Trump May Be Out of Town for His Big Military Parade

U.S. President Donald Trump and French President Emmanuel Macron attend the traditional Bastille Day military parade on the Champs-Elysees on July 14, 2017, in Paris, France. Thierry Chesnot/Getty Images
U.S. President Donald Trump and French President Emmanuel Macron attend the traditional Bastille Day military parade on the Champs-Elysees on July 14, 2017, in Paris, France. Thierry Chesnot/Getty Images

President Donald Trump's idea for a big military parade was hatched in Paris, and now France wants him back at the same time the fighters would zoom overhead and the tanks would roll down Pennsylvania Avenue in November.

Trump indicated late last month that Nov. 11, Veterans Day, is his preferred date for the parade, but French President Emmanuel Macron has now invited Trump to a security summit in Paris on Nov. 11 with 78 other world leaders.

Dana White, the chief Pentagon spokesperson, said Thursday of the parade that "we are looking towards November 11, around Veteran's Day, and also possibly in conjunction with the World War I centennial celebration. So it would be a celebration not only of our currently serving members but also those of the past."

Whether Trump himself would be around to watch the parade he ordered remains an open question. The White House declined comment on the president's travel schedule and referred all parade questions to the Pentagon, which had nothing further to offer, CNBC reported.

Trump has been fixated on having a parade to honor the military since he and First Lady Melania Trump attended the Bastille Day parade in Paris as guests of Macron last July.

"It was a tremendous day, and to a large extent, because of what I witnessed, we may do something like that on July 4th in Washington down Pennsylvania Avenue," Trump said in September of the Bastille Day parade he attended.

After discussions with the Pentagon, Nov. 11 has now replaced July 4th as the projected day for the parade.

"We're going to have to try to top it, but we have a lot of planes going over and a lot of military might, and it was really a beautiful thing to see," Trump said of his Paris experience.

Earlier this week, Army Col. Rob Manning said planning for the parade has begun but funding has yet to be identified.

"When we talk about the options -- the composition, the theme, the date, the location, the associated costs -- all those are being looked at as part of the options that are being created" for the parade, Manning said Monday at a Pentagon briefing.

"The funding stream is a line that [parade planners] would have to provide details on," Manning said.

-- Richard Sisk can be reached at Richard.Sisk@Military.com.

 

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