Trump minimizes severity of head injuries in Iran attacks

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump on Wednesday minimized the severity of head injuries sustained by U.S. troops during the Iranian missile strikes on two Iraqi air bases as he was pressed on why he'd claimed no troops had been injured in the attacks.

“I heard they had headaches and a couple of other things ... and I can report it is not very serious,” Trump said at a press conference in Davos, Switzerland, arguing that potential traumatic brain injuries are less severe than, say, missing limbs.

“No, I don't consider them very serious injuries relative to other injuries that I've seen,” the Republican president said. “I've seen what Iran has done with their roadside bombs to our troops. I've seen people with no legs and with no arms. I've seen people that were horribly, horribly injured in that area, that war."

“No, I do not consider that to be bad injuries, no,” he added.

Trump has repeatedly claimed that no Americans were harmed in the Iranian missile strikes on Jan. 8, which came in retaliation for a U.S. drone strike that killed Qassem Soleimani, Iran's most powerful military general.

The question of American casualties was especially significant at the time because Trump cited the fact that no Americans were killed or inured as driving his decision not to retaliate further and risk a broader war with Iran.

But in the days following the attack, medical screening determined that some of the U.S. troops who took cover during the attack were suffering from concussion-like symptoms. Last week, 11 U.S. service members were flown from Iraq to U.S. medical facilities in Germany and Kuwait for further evaluation of concussion-like symptoms.

And U.S. defense officials said Tuesday that additional U.S. troops had been flown out of Iraq for closer evaluation of potential concussion injuries. The number of troops flown to Germany was not immediately clear, but officials said it was a small number.

Trump told reporters he was informed of the concussion issue “numerous days” after the attack.

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Senate Impeachment Trial: Day 1
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Senate Impeachment Trial: Day 1
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., waves as the impeachment trial of President Donald Trump concludes on Capitol Hill in Washington, early Wednesday, Jan. 22, 2020. (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta)
Sen. Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn., walks from the Senate chamber during the impeachment trial of President Donald Trump on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, Jan. 21, 2020. (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta)
Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn., walks to the Senate chamber after a dinner break during the impeachment trial of President Donald Trump on charges of abuse of power and obstruction of Congress, at the Capitol in Washington, Tuesday, Jan. 21, 2020. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)
In this image from video, the vote for passage approving the rules for the impeachment trial against President Donald Trump in the Senate at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, Wednesday, Jan. 22, 2020 is displayed. Senate resolution 483 passed along a party-line vote of 53-47. (Senate Television via AP)
In this image from video, presiding officer Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts reads the results of the vote on approving the rules for the impeachment trial against President Donald Trump in the Senate at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, Wednesday, Jan. 22, 2020. Senate resolution 483 passed along a party-line vote of 53-47. (Senate Television via AP)
In this image from video, impeachment manager Rep. Adam Schiff, D-Calif., speaks during the impeachment trial against President Donald Trump in the Senate at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, Wednesday, Jan. 22, 2020. (Senate Television via AP)
In this image from video, Senators vote on approving the rules for the impeachment trial against President Donald Trump in the Senate at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, Wednesday, Jan. 22, 2020. Senate resolution 483 passed along a party-line vote of 53-47. (Senate Television via AP)
In this image from video, Senators vote to table an amendment by Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., during the impeachment trial against President Donald Trump in the Senate at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, Wednesday, Jan. 22, 2020. (Senate Television via AP)
In this image from video, presiding officer Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts reads the results of the vote to table an amendment by Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., during the impeachment trial against President Donald Trump in the Senate at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, Wednesday, Jan. 22, 2020. (Senate Television via AP)
In this image from video, White House deputy counsel Mike Purpura speaks against an amendment regarding calling witnesses offered by Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., during the impeachment trial against President Donald Trump in the Senate at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, Wednesday, Jan. 22, 2020. (Senate Television via AP)
In this image from video, personal attorney to President Donald Trump, Jay Sekulow, argues against a amendment proposed by Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., to subpoena John Bolton during the impeachment trial against President Donald Trump in the Senate at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, Wednesday, Jan. 22, 2020. (Senate Television via AP)
In this image from video, White House counsel Pat Cipollone argues against a amendment proposed by Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., to subpoena John Bolton during the impeachment trial against President Donald Trump in the Senate at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, Wednesday, Jan. 22, 2020. (Senate Television via AP)
In this image from video, a graphic is displayed as impeachment manager Rep. Jerrold Nadler, D-N.Y., argues in favor of an amendment proposed by Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., to subpoena John Bolton during the impeachment trial against President Donald Trump in the Senate at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, Wednesday, Jan. 22, 2020. (Senate Television via AP)
In this image from video, a graphic is displayed as impeachment manager Rep. Jerrold Nadler, D-N.Y., argues in favor of an amendment proposed by Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., to subpoena John Bolton during the impeachment trial against President Donald Trump in the Senate at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, Wednesday, Jan. 22, 2020. (Senate Television via AP)
In this image from video, a graphic is displayed as impeachment manager Rep. Jerrold Nadler, D-N.Y., argues in favor of an amendment proposed by Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., to subpoena John Bolton during the impeachment trial against President Donald Trump in the Senate at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, Wednesday, Jan. 22, 2020. (Senate Television via AP)
In this image from video, a video is displayed as impeachment manager Rep. Jerrold Nadler, D-N.Y., argues in favor of an amendment proposed by Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., to subpoena John Bolton during the impeachment trial against President Donald Trump in the Senate at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, Wednesday, Jan. 22, 2020. (Senate Television via AP)
In this image from video, a graphic is displayed as impeachment manager Rep. Jerrold Nadler, D-N.Y., argues in favor of an amendment proposed by Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., to subpoena John Bolton during the impeachment trial against President Donald Trump in the Senate at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, Wednesday, Jan. 22, 2020. (Senate Television via AP)
In this image from video, a graphic is displayed as impeachment manager Rep. Jerrold Nadler, D-N.Y., argues in favor of an amendment proposed by Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., to subpoena John Bolton during the impeachment trial against President Donald Trump in the Senate at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, Wednesday, Jan. 22, 2020. (Senate Television via AP)
In this image from video, a graphic is displayed as impeachment manager Rep. Jerrold Nadler, D-N.Y., argues in favor of an amendment proposed by Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., to subpoena John Bolton during the impeachment trial against President Donald Trump in the Senate at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, Wednesday, Jan. 22, 2020. (Senate Television via AP)
Senate majority leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., walks past the Ohio Clock as he heads back to the Senate chamber during a break in the trial of President Donald Trump at the Capitol Tuesday, Jan. 21, 2020, in Washington. (AP Photo/Steve Helber)
In this image from video, a video is displayed as impeachment manager Rep. Jerrold Nadler, D-N.Y., argues in favor of an amendment proposed by Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., to subpoena John Bolton during the impeachment trial against President Donald Trump in the Senate at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, Wednesday, Jan. 22, 2020. (Senate Television via AP)
In this image from video, a graphic is displayed as impeachment manager Rep. Jerrold Nadler, D-N.Y., argues in favor of an amendment proposed by Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., to subpoena John Bolton during the impeachment trial against President Donald Trump in the Senate at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, Wednesday, Jan. 22, 2020. (Senate Television via AP)
In this image from video, a graphic is displayed as impeachment manager Rep. Jerrold Nadler, D-N.Y., argues in favor of an amendment proposed by Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., to subpoena John Bolton during the impeachment trial against President Donald Trump in the Senate at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, Wednesday, Jan. 22, 2020. (Senate Television via AP)
In this image from video, impeachment manager Rep. Jerrold Nadler, D-N.Y., argues in favor of an amendment proposed by Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., to subpoena John Bolton during the impeachment trial against President Donald Trump in the Senate at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, Wednesday, Jan. 22, 2020. (Senate Television via AP)
Senate majority leader, Sen. Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., left, walks out of the Senate chamber during a break in the trial of President Donald Trump at the Capitol Tuesday, Jan. 21, 2020, in Washington. (AP Photo/Steve Helber)
In this image from video, White House deputy counsel Patrick Philbin argues against an amendment regarding selective admission of evidence and handling of classified material that was offered by Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., during the impeachment trial against President Donald Trump in the Senate at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, Tuesday, Jan. 21, 2020. (Senate Television via AP)
In this image from video, impeachment manager Rep. Adam Schiff, D-Calif., argues in favor of amendment regarding selective admission of evidence and handling of classified material that was offered by Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., during the impeachment trial against President Donald Trump in the Senate at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, Tuesday, Jan. 21, 2020. (Senate Television via AP)
In this image from video, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., offers an amendment regarding selective admission of evidence and handling of classified material during the impeachment trial against President Donald Trump in the Senate at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, Tuesday, Jan. 21, 2020. (Senate Television via AP)
In this image from video, a graphic is displayed as impeachment manager Rep. Sylvia Garcia, D-Texas, argues in favor of a amendment offered by Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., to issue subpoenas to Robert Blair and Patrick Duffey, during the impeachment trial against President Donald Trump in the Senate at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, Tuesday, Jan. 21, 2020. (Senate Television via AP)
In this image from video, a graphic is displayed as impeachment manager Rep. Sylvia Garcia, D-Texas, argues in favor of a amendment offered by Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., to issue subpoenas to Robert Blair and Patrick Duffey, during the impeachment trial against President Donald Trump in the Senate at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, Tuesday, Jan. 21, 2020. (Senate Television via AP)
In this image from video, a graphic is displayed as impeachment manager Rep. Sylvia Garcia, D-Texas, argues in favor of a amendment offered by Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., to issue subpoenas to Robert Blair and Patrick Duffey, during the impeachment trial against President Donald Trump in the Senate at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, Tuesday, Jan. 21, 2020. (Senate Television via AP)
In this image from video, a graphic is displayed as impeachment manager Rep. Sylvia Garcia, D-Texas, argues in favor of a amendment offered by Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., to issue subpoenas to Robert Blair and Patrick Duffey, during the impeachment trial against President Donald Trump in the Senate at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, Tuesday, Jan. 21, 2020. (Senate Television via AP)
In this image from video, a graphic is displayed as impeachment manager Rep. Sylvia Garcia, D-Texas, argues in favor of a amendment offered by Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., to issue subpoenas to Robert Blair and Patrick Duffey, during the impeachment trial against President Donald Trump in the Senate at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, Tuesday, Jan. 21, 2020. (Senate Television via AP)
In this image from video, a graphic is displayed as impeachment manager Rep. Sylvia Garcia, D-Texas, argues in favor of a amendment offered by Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., to issue subpoenas to Robert Blair and Patrick Duffey, during the impeachment trial against President Donald Trump in the Senate at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, Tuesday, Jan. 21, 2020. (Senate Television via AP)
In this image from video, a graphic is displayed as impeachment manager Rep. Sylvia Garcia, D-Texas, argues in favor of a amendment offered by Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., to issue subpoenas to Robert Blair and Patrick Duffey, during the impeachment trial against President Donald Trump in the Senate at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, Tuesday, Jan. 21, 2020. (Senate Television via AP)
In this image from video, a graphic is displayed as impeachment manager Rep. Sylvia Garcia, D-Texas, argues in favor of a amendment offered by Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., to issue subpoenas to Robert Blair and Patrick Duffey, during the impeachment trial against President Donald Trump in the Senate at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, Tuesday, Jan. 21, 2020. (Senate Television via AP)
In this image from video, a graphic is displayed as impeachment manager Rep. Sylvia Garcia, D-Texas, argues in favor of a amendment offered by Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., to issue subpoenas to Robert Blair and Patrick Duffey, during the impeachment trial against President Donald Trump in the Senate at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, Tuesday, Jan. 21, 2020. (Senate Television via AP)
In this image from video, a graphic is displayed as impeachment manager Rep. Sylvia Garcia, D-Texas, argues in favor of a amendment offered by Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., to issue subpoenas to Robert Blair and Patrick Duffey, during the impeachment trial against President Donald Trump in the Senate at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, Tuesday, Jan. 21, 2020. (Senate Television via AP)
In this image from video, a graphic is displayed as impeachment manager Rep. Sylvia Garcia, D-Texas, argues in favor of a amendment offered by Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., to issue subpoenas to Robert Blair and Patrick Duffey, during the impeachment trial against President Donald Trump in the Senate at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, Tuesday, Jan. 21, 2020. (Senate Television via AP)
In this image from video, a graphic is displayed as impeachment manager Rep. Sylvia Garcia, D-Texas, argues in favor of a amendment offered by Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., to issue subpoenas to Robert Blair and Patrick Duffey, during the impeachment trial against President Donald Trump in the Senate at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, Tuesday, Jan. 21, 2020. (Senate Television via AP)
In this image from video, a graphic is displayed as impeachment manager Rep. Sylvia Garcia, D-Texas, argues in favor of a amendment offered by Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., to issue subpoenas to Robert Blair and Patrick Duffey, during the impeachment trial against President Donald Trump in the Senate at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, Tuesday, Jan. 21, 2020. (Senate Television via AP)
In this image from video, a graphic is displayed as impeachment manager Rep. Sylvia Garcia, D-Texas, argues in favor of a amendment offered by Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., to issue subpoenas to Robert Blair and Patrick Duffey, during the impeachment trial against President Donald Trump in the Senate at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, Tuesday, Jan. 21, 2020. (Senate Television via AP)
In this image from video, a graphic is displayed as impeachment manager Rep. Sylvia Garcia, D-Texas, argues in favor of a amendment offered by Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., to issue subpoenas to Robert Blair and Patrick Duffey, during the impeachment trial against President Donald Trump in the Senate at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, Tuesday, Jan. 21, 2020. (Senate Television via AP)
In this image from video, impeachment manager Rep. Sylvia Garcia, D-Texas, argues in favor of an amendment offered by Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., to issue subpoenas to Robert Blair and Patrick Duffey, during the impeachment trial against President Donald Trump in the Senate at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, Tuesday, Jan. 21, 2020. (Senate Television via AP)
In this image from video, a graphic is displayed as impeachment manager Rep. Sylvia Garcia, D-Texas, argues in favor of a amendment offered by Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., to issue subpoenas to Robert Blair and Patrick Duffey, during the impeachment trial against President Donald Trump in the Senate at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, Tuesday, Jan. 21, 2020. (Senate Television via AP)
In this image from video, a graphic is displayed as impeachment manager Rep. Jason Crow, D-Colo., speaks in favor of a amendment offered by Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., to subpoena documents from the Department of Defense, during the impeachment trial against President Donald Trump in the Senate at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, Tuesday, Jan. 21, 2020. (Senate Television via AP)
In this image from video, presiding officer Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts speaks during the impeachment trial against President Donald Trump in the Senate at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, Tuesday, Jan. 21, 2020. (Senate Television via AP)
In this image from video, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., speaks during the impeachment trial against President Donald Trump in the Senate at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, Tuesday, Jan. 21, 2020. (Senate Television via AP)
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