The late Lee Atwater, master of Washington politics, often said that an anonymous source can always be identified as the person who benefits from the article. Pence would not benefit. He is already next in line. He has only one important political task. Do nothing. If he keeps his head down, he wins.

#2) And yet the author uses the word “lodestar” an odd word that is used frequently by Pence. Which may mean that anonymous may want us to suspect that Pence is the culprit. In fact, CNN was sure of it. Another reason why it can’t be.

#3) This is not the killer’s first victim. It is not likely that the Times would take such a chance and print this op-ed, anonymously, without already using this same source in other numerous pieces. Review past articles for verbal fingerprints.

#4) The author is very likely in the pack of those who have already publicly denied the crime. Remember, Agatha Christie’s “Ten Little Indians”? The killer staged his own death so he would not be suspect and could surreptitiously finish off the others. Carefully, read the words of the denials to see who left a door open by a deft choice of words or use of a spokesperson.

#5) The author cannot be Secretary of State Mike Pompeo. He was the first to publicly deny writing the piece. The author would want to be lower profile, back in the pack.

#6) Anonymous is probably out of town. If they lived in Washington, D.C., they would see the bitter rivalries and deep divisions among the cabinet and Capitol Hill and thus the absurdity of their idea. Only from a distance would such a coup look possible.

Whoever penned the op-ed did a great service to the President. It did more to unite his White House and his government than anything Donald Trump, himself, could have ever done. It forced a confession of public loyalty.

If there ever was any contemplated resistance inside the Trump administration it is surely over now.

The op-ed failed miserably. The “resistance” is dead. Trump has won again.

Read Newsmax: NYT’s Anonymous Op-Ed Inadvertently Helps President Trump |
Urgent: Do you approve of Pres. Trump? Vote Here in Poll

Thanks Obama, You Got Us Trump and He Got Us Jobs and Got Rid of ISIS Too!

With Barak Obama trying to get us to return his team to power, it might be well to remember the story of ISIS.

When Barack Obama was president, he sought to defuse Islamic extremism by offering friendship. Obama berated Christians in a speech, reminding them that they had committed crimes during the Crusades of the 11th Century. He told audiences that the Muslim “Call to Prayer” was one of the “prettiest sounds on earth.”

When the so called “Arab Spring” swept across Africa and the Middle East, the Obama-Hillary Clinton State Department welcomed the moment. Libya, which had finally give up its nuclear weapons at American urging, was now gleefully toppled into anarchy.

On the anniversary of 9-11, the American embassy in Benghazi, Libya was attacked and the American Ambassador was murdered. The Obama administration claimed on national television, that the attack was provoked by an intolerant video produced by an Egyptian living in California. We were told that the date of the attack, the anniversary of 9-11, was only coincidental.

Extremist attacks became the norm. A British Army soldier, Lee Rigby, was attacked as he walked down Wellington Street in London in the middle of the day. This father of a two year old was hacked to death and then beheaded by Nigerian Muslims.

The following year, the Boko Haram declared allegiance to the newly proclaimed ISIS. The Boko Haram attacked a boarding school in Chibok, Nigeria and kidnapped hundreds of teenage girls which were raped and sold as sex slaves to Muslims across Africa.

Thanks to an Obama-Clinton plan to supply anti-government groups in Syria, arms began to inadvertently flow into the newly announced Caliphate of ISIS.

Americans watched in horror on national television as American made tanks and Humvees, with black flags of ISIS flowing from their hatches, raced across the Middle East. By 2015 the new territory controlled 35,000 square miles of Syrian and Iraq. Mosul was its capital.

ISIS was rich. It had a population of millions which it robbed and turned into slaves. It controlled massive stockpiles of weapons, oil fields, lucrative smuggling routes and vast numbers of priceless carvings and art pieces from antiquity which it began selling to collectors all over the world. Inspired by its great successes and its gruesome executions, Islamic extremists flocked to the Caliphate from all over. New ISIS cells popped up in the Philippines, Indonesia and all across the Middle East and Africa.

Television viewers in Asia, Europe and the West witnessed mass beheadings on the beaches. And then genocide of villages and cities. Christian communities, which traced their lineage back to the First Century, were now slaughtered. The bodies of these men, women and children were dumped into mass graves.

There was every reason to believe that what ISIS had done in the Middle East would only be the launching pad for attacks in the West. In November, 2105, an attack in Paris left 129 dead.

All during this time, American weapons continued to flow into the hands of ISIS. According to an NBC report, serial numbers and “key markings” on weapons allowed them to be traced back to their American origins. For example, an American owned anti-tank missile passed into the hands of ISIS just 59 days after the American’s purchased it from the Chinese.

In April, 2016, during a campaign stop in Connecticut, GOP candidate, Donald J. Trump announced the end of ISIS. “We are gonna beat ISIS very, very quickly, folks.” It sounded pretty incredible at the time. “It’s gonna be fast. I have a great plan. It’s going to be great.”

The Hillary Clinton campaign openly ridiculed the idea.

“They ask, ‘What is it?’” Trump said, “Well, I’d rather not say.”

Word leaked out of the Trump campaign that his plans had been gleaned from soldiers in the field. That they involved good business sense, new ideas for choking off the source of ISIS money. New ideas for working with Saudi Arabia, the Kurds and Israel. Allowing commanders in the field more authority to reduce decision making time. The latter would prove to be one of the key decisions.

Shortly after winning the presidency, Donald Trump took immediate action on ISIS. He called for a Pentagon review on how to win the war. Secretary of Defense, James Mattis, was urged to eliminate layers of approval for tactical decisions.

There was one other critical adjustment. ISIS would no longer be forced out of a city, province or territory. Now it would be surrounded and annihilated.

The new ideas jelled. ISIS began to break. Its supply of new fighters dried up. And then it collapsed.

Trump claimed more progress on ISIS in five months than the previous five years.

He was right. Donald Trump made it look easy.

John McCain, The Maverick. He used his setbacks as stepping stones.

“Whenever you find yourself on the side of the majority it’s time to pause and reflect.” – Mark Twain.
He was called, “the Maverick.” He was finally a man of the west, who carved out his own career that often defied any political party orthodoxy.

When you think of Senator John McCain you think of integrity and courage. You think of the man who championed campaign finance reform, the McCain-Feingold Act. In fact, in 1989 he was one of the so-called “Keating Five”, which were the five US Senators who were involved in a corrupt Savings and Loan fraud case. Charles Keating went to prison, the five US senators saw their careers cut short, all that is, except for John McCain who tediously fought his way back from scandal to become one of the most admired and respected voices in American politics. He ran for president in 2008. McCain was an example of a man who did not let a setback destroy him.
I first met Senator McCain in 1989, backstage at a patriotic July 4th event in Phoenix. He had been a prisoner of war at the soc-called “Hanoi Hilton” in North Vietnam. My stepmother’s brother, General Robinson Risner had been held there with him. They experienced torture at the hands of their guards and the prisoners were all brothers because of it. Over the years I was able to interview him on numerous occasions. He was always direct, straightforward and unabashed.
Senator McCain, like many presidents, presidential candidates and great men, was close to his mother and had an absent father. The senior McCain, John S. McCain, Jr., was commander of the US Naval forces during the Vietnam War. When John was growing up his father was almost always gone. During the war, the North Vietnamese offered to release the son, out of respect for the father. But John McCain refused and stayed on to suffer torture with his fellow American prisoners.
The Senator survived many remarkable public political squabbles. In 2000, the campaign of George W. Bush spread rumors before the South Carolina primary that Senator John McCain was a traitor who fathered a black child. In 2016, Donald J. Trump attracted a crowd of 10,000 to a Phoenix, Arizona rally. McCain called the people “crazies.” Trump counter punched, saying that he preferred heroes that “weren’t captured.” It became a public feud that was never resolved. The McCain family announced that President Trump would not be welcome at the Senator’s funeral.
On August 25, 2018, shortly before Senator John McCain’s passing, President Donald Trump tweeted to the McCain family, “Our hearts and prayers are with you.”

Fake History Creates Fake Scale of Trump Opposition

Donald Trump and Theresa May had a good laugh about “fake news” at their press conference last July 13, 2018. They might just as well have added a discussion about “fake history.”

All of the American television networks, including the normally objective, Fox News Channel, were busy reporting on the “unprecedented” protests against Trump’s visit to Europe. They typically showed footage of Ronald Reagan speaking to cheering crowds in Berlin, saying, “Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall.” Or showcase his close relationship with British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher.

London mayor Sadiq Khan approved the launching of a Trump-like pig balloon to fly over the city during Trump’s visit. Fox News anchor Bill Hemmer called it “new territory.”

But in fact, the stream of Trump haters in London cannot even compare to previous anti-America protests that history-deprived journalists seem to have forgotten.

In October of 1983, more than one million people filled the streets of West Germany to protest Reagan’s deployment of the Pershing 2 and cruise missiles.

This number included 400,000 protesters in Bonn. 200,000 in Stuttgart

Similar protests were held in Paris, London, Rome, Stockholm and Vienna. A bomb was thrown into a military intelligence school in Germany.

Two years later, in 1985, there were similar protests against Reagan when he visited the Bitburg Cemetery.

In fact, Ronald Reagan was hated globally. I took a world speaking tour during that time and there were only two places on earth that liked Reagan and America; the apartheid government of South Africa and South Korea. It was amazing.

Reagan is considered by many as one of America’s greatest presidents. One survey actually ranks him as the greatest. His Pershing 2 missiles helped end the Cold War, allowing the reunification of  Germany.

The truth of history is that many presidents are despised — even during their time in office.

Consider the following memo sent to the American Ambassador in London: “As to the politics of Washington, the most striking thing is the absence of personal loyalty to the president. It does not exist. He has no admirers.  . . . This is felt by all, and has got down through all layers of society. It has a disastrous effect on all departments and classes of officials, as well as on the public.”

The memo was written by Richard Dana to American Ambassador Charles Francis Adams in London.

The president in question? Abraham Lincoln.

Read Newsmax: Media Forgets Reagan Faced ‘Unprecedented’ Protests |
Urgent: Do you approve of Pres. Trump? Vote Here in Poll

Melanie Trump: America’s Greatest First Lady? And a Great Mother!

We may be witnessing the unfolding story of one of America’s greatest first ladies, Melania Trump. And on this mother’s day, an example of a dedicated mother who puts her child ahead of other justifiably, demanding, distractions.

Melanie has been first lady for almost two years and she continues to quietly and gracefully move through her public duties as wife of the president. While political storms rage all around her, she keeps her head held high, with poise, with beauty and humble grace.

Her dignified performance is made all the more powerful when contrasted by a shrill and hysterical, corporate media, still angry that their chosen candidate lost the 2016 presidential election. Every negative thing her husband says and does is amplified while his remarkable economic and foreign policy record is ignored.

When Melanie Trump took up the issue of internet bullying of children, the media turned their ferocity on her, claiming that her husband was the biggest internet bully of all, how dare she speak on this issue?

The First Lady responded with exquisite grace. In March, 2018 she slipped into a White House roundtable meeting with technology executives, dropping the comment, “I am well aware that people are skeptical of me discussing this topic but that will not stop me from doing what I know is right.”

Historians point out that she is the second first lady to be born outside the United States. But it is where she was born and raised that may hold the secret to her success.

Melanie comes from Slovenia. A tiny country that was part of Yugoslavia during much of its time in the Soviet bloc. It was illegal to celebrate Christmas in Slovenia, or even have a Christmas tree, but her parents had her secretly baptized as a Christian.

In the middle of the Cold War Slovenia provided the whole Soviet bloc with refrigerators and other manufactured products. The people were very positive, proud of themselves, creative. But they knew how to keep their heads down. How to become invisible. They knew that they couldn’t even challenge any of their small neighbors, let alone the centralized government in Belgrade, which was walking a tightrope between the mighty Soviets and the Chinese.

And yet Slovenia thrived by minding its own business and letting insults and provocations pass over their heads.

I have been to this remarkable country many times and I believe that Slovenia, and Melanie’s family may be part of her secret to success.

It is very Slovenian for her to be discreet and to avoid provocation. In that respect, she is almost a perfect match for Donald Trump who is upsetting traditions and taking on entrenched powers.

Some say that the role of first lady should be changing because the role of women is changing. And thus a first lady who only deals with ceremonial and domestic chores is diminished when compared to a career woman.

But this is complicated. A president’s wife is not elected.

The German people voted Angela Merkel as their leader. Should her husband serve as a co-leader? Is he diminished as a man if he does not assert himself in her government?

When Bill Clinton said, “You get two for the price of one,” meaning that Hillary was going to help him run the country, it was not well received. Hillary had to establish her own separate identity and political success, separate from him.

The modern role of first lady is complicated by the fact that it has grown in responsibility.  Unlike the UK or France, there is no ceremonial head of state in the United States. Thus all such duties fall on the shoulders of the president. This is where first ladies play a critical role.

Add to that, a first lady may sometimes be a mother. It was a role that Jackie Kennedy made preeminent and that Melanie Trump is reviving.

In history, Slovenians won their revenge by quietly succeeding, not through violent domination of their opponents. As the old T-shirt slogan proclaims,”Success is the best revenge.”

This seems to be the First Lady’s style. She maintains a dignity that makes her all the more mysterious when her critics rage. Sometimes she wins just by being still. And in some cases she is succeeding through her fashion sense, which is stunning, no easy thing.

So today, the media is in a frenzy about borrowed words from an old FTC document, as if it were sacred script that cannot be re-used. Tomorrow it will be something else.

Meanwhile, Melanie, our beautiful, graceful first lady, whose life will one day cover entire bookshelves in libraries, can knock around the private quarters of the White House today, with a T-Shirt emblazoned with her wonderful new slogan for America’s youth, words that represent New York City meets Ljubljana.

“Be best.”