President Donald Trump will get his military parade through Washington DC on Veterans’ Day, but without tanks. The Pentagon said only wheeled military vehicles would be on display, to avoid damaging roads.
Trump had floated the idea of a parade through the capital on the November 11 holiday, formerly Armistice Day, after being impressed by the Bastille Day celebrations in Paris last July on a state visit to his French counterpart Emmanuel Macron, boasting: “We’re going to have to try and top it.”
A Pentagon memo of guidelines for the event, released on Friday, said it should “Include wheeled vehicles only, no tanks – consideration must be given to minimize damage to local infrastructure.” But it said there would be a “heavy air component at the end of the parade” from the White House to the Capitol building, the seat of Congress, past the Trump International Hotel.
The event will cost the taxpayer an estimated $10-$30 million, White House budget director Mick Mulvaney said last month. But the city’s District of Columbia Council has ridiculed the idea, tweeting: “Tanks but no tanks!” last month.
Trump originally wanted the march-past on July 4, Independence Day, to take advantage of the good weather. Late in February, he conceded it would likely be in November, adding: “We’ll see if we can do it at a reasonable cost, and if we can’t, we won’t do it.”
Other major annual displays of military hardware around the world include Russia’s Victory Day parade through Moscow’s Red Square every May 9, China’s Army Day on August 1 and North Korea’s February 8 Army Day, where the 70-ton Hwasong-15 intercontinental ballistic missile on its 40-ton transporter-erector vehicle was on display this year.
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