Trump cancels DC military parade; says he will go to Paris instead

Pauline Gross
August 20, 2018

US President Donald Trump said yesterday he would attend a November celebration in Paris marking the end of World War I - hours after the Pentagon announced it was postponing the much-maligned military parade that he had ordered.

Secretary of Defense James Mattis gave a strong rebuke to the recent news that the military parade, to take place at the orders of President Donald Trump, was going to cost $90 million.

The US President added that "maybe" the event would be held next year and stated that now the country can "buy some more jet fighters".

More: Pentagon says Trump's military parade postponed until 2019 amid reports costs jumped 666%.

A U.S. official told AFP on Thursday the planning estimate had soared as high as $92 million, though no final figure has been reached.

"Yup, I'm Muriel Bowser, mayor of Washington DC, the local politician who finally got thru to the reality star in the White House with the realities ($21.6M) of parades/events/demonstrations in Trump America (sad)", Bowser tweeted. "Never let someone hold you up!" he wrote. The officials spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss early planning estimates that have not yet been finalised or released publicly.

Washington Mayor Muriel Bowser suggested the cost to the city alone would have been more than $20 million.

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Mattis, who spoke before the announcement that the parade would not happen in 2018, added: "I'm not dignifying that number ($92 million) with a reply".

The tradition of grand military parades has been out of fashion in the US for a while. There was no indication of how long the parade would last - including whether it would span multiple days - or confirmation of the November 10 date, the official said.

Yes, a military parade would be an impressive and awe-inspiring showcase of our armed forces. Big, heavy tanks could tear up streets in the District of Columbia.

"The Department of Defense and White House have been planning a parade to honor America's military veterans and commemorate the centennial of World War I", said a statement.

Several administration officials described a sort of sticker shock after seeing a Pentagon estimate that soared as high as $92 million to pay for the troops, fighter jets, armored vehicles and other military hardware that would be mustered to satisfy the president's dream of displaying American might.

On Friday morning, Trump tweeted that he has canceled the parade for this year amid spiraling costs but indicated that it was potentially still on for 2019, if costs go down. We don't need a high-profile expenditure like a military parade to show what little regard for the voters' wallets we have.

Other reports by GizPress

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