WASHINGTON — President Trump raged at his discovery Monday that Bread and Butter, the two turkeys he will pardon in the traditional pre-Thanksgiving White House ceremony, have not committed even a single war crime.

The president, who had tirelessly advocated for Navy SEAL Eddie Gallagher to retain his Trident pin even after being accused of war crimes and convicted of posing for a photograph with the corpse of a prisoner, reportedly was furious upon discovering that these turkeys had not been responsible for even one atrocity. Unlike the three service members Trump cleared earlier this month, the turkeys had never ordered soldiers to fire into a group of civilians, were not on trial for murdering anyone and had never posed for a single photo with a slain combatant.

What was the point, the president wanted to know, in pardoning them? This pardon seemed to send a message contrary to every principle the president has thus far espoused — that “killing machines” are good, that waterboarding is just swell, and that extremely vicious acts (such as the pigs’ blood-coated bullets he erroneously ascribed to Gen. John J. Pershing on the campaign trail) are the American way! How is it in keeping with Trump’s stated values to pardon two individuals who are not undermining traditionally held American values at home or abroad? The turkeys were not even autocrats!

While their fate was discussed, the turkeys ate feed and remained in their enclosure, like losers. They did not go on Fox News (perhaps laboring under a misperception of what the “Fox” referred to). They shook their wattles and gobbled intermittently. They made a mess of a single hotel room at the Willard but not as much of a mess as they could have and otherwise did nothing that could be described as even mildly monstrous. Aides rushed to doctor images of the turkeys next to human corpses so the president’s black, shriveled heart could delight in his act of mercy.

At time of writing, Trump had just received the devastating news that the turkeys had not committed even a financial crime.

Read more from Alexandra Petri: