As she visited an elephant sanctuary in Kenya on Friday, Melania Trump had to be stabilized by the shift supervisor on her Secret Service detail. Because one elephant decided to push its buddy and thus endanger the first lady!
Still, this isn't the first time the Secret Service have had to protect one of their charges against elephant-related excitement! Forty years ago, two Secret Service agents were slightly injured in the line of duty when a 10-year-old Amy Carter had to be removed from the path of an agitated elephant! As the New York Times reported at the time, "The 10‐year‐old daughter of President Carter was twice thrown from one agent to another across fences to get her out of the elephant's path, said Mary Hoyt, a press aide to Rosalynn Carter." Apparently that elephant had been spooked by a barking dog.
But while this all might seem a bit silly, it's worth noting that the Secret Service endeavor to take no chances with their protectees when it comes to elephants. The issue here isn't just that elephants are very heavy and very powerful, but that they are highly unpredictable. It's a lesson that the Carthaginian general, Hannibal, learned the hard way at the Battle of Zama in the late 3rd century B.C. as he sent his war elephants forwards to smash the front lines of the Roman general, Scipio Africanus. Hannibal expected that he would shock his enemy into disorder. Instead, Scipio ordered a sounding of horns which frightened a number of Hannibal's elephants into turning into their own flank, breaking the Carthaginian formation.
But I digress. The simple fact here is that the Secret Service don't take chances with humans or animals. And just as Mrs. Trump's agents would have been wary of saltwater crocodiles had she been traveling in Australia's Northern Territory, so were they always going to be ready for the baby elephants!